Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans is the story of a show that tries to achieve so much in a fairly long time, and somehow manages to fall face flat on earth in everyway imaginable.
Second Season starts roughly a few years from when the first season ended. And it carries on the same problems the first season had.
Story itself largely follows McGillis' machinations as he, and later on, Tekkadan, as they look to change the world and make a better one for themselves. In itself this plotline is not particularly bad. The show however, multiple times, takes too long to come to any point, and regularly writes itself
into a corner, and uses completely bullshit methods to take itself out of this corners, sometimes with hilarity might I add. It spends episodes wasting it's time on pointless plotlines that, in the end, add absolutely nothing to the story.
The main problem of IBO however is it's characters and their development, or lack thereof. For a show that tries so hard to develop it's characters, IBO fails to develop them to any meaningful point. Mika is the same person he was in Episode 1. Orga is only slightly altered from where he was in Episode 1. Rest of the cast is exactly the same people they were in Episode 1. McGillis, who was hyped up to be a cunning mastermind, constantly fails in hilarious fashion, making you wonder if he is actually retarded.
They also have the gall to add new characters like Hush, when they fail to develop the characters they had since Episode 1. Hush, and rest of the new cast, achieves nothing, and at the end of the story, you just sit there and wonder what the fuck was even the point of addind these characters. Some of these characters are there only to further the plot, like Rustal, who has no personality other than furthering the plot. That's it.
There was also the ending, but I'm not even gonna mention it too much. The writers did not have any guts to end on a dark note so they made it so that everything works out in the end without Tekkadan or McGillis' volition. I was honestly laughing and making fart noises with my mouth throughout the entire last 10 minutes of the last episodes. It was fucking nonsensical.
Art and animation is just okay. There is nothing special about it. It's neither particularly bad nor really good. Generally mediocre character designs lack any kind of flair or vision.
Music is a disappointment from stellar soundtracks of Unicorn and Thunderbolt. It's completely forgettable.
Overall, IBO is a show that, despite the hype it has on it's back now, will join the ranks of SEED Destiny and AGE as worst Gundam shows to date, with it's forgettable cast, meager plot, horrible pacing and overall mediocreness.
(At the time of writing, the second season is 11 episodes in.)
The more the series progresses the more it tries to victimize the Tekkadan as people who are being used by everyone around them, there are no decent adults who are genuinely their ally except Naze who has placed an unusual level of faith towards them just as McGillis does. The problem with no other adult being a decent human being is that it becomes hard to want to see the story from another perspective because the only thing you are going to get is a person fueled by greed. It's
pretty much impossible to differentiate what kind of person the boss of the Teiwaz is from any of the Gjallarhorn leaders because they're all the same: greedy old men who want more power.
On the opposite spectrum of goals we have the Tekkadan, who want more power so they can have farm and live peacefully...or something. The predictable and way too telegraphed deaths of multiple of its characters doesn't help how the series really wants to drive in how unfortunate their situation is and how they're always being played with. A simple solution would have been to introduce other factions who were treated similarly and actually focus on them or even just their interactions with the Tekkadan because at this point it just seems like they're the only ones who have it that bad.
From it's allusions to Jeanne D'Arc to its aforementioned predictable deaths, this anime lacks any kind of subtlety or even expects ay kind of intelligence from its viewers, one of the most recent episodes has a scene where a woman from Gjallarhorn spends a minute theorizing why a certain character wears a mask and is actually spot-on, this takes away any opportunity for the person watching to analyze or interpret the masked man themselves. It even goes very over-dramatic for the most banal of scenes, including one where the leader of the Tekkadan refuses to eat his food microwaved because "he just deals with whatever in front of him as it is" as if any viewer would actually consider this a good reason to not get off their ass and heat up their meal for 20 seconds, though with how highly rated this series is maybe that is the case.
The mobile suit designs are the worst they've ever been, from the most boring mass-produced unit "Graze" to even the main unit "Barbatos", who is a an anorexic sheep. even the gimmick of it constantly being refitted is pointless and unmemorable because the things that distinguish each different form aren't important and only used once or twice. It's sad to see G-Reco with it's great designs and most inventive main unit be a flop while this is even considered a success.
G-Tekketsu is a very boring war drama, the kind where there is visibly only one side to root for, that side being the oppressed children of mars who were treated as space trash, other than that there isn't any complexity or subtlety to them because the anime itself goes out of it's way to explain exactly how the characters feel and what drive their actions, even if those actions make absolutely no sense, leaving nothing to the viewer to chew on. It fails to create in interesting world that has different nuanced factions that aren't just there for the plot: I still can't tell what exactly Teiwaz do when their not gathered at the table doing nothing but drive the plot in a predictable way.
So we've finally reached the end of the ride, and what a ride it has been. IBO disappointed many fans early on due to the fact that (1) it isn't crossbone, (2) it is somewhat different from all the other gundam series and (3) it has no "waifu" as some of my mates have pointed out.
That being said, what IBO is full of is tear jerking moments, a few twists and turns which depending on your experience you may be able to predict, and lots and lots of deaths. As usual the ops, eds and osts are very good, and unlike clannad's ones
they actually fit in with the story, meaning you wan't get a happy/dango song after someone's death.
The characters are not bad, but as I've mentioned some people have pointed out that the female characters need a little bit more work put into them, which isn't necessarily wrong, but it doesn't in the grand scale of things affect your enjoyment.
All in all watching even if you aren't a huge fan of mecha, but if this really isn't your thing then you won't be missing out on too much.
A de-railed steam train which desperately burnt it's somewhat impressive coal stash just to move an inch.
I assume everyone reading this has prior knowledge on Gundam Iron Blooded Orphans season 1. So turn away if you don't want to be spoiled.
To start with the good. The soundtrack, amazing as always. Blends in flawlessly with the battle scenes, simply outstanding. Considering it's a work of Yokoyama Masaru, the man behind the soundtrack of Your Lie in April, Plastic Memories, this man knows how to capture your attention and evoke emotions. The sound design is also amazing with clashes of metal and projectiles impacting the mobile suits
which gives out a down-to-earth vibe to a universe where beam weaponry is rarely seen or used.
