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.

2.23 Harsh Realities

The Eyes of Pompadour Shishkabob

Show Notes

This week, we recap, review, and analyze Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (機動戦士Ζガンダム) episode 22 - The Eyes of Scirocco (シロッコの眼), discuss our first impressions, and provide commentary and research on Scirocco's implement and corporal punishment in Zeta, the history of vending machines, and a follow-up on last week's research on Saint Miki.


- Roman centurion's vine staff (or vitis, plural vites).

- Its descendant, the swagger stick.

- An 1869 treatise of staggering length and breadth on the history of corporal punishment:

Cooper, William M. The History of the Rod: Flagellation and Flagellants in All Countries from the Earliest Period to the Present Time. Kegan Paul (1869).

And on the Japanese Context:

Drea, Edward J. In the Service of the Emperor: Essays on the Imperial Japanese Army. U. of Nebraska (2003).

- Japanese Wikipedia page on soldiers and training, including notes on Imperial Japanese Army and Navy policies on hazing.

Miller, Aaron L. Discourses of Discipline: An Anthropology of Corporal Punishment in Japan's Schools and Sports. Institute of East Asian Studies, UC Berkeley (available here).

Yoneyama, Shoko. The Japanese High School: Silence and Resistance. Routledge (2012).

- A WW2 era US Army translation of an internal Japanese Army report on the state of discipline and morale in the army.

- Blog post republishing a Mainichi Japan article from November 2009 about the Totsuka Yacht School, and talking about the relationship between hierarchical power and violence.

- Japan Times article about corporal punishment in Japanese sports, and its interconnection with popular media including anime, as well as the attitudes among many older Japanese people that corporal punishment is an essential component of masculinity.

- Japanese page on the 軍人精神注入棒 Military Spirit Instillation Rod (or the Soldierly Spirit Injection Stick).

- Bon Appetit article on the history of vending machines, (includes images of patent drawings) and another brief history with examples of unusual vending machines.

- Description of Heron Alexandrinus’ holy-water dispensing machine (and some other miscellaneous details about the vending machine industry).

- History of the Automat (restaurant where all food was purchased from vending machines).

- Wikipedia page on vending machines (history portion is not very detailed but has useful statistics on vending machines in Japan and sections on different types of vending machines).

- History and context for vending machines in Japan.

- Burger vending machines (FEBO in the Netherlands is an example of an automat).


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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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