Available on Gundam.info
Developed by Sunrise
Quick recap, since this is probably the first review of this anime on here. I promise, after you catch up with this, my reviews won’t be as long.
Gundam Build Fighters was the first season of this particular series. It focused on a kid named Iori Sei and his mysterious friend, Asuna Reiji. The setting is a future version of Japan that has developed an energy known as Plavsky Particles that can manipulate the plastics of Gundam models. Besides the actual competitions that judge gunpla on craftsmanship, ingenuity and other aspects, they also hold championships for builders from all over the world to pit their best builds against each other in classic Gundam style fights.
This series is more or less a glorified commercial for Bandai’s model kits, with them releasing new ones to the eager masses upon every reveal. But, man, does it work. The lot of the models are really something else. The story is a bit wonky at times, with many feel-good moments and “Hey, don’t be angry. Build Gundams!” But when the action gets going, there’s plenty of it to be had. If you aren’t coming down from an adrenaline rush by the end of the fights, you are doing it so very wrong. Personally, I can never contain my excitement when the Try Fighters are able to grasp victory.
Gundam Build Fighters Try focuses on Hoshino Fumina, Kousaka Yuuma and Kamiki Sekai. The setting is the same, but it takes place 7 years after the first season. Iori Sei is only mentioned, but there are plenty of appearances from the earlier characters with a few having recurring roles as well. Rules for Gunpla Battle have changed slightly too. The biggest of those being instead of one on one battles, it’s three on three.
“Fateful Reunion” is heavy on the exposition and starts off with the previous episode’s cliff hanger. Yuuma is on his way back with spare parts for the Build Burning Gundam when he is surrounded by a group of thugs hell-bent on taking those spares. They’re obviously out to get our team disqualified.
But timely help arrives and we get to see that Junya, another student of Jigen Hoah School, was “not” the mastermind behind the encounter. It’s obvious he just wanted to try on his evil eyes when he was denied the ultimate technique of his master’s teachings. With the promise of defeat at his hands, he walks off into the night.
It should be pointed out here that the master of Jigen Haoh School is actually Domon Kasshu from the G Gundam series. They haven’t acknowledged it, yet. But the silhouette and some of the things he’s been quoted as saying, all match the description of the Neo Japan fighter. He and Mr. Ral are just two of the cornucopia of winks, nods and references to other Gundam shows that have been sprinkled about the Build Fighters series.
Woof! With all that backstory done, we’re treated to a small montage of the two other top teams breezing through the quarter finals the next day. I was incredibly surprised by the Tryon 3 when it was revealed (Ep. 14). Throughout my many years of watching Gundam, I’ve never seen one combine like that. It was like being 8 years old and watching Power Rangers in my pajamas all over again.
Then the main attraction starts. The Try Fighters split up and we get to see them improvise on their own. Yuuma proves he’s not as weak as he once was and Fumina plays a hilarious game of mix and match with her Star Winning. Meanwhile, Sekai is getting his skills handed to him by Junya.
The cliff hanger here is more of a promise of what’s to come. There’s going to be plenty of action, emotional torment, screaming and flaming kenpo attacks. I have to admit, I wasn’t expecting it. But this seems to be building up to a Sei and pseudo-Domon reveal towards the end of the series. We’ve only got about 5 episodes left, sadly. I’m just not sure of what or who the “final boss” is yet.