So we all know that it's not as bad as what follows but there are still a lot of people that are, at best, on the fence about Gundam Seed. Nostalgia can not only cloud our judgement but also poison it, especially in regards to such a divisive show.
Here are 5 reasons you should give Seed a chance, or another chance.
5. Interesting Setting
With Seed originally designed to be a new, updated take on the original 0079 story line, it draws on the strengths of it's storytelling. One of the biggest strengths is the setting. Sure it's really similar, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. We see things being a little more one sided, but for the most part there are people on all sides that are sympathetic.
Zaft having good reason to protect themselves, the Alliance acting in turn and Orb try to stay out of it all, while Anaheim Electronics-ing their way to fortune, we got a really interesting world.
It doesn't stop there either as we get loads of content in the Astray manga as well.
With the Cosmic Era being the 2nd most flushed out of the Gundam universes it's easy to see why it retains as much of it's popularity abroad. Even for all their flaws Kira & Athrun are great examples of how this world has shaped people's views. Sure there are always people who want revenge or peace but we see Kira slowly understand, much like Amuro, that war is a horrible thing but you have to do what you can to survive. Eventually coming to fighting for what he believes in. Athrun does almost the reverse, wanting revenge and slowly turning to see how pointless the war ends up being.
Even with most of the Alliance being painted as much worse than the original Gundam's Federation, we still get to see some people are genuinely good, like Admiral Halberton. He is the only one, outside of the Archangels crew, but still, neither side is 100% evil.
However Mu La Flaga and Andrew Waltfeld are 100% radical. The cool dad/senpai/sexy Ramba Ral (Thank you Gundam Seed Podcast), these guys are chewing up the scenes their in and boy is it needed sometimes.
Mu is such a cool laid back guy, a great balance to the Archangel's command structure. Not only does he mentor Kira he also helps the ship make it through the series in more than just a combat role. Mu is a smart enough strategist and tactician that he's one of the only people in the Cosmic Era that can actually be a threat to a mobile suit in a mobile armor.
I know I'm suppose to be making a case for Gundam Seed but without these two some of these arcs would be rough to say the very least. For instance the desert tiger arc.
This are would be one of the worst in Seed if Waltfeld wasn't a cool Rambal Ral type to help further Kira's abilities and his understanding of what it means to pilot. He's another great character used to humanize the Zaft forces and show what a competent commander looks like. Plus he gives a little insight into the "Berserk mode" the Kira goes into from time to time, more commonly referred to as "Seed Mode".
3. MS & Ships Designs
Gundam Seed is rife with awesome design work, the mobile suits and the ships pay tribute to the original UC concepts.
Just to mention a few suits, the Ginn, Cgue and Strike Daggers are awesome grunt suits. They bring out the UC vibes without "updating" designs like Seed Destiny, not that those are bad but the Ginn is a great modernized Zaku. The Cgue pulls a little Gouf Custom on us and the Strike Dagger couldn't be more GM like if it tried.
As for the main Gundams, the original 5 GAT suits are all pretty sound, the Buster Gundam being the weakest, in my humble opinion, but still not a bad design overall. This is a time in Gundam where were coming off a lot of Super Robot type vibes in the alternative universes with G Gundam and Wing airing a few years before and even the "UC" coming off of Turn A which was super different for the time. It was nice to see units with specific roles and being more a formal military work than the shining finger or Herro's self destruct switch.
Lastly we have the best thing to come our of Seed hands down, the LCAM-01XA Archangel, the White Base of Seed. This is a beautiful design that still stands up today as one of the best ship designs in all of Gundam.
2. An Idol With A Cause
Before you start calling me an idiot, just think for a second, what's the best way to get licensed music into your show? Bam Relina Peacecraft joins Love Live!
She's more than just an Idol though, her Idol status plays into her character, she's not just there to sing and save Kira. She knows how to be inspiring and lead, she's apparently a strategist and tactician in Seed mode and she can sing. 3 of "her" songs end up on the albums for Seed and are some slower jams, but jams regardless.
Lacus Clyne is the songbird of this era, being a popular political figure with both smarts and a genetically engineered voice. Like if Katy Perry and Princess Diana were combined and became a competent military commander. If only they could've shoe horned Aimer into Unicorn and Narrative.
Both a joke and not a joke, Gundam Seed has such a large amount of memable moments, it's worth being in on it. If you've been in the Gundam-verse for any time you'll have seen at least one picture of either Kira "Jesus" Yamato or Kira's screaming scenes. There are a lot of them.
The more we make fun of a show like Seed the more we remember it. Part of why Age is viewed as so meh is it's not got a lot of memorable moments, serious or goofy. We don't remember Asuemo & Zeheart screaming each other's names but we surely remember Athrun & Kira's scream offs, leading to some interesting speculations.
In conclusion, I think all Gundam is worth watching but here are my reasons, love them or hate them. There are some diamonds in this coal mine.