The visuals, though not as eye-catching as other gundam series such as thunderbolt and Unicorn, are great nonetheless. Some of the fights are the best that I've seen in a while, brutal and emotionally gripping. The series seldom uses recycled animations, (which already makes it leagues above Seed/Seed Destiny/GBF Try) and displays nice details such as the nano-laminate armor flaking off as the Mobile Suits get hit as well has the melee clashes.
Now for the bad. Although there is no denying that I like the characters, their deaths ultimately meant nothing from season 1 all the way to season 2, Biscuit, Naze, Shino just to name a few. Sure, they did burn fiercely when thrown into the combustion chamber, yet the train just won't move. It doesn't matter if you're burning expensive fuel, as long as there are no tracks under the train, it's all pointless.
From start to finish, you're supposed to believe that everything will change for these kids, that they won't be exploited anymore by the powerful and greedy: and season 1 did an okay job at moving it's plot, yet in second season it de-railed itself. All these deaths were supposed to warn Orga the consequences of leading Tekkadan without organisation or planning, yet Orga presses on like a fucking retard and pulls off mental gymnastics just to move on the next plot point . Not only that, but these deaths had no significance at all, nothing within the IBO universe would have changed because these deaths lack any believable consequence. Death only means no more screen-time for certain characters, nothing more, nothing less. There are no emotional bonds being broken, no meaningful ideals being destroyed and so there are no shits that anyone should give.
Some praise the series for ending with a sad note, yet there is nothing enjoyable about forced tragedies. If only the writing made more sense, the orphans could have been portrayed as actual victims of circumstance and not just dumb cannon fodder who deserved what was coming for them. And I say cannon fodder very loosely as the Tekkadan kids don't really get any sort of development as they once did in season 1 to a point where the show should be called "Gundam Iron Blooded Orga/ Mikazuki" instead. Orga keeps blindly pressing on-wards for the sake of Mikazuki and Mikazuki keeps throwing his life away for the sake of Orga. Tekkadan as the organisation of "Gundam Iron Blooded Orphans" has no significance to the plot whatsoever.
I'd say IBO knows how to introduce likable characters, but doesn't know how to deal with them, given the loose writing that has been plaguing the series. To a point where the only way for characters to get screen-time is kill them off. It knows how to press the right buttons with showing us their motivations and why we should feel sad for these deaths, but in the end, you can drown yourself in THEM FEELS all you want, you can burn all that coal to your hearts content, yet we all know where this train is really going: absolutely nowhere.
"There's no pure evil and there's no pure good in this world. The good and evil just a matter of perspective."
Sorry if my english were bad ^_^
Iron Blooded Orphans Season 2 (IBO S2) has already surpass my expectation. I have watched Gundam since Wing until today (IBO S2). Sometimes, i'll go to the classic one (Gundam, Zeta, ZZ, G-Gundam). But, this series really exceed my expectation. Gundam series didn't just about someone piloting giant robots fight and kill each other. There's always a deep moral value in every series, the political aspect, drama, and conflict around the main protagonist as the main dish of Gundam
series. Love stories around the characters on stories is just like it's garnish.
On several years, the quality of Gundam series are under my expectation since AGE and *the worst one* G Reconguista. But, thanks to IBO the Gundam series can extend the breath of this series.
Story: More darker, the conflict were more complicated, the "feels" are everywhere, and moral message make us questioned our understanding about good and evil in our perspective.
The stories started when Tekkadan has been recognized as a legitimate organization. Not just ordinary organization, this season they deepen the main theme of this series, FAMILY. Orga, as their leader is trying to find a place and future where they can live happily ever after. But, the conflicts that revolve around them can't let it happen in subtle ways. Of course, the blood and the brutality of this series are increased. The weakest plot in this season stories are Mika character development (although he's kuudere), the love triangle harem things around him, and how they dethrone Kudelia as main heroine. The finale of this season, strengthen the statement that I make at first and strengthen the roots of the stories of all Gundam series, that war is to painful for both sides and it can't resolve anything. In the end, our "antagonist" Rustal Ellion, created the world that Tekkadan and McGillis want to made. Gjallarhorn evolving and become more democratic, the world with peace and equality, and Mars has achieved it's true independent. So, don't judge someone just because he has different perspective and ways to achieve the goal that we want to attain too.
Art: the art far away better than the 1st season. The details of the mobile suits and it's character are more better than the 1st season. At 1st season I almost dropped this series because of the artwork and the slow paced stories. But, when the series going to be like roller coaster, the artwork already accustomed to me. The 1st season, just like an introduction to those artwork, and the 2nd season they went all out to perfecting it. The battle scene of the finale was very enjoyable and entertaining. Probably the best of this whole series.
Sound: the soundtrack are very enjoyable. Especially the 1st opening and ending. The 2nd opening isn't my kind. But, the 2nd ending really flew the feels away especially at episode 23. The sound effect are more audible and epic especially when the mobile suit hammering and slicing each other. There's no more beam in IBO series. So, the noise when the fight happen didn't noisy like it's predecessor, and it's really help the audience to concentrate on the fighting scene.
Overall, I enjoyed the series. Gundam back on it's root when IBO series out. The battle scene, the artwork, and the stories (exclude the love triangle harem thing) are already passed my expectations. It really know how to feast the audience who grew up watching Gundam, and for me this Iron Blooded Orphans make Gundam 00 series is like to "soft" for me who grew up watching Gundam.
Gundam is for 15 and above when it first release. Thanks to AGE and *The Worst One* G Reconguista series, they are success to weaken the Gundam series grip as king of mecha genre anime with reason "to attract the younger audience". There's no need for Gundam to change it's way. Because, people like Gundam the way they are. I even watch Gundam Wing when I just a little kid. Even the stories were darker and complicated, Gundam Wing really hooked me up to Gundam series. So, to someone who says He/She is Gundam fans but only watch from Gundam 00 above. Man, you don't know the true colors and nature of Gundam. Gundam 00 is one of the best. But, still IBO is the one who make Gundam series back to it's roots, and admit it. This Gundam series are more Gundam since the 1st Gundam.
