Ah, CCA Char. When I first forayed into UC Gundam, CCA was one of my first stops. I was fascinated with the character of Char, and I wanted to consume it in the shortest, most succinct way possible.
Imagine my disappointment. The movie showed a great deal of Char’s greatness alright–his personal magnetism, piloting skills, and what seemed to me as untarnished ideals of how humanity should move forth, extreme measures and all.
However, it seemed that Tomino himself was holding Char back. No, he actually degenerated Char. The title of the movie is Char’s Counterattack. Char was to launch a counterattack… aimed at whom? Or what?
It wasn’t the Federation or the Earth that Tomino wanted Char to fight. It was Amuro–the movie is structured so that Char can have his final go at Amuro, in the backdrop of a war he started. The tragic thing is that Tomino could have easily written CCA in such a way that Char’s main purpose was to drop Axis on Earth, Amuro being just another unwanted thorn in his side. But no, he had to encase Char in myopia and have him make concessions just to allow Amuro to engage him on equal footing.
It’s common sense. If you really wanted to achieve something, you don’t give your enemy legroom in order to trounce you.
I found it hard to like Char when his ego was ridiculously bloated like this. He started the ball rolling, but stopped caring midway, playing around with Quess instead of, you know, commanding an army. And for all his coolness in the first half of the movie, he is utterly trounced by Amuro in what is the greatest mobile suit bar brawl in all of Gundam. WHOSE RESPONSIBLE THIS??
And Lalah… that is the worst cheap shot ever.
I can understand all this, but seeing how Char had been screwed up in Zeta, I’d think he would be smarter, more resolute (in the sense of ensuring that you succeed with what you want). But I can’t accept this self-destructive behavior of his. There’s a reason why in Super Robot Wars, we usually have Quattro to play with, not CCA Char.
However, that takes nothing away from my fascination with the original masked man. He was truly at his worst in CCA, but it was still a grand film that concluded a great rivalry in a satisfying way. I could turn a blind eye to his failures, and look at the man with admiration, his fatal flaws and all.