Mobile Suit Breakdown: the Gundam Anime Podcast
A Companion Podcast for All 40 Years of Gundam
MSB is a weekly Gundam podcast for new fans, old fans, and not yet fans. Nina (a Gundam first-timer) and Thom (a lifelong Gundam fan) analyze, review, and research all 40-years of the iconic sci-fi anime mega-franchise Mobile Suit Gundam in the order it was made. We research its influences, examine its themes, and discuss how each piece of the Gundam canon fits within the changing context in Japan and the world, from 1979 to today. Part history podcast, part discussion podcast, all Gundam podcast.

1.25: 1.25 - Welcome to the Jungle

Gundam Eps. 29 & 30: We've Got Fun and GMs

Show Notes

This week, we recap, review, and analyze Mobile Suit Gundam episode 29 and 30 (28 and 29 in the US), "Tragedy in Jaburo" and "A Wish for War Orphans," discuss our first impressions, and provide commentary and research on: orphans, orphanages, and childcare in Japan, the history of robots in Western cinema, Operation Gunnerside, visual inspiration and references, and the St. Nazaire raid.

- Our sources on life in Japan's orphanages:

Japan Info. (Jun 17, 2016). What Challenges Do Children in Japan’s Orphanages Face? (Culture, Society) No author credits. Retrieved from

Quora (Answers) (Oct 23, 2015). What is it like to be raised in a Japanese orphanage? Karen Ma. Retrieved from

The Japan Times News (May 1, 2014). Japan’s orphans neglected: HRW by Tomoshiro Osaki. Retrieved from

- About adult adoption in Japan.

- Japan's WWII war orphans, in the home islands and in China.

- Ron briefly mentioned the Tekketsu Kinotai, young boys who were conscripted into the Japanese army to defend Okinawa. We talked about this in episode 1.2, when we discussed the battle of Okinawa, and there's more info here:

A War to be won (Apr 2, 2016). Okinawan boys of the Tekketsu Kinnotai, Japan’s last ditch weapon (WWII History Articles) Posted by Admin. Retrieved from

- For the history of daycare/childcare in Japan, we consulted this article:

CHUNG, BYUNG-HO. “LABOR-MARKET DEMAND FOR WORKING MOTHERS AND THE EVOLUTION OF DAY CARE SYSTEM IN JAPAN.” International Journal of Sociology of the Family, vol. 18, no. 2, 1988, pp. 233–247. JSTOR,

- Sources on film history, and specifically on robots in cinema:

Sarris, Andrew. The American Cinema: Directors and Directions, 1929-1968 1st ed. New York: Dutton, 1968

Dirks, Tim. Robots in Film: A complete Illustrated History of Robots in the Movies Early to 1939 Sourced from:

- These articles provide an overview of Operation Gunnerside.

- An interview with Neal Bascomb, author of The Winter Fortress, a book that "sets this daring sabotage mission in the context of the high-stakes race between the Germans and the Allies to create a nuclear weapon."

- The New York Times obituary for Joachim Ronneberg, the leader of the Gunnerside raid.

- The evolution of diving suits (relevant for appearances of amphibious mobile suits).

- The wiki page for Kappa, and art depicting the Kappa: image 1, image 2.

- The wiki page for Kamaitachi, and interpretations of how they might look: image 1, image 2, image 3.

- Alien 'Zarab,' possible inspiration for the Z'Gok.

- Charles H. Townes, inventor of the maser.

- About phonons, and an abandoned patent for a phonon maser.

- Wiki article on Sasers.

- Sources on the St. Nazaire raid.

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The intro music is WASP by Misha Dioxin, and the outro is Long Way Home by Spinning Ratio, both licensed under Creative Commons CC BY 4.0 license. Both have been edited for length.

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