Okay so basically Gundam:Iron blooded orphans was pretty good, but Iron blooded orphans season 2? Now thats just terrible AND I MEAN TERRIBLE, first off we gundam lovers watch gundam for the action and romance right? And the action being the main gundam guy slaughtering 1000000000 movile suits in a blink of a eye with eye appealing effects and slicing and dicing and gun firing explosions, well dont expect any of that in this anime because there are fights but like its 1 overpowered gundam with 1 mobile suit with the power equivilent to a gundam with 10 mobiles suits and a annoying ass enemy
character (just know that this anime also has annoying enemy characters which make you want to break their soul but when this anime does make it happen its not as satisfying as you would want it to be) with a pretty good leader vs. The main group because i guess the anime wants to focus more on the group than the main guy and i can see that since the main guy litterally has no emotions at all, also another terrible thing is that the whole anime is 1 guy beating 10 mobile suits with a hammer rod like thing when if he had a sword he couldve sliced the mobile suits making less un needed deaths because theres only like 3 good deaths so far out of the 10 deaths that couldve been more dramatic. Another factor why this anime makes me sick is that THE DAMN ANIME SHOULDNT BE CALLED GUNDAM ITS JUST ANOTHER MECHA ANIME and what i mean by that is gundam anime are where the gundam LOOKS LIKE A GUNDAM, The person using the gundam freaken kills everything in sight and wants to stop war but no this guy fights because he follows this leader who says one thing then out of nowhere he does the exact opposite and which results in the main guy killing 4 mobile suits which takes a whole episode by the way to end 1 little fight that probably couldve been reduced to 5 mins instead 18 mins. Also I mentioned "looks like a gundam" and what i mean by that is the main movile suit in the anime is legit the ugliest main mobile suit ive seen in any mecha anime, like its terrible the enemy and even a side guy has a better looking machine than the main guy and the other mobile suits look like gundams meanwhile barbatos looks like a machine from some knock off mecha anime trying to be gundam. So this is my review for the season 2 and yes season 1 was pretty good but season 2 is just terrible and destroyed my hype and expectations for this anime as a whole and in all honestly the anime play of characters is pretty bad and the satisfaction of dead annoying enemies and feels of dead favorable characters is rarely there while other gundam series give the satisfaction of death of enemies and feels favorable characters. I guess after releasing my anger on this anime I can see that the thing this anime lacks is good character development and disgraces gundam series in a whole because gundam at least to me have AMAZING character development which intrigues me to keep watching. So yeah I guess you can like this anime but honestly compared to the other gundam series this one has to be one of the badder ones.
The second season of Iron-Blooded Orphans is a disjointed sequel that is disappointing to say the least. None of the emotional weight that the first season carried managed to make its weight into the second season. Rather than being a meaningful continuation of a remarkable series, IBO S2 ends up becoming a predictable series that at times can almost seem like a chore to watch.
My biggest complaint would be the show’s attempts to generate an emotional response. In the first season, the audience was introduced to a group of battle-hardened child soldiers bent on forging their own path. And like
almost any other story in the same vein, there is tragedy and death along the way. While this aspect of IBO continues on in the first season, IBO S2 suffers from the problem of creating tragedy for the sake of tragedy.
And yes, this is Iron-Blooded Orphans, so expect protagonists to die as well.
Whereas the first season had Tekkadan members die in order to create meaningful plot development, the second season feels rather empty when it comes to its attempt at creating emotional and poignant events.
For instance, when characters die, their deaths cease to have an impact beyond the scope of maybe one or two episodes after.
Another problem would be the way Tekkadan’s growth as a mercenary outfit is handled. The boss, Orga, constantly doubts his own ability to lead. And although this is a very logical flaw to have in a character thrust in an unfriendly world, it becomes rather annoying when these flaws are mentioned in almost every single episode. Many of the great characters of Tekkadan have become relegated to being tools for the writers to directly tell the audience how Orga is developing as a character.
Character development should be implicit, rather than directly stated. We don’t need characters literally laying it out for the audience in order for us to see that characters have changed. We don’t need three minutes of dialogue about how the crew members think that so-and-so has changed as a person. That’s just lazy writing if anything.
So basically, if you thought Eugene was a great character in the first season, prepare to be disappointed. His main role is going to be simply reminding you of how Orga’s changing as a leader.
Finally, a huge problem I noticed was how plot twists or surprises seem either artificial and / or obvious. You’ll notice what I mean as soon as the character of Vidar is introduced. If you are seriously surprised to find out who he is later on in the season, then you are really not paying any attention.
Now let’s move on to some positives.
The music is fantastic. One of my favorite songs perhaps this anime season would be the second ED, being Freesia by Uru.
Animation is good, but nothing extraordinary.
Voice acting is as good as the previous season.
To conclude, IBO S2 is a heap of disappointment. The plot’s problems make it hard for me to give it any score higher than a 6.
I wrote this review just a few episodes shy of the finale. Perhaps my opinion will change if for whatever reason IBO manages to pull off an amazing finale.
Gundam Ironblooded Orphans was a great entry into the Gundam Franchise after the last few failures. It felt more grounded in reality, with protagonists that we could empathize with. Everything about the series was great. The story was good, a bunch of child soldiers struggling to make a living and better life for themselves. The art was mostly crisp, the sound was excellent, and I greatly enjoyed it.
However, without wishing to spoil, the ending is bittersweet as hell and possibly the most bitter ending in Gundam because of how the writing got screwed up around the middle of the second season. What happens knocks the
story down a few notches as it leads to the ending, and you really can't get a sense of satisfaction from it.
It could have ended a lot worse, but it deserved better.
