Synonyms: Kidou Senshi Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory
Japanese: 機動戦士ガンダム 0083 スターダストメモリー
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: May 23, 1991 to Sep 24, 1992
Duration: 30 min. per ep.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 7.521 (scored by 9,967 users)
1 indicates a weighted score. Please note that 'Not yet aired' titles are excluded.
2 based on the top anime page. Please note that 'Not yet aired' and 'R18+' titles are excluded.
Specifically we follow rookie pilot Kou Uraki, who by chance earns the right to pilot one of three new Gundam models in a search for Zeon remnant Anavel Gato who has stolen one of the two remaining Gundams. Kou and the rest of the Albion crew's battle with the ace pilot Gato and what remains of Zeon's forces leads them into Zeon's massive plan for revenge: "Operation Stardust". What is the true purpose of the desperate Zeon force's new plan? Aboard the Albion, Kou is forced to grow as a soldier not only for the sake of his mission but also to earn the love of Nina Purpleton, the Gundam development team's most stupidly named crew member.
Gundam 0083 is notorious for its reputation as "mecha porn". Not only is this one of the most disgusting combinations of words ever to come out of the English language, but it's an incredibly demeaning judgment that tells onlookers nothing other than to pass by this Gundam installment in favor of many others. Is this reputation deserved? To bring up the conclusion early because it deserves it: absolutely not. Gundam 0083 is far more than its high production values. On the contrary, it's by all measures one of the best Gundam installments ever made. I've yet to see any Gundam without sizable flaws that need to be fought to ignore, but relative to the franchise as a whole it's very puzzling as to why Gundam 0083 has its reputation.
It's logical then to start off addressing the most common criticism: that Kou Uraki and Nina Purpleton are terrible, frustrating characters. Among a franchise that's almost known for how its main protagonist is typically one of the least likable characters, it's bizarre to see 0083 getting so much fire for its characterizations. Kou's biggest offense in particular isn't so much his actions as that he's a fairly typical, normal man. Amuro Ray and Kamille Bidan were prone to some aggravating emotional fits, but they had a powerful voice with something to say and stood out among their peers. Kou is a hestitating soldier who gradually becomes a straight-faced normal one and at his most memorable is a bumbling lovestruck idiot who fails with women like someone who's never touched one in his life. While Kou and Nina's interactions and over exaggerations to each other's... over exaggerations can be rather cringeworthy, it's worth noting that they're (sadly) still among the most tolerable main Gundam characters simply for the fact that when they are being stupid, it's -almost- never in ways that selfishly jeopardizes their mission or the lives of their fellow crewmembers. They're normal people who dip into awkwardness now and again, as opposed to awkward people who dip into slight bouts of Tomino-induced schizophrenia.
From there we can get to one of the best qualities of Gundam 0083 that people -don't- talk about: its great supporting cast. Kou's best friend and fellow rookie pilot is the bespectacled Chuck Keith, a slacker dork who's basically the opposite of Kou in that he feigns confidence and fails at women and piloting completely while Kou gets anxious and sweats a lot yet succeeds. Keith grows as a pilot over the series as well but it's much more subtle since the focus is never on him, which turns out to be a waste (more on that later). South Burning (what) is their commander before and after their mission aboard the Albion. One of the franchise's better mentor pilots, we actually get to see Burning give Kou and Keith combat advice during their battles and his warm grandfather-esque guidance makes him immensely likable despite his also minor role. Bernard Monsha is the last major-minor character on the Albion and its third best pilot, despite his hiding of it through his excessive drinking, jealousy of Kou, and sexual harassment of Nina. Though not really a good person, Monsha is humanly flawed and his strong personality and expressions color some of the most memorable moments in 0083.
On the Zeon side we mainly see the aforementioned Gato, an ace pilot compared to the Red Comet Char Aznable. To describe Gato's character requires also bringing up one of the things 0083 does right relative to other Gundam series, which is actually portraying Zeon in a respectable fashion. The original Gundam series wanted to push the belief that both sides had good people on them, but the good Zeon soldiers were mainly minor characters pushed away before long to service screen time to the megalomaniacal Zabi family. Meanwhile, most of what we saw of the Earth Federation were of our admirable heroes. In the end it really wasn't daring enough to make that a major theme and deal with the consequences, but in 0083 we're given the perspective of Gato and his fellow Zeon soldiers without the Zabi family. For the first time we see for an extended period their dignity as soldiers, love for their homeland, and respect for each other and their ideals over their individual ambitions. The Zabis mostly go unmentioned, which helps to explain some of their extremism from their perspective that they were simply denied their independence, rather than the evil ambitions of the Zabi family.
