Gundam Rising is the first episode of the anime series Mobile Suit Gundam. It follows protagonist Amuro Ray as his home is attacked and he learns to pilot the titular Gundam.
The episode opens with three Zeon Zaku IIs infiltrating the Federation-controlled Side 7 space colony. They, and their commander, Char Aznable, followed a Federation cruiser from Earth in the hopes of learning more about their top-secret mobile suit. Upon entering the colony, the Zaku IIs discover that most of the civilians have begun evacuating, and that the Federation is beginning to transport their new mobile suit onto a new warship.
Elsewhere on Side 7, Fraw Bow and Haro travel to Amuro Ray's house to make sure he evacuates safely. When they arrive, they find him in his workshop, blissfully unaware that an evacuation is even taking place. After some browbeating from Fraw Bow, Amuro finally agrees to leave with her for the spaceport. Fraw Bow goes outside to wait for Amuro, and sees his neighbor, Hayato Kobayashi preparing to leave with his family. He expresses his bitterness at being forced to leave his home because of the new Federation base being constructed. He also mentions that he is unhappy with Amuro because Amuro's father, Tem, is one of the chief engineers leading the project. Eventually, Hayato and his family leave for the spaceport and Amuro comes out of his house to go with Fraw Bow.
At the Federation military base and spaceport, Tem Ray is leading the effort to get the new mobile suit, called Gundam, loaded onto the prototype warship, named White Base. As he is making the final preparations, he has a conversation with a young NCO, Bright Noa, about the realities of war. During the conversation, Tem remarks that once the Gundam enters mass production, the Federation will be able to end the war without sending kids like Bright or Amuro into battle. This foreshadows much of the war's future, as Bright and Amuro will soon become thrust into the heart of the conflict.
Meanwhile, the three Zaku IIs who were scouting the colony locate the Federation base and the Gundam. Against orders from Char, they begin to attack the base and the innocent colonists in an effort to destroy the Gundam and be recognized as Zeon heroes. During their attack on the Federation forces, they cause much collateral damage to the colony and kill many of the fleeing colonists. Amuro, already safely inside one of the Federation's bunkers, decides to venture outside to find his father and demand that the colonists be evacuated onto White Base. As soon as he leaves the bunker, a group of soldiers is killed near him, and one of them drops the instruction manual to the Gundam. Amuro picks it up and begins to read it thoroughly. When Amuro finally finds his father, he overhears him giving an order to load the Gundam onto White Base instead of evacuating the colonists, because the Gundam is more important. Amuro argues with his father over his priorities, but his father dismisses Amuro's concerns and leaves with the other soldiers, ordering Amuro to return to safety.
Fraw Bow, seeing Amuro's argument with his father, runs off of the trail the civilians are taking to the bunkers. As she does, a shell from a Zaku II gun explodes behind her, killing almost all of the civilians, including Fraw Bow's mother and grandfather. Distraught, she runs over to their bodies and begins sobbing uncontrollably. Amuro is forced to literally slap some sense into her and order her to run for safety. Once she is safely away from the area. Amuro heads over to the now-abandoned Gundam and climbs inside. Using the manual and his strong technical skills, he manages to turn the Gundam on as one of the Zaku IIs finds him. While incredibly inexperience, he is able to rip the front camera off of the Zaku II due to the extraordinary power of the Gundam. As the damaged Zaku II tries to flee, Amuro cuts it in half with the Gundam's beam sword, causing both a massive explosion inside the colony and breach in the colony's hull which begins to suck the colony's air out before it is sealed by Federation forces.
Amuro realizes that he cannot risk detonating another Zaku II, as the explosion might destroy the entire colony. Instead, Amuro carefully impales the other Zaku II in the cockpit, killing its pilot without destroying the mobile suit, while the third Zaku II manages to escape and return to Char's ship. In the aftermath of the battle, Bright realizes that Amuro is the only person on the colony capable of docking the Gundam onto White Base, as most of the engineers and pilots were killed int he fighting. The episode ends with Amuro still inside the Gundam, looking out over the ruins of the colony city.
|Air Date||July 23, 2001|