Before writing this review, i'd need to clarify some information regarding my standpoint as an audience: A
1. This is my FIRST Gundam. So i can't really tell the different between the art and the story between this and the previous gundams. So don't expect something like "This is the best/worst gundam ever out of me". ALSO, if you learned enough Psychology you'd know that human has tendency to have emotional attachment to the FIRST VERSION of something that they LIKE/LOVE. For example, if you listened to Michael Buble's Home FIRST and loved it, you would not like West Life's version as much. The same logic
applies to the reverse case when you listened to West Life first. Thus, it is possible that i'd have higher opinion on IBO than your beloved Gundams, and pardon me for lacking of Gundam-culture. In return, i'd keep my review as neutral as possible.
2. I always appreciate the CONSISTENCY the animes when the season 2's on par with, or better than season 1. It is extremely difficult to keep surpassing. Remember, IBO ss2 served as a CONTINUATION of one storyline, which mean it is not meant to SURPASS the story of first season, but meant to CONNECT with the first season into a GRAND STORYLINE - ONE ANIME (This logic does not apply to all the animes, obviously. But in the case of IBO, it does). In short, DEMANDING for SS2 to have BETTER story than SS1, to me, sounds nothing more than a load of bull spouted by a bunch of ungrateful fcks.
Now, for the review.
The first strong point of IBO (Both SS1 and SS2, as i said) is itself being a symphony of battles/Wartime and short breathe of Peace. If you read a lot of wartime literature (I was born in Vietnam, so there's a lot of those in our literature), you'd see that this the War-Peace blend that this anime maintained is close to, if not to say, perfect at a masterpiece level. Comparing to Code Geass or Aldnoah: Zero, IBO is just of another level in this particular department. Basically, Adnoah: Zero and Code Geass both created a good proportion of war but the variety of characters available and the depth at which each characters are portrayed are just not enough to create a good War-Peace blend. On the other hand, IBO have multiple characters sharing the role of the first-person view and main character and that's what make the anime's so dam good.
The second strong point lies in the many faces these anime characters that this anime portrayed. The number of characters having a relatively far personality development is absolutely phenomena. We have multiple 1st-person seats: From the main hero Mikazuki, to the ones have their loves and siblings and comrades die in the war, ones who could have separated themselves from the war, and the ones who are obsessed with the war. Most of the characters are developed just perfectly deep enough. And the romance factors, little as they are, shine like flowers blooming from the iron armor of the Isarabi, along with family love, and comrades' bonds. At the same time, all of those flowers of different circumstances and lives are connected with the bloodline of fate they shared together: The thing most people would perceive as these kids' naivety and shallowness is exactly the kind mindset they need in wartime, especially as the underdogs with no chance of victory. Again, it comes back my background: As i mentioned earlier, I read a lot of Vietnamese wartime literature and this psychology - what's called "naivety", "stupidity" or "madness" by the enemy, and called "Patriotism" and "Sacrifice" by the Vietnamese, is simply ubiquitous, and overly familiar. This is what it looks like from the perspective of the underdogs. In order to win, they have to let themselves be brainwashed. They need to fight with a few hundred, or thousands, percent of what they have. IOB is a masterpiece at portraying wartime, that could easily shy Aldnoah: Zero and Code Geass.
In short, this is, in my opinion, absolutely a masterpiece among war/military animes. The character's development, the comrade bonds, the wartime romance and the psychological progress of each characters have never been this close to perfectly developed, given the story of the entire anime and the background of the characters (both season 1 and 2). The story, as most people would say, predictable. But it doesn't have to be overly complex. Sometimes, simple story is needed provide the perfect environment for many other perspectives of an anime to shine.
Let me say right from the get go, that if you like emo teens piloting the gundam, this isn’t the series for you. If you abhor on screen death, then this isn’t the series for you. If you want a gundam series that encapsulates everything we loved about Universal Century gundam then this IS the series for you. If you're looking for an intro into this thing called gundam but don’t know where to begin, this is the series for you. IBO has everything that we love about universal century gundam without the emo teens and child friendliness of the newer, alternate universe gundam series.
The key here is the fact that IBO has no ties to any other gundam series so they were free to explore a world and mythos all their own. This is gonna be a turnoff to those who hold one specific gundam series above all others. But it’s still great, even for those who feel it doesn’t “measure up” to series in the past. The action is stunning and fluid, at times a little too chaotic to actually see what is going on exactly. Some characters develop, some don’t. One doesn’t watch gundam for the emotional content, but it has enough to make the characters matter to the viewer. I don’t know what else to say. If you love gundam, you’ll love IBO! Unless on screen death is a strict no-no with you; then you may want to avoid this one.
let me begin with just not understanding how stupid can some people in anime community be ...
writing a review just to state some false statement and easily get supported by people ah how amusing..
first of all this series is one of the best gundam serieses out there (speaking as someone that watched almost every single mecha anime out since the 2006)
good enough for being a gundam story that includes drama , action a little bit of romance ... even though there was some moments that may anger/sadden some people but as long as it gives you emotion , it did well.. they excuted
everything so dam good , some deaths were impactful and some were not ...
a Gundam series what can i say . as expected .
ooooh cant believe that some people find sound the most horrible thing , like what are you ? a fucking deaf? ofc not , you can hear ... they pretty much perfected the sounds , even though there were not so many SFX but still they added the ending song in some impactfull scenes and made it more reachable to the heart...
hoho Mika is up there with Setsuna and the others ... every other character had their place in the viewer hearts like some of them are despiseable and some are very likeable ...
well this was a very long journey and it was very much worth every second ....
they began it well and ended it better .
dont listen to the haters.. if one thing i learned from this site , is that there are many people that just throw you away from the truth . this series is almost a masterpiece (sorry i cant give gundam a 10/10 cuz gundam.. they always kill your favs)
i cant believe people are saying sound are horrible when they did the sound better than most mecha anime , oh and Character too i cant believe they are hating on the character... oh nvm all of that , i saw some reviews hating on art , am done with this community LOL , art is obviously is one of the best in gundams out there , gtfo...
well i hope this helps , even though it was mostly a rant since many reviews were delusions throwing people off a good anime.. thats why i made this account just to make things clear (being new doesnt mean that i dont have experience ... let me just say that i have been watching anime since 2006 each semester each year... yep i have no life )
try it , you wont lose anything ..
oh and sorry for my bad non-native english
Have you watched Iron-Blooded Orphans season 1? If the answer is yes then stop right there. Do not subject yourself to the pain and agony that is season 2.
