Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt

Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt

The cover of the first volume.
機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト
(Kidō Senshi Gandamu Sandāboruto)
Genre Science fiction, Mecha, Drama
Written by Yasuo Ohtagaki
Published by Shogakukan
English publisher
Demographic Seinen
Magazine Big Comic Superior
Original run March 2012 – present
Volumes 8
Original net animation
Directed by Kō Matsuo
Written by Kō Matsuo
Music by Naruyoshi Kikuchi
Studio Sunrise
Licensed by
Released 25 December 2015 – present
Runtime 18 minutes each
Episodes 4
Anime film
Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky
Directed by Kō Matsuo
Written by Kō Matsuo
Music by Naruyoshi Kikuchi
Studio Sunrise
Licensed by
Released 25 June 2016
Runtime 70 minutes[1]

Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt (機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト Kidō Senshi Gandamu Sandāboruto) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yasuo Ohtagaki. The manga takes place in the Universal Century timeline during the events of Mobile Suit Gundam. Viz Media has licensed the series in North America. An ONA series adaptation by Sunrise was released between 25 December 2015 and 8 April 2016.[2][3][4] A second season of the ONA series has been announced, which will adapt the second arc of the manga.[5]


The series takes place concurrently with Mobile Suit Gundam, during the One Year War. In U.C. 0079, the Earth Federation's Moore Brotherhood and the Principality of Zeon's Living Dead Division engage in a fierce battle in the "Thunderbolt Sector" (サンダーボルト宙域 Sandāboruto Chū-iki), a shoal zone littered with debris from destroyed space colonies, named for the frequent electrical discharges. Since the outbreak of the war, Zeon forces have secured the Thunderbolt Sector, as it is a vital supply route to the A Baoa Qu asteroid fortress. The story focuses on Federation soldier Io Fleming as he battles Zeon's best sniper, Daryl Lorenz.


Moore Brotherhood

The Moore Brotherhood (ムーア同胞団 Mūa Dōhō-dan) is an Earth Federation squadron consisting of former residents of the space colonies of Side 4: Moore, with the intent of punishing the Principality of Zeon for destroying their homeland.

Io Fleming (イオ・フレミング Io Furemingu)
Voiced by: Yuichi Nakamura (Japanese); Max Mittelman (English)
A Federation Ensign who enjoys pounding his drum sticks on his mobile suit cockpit console to free jazz music on his pirate radio receiver. Prior to the One Year War, Io, along with his friends Claudia Peer and Cornelius Kaka, participated in air racing events in Side 4. His father, who was Mayor of Side 4, had committed suicide during the outbreak of the war. Io is part of a GM squadron sortied to break through the sniper lines of the Thunderbolt Sector when his GM is shot down before he manages to eject his cockpit block. He sneaks through the debris, kills Zeon pilot Hoover, and commandeers his Rick Dom before returning to the Moore Brotherhood fleet. Using the sniper data extracted from the Rick Dom, Io pilots the Federation's new Full Armor Gundam prototype to flush out the Zeon Big Gun units stationed all over the sector, boasting that the sound of jazz music marks his presence. Following a grueling battle between the Full Armor Gundam and the Psycho Zaku, Io is captured by Zeon reinforcements along with the surviving members of the Moore Brotherhood. He is beaten to a pulp by members of the Living Dead Division while in captivity aboard the Chivvay-class ship en route to A Baoa Qu. In the epilogue of the Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky theatrical compilation, the ship crashes on A Baoa Qu's surface when the Earth Federation stages an assault on the Zeon asteroid fortress. In the midst of the chaos, Io breaks out of his cell and kills the remaining guards before reuniting with his comrades.
Claudia Peer (クローディア・ペール Kurōdia Pēru)
Voiced by: Toa Yukinari (Japanese); Cherami Leigh (English)
Captain of the Beehive. Claudia finds her position uneasy, especially with Io as her lover. She is further disgusted when the Earth Federation sends teenage pilots to her fleet as reinforcements. The war takes a huge toll on her, as she resorts to taking depressant drugs before Io snaps her out of an overdose. During the last leg of the Moore Brotherhood's operation, her fleet is destroyed and she is shot dead by her XO Graham, who blames her and the Brotherhood elites for the death of his family.
Cornelius Kaka (コーネリアス・カカ Kōneriasu Kaka)
Voiced by: Daisuke Hirakawa (Japanese); Christian La Monte (English)
An engineer aboard the Beehive and Io's best friend. As Io seemingly has an allergic reaction that causes him to sneeze in the hangar, Cornelius often lends him a pack of tissues.
Graham (グラハム Guraham)
Voiced by: Shunsuke Sakuya (Japanese); Ray Chase (English)
A Federation XO aboard the Beehive. He is uncomfortable with serving under Claudia. After the Beehive is severely damaged by the Psycho Zaku, Graham shoots Claudia before he is consumed by the ship's final explosion.

