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Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans; Ep 8

Gundam mecha Mars military science fiction

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#1 Cybersnark


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Posted 27 November 2015 - 06:23 AM

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Episode 8: The Form of Closeness

We finally get an explanation of what the title means, and several people start to realize that they're in over their heads.


I'm not entirely comfortable with Naze's harem, though I can't easily articulate why. I'm impressed that the show is coming right out and making it a plot-point, and it (so far) hasn't been used for titillation. Nor are the women themselves being devalued by the narrative; if anything, they actually seem more skilled and emotionally well-adjusted than most of Tekkadan.

Everyone involved seems perfectly happy with the situation (though we're still missing important details, like how women go about joining the harem, or what happens if somebody wants to leave, and why all the babies seem to be male. I didn't know I'd noticed that). In fact, if Jupiter Sphere is as bad-off as Mars is, this harem might be a natural economic development; the women get the financial support of Teiwaz, and the men get a workforce, reproductive monopoly, and perhaps some measure of eugenic control. It's a somewhat Nietzschean system.

On a purely objective level, my Liberal-leaning philosophy says I should accept it as just another "alien" culture, like a Denobulan or Vedran marriage, but something about it still rubs me the wrong way. Certainly, the history of harems on Earth is often linked with repugnant social and gender philosophies, and there's something inherently unjust about demanding exclusivity from one sex and celebrating the lack of it for another.

Otherwise, Orga and Mikazuki continue to be the emotional core of this story, which perhaps hints at the show's willingness to subvert gender norms, since neither of them is exactly the hot-blooded and/or emotionally-stunted hero we've come to expect from Gundam protagonists. Both of these young men have complex and surprisingly healthy emotional lives that are treated as a source of strength for them.
"Hilarity ensues." --Seamus Harper

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