In my many many years of watching anime rarely if ever have I been so insanely disappointed before.
Season 1 builds you up. Gives you hope. Screams a clear message. You can make something of yourself even if you've had a shitty life. It gives you hope.
Season 2 takes it all away in the dumbest way imaginable.
Basicly the creators of season 2 has a message for you. The world is unfair, unjust, corrupt and shit. Anyone who tries
to make it better will get a big platter of feces served to them.
Do yourself a favor and watch something else. Anything else really. Go watch Naruto fillers I'm telling you it's a far better fate than this.
In the year 1947, over 1700 middle school aged boys were drafted into the Japanese Military to fight the Pacific War. They were given inadequate equipment and little training, predictably leading to mass slaughter without understanding what they were even fighting for. Their deaths were not worthless however, helping to inspire laws against child slavery and serve as an eternal testament to the horrors of war.
This group was named the Tekketsu Kinnōtai - Blood and Iron. Seventy years later Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans is a tribute to those fallen soldiers and a more heroic outcome, even if no less brutal.
Picking up where the previous
season left off, the Tekkadan are continuing to fly towards a blazing sun that promises to light them on fire. They've gained a reputation as one of the most powerful organizations on Mars, a double edged sword that grants them both strength and danger as other powerful entities scheme ways to destroy them. Orga's promise to allow his men to live a life free from danger. Kudelia's desire for them all to make it out of war safely seems more and more far-fetched by the passing day. These ever-increasing stakes make this season a clear improvement over the first. most episodes are rife with tension and build to a dramatic conclusion that can be compared to the best in Gundam franchise history.
I appreciated this anime's approach to a group of adolescents assuming a large role of power. Rather than having all the answers or being overpowered, they are often overwhelmed, prone to mistakes and reliant on the adults around them for support. Even Mikazuki Augus - an unapologetic killing machine - has to sacrifice his own body for the sake of gaining strength in battle. There is a tangible cost to every action these characters take.
IBO offers an accurate portrayal of good and bad in war - there is no such thing. Both sides are spurred on by a selfish conquest at the cost of thousands of lives, with the victor being given the opportunity to shape the world however they see fit. It's up to the viewer to rationalize who's the least evil of the factions and come to grips with the decisions that they make. I found myself grappling with this decision until the very end where it all became clear.
The least interesting aspect were the political discussion. I did not care for negotiations when the solution for every problem is brute force and more resources. IBO can become preachy in between battles leading to periods of aimlessness. Fortunately, these moments aren't overwhelming throughout the second season and can be ignored with no consequence.
For the romantic shippers out there, you'll be happy to know there is substantial progress made on the love triangle. In a sense, IBO understands what the fan wants and gives it to them - of course with an appropriate level of caution because this is Gundam and nothing is sacred.
This is a season full of twists and turns, death flags, and a group of children finding out the hard way just how cruel the realities of war are. An appropriate follow up to one of the most grounded Gundam inserts in recent memory, I'll long remember impact a group of Iron-Blooded Orphans once had on the fate of the world and will eagerly look forward to any future installments.
Gundam is a war drama. A drama being exactly what you expect it to be, a drama. Characters are put into very dramatic situations while feeling the pressure of adult hood and tragedy weighing them down to the point of breaking. People don't watch drama to have fun, they watch it for an interesting story full of twists and turns that shatter your expectations. Mix is with war and you have some heavy drama coming your way. That is exactly what the most recent Gundam Franchise is all about.
As a great fan of the Gundam Franchise I can safely say that IBO as a
whole is a fantastic war drama along with having some better spins on the franchise itself to keep it fresh. IBO is VERY different from other Gundam Series, but alas the core theme is still present. As long as Sunrise continues to experiment with the Gundam Franchise then perhaps the infinite possibilities that inhabit the core concept of Gundam can finally be discovered. In this case IBO shows plenty.
No matter how good a story is, presentation is key. The most boring of concepts within a story can be made interesting is presented JUST right. The same can happen the other way around where the most interesting of concepts can be made boring if the presentation is off. No matter how perfect someone's writing is people will find some sort of fault in it. The key of a good story is to present the premise, give tension, give reasons, give life and have a good time on that roller coaster ride. And a roller coaster ride best describes the story of IBO. Things keep happening and lead to another incident and you wanna know what happens next. If you have that "I wanna know what happens next" mentality for your target Audience to have, then you nailed presentation.
Iron Blooded Orphans is about a mercenary group known as Tekkadan trying to survive the bat crazy world of Mars/Earth government finding their footing. People fight, people cheat, people murder just to get by. Tekkadan is no different. They are mercenaries after all. They aren't supposed to be good guys, but people we can relate to. That spark of humanity is all what we need to follow a character. However, inhuman concepts that harbor within Mika are also important within dramas. People that don't understand drama to act as a fish out of water character. With many characters with different points of the story you can see what they go through. It might be brief but all what you need is brief. It's a war drama after all. ANYONE can die.
As things go on, Tekkadan gets pushed and pushed until they struck a deal that they will soon regret. Watching their spiral into failure is indeed depressing, but that is Gundam at its finest. The ending itself is more unique than the other Gundam series' endings but it is at least bitter sweet. The theme for IBO is Family and the cold heart truth of reality that you can't change who you are or even how things are unless you become the very thing you set out to destroy.
Looking gooood again eh Sunrise? I never bought any Build Fighters or G Rec models, but I have bought several of IBO because of how amazing they are. The MS Designs are AWESOME! Getting some unique ones here and there and the Barbatos is a very coold Gundam! COOL COOL COOL! What else must I say? Animation is saved for the action which makes total sense, and the color pallets work just fine. In the future I wanna get myself a Tekkadan jacket for obvious reasons. AHEM! Enough of me fan boying. I'm not the best on art analysis, but if Gundam's visuals rely on rule of cool then I was say they did a splendid job.
