Home > Check-in Station, Episode by Episode > #GundamAGE ep21: Woolf is on the fast track to being the best sempai ever. #anime

#GundamAGE ep21: Woolf is on the fast track to being the best sempai ever. #anime

There are plenty of ways to deal with your feelings towards a problem.  There’s only one true way to deal with the problem itself. That appears to be what Asemu’s learning to master as of this episode of Gundam AGE. You could easily pin the guy (can’t say he’s a kid, despite his character design he is an adult) with the spoiled, entitled brat label. But you’d only be showing how much of an ignorant hate you are. The only thing Asemu has lacked so far was
focus. True focus on a goal. He doesn’t lack it now.

As I’ve said a few times before, AGE doesn’t linger for long on a particular circumstance or problem. As in other Gundam series, loads of time could be devoted to slowly having a character work through their problems with moping, depression, angry streaks and insubordination, but Asemua finds himself frustrated by a perceived lack of progress.

Despite the skill he’s shown, and the fact that he’s started out with a huge leg up on every single Gundam pilot that has come before (the exception being perhaps the Wing pilots or 00’s), Asemu has huge goals in front of him. His dad is nothing short of a Gundam god at this point. He’s taken on responsibility and leadership that other Gundam pilots have not or could not. And in this universe, he’s THE man for the Federation.

Then Asemu has to deal with the humiliation and confusion of facing down someone he assumed was a close friend and getting absolutely outdone by him. Zeheart as a leader I feel has much to be desired, but as a pilot he’s showing that he has the skills to be right up there with the best of them. At the very least, anyone who has seen him in combat should not have any qualms about him picking up the Char mantle and running with it. His presence means Asemu has to deal with the fact that he’s been directly out piloted, and is now evern further pushed away from his father.

This frustration is brought to life through Asemu’s furious training outside the Big Ring, constantly participating in solo target practice on some baloon dummies. It is a bit cliche, but it’s better than moping around throwing a f*cking tantrum and burying your Gundam in the sand. Woolf notices Asemu’s actions and is the only one who seems to get what Asemu’s problem is.

This will be addressed later, as the crew has finally docked at the Big Ring. Asemu for a moment is happy as he gets to see his dad again. Though Flit is quick to remind him that he still needs to be professional. What I liked about that scene though is that Flit isn’t too stern. He still pats his son on the head and gives him encouraging words. I’m still amazed at how well they get along.

After that scene some of the pilots hear about some new advanced training for “next generation” pilots. Flit sees it as a quick way to work towards his goals and goes in full force.

I found it somewhat interesting that one of his fellow pilots, the milquetoast at best Max decides to join in too. I guess he’s feeling a bit of that jealousy that seems to infect most people who get around Asemu.

I don’t want to get on the guy’s case too much, but when your name is Max, you wear glasses and you pilot a mobile suit… or pilot anything, then you had better be good. I know better, but it almost feels like Gundam took a swipe at Macross with that character. Yes, childish I know.

Then again, that probably is as good as Max from Macross would be if he did try to pilot in the Gundam universe. HA! Take that Macross fans!


Asemu soon gets his results back from the testing and find that despite rather amazing scores all around, the one area where he is lacking is in X- X- NEWTYPE apritude (sorry guys, I still can’t do it). It also doesn’t help that he learns that Romary may have a crush on Zeheart. Ouch! Finally, to finish off the combo of failure, it appears that everyone has heard about his test scores. And though Flit and Woolf try to cheer up the guy, he’s not having it.

And here! Right here! Is a key moment in the show. And it speaks towards how this show in ways has been a huge departure from the Gundam norm.

Most veteran/sempai characters in Woolf’s position would have some stern and manly words for their junior. It’s then left for the whiny pilot to figure it out, draw motivation and move on. Woolf goes one step further. He actively helps Asemu work through his funk. And he does it in the most awesome, and thorough way possible.

Woolf actually takes Asemu on a little trip to the Maradona workshop!  I wasn’t sure that place still existed. And I’m also a bit puzzled as to what it’s doing just “hanging around the neighborhood” with in the Big Ring’s space, but that’s just a minor question. We get to see Mr. Maradona (and his gorgeous wife) again and he’s got himself a son. A son who’s going through the exact same situation Asemu is struggling with. Not only is the guy relating to Asemu, but he gives Asemu just what he needs, something to constructively vent his frustrations.

Asemu is given a badass flight simulator that has the combat data fromFlit in the AGE-1 and Zeheart during his battle in the red Vagan mobile suit! All of this is highly illegal, but f*ck it! Woolf is just too awesome a guy to worry about courtmartials and government secrets. He gets the job done!

Hey Asemu! You got a problem with your ex-best friend and dad? Shoot them!

He might as well get some of that stuff worked out now anyway. Zeheart at the end of the episode is finally moving his forces out.  So there will be copious amounts of space death next episode.

Before I forget, it looks like there’s another romance brewing with the lieutenant and the new cute mechanic that workds on the Genoace II’s. Her name’s Remi and she’s a nerd’s dream. She’s all cute and knowledgeable. I hope they don’t kill her off. Then again this isn’t anywhere near Gundam 00 territory, so I think the bridge bunnies should be safe.

This show really is a shipper’s dream.

Usually I would say overall this was a decent episode. And in the grand scheme of things I’m sure it is, but it felt really good to me.  Perhaps it was the Dynasty Warriors Gundam style dream matchups created by the “Danger Room” -style flight simulator. Or perhaps it was that somewhat shattering conversation Asemu had with Romary. But I think it was really all Woolf’s actions that made this episode magical. He really is a dominating force. And I’m glad to see he’s using all that talent to help out his team in war. He’s come along way since he was first awakened from cold sleep. Best sempai character ever in a Gundam? In a mecha anime? We’ll see. He’s doing a hell of a job right now.
Image posted by MobyPicture.com
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