Gundam Wing is a self-contained anime series using the same motifs as the traditional Gundam series in its story: Giant robots, space colonies, political ambition, and war. The series is one of the alternate universe series, like G Gundam and Gundam X; its story does not fit in, nor is it meant to fit in, with the regular Gundam series covered in Mobile Suit Gundam, Gundam Z, etc. Thus, for American audiences being introduced to the Gundam genre, it would seem more logical to introduce a series that can stand on its own and create a fan base rather than trying to hit or miss with a series from the original Gundam series and possibly destroying the franchise in America.
In Gundam Wing, one can find many pop culture influences not in the original series, among which is the group of 5 individuals, a characteristic seen in other series such as Sailor Moon as well as in Japanese boy bands such as SMAP. Likewise, the personality types are programmed as well, such as the brooding guy - Heero, the talkative guy - Duo, and such.
The dubbed American series uses a new opening sequence and music in comparison with the Japanese original. However, the animations during the closing credit sequences feature the animations from the original Japanese opening, along with a reinterpretation of the music as a guitar rock/orchestra piece.
The Gundam Wing series spawned an OAV,"Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz", and a game for the Super Famicom, "Gundam Wing: Endless Duel".
Gundam Wing currently plays on the Cartoon Network at 5:30 pm on Monday through Friday as part of the Toonami lineup.
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