Sound: ALL of the openings are amazing! The Tekkadan theme is off the hook! And you know once that theme is playing you just wanna root for them! Take my word for it, listen to it with the Unicorn theme when you can.
I can say with great confidence that IBO knows what it's doing with its characters. With the theme of Family you can see Tekkadan giving themselves a shoulder to cry on and give each other support. Akihiro wanting to be more family orientated, Takaki leaving to get away from the fighting, Orga struggling and making poor choices, Atra opening up more and even Gaelio with McGillis are great wonderful characters to follow. Mika is...strange. I would say he is crazier than Heero and Setsuna. He is with out a doubt a sociopath that only cares about Orga. Though I feel like he has way too many Kira Yamato perfect moments, he is still touchable. Presentation is key here. When Mika is being perfect he looks GOOD being perfect, and when he struggles he REALLY does struggle and push his body and mobile suit to the absolute limit. That kid isn't afraid of death. Mika is far from realistic but characters like this exist because of how awkward they are. He certainly a wild card in IBO and I'm glad to get a shot to experience his flavor. McGillis is a what if Char failed from the beginning, though McGillis struck me as a small disappointment. It's not because he failed or how he failed, his failure makes sense to show how idealism on a single note can't accomplish everything. Even becoming the very thing you sought out to destroy. My disappointment lies within his interactions with Mika.
Have you ever noticed when McGillis had a flash back his young self has the EXACT same expression as Mika when he was younger? I always felt that IBO was setting up Mika and McGillis to have a clear rivalry or friendship. McGillis growing up closed his heart from people, planned ahead and did ruthless things for himself. Mika on the other hand did ruthless things for Orga, someone he CARES about, his heart is closed but not entirely. Basically a Good Sociopath and a 'Bad' Sociopath. But over time it is hinted out that McGillis TRULY is a good man who got corrupted by his own ideals. Making him closer to Mika than mirroring him. It felt like wasted potential that they would seem to hint that McGillis and Mika are very similar yet very different at the same time. Oh well, guess my expectations were subverted. But it still irks me...which leads to
Perhaps what I see the most in IBO threads here on anime list is the anger meter. People get ANGRY when characters die in a way they don't see fit. People get ANGRY when certain characters DON'T die. Die die die. He must die, no he must live. It's all the same. Things happen because the route is set for people's demise. It's satisfying when Iok dies, it's sad when Laughter Dies. The deaths fulfill their purposes. It fills you with emotions that you will never forget which is mission accomplish for a war drama. And honestly I feel like people here forget about that. I enjoyed it for what it was and had my own sort of way for fun. The show is a roller coaster and I love that aspect.
Overall: IBO gets an 8. Some disappointments but the good outweigh the bad. I had a great time with this show and I can't wait for the next franchise.
Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season Review
Story (8/10) Very Good
The story for Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season was very good. It doesn't try to follow in the foot steps of previous Gundams and it tries it's own thing, other than the Gundam itself there's barely and resemblance to any alternate universe that have come before it. No lasers (except that one the mobile armor used), No beam weapons and no haro, sure there's a mask character and a char and even a garma clone. But it still does things that aren't seen before in a actual plot in a Gundam story and
the end it's quite original too in comparison to previous universe. I thought it was very good but I do indeed think it could have been better.
Art and Animation (9/10) Great
More Specifically (9.25/10) Great
The art and animation in Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season was great. When Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season wanted to showcase come nice ass looking animation they can deliver some, the mobile armor fight alone is probably one of the best mech animated fights I've ever seen and I will never forget it, after that the last episode of this second season and the McGillis vs Gaelio's final fight were amazing. A nice handful of nicely non-cg mech fights and I appreciate and would love more of in the future of the mech genre as a whole not this cg stuff.
Sound (9/10) Great
More Specifically (9.75/10) Great+
Just like Season 1 Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season brings the sound to high standards now I wasn't too found with the second ending outro but literally everything else sound related in this entire anime was outstanding.
Characters (8/10) Very Good
A lot of the characters get characterization and this anime doesn't give anyone plot armor. Anyone had the potential of dying it felt which is good. Now some characters did disappoint me because I was expecting more from them before the anime was over like I wish Orga ended up piloting his own Gundam alongside Mika, or that the new character of Season 2 Hash Midey was an interesting character which I thought would rise to top tier the way he was talking at the start of the anime but it basically felt like a waste of characterization, development and overall screen time by the time the anime ended I was quite disappointed he really didn't amount to a damn. Now Gaelio on the other hand surprised me especially doing what his orginial counter-part Garma could not and that was best his rival I enjoyed seeing his success. The main character Mikazuki was a beast until the end and I haven't seen a Kill em all Tomino style ending in a while.
Enjoyment (7/10) Good
More Specifically (7.25/10) Good
My enjoyment for the series was good, I was indeed expecting a lot more enjoyment out of the series though to be quite honest. It does succeed in story building and characterization and top tier mech fights. But I felt certain points that make a Gundam anime super enjoyable to me were missing. For one I do feel like this tops Gundam Wing for the new Gundam series that'll talk more than battle and we all know at the end of the day all the talk is just build up to the pay off which is the battles and majority of the build up to the fights in the second season didn't feel worth the wait, it always left me wanting more, what I got was awesome but I felt it was always in small amazing doses which left me saying "It's over already? damnit" then the rest of the episode is dialogue and build up again. I know they were thinking from a story narrative standpoint but I do feel the balance between the two was not in snyc which hinder my enjoyment quite a lot, but I still end up staying caught up with it weekly which is still a good thing.
Overall (8/10) Very Good
More Specifically (8.45/10) Very Good
I will be honest Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season is a very good installment to the Gundam Universes but I'm not going to lie I was expecting more from this series. I do not feel satisfied and it's current rating on this site is still higher than Gundam 00 which I feel is a far superior alternate Gundam Universe anime to this one. Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans will be missed sure but not too much. If anything I would love to get a spin off prequel movie or something showcase the Calamity War or something to do with the Mobile Armors since they were not used alot in this series. Anyway Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans 2nd Season is very good but even with the many many good things I can say about it I do feel Season 1 was better, Season 2 sure does a lot of things better but it has the burden of the conclusion of the overall series to live up to and I feel disappointed by how it ended which did not help in the enjoyment, character or story categories.