Returning to Gato, he's a hero to the Zeon and a charismatic lynchpin of their rebellion, despite answering to the equally respectable Aiguille Delaz. Gato is also hinted to have some sort of a past relationship with Nina, but this ultimately amounts to very little and is handled so poorly it may as well not have been a part of the story at all. Gato is a cool character overall but an awkward rival for Kou, with the age and experience/perspective gap being too large to ever be cleared unlike Amuro/Char, and it doesn't help that the two actually barely have contact over the course of the series despite Gato getting several scenes dedicated to him. Kou eventually fights Gato on equal skill, but there's just very little chemistry to their relationship dynamic and we're ultimately treated to one of the franchise's more underwhelming rivalries. And of course, there's need to mention Gato being a significantly better character than Kou.
On the other hand, the evil seeds of Zeon have passed down into Cima Garahau, a fierce queen bee who commands her own fleet, stylized like that of space pirates complete with animal furs lining the command center and an old ship wheel at the helm. It's a little ridiculous, but I love this villain. Her tastes are hardly contemporary but do nothing to undermine her fleet's power potential and add a lot stylistic flair without being too unrealistic despite tackiness. Cima herself is expectedly combative and frequently defiant of the Delaz fleet, and in addition to her wearing a cape and garnishing a hand fan her men wear worn and tattered uniforms. Cima is badass and fulfills the evil role on the enemy side while also making it very fun. Many of the series's most exciting scenes involve Cima and she overall contributes the most to the show's sense of style.
Though Tomino is given a writing credit, I can only assume (and be thankful) that he didn't actually have much of a hand in the dialogue, which is the most down-to-earth behind The 8th MS Team, which is the most commonly cited reason as to why people favor that series. Kou and Nina can be weird and forgettable, but they're surrounded by likable archetypes. It's unfortunate then that after the midway point Gundam 0083's own director switches, and they push so many of these characters to the backburner in order to focus solely on Operation Stardust and Kou's weird obsession with Gato. These characters go from being in every other scene and talking to delivering a handful of lines each episode and lose what further chance they had at developing themselves. It's a real shame, and if the series didn't develop so much good momentum by this point it could have been enough to cripple what was left. Instead we're left with an above average Gundam cast that are yet utilized less effectively than most. It's a waste of potential.
Getting back to the original point and Gundam 0083's legacy is the animation quality. In general the series is as detailed as early 90s anime ever got, and although greater things have been achieved since with even higher budgets, it's obvious that this OVA production still far exceeds your average TV production. On the other hand, it's got that same disease all early 90s OVAs and movies have where it looks like all the black ink pens were broken and leaking ink over every cel. In other words, many scenes are extremely dark and have a significant negative impact on the composition of a scene by so many figures and poses going unhighlighted. This is doubly troublesome considering almost all of the series takes place in the darkness of space, and Gundam 0083 isn't much an exception when it comes to space battles where they use heavy zoom-ins and no sense of perspective to have the action be chaotic and unpredictable. Laser blasts and enemies come in from any side of the screen whenever without a logical progression to much of the battle or fighting. The early battles that take place on the ground on Earth are by far the best, and it's unfortunate it's downhill from there when Gundam has a rare opportunity to make use of a fat budget.
Though Gundam 0083 stumbles around here and there, so does every single Gundam, and yet 0083 is able to tap into some of the strengths of its greatest series to create one of the most cohesive entries in the franchise. The bizarre Tomino dialogue is nowhere to be found, characters aren't always mature but this doesn't result in completely insane actions and decisions, the often criticized "Newtype magic" is pretty much nonexistent, the cast is enjoyable and brought to life due to great detailed expressions gifted by its nice budget that also aids the show in general and makes the action better than ever before, and... boy, what's the problem? Stardust Memories isn't only one of the most unfairly maligned Gundam entries, it's one of the first ones anybody should watch. It's due for a more fair, less superficial analysis don't you think? read more
Kou and Anavel do have good chemistry as rivals, but isn’t really that epic in comparison to that of Char and Amuro. Not saying it’s a bad thing, but you really can’t top that. The cast does ok in standing out, but I just don’t feel they have the kind of impact that an Amuro, Captain Bright, or another cast member from the original Gundam can have. But both Kou and Gato are likeable characters in their own right and you can see things in their points of view. Kou just has something to prove to himself and to his peers, while Gato is doing it for duty and patriotism to his nation.
