Decades ago, Mobile Suit Gundam helped fans across the globe imagine a world far out in space. The game-changing anime not only revolutionized the mech genre, but its take on space exploration and colonization prompted lots of tough questions. These days, humanity is finally starting to take its first steps into private space travel, but Gundam's creator is not all that thrilled. After all, Yoshiyuki Tomino is not eager for any sort of colonization, and he's not afraid to share why.
The update comes from the man himself as Tomino sat down for an interview with Weekly Playboy in Japan. It was there the artist spoke about his career up until now, and when the topic shifted to recent interstellar enterprises, Tomino was far from wowed.
"Politicians, financiers, and space explorers are not thinking about how harsh things will be in the near future," Tomino shared. They're not thinking about things like, 'Isn't it stupid to be saying what a territory [in space] is? To the fundamental point, what even are people going to do on the colony? Humans need air and water to live in space, right? How long are they going to live in space?'"
Of course, it is easy to figure out who Tomino is talking about. Earlier this summer, Richard Branson (Virgin) and Jeff Bezos (Amazon) funded private flights into the lowest levels of space. The pair will soon be joined by Elon Musk who operates his own rocket company SpaceX. These pricey missions did make history as the billionaires could make space travel affordable to those with deep pockets. But when it comes to full colonization efforts, Tomino isn't convinced that will happen for several lifetimes.
"The world of Gundam is unrealistic," Tomino once told fans back in 2010 when asked if life would one day imitate the anime. "It's just an anime."
While colonization is surely on humanity's to-do list in space, it is nowhere near feasible. From radiation to dehydration and more, experts don't have answers to the top challenges preventing risk-free exploration let alone colonization. Tomino knows this, and he isn't eager for the status quo to change anytime soon. So while the creator's characters live on in Gundam, Tomino is fine to live out life on Earth without any plans to lift off into space.
What do you think about the creator's point of view here? Are you a proponent for space exploration or...? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB.