Mobile Suit Gundam is arguably the most important mecha anime to ever grace our screens. The super cool series launched in 1979 and told the story of a futuristic version of the world where space colonies and intergalactic wars are the norm. To win these wars, a desperate population turns to giant teenager-manned robots known as Gundam. Next year, Japan will be sending some actual Gundam models into actual space so that they can cheer on the massive sporting event from the cosmos.
According to SoraNews24, “The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has teamed up with the Tokyo University Graduate School of Engineering’s Aerospace Engineering department to use mobile suits to cheer on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics from space. To do so, they’ll be sending models of the original Gundam and Char’s Zaku from the Mobile Suit Gundam series out into Earth’s orbit.” It’s a super cool idea that will likely excite fans of the sprawling anime franchise who will be eager to think of the mechs they love so much venturing out into the vast wilds of space.
Though a full-size Gundam mech does exist—and you can visit it in Tokyo—these explorers will be more akin to the massively popular build-at-home models that have become a large part of the wider Gundam fandom. Of course, these will be made of special materials that will enable them to survive in space once they’re released out of “the cockpit” of the G-Satellite that will be transporting them on their epic adventure. The pair will even take an electronic signboard that will show positive messages for the athletes competing below. Their journey will be a short one, as they’ll be only orbiting around Earth until they’re brought back down sometime before the ceremonies are over.
Images: Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Sunrise Studios