The only thing that bothered me was the Nina and Kou story arc. I felt it was thrown in there too much for convenience and I felt for the sake of giving it an all around story by adding in that element, which I felt was unnecessary. Yes, I will admit that Nina and Kou do have a good chemistry as well, but I just felt it was really useless and doesn’t really advance anything and felt the twist to that relationship was anti-climatic. But anyway, the development is basic and the pace is moderate.
I think the art design is really excellent for its time. It represents a certain transition era of how anime is done today to how it was done back then. Like if you’re familiar with my other reviews, I always talk about how in the 1980s, anime was more circular and in the 1990s and now, it’s more angular. Well, this anime was done in the early 1990s and you get a balanced mixed of those styles and they mesh excellently. I say Kou’s circular design really represents he’s still a kid, and Gato’s more angular look shows more dignity and maturity and higher status to him. So I really like that use of those art styles to contrast those two in my personal opinion.
The mobile suit designs I think are my 2nd favorite of all time. After all, the great Shoji Kawamori himself does the mechanical designs; you can’t deny his presence and credit. I like how detailed and articulate they are. Though the mobile suits tend to look more packed and bulky, the skills of the pilots that are portrayed justify their agile mobility and fast speeds. The action is explosive, fast paced, and electrifying. Plus, the GP02A like some other Gundams sort of breaks the tradition with the head design of being more rectangular and not having the grilled mouth, which I thought was cool and looked intimidating. I really loved the features all the mobile suits have and you get overall variety.
OK, I will state that I have no familiarity with the dub with this anime so I can only comment and score on the Japanese. Forgive me for not mentioning the dub since I have never seen it. I was shocked to learn that Horikawa Ryo, the voice of Vejita from Dragon Ball Z, happens to voice Kou Uraki! In comparison to Vejita with this role, he’s more humble, childish, and developing. I thought he did excellent in portraying such a character. And I also enjoyed Ohtsuka Akio’s performance as Gato. He also voices in Solid Snake in the Japanese Metal Gear Solid and is also famous for playing Batou in the Ghost in the Shell installments. He brings a unique kind of appropriate charisma to the character where you can also feel the passion he his motivations.
The majority of the music is also highly energetic and suits the high-octane atmosphere of this series. The opening theme, The Winner is highly addictive and goes along with how I just described the soundtrack and atmosphere in an overall sense. And the first ending theme, Magic, is a unique George Michaels esque love song that is sung in perfect English. It’s about wanting that moment with that girl now and forever and want to always make it special. Gundam 0083 does have some romance, so I felt it was an interesting touch.
I say 0083 is more for the dedicated and hardcore Gundam fan. Those not familiar with the Gundam franchise will probably not understand some of the basic concepts such as who Giren and Kycilia are who are briefly mentioned in the intro to the first episode, and about why Sydney is under water. But if you want to watch it for the action, then you’ve come to the right series. Also, if you want to watch cool looking robots, then you still came to the right series. The plot isn’t necessarily the best, but I don’t think it’s flawed enough to be considered bad or below average. Granted some things about it do get annoying, but in the end everything works out. Once again, I still say those who are familiar with the original Gundam, and especially Zeta Gundam are going to understand the story best considering the purpose of this anime. read more
The premise 0083's story is very promising at first glance. The valiant and desperate attempt of the Zeon remnants to pave a road for the future of its beliefs and its people makes them commendable antagonists, and the thus viewers are able to sympathize with both sides in the struggle between Federation and Zeon. However, upon closer inspection, one finds the story riddled with the juvenile rivalry between Uraki and Monsha, as well as the thoroughly uninteresting romance between Uraki and Nina, which derails the focus from the promising overarching conflict to rather petty squabbles. When the story of 0083 is in high gear, it is quite rewarding, rife with exciting battles and unexpected twists. The problem is, like an aged car, 0083 often finds itself stuck on its low gears in terms of storytelling.
Much of the faults concerning the plot of 0083 can be blamed on the main characters themselves. Uraki is a painfully generic mecha protagonist without much, if any, redeemable qualities. Angsty and lacking confidence, the story does not provide much room in which the view can sympathize with him, even considering the challenges Uraki faces over the course of the story. Nina's role as Uraki's love interest only manages to evoke either terrible boredom or the gag reflex; it is bland and devoid of any trance of genuine emotion. Gato, though certainly better than the aforementioned pair, also gets somewhat tedious from his own over-zealousness -- he is a character who seems to gobble up the very propaganda he spews, which in turn makes it more difficult to hold respect for the character.
Fortunately, 0083 excels in the animation department. Each and every fight is smoothly animated with hand-drawn frames, be it a small training skirmish or a grand space battle. This OVA series features detailed and technical background art and some of the most exciting action scenes from the gundam franchise to date, especially those of the last battle, which can only described as epic in proportion. 0083 also features superb mecha designs not only in the form of the gundams themselves, but also the various grunt suits used by both factions. Even after seventeen years, the visuals of 0083 are still more than enough to lure the gaze of any mecha fan.
The sounds of 0083 are standard fare. Typical gundam sound effects are to be expected here, which is just fine, as they serve their purpose well. The catchy opening theme "Men of Destiny" is full of that nostalgic 90's feel -- it gets the viewer in the mood for some giant robot action.
In the end, the flaws of 0083's plot and characters limit the enjoyment of the OVA series exclusively to fans of the mecha genre. However, mecha fans will be able to find plenty of what they love: superb sci-fi action, and mobile suit battles they'll remember for a long time to come, provided they can manage to endure through the other aspects of 0083, which may feel agonizingly long and difficult. read more
Gundam 0083 gets started with a bang in the very first episode and the momentum carries through all the way to its dramatic end. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep you hooked and waiting for what's to come. Both drama and action are given equal screen time and presented with equal intensity.
For an OVA from 1991, the animation quality in this series is simply amazing. In fact, Gundam 0083 still shines by today's standards. The design of the artwork itself is also a highlight with great detail being put into backgrounds and things such as uniforms.
There is quite a bit of the typical background music you'd expect to hear in a war story. However, also included are some well-composed atmospheric pieces that set the mood for certain dramatic scenes. The opening themes are upbeat and catchy, with the second in particular being a highlight with it's brilliant guitarwork. Both endings are slower ballad type numbers. The contrast works well here as it fits with the anime's ability to balance dynamics. In terms of voice acting, the main vocal cast cast does a great job conveying the emotions of their characters. The English dub is also surprisingly well done and on par with the original.
We are the shown the perspective of both the Zeon and Earth Federation with the main focus being on Anavel Gato and Kou Uraki, respectively. The characters of Gundam 0083 are all adult which makes this series stand out from most other Gundam stories. Don't take that mean there ins't as much room for character development though, as plenty of growth occurs during the course of the OVA.
As the series progressed, I was drawn in more and more by the characters and found myself torn between the two warring sides. Every episode left me in anticipation of the next.
As someone who isn't extremely fond of mecha series in general, Gundam 0083 was able to keep me entertained and make me wish there were more shows like it.
9.5 out of 10 read more
The other thing you'll take away from it...is how poorly written some of the characters and scenarios are. Nothing really stands out: Nina's a bitch, Gato is manly and a fantatic, Cima wears too much makeup, Burning is Burning, and Kou hates carrots. Nobody's really worth mentioning, and whenever there aren't beautiful mobile suits on the screen, you want to skip past the aimless dialouge and watch some more giant robot matches. There's talk of conspiracy, and the ineptitude of the Federation's bureaucracy is a lot more apparent here than it was in first. The OVA ties into Zeta Gundam, but the references, and its place in the Universal Century timeline aren't too obvious the first time around, and feel a bit out of place. It's the same kind of problem that the Star Wars prequels suffered from: everything looks shiny and new compared to the older material, and a little bit of text at the end of the OVA keeps it from messing with the continuity. All of that aside, it fleshes out our understanding of the Gundam universe a little bit more, an gives us lots of cool-looking mecha to play around with. And most importantly, more cool-looking mecha to buy as plastic models. read more
The 8th MS team is the best UC OVA in my opinion but 0083 had a real chance of sitting on that throne if only the director hadn't switched half way through, the second half of the show (as enjoyable as it is) is told clumsily, the plot twists come across weakly and you can't help but feel something integral is missing from the show. The first half episodes 1-7 are perfect and deserve a 10 rating on their own.
The Characters are all fairly typical but they work well together, gato the nightmare of solomon especially, who I find to be cooler than char (just my own opinion). Nina and Ensign Uragi have a bumpy romance. As far as development goes Uragi is the only one who really changes but then in a 13 ep series its difficult to focus on developing the whole cast.
The story is well told until episode 7 and afterwards bad directing aside the plot is multilayered, I won't say anything else because I don't want to spoil anything for anybody. I would reccomend this to any fan of UC gundam, not as an introductory series though.
I love the art, we all know modern mecha can't compare to the classics, the handdrawn backgrounds bring the whole show to life. I want to give this show a 9 but for reasons I've already stated its getting an 8 =[. read more
Beyond my praises though, Gundam 0083 does have a number of issues that hurt its quality quite a bit for me. A number of 0083's prominent characters are rather underdeveloped compared to others, making them either rather shallow in personality or having you question the reasons for their actions during certain points of the series. To a degree, this issue takes effect in the rather sloppy and anticlimactic finale to the series as characters betray one another for no known purpose and leave you wondering why they did what they did. Towards the middle of 0083, the series also tossed in an unconvincing love triangle involving Nina and Kou which comes across as flat due to the lack of proper buildup and chemistry between the two in terms of developing such an aspect to their relationship. And while I'm not too hard pressed about it, there may be Gundam fans disappointed to know that none of the major UC Gundam characters from Gundam or Zeta Gundam appear at all in this series outside of cameo appearances by a few supporting characters from both titles.
Overall, I found this chapter of the Universal Century continuity of the Gundam franchise to be a bit of a mixed bag. While a decent addition to the franchise to show what led to the creation of the Titans and having well-animated mecha fights, the sloppy finale, limited depth to certain major characters and unconvincing romances hurt its overall quality quite a bit. I would say watch it so you knew what led to the events of Zeta Gundam, but wouldn't recommend watching it more than once. read more
Mobile Suit Gundam 0083 is a highly underrated work in the Gundam series.
I feel this is because people have the wrong sorts of expectations going into the show, but since I watched this with no preconceived notions, I feel like I was able to enjoy it for what it was.
The story is set in 0083, just four years after the One Year War and the events of the original trilogy. While some of the events are related to bridging a gap in the UC timeline between Zeta Gundam and the original, the story is its own self-contained entity with a lot to offer.
The romance angle may not have anything on MS 08th Gundam team, but it is still solid. Moreover, its rather ordinary, when put up against the canvas of a major civil disturbance and War. This creates a sense of the people and situations being real. The interaction between the soldiers themselves feature some good old fashioned ribs, and petty jealousy, making the whole thing FEEL like a military base.
Often times, these fairly petty personal issues will crop up in battle. For instance, the pilots relationship with their commander, Lt.Burning is pulled off rather well and Burning himself is a badass. Another character whose compelling personal story is Kelly Layzner, a former Zeon pilot that Ko meets towards the middle of the story. These simple, but effective relationships makes the battles meaningful and interesting to watch. This tapestry of interpersonal relationships also taps into the overall plot going on in the background, featuring series setpieces like Anaheim electronics, the Zeon remnants, and ending with the Formation of the TITANS at the very end.
OVerall, the story is an interesting Gundam sidestory, much like MS 08th Gundam Team and I found it highly enjoyable. Just don't go in expecting to find out what Char was up to and youll be fine. read more
Firstly may I start by saying the animation in this ova puts ninety percent of the animation that we get in todays anime to shame.The detail by which each character is drawn is simply phenominal.You dont see eyes that cover three quarters of the face , ears that are crudely drawn or triangular pointed chins.The animators ensured that every wrinkle is seen,every character has their unique physique and dont simply look like cardboard cutouts.the background whether earth or space is well done and not overdone with unrealistically bright colours.