Living Dead Division

The Living Dead Division (リビング・デッド師団 Ribingu Deddo Shidan) is a Principality of Zeon squadron made of amputee pilots fitted with metal prosthetic limbs. The division is assigned to defend the Thunderbolt Sector from the Federation.

Daryl Lorenz (ダリル・ローレンツ Dariru Rōrentsu)
Voiced by: Ryohei Kimura (Japanese); Johnny Yong Bosch (English)
A Zeon Chief Petty Officer and ace sniper. He carries with him a retro-style radio he has owned since childhood that plays pop oldies. As an infantryman, Daryl lost his legs from mortar fire during a landing raid on an enemy colony in the first half of the One Year War. While fighting against Io during a skirmish in the Thunderbolt Sector, he loses his left hand after the Full Armor Gundam pierces through his Zaku I with its beam saber. After much deliberation by the Living Dead Division to hasten the Reuse P. Device project, Daryl has his right hand amputated so his body can have full control of experimental Psycho Zaku. Following a grueling battle with the Full Armor Gundam, Daryl is rescued by Zeon reinforcements and he sets his critically damaged Psycho Zaku to self-destruct. In the epilogue of the December Sky film, Daryl is issued a Gelgoog unit, but has difficulty using the manual controls with his prosthetic arms.
Karla Mitchum (カーラ・ミッチャム Kāra Mitchamu)
Voiced by: Sayaka Ohara (Japanese); Tara Sands (English)
A Zeon scientist who is part of the "Reuse P. Device" (RPD) (リユース・P・デバイス Riyūsu Pī Debaisu) project. Her father was a historian who was sent to prison after being marked by Zeon as a dissident, and she is serving the Zeon military in hopes of her father's release. Karla supplies the Living Dead Division's pilots with their prosthetics and cares heavily about them. After Hoover is shot dead by Io, Karla asks Daryl to avenge him and kill Io. She is sent into a catatonic state after witnessing her comrades vaporized by a GM Cannon's beam saber while attempting to self-destruct the Dried Fish.
J. J. Sexton (J・J・セクストン Jei Jei Sekusuton)
Voiced by: Hiroshi Tsuchida (Japanese); Will Barrett (English)
A Zeon scientist in charge of the RPD project. He treats the Living Dead Division pilots as lab rats. During the evacuation of the Dried Fish, Sexton sneaks through a pile of injured soldiers and jumps into an escape pod.
Burroughs (バロウズ Barousu)
Voiced by: Mutsumi Sasaki (Japanese); Scott Williams (English)
Captain of the Dried Fish, the Living Dead Division's flagship. Like the division's pilots, Burroughs is an amputee, sporting a prosthetic right arm. He and his main crew are killed after the Full Armor Gundam fires at the Dried Fish's bridge.
Sean Mitadera (ショーン・ミタデラ Shōn Mitadera)
Voiced by: Shinya Hamazoe (Japanese); Ivan Nemer (English)
A Zaku pilot with prosthetic arms. He is killed by Io, who uses his Zaku as a shield against Daryl.
Hoover (フーバー Fūbā)
Voiced by: Kent Itō (Japanese); Jamison Boaz (English)
A Rick Dom pilot with a prosthetic left arm, he is described by Daryl as a "playboy-wannabe". Hoover is shot in the head by Io, who then hijacks his Rick Dom to leak the Living Dead Division's sniper positions to the Moore Brotherhood.
Fisher Ness (フィッシャー・ネス Fisshā Nesu)
Voiced by: Ryōsuke Morita (Japanese); Chris Jai Alex (English)
A Rick Dom pilot with prosthetic legs. During the final battle between the Moore Brotherhood and the Living Dead Division, he retreats to rendezvous with Zeon reinforcements to rescue his comrades.
Layton (レイトン Reiton)
Voiced by: Shuuhei Iwase (Japanese); Todd Haberkorn (English)
A Gattle pilot and Daryl's close friend. After firing a direct hit on the Beehive with a Big Gun, he is killed by the Moore Brotherhood fleet's countering fire.
Keith Meyers (キース・マイヤーズ Kīsu maiyāzu)
Voiced by: Hiroshi Murata (Japanese); Wayne Grayson (English)
Denver Roche (デンバー・ローチ Denbā rōchi)
Voiced by: Keisuke Kōmoto (Japanese); Daniel J. Edwards (English)
A Zeon soldier who wears a black face mask and has a prosthetic leg. During the Moore Brotherhood's takeover of the Dried Fish, Denver detonates a suicide bomb in the vessel's armory.