Do NOT watch this anime if you want a fun shounen anime with clear "good" v "evil" factions who fight on equal terms.
This show was a fairly realistic portrayal of what would happen if a gang of murderous child soldiers tried to overthrow the government. The characters are complex and likable. My main complaint is with the character Juliet who seems like she could have been a lot more interesting, but was kind of neglected by the writers. Her character growth is very subtle and mostly happens in the final episode.
The overall vibe is much more of a mafia-style than the traditional gundam rebels vs.
the man. Some of the character deaths are shocking and reflect this - be prepared.
The ending is very bittersweet but also very satisfying.
Would highly recommend this to people who watch things a little more closely, it will be less enjoyable if played in the background and only half payed attention to.
I've talked about the Gundam franchise once before with the sub-par 00. Honestly, it's a franchise I'm not super familiar with even though it's incredibly famous. I've seen bits and pieces of some others but the only other one I've watched all the way through was Wing, which I have a lot of praise for. None of the others have really grabbed my attention, though. Enter Iron-Blooded Orphans, which just finished its second series in April. I haven't seen anything of this one. I've heard some positive things but I can't say whether or not I agree with them. One thing that interests me is
that it was written by Okada Mari. She's written some anime adaptations we've looked at before like Toradora & Kuroshitsuji. We also have her to thank for writing Canaan, Black Rock Shooter TV & AnoHana, the original novel, anime & manga. She doesn't have the world's best track record with me (The late Sir Terry Pratchett holds that distinction) but she does have a pretty solid one. Especially when it comes to non-adaptation works. And, with Gundam, the anime and manga were basically released simultaneously. This may be another Gundam series I can be really positive about, but let's watch through it before making that judgement. After all, we all remember that time Ikuhara Kunihiko disappointed me even though I usually like his work. Keep in mind, this review is going to cover both series of Iron-Blooded Orphans.
We open on Mars with a company called CGS. They're hired by a young activist, Kudelia Aina Bernstein, to escort her to Earth so that she can try to push for some changes to benefit Mars. Things go south quickly. The powerful military organisation, Gjallarhorn, sends troops to demand that CGS turn over the young lady. This results in the older member scarpering and the child soldiers taking advantage of the situation to take control of the company, after using a Gundam Frame to repel the initial attack. Under the leadership of Itsuka Orga, they change the name to Tekkadan. Their first mission, finish the escort job that CGS started. Thus begins their legend.
The biggest flaw with IBO is that there are some plot points that rely on some pretty contrived stretches. In the first series, our heroes arrive at a colony where there's a group that's been heavily inspired by Kudelia & she's still being chased by Gjallarhorn. Both groups mistake Tekkadan's chef, Atra, for her. Now, let me get this straight, Kudelia is a public figure who's appeared on television stations and the like, but these groups don't know what she looks like? Gjallarhorn couldn't pull up a stock photo for their goon squad to look at? The group inspired by her speeches and ideas never bothered to actually watch them? What makes this even dumber is that we know they have access to them. There's a point where she's recognised by a member of the group who saw her on the news. But we're expected to believe that this major public figure who's inspired all these people is only recognised by this one person? Is literally everyone else in the group named Matt Murdock?
The second series gives us another with a character who was shown pretty definitively dying in the first series turning up alive and well. You'll know them when you see them, they try to hide the identity but it's really obvious. Then again, this is Gundam, maybe he was just replaced by his identical younger brother. No, I'm not sick of mocking that bit from 00 yet. A more minor issue is with the romances. There are some characters who end up together even though they've just exchanged a few lines and never shown any chemistry. Fortunately, the romance is just a side thing and has very little impact.
The death scenes are a bit of a mix. On one hand, the series generally does do a good job of illustrating why a character matters before we see them die. Unfortunately, this has the side effect of making the major character deaths incredibly predictable. Most of the time you'll get five minutes into an episode where a major character dies and you'll know it's coming. Now, there are ways to write a strong character death when it's obviously coming. Beast Wars managed it as did A Prayer for Owen Meany. The difference between those and this is that one started delivering hints for a good dozen episodes in advance and the other was a fairly long novel where most of it was dedicated to showing why the character mattered. It doesn't work as well when you try to cram all of that into fifteen minutes or so. Especially when it comes to less prominent characters who haven't had all that much of a role.
There are plenty of positives to the narrative. I appreciate that the series takes risks. There are quite a few major characters who don't make it. There are times the antagonists win major victories. The ending is very bittersweet. The series also has a good amount of subtlety in its portrayal of the conflicts. There's rarely a side that's just abhorrent, rather, you'll get two sides coming into conflict and you'll have an understanding of why each one is fighting. And chances are they'll both fight dirty. You'll probably favour one side over the other but you can understand both. The series is also good at handling its darker content like slavery, arranged marriage involving characters who are far too young or child soldiers in a way that doesn't shy away from showing or discussing the darker aspects. The content isn't just there in an attempt to be edgy or dark, it's actually relevant. Sadly, that's not common.
One thing that's kind of inevitable when you've got a cast this big is that some characters are better developed than others. You'll have some characters who are largely relegated to the background, others who are big supporting characters & the core group. I will say, the characters you spend any amount of time with do have decent levels of verisimilitude. They're fleshed out enough to make them compelling. The major characters get even more development, mostly. Then we have Mikazuki. In some ways, he's kind of like your typical, emotionally stunted protagonist. He has a perpetual thousand yard stare, speaks pretty monotonously and follows his orders. He is shown to have some emotions, mostly violent, but he's still kind of dull. I do appreciate that our antagonists are given proper motivations and fleshed out too.
One thing that Sunrise is pretty consistently good at is artwork & this series is no exception. The backgrounds, mechs, space ships, & character designs are all really strong. A lot of the characters even have noticeable non-verbal tics. Which adds some realism to them since we all have things like that that we do without even thinking about it. The action flows well and a lot of the battles are absolutely brutal. The artwork is also really effective at setting tone. The worst I can say about it is that a lot of the major characters have shounen hair. You know what I'm talking about. Ridiculous looking hair styles that probably involve entire tubes of gel every day but the characters have them because they stand out.