The music is ok,nothing special but I did like the closeing theme,its a real soothing love song that goes well with the love aspect of the ova.
Now character wise this ova pales in comparison to the likes of gundam 08th Ms Team,their not bad just not memorable.Kou Uraki is the enthusiastic young pilot with a passion for everything gundam.He is quite naive with a childlike attitude.Nina Purpleton Is a engineer who life revolves around her work with little time for anything else.The action sequences are also good though not the best.
Overall a good ova thats worth a watch.
From what I can gather, "Gundam 0083" is a continuation of a chain of earlier Gundam series which eventually can be traced back to the original Gundam series, "Mobile Suit Gundam: 0079". The original Gundam series is supposed to be pretty good, but it needs to be a lot better than "Gundam 0083" in order to live up to that kind of praise, because "Gundam 0083" is a bit lame. I may not know how good the series sound in Japanese, but given the uninspiring script, I doubt even a bunch of highly skilled voice actors would be able to make it sound good.
It may be because I hadn't watched the previous series, but I found the story in "Gundam 0083" to be somewhat confusing. "Gundam 0083" fails as a standalone series, as it doesn't really provide any background on the seeds of conflict that has obviously been sewn previous to this installment. I don't know who this Zeon group is, I don't know where they've recruited this psycho woman from... I don't even know why they're fighting. They're sacrificing their lives for what ideals again??
At the heart of the "Gundam 0083", there are lots of paper thin characters. Knowing full well they're pretty poor, the producers then sacrificed realism and rationality in order to make them "interesting". As a result we end up with lots of strange twists in the storyline where people make bizarre decisions to try and spice up the predictable plot. The ending is terrible too. If, by some miracle, it managed to resolve anything, I must have missed it.
Having said all this, most of this series was still enjoyable to some extent. The development of the relationship between Nina and Kou is quite pleasant to watch, even though it is a bit predictable. Visually, "Gundam 0083" has some nice and distinguishable character designs, and the battles scenes are competently done, if not exactly memorable. There is one thing that is memorable about "Gundam 0083", however, and that's the second opening theme "Men of Destiny". It's a very cheesey 80's kind of song... and I love it! Its grand and energetic feel means that it works nicely as the theme to a Gundam series. A pity the anime itself isn't nearly as good.
Interestingly, I found my viewing experience of "Gundam 0083" to be opposite to that of "Gundam Seed Destiny". With the latter, I sometimes found it an effort to watch even though I acknowledge the quality of the anime. With "Gundam 0083", even though I knew what I was watching isn't particularly good, I just couldn't seem to stop watching it! Still, I guess I should count that as a positive trait. read more
It started off great with a good story, interesting characters, good music, and mobile suit design, and amazing animation. Sadly it spiraled out of control quickly. I think they tried to do to much in just 13 episodes. They should have expanded it to 24 or 26. First off they add to many characters, which made the story get convoluted, and the end revelations meant nothing since there was no back story leading to it. The ending seemed hurried and boring. The only really good think about this seres is the animation. The series was made nearly 20 years ago in 1990, and they animation is better than some anime that come out today. I'm not sure who did the animation, but they did a great job. The music was done really well, but that's it. read more
Overall 0083 is a pretty descent. It acts as a bridge for Zeta and the original series. In 0083 a team of ragtag Zeon fleets that honestly act more like terrorists than soldiers to try and topple the Federation. They do use many Gundam cliches though, i.e. a colony drop. However, it is still terrifying and the way Operation Stardust unfolds is brilliant.
The art is everything you've come to expect from Sunrise, in the last two decades anyway. The mechanical designs will blow you away and their fluent movement is positively gorgeous. Takashi Imanishi really knew what he was doing.
The characters really aren't anything different, except the protagonist Kou. He is considerably less emo than Amuro or Kamille. All the other Gundam stereotypes fit. Gato is the ace Zeon pilot who strikes fear in the heart of Feddie soldiers (Char). Synapse is the calm collected captain of the Albion (Bright).
Overall despite the many cliches 0083 is very enjoyable, I recommend it to any Gundam or mech fan. I ecspecially recommend it to fans of Gundam Zeta. read more