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.

The Descendants of Earth

Gundam Ep. 5: The White Base Returns to Earth

Show Notes

This week, we recap and review Mobile Suit Gundam episode 5, "Re-Entry to Earth," discuss our first impressions, and provide commentary and research on: hot towels, the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, the history of spaceflight, childhood trauma, Japanese migration, and physics in science fiction! with special guest, Iraj.

The East Japan Oshibori Cooperative Association has a brief history of hot towels (oshibori) in Japan (site is in Japanese).

Wikipedia has a thorough overview of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, while the following news articles talk about those who refused to leave the exclusion zone, farmers returning to tend their animals, and the high percentage of returners who are 65 and older.

I go over the history of spaceflight very quickly - you can learn more here, and click here to learn specifically about Skylab (the space station that broke up on re-entry, it's pieces crashing into Australia).

For our discussion of transitional objects, we reference online articles here, here, and here, as well as this article from the International Journal of Adolescence and Youth:

Enrique Roig , Clelia Trelancia Roig & Nancy Soth (1987) The Use of Transitional Objects in Emotionally-Disturbed Adolescent Inpatients, International Journal of Adolescence and Youth, 1:1, 45-58, DOI: 10.1080/02673843.1987.9747625

In case, like me, your high school science knowledge could use a refresher, here is a handy chart of the electromagnetic spectrum, which Iraj references several times in the episode. And here are the promised links with more information about reinforced carbon-carbon and ceramics used on space shuttles.

Our discussion of Japanese migration is based on this article from UCLA's Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies, and on this book:

Masterson, Daniel M., and Sayaka Funada-Classen. The Japanese in Latin America. University of Illinois Press, 2004.

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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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