FEATURE: The Most Satisfying Fight in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury Didn’t Involve Mobile Suits

Who needs big robots when you've got fists?

Chuchu in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury


Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury works to define itself differently than other series in the franchise. The biggest way it accomplishes this is through the use of mobile suit duels that happen within a school setting. These duels are not the same as other fights in the franchise as they usually involve only trying to take out the horn of your opponent's suit rather than outright destroying your opponent in a wartime setting.


Not only does this new setting create a different dynamic for a Gundam series, it effectively gives the series sports anime vibes, which is not what you’d typically expect from Gundam. Since there is no war going on that these characters have to deal with, you get to see these kids act the way kids would in a high school setting. There are your cliques, pettiness, rivalries, friendships and everything in between.


Chuchu and friends in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury


Of course, the fact that we get characters settling their differences with giant robots does make this school just a tad different. But there’s one fight that stood head and shoulders above the rest and, surprisingly, it didn’t involve any giant robots.


The best fight focuses on a common idea found throughout the series: humans from Earth versus humans from space. People from Earth and space have been going at one another ever since Gundam was first a thing in 1979. The one character in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury that truly exemplifies this rivalry is Chuatury Panlunch, otherwise known as Chuchu.


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There are social hierarchies in Asticassia, the fancy school where the story takes place. The kids from Earth aren’t treated as kindly as kids that have ties to the various corporations involved in running the school. That leads to situations where Chuchu and her friends are constantly getting bullied because of where they’re from. Chuchu’s guard is up so high that even when Suletta needs help, Chuchu still can’t bring herself to accept her since she’s from space.


In the fourth episode, we get a fight between Chuchu and her bullies. Chuchu’s brash demeanor shows she’s eventually going to reach a breaking point where she won’t be able to take things any longer, and that begins to show in this episode where the bullies keep messing with the mobile suit’s she and Suletta need to use in a makeup exam. 



Chuchu in Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch from Mercury


Suletta has a very tough time dealing with the fact that she was sabotaged in her exam. Chuchu, on the other hand, sees this as an opportunity to finally get even with these bullies. The first punch she throws, which admittedly is a cheap shot, is incredibly visceral thanks in large part to the sound design. It gives each punch so much more weight and makes them very devastating. She knocks this girl out cold and you can feel it with just that one punch.


Chuchu going after the second girl becomes more of a tussle, and a realistic one at that, since neither is really able to gain an advantage and are more or less holding onto each other’s collars to gain some sort of control. There are a few punches thrown here or there (along with a Chuchu headbutt) but it’s nothing like Chuchu’s first punch. These two scuffle long enough that other characters are able to show up and try to break things up, including Suletta. Unfortunately for her, she takes an inadvertent punch and gets knocked down, which allows Chuchu to wind up and knock out the second girl.


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Up until this point we have gotten characters fighting their own intense battles. Miorine taking Aerial comes to mind as she had gotten fed up with people making decisions for her. That being said, there's something truly cathartic about this scene with Chuchu. There’s an intensity in the anger shown on Chuchu’s face as she winds back to throw that last punch. You can effectively see her finally getting to let out all of the emotions and anger she’s had bottled up toward not only these bullies, but to people like them who discriminate.


Giant robot fights are the bread and butter of Gundam, but sometimes you just need a round of good old-fashioned fisticuffs to get the point across.


What did you think of Chuchu finally taking it to her bullies in this episode? Let us know in the comments below!




Jared Clemons is a writer and podcaster for Seasonal Anime Checkup and author of One Shining Moment: A Critical Analysis of Love Live! Sunshine!!. He can be found on Twitter @ragbag.

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