There are plenty of strong performances. To name a few of the more prominent ones, we've got Terasaki Yuka, Kanemoto Hisako, Takumi Yasuaki, Sakurai Takahiro (stop following me, Cloud), & Hosoya Yoshimasa. There aren't any poor performances in this. About the worst you get are the minor characters who never get to demonstrate any kind of range. Even then the few lines they get are capably delivered. The music is really good too. The theme tunes are nicely done & the music within the episodes is used, effectively, to enhance the atmosphere.
IBO has a lot of characters who read as bisexual and a few who take things a step further. Mikazuki likes to talk about how Orga gave him his life and he'll do anything for him. Although he also has female love interests. Speaking of, Atra & Kudelia both seem to be as interested in one another as they are in Mikazuki. Especially Atra who likes to fantasise about a world where the three of them are all together. In the second series, Takaki seems to have a thing for Aston. We also have Yamagi who wants to Trowa Shino's Quatre.
Iron-Blooded Orphans has some flaws. It has some really noticeable contrivances, romances that are mediocre at best & the main protagonist is just okay. Still, it's a really good series with positive aspects that far outweigh those issues. My final rating is going to be an 8/10. Next week I'll look at Koe no Katachi.
so this is my first review on MAL and it has to be for Iron-Blooded Orphans. I haven't seen any other Gundam Anime so I am kinda a noob when it comes to the universe and I can't really compare it to others of this series. Please remember that this is my personal opinion but goddamn.. that anime was great!
Great music, awesome characters, really loved the artstyle and the story... ugh!
Iron-Blooded Orphans was a rollercoaster ride most of the time. I was shedding tears in this anime, thrilled by actions, had goosebumps during the fighting scenes which were so fucking epic. Holy shit.
characters were really great in this anime. You had some you really love and others you start to hate with a passion. There were moments where you guys are going to be like: "What the fuck, why?" and other moments where you're going to be like: "FUCK YEAH".
Frustration, sadness but also enjoyment and satisfaction.
I was watching the anime while it was aired, so I had to wait week for week for a new episode which was so damn frustrating at most of the times, cause it's full of cliffhangers. That probably won't be a problem when you guys are bingewatching the shit outta this.
I had episodes where I just sat there for like 5 minutes in shock trying to understand why and what just happened.
This is by far one of the best animes I have ever seen. My rating is a solid 10/10, I would probably give it 11/10 just to make clear that it is in my eyes better than the rest on my Animelist rated with a 10.
I hope that review makes anyone of you guys to watch Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans and enjoy the trip with my dear friends from Tekkadan. Enjoy that ride, all the emotions and that really nicely told story.
In this second series of Iron-Blooded Orphans (which I'll refer to as IBO for the remainder of this review), Tekkadan serve as bodyguards to a new organization created by Kudelia to help restore the independence of Mars while also contending with the remnants of Gjallarhorn, when the military organization's credibility to the masses became damaged following the events of the first series. However as the series progresses, multiple parties are able to exploit Tekkadan's brutal reputation on the battlefield to decredit them and cause things to go on a downward spiral for the group as the series progresses.
IBO's second season will perhaps become remembered in
time among Gundam fans as one of the more darker and bittersweet entries in the franchise to date, and for good reason. The first series established Tekkadan as a team of tragic anti-heroes consisting mostly of child mercenaries who knew only how to fight throughout nearly their entire lives and sought to break out for themselves as an independent entity by taking on the job of protecting Kudelia to get her to Earth and reveal the corruption of Gjallarhorn. As mercenaries, they are not hesitant to kill any enemies that get in their way and will strike up deals with any party or organization that will assure them success, hence their dealings with Teiwaz and Gjallarhorn's McGillis Fareed.
In the second series, Tekkadan have become instant celebrities to the people of Mars for their exploits in exposing Gjallarhorn's corruption. While Orga and the other members hope this would allow them to become an honest business due to their association with Kudelia, their brutal reputation among their enemies and the dealings they made with questionable entities eventually comes back to haunt them in later episodes. Through complicated manipulations and politics, Tekkadan's public reputation among the masses eventually becomes tarnished and the associations they established with questionable parties unravel. While I won't spoil too much else of what happens with Tekkadan, all I will say is that the series returns to the days of older Gundam titles where you would never know who would wind up a victim of the travesty of war and IBO cruelly delivers on showing how Tekkadan's reputation eventually comes back to bite it hard.
Outside of its focus on Tekkadan, IBO also takes a decent amount of time to explore more about the complicated power structure within Gjallarhorn and further develop the character relationships within the series. The series devotes time to exploring McGillis' motives and past, which turns out to be a rather tragic one due to being an illegitimate child of one of Gjallarhorn's influential families. In addition, more of the power structure within the organization is explored with the Seven Stars, those making up the seven most influential families within the organization.
A number of the show's character relationships also have time to get further fleshed out and focused on. Some of them are on the romantic side and serve to show more of the human side to the mecha pilots of the series, this most notable in Mikazuki's relationships with Atra and Kudelia as he starts to better understand human social skills. Others serve to explore how character relationships have deteriorated due to the complicated manipulations that occurred in the ensuing conflict between Tekkadan and Gjallarhorn, this notable with McGillis as his manipulations lead his former friends in Gjallarhorn to show hostility toward him as they learn more about his actions and motives.
In terms of presentation, IBO's second season retains the high-quality visuals and fluid animation of its first series that made mecha action scenes a treat to see. This combined with the title's great musical composition within action and dramatic situations offers it one of the best overall presentations within the past year for an anime.
Overall, the second season of IBO is yet another excellent recent addition to the Gundam franchise as it offers a tragic and bittersweet end to the struggles of Tekkadan that will remind fans of older entries in the franchise coming from Yoshiyuki Tomino. A definite watch for fans of the Gundam franchise, provided you have already seen IBO's first season.