Earth Federation

FA-78 Full Armor Gundam (フルアーマーガンダム Furu Āmā Gandamu)
The Earth Federation's latest Gundam prototype mobile suit, delivered to the Moore Brotherhood and assigned to Io Fleming. It is fitted with extra armor plating and equipped with multiple beam cannons and missile pods. Its backpack has two sub-arms that hold shields and other weaponry. To compensate for the weight of the added equipment, the Gundam is fitted with multiple vernier thrusters on its body and backpack. The Full Armor Gundam is severely damaged during its battle with the Psycho Zaku and captured by Zeon forces along with Io and the surviving members of the Moore Brotherhood.
RX-78AL Atlas Gundam (アトラスガンダム Atorasu Gandamu)
RGM-79 GM (ジム Jimu)
The Moore Brotherhood's version of the Earth Federation's mass-production mobile suit is equipped with multiple vernier thrusters and two backpack-mounted sub-arms that typically hold two shields.
RB-79 Ball (ボール Bōru)
The Earth Federation's mass-produced mobile pod, equipped with heavier weaponry for the Moore Brotherhood's assault missions.
RGC-80 GM Cannon (ジム・キャノン Jimu Kyanon)
A variant of the GM with a long-range beam cannon mounted on its right shoulder.
RAG-79 Aqua GM (アクア・ジム Akua Jimu)
RX-77 Guncannon (ガンキャノン Gankyanon)
A medium-range mass-produced mobile suit equipped with two shoulder-mounted beam cannons.
RX-77AQ Guncannon Aqua (ガンキャノン・アクア Gankyanon Akua)
G-Fighter (Gファイター Jī faitā)
A multipurpose mobile unit that docks with a Gundam or GM. Exclusive to the December Sky theatrical compilation, one G-Fighter is seen during the Earth Federation's assault on Zeon's A Baoa Qu fortress before being destroyed by a High Mobility Psycommu System Zaku II.
Core Booster (コア・ブースター Koa Būsutā)
The Earth Federation's space-type fighter plane unit. Multiple Core Boosters are sortied on the A Baoa Qu assault in December Sky.
Beehive (空母ビーハイヴ Kūbo Bīhaivu)
The Moore Brotherhood's Columbus-class mobile suit carrier and flagship. It is destroyed by the Psycho Zaku.

Principality of Zeon

MS-06R Reuse P. Device High Mobility Zaku II (リユース・P・デバイス装備高機動型ザク Riyūsu Pī Debaisu Sōbi-kō Kidō-gata Zaku)
Also known as the Psycho Zaku (サイコ・ザク Saiko Zaku), this is a prototype Zaku unit modified with the RPD system, which enables pilot control using direct thoughts. In order for this system to work, the pilot would need to be a multiple amputee, with his limbs replaced with metal pegs that connect to the system. The direct nervous connection results in significantly quicker reflexes that rival those of Newtype pilots. Daryl Lorenz is assigned as its pilot after having his right arm amputated and rendered limbless. The Psycho Zaku is equipped with multiple vernier thrusters and is heavily armed with a backpack that stores a plethora of machine guns, bazookas, and missile pods to match the capabilities of the Full Armor Gundam. It sustains critical damage during its battle with the Full Armor Gundam, but it manages to decapitate the Gundam with its last missile before Daryl exits it and leaves it to self-destruct.
MS-06 Zaku II (量産型ザク Ryōsan-gata Zaku)
The Principality of Zeon's mainstay mobile suit. The Living Dead Division's Zaku II units are equipped with larger backpacks that have two sub-arms.
MS-05 Zaku (旧ザク Kyū Zaku)
One of the Principality of Zeon's first mass-produced mobile suits. A yellow colored unit is assigned to Daryl Lorenz before it is severely damaged by the Full Armor Gundam.
MS-09R Rick Dom (リック・ドム Rikku Domu)
Another mass-produced Zeon mobile suit assigned to the Living Dead Division.
Big Gun (ビッグガン Biggu Gan)
A high-powered beam cannon used by the Living Dead Division to snipe enemy units from long distances.
MS-14 Gelgoog (ゲルググ Gerugugu)
A Zeon mass-produced mobile suit assigned to elite pilots. Multiple Gelgoogs are launched from Chivvay-class Heavy Cruiser reinforcements to recover the surviving members of the Living Dead Division after their fleet's destruction in the Thunderbolt Sector.
MSN-01 High Mobility Psycommu System Zaku II (サイコミュ高機動試験用ザク Saikomyu-kō Kidō Shiken-yō Zaku)
A modified Zaku II used as a testbed for the MSN-02 Zeong. Each arm is equipped with a wire-guided 5-barrel Mega Particle Gun that enables the mobile suit to execute all-range attacks. Exclusive shown in the December Sky theatrical compilation, this Zaku is sortied to protect A Baoa Qu from the invading Earth Federation forces.
MSN-02 Zeong (ジオング Jiongu)
A prototype mobile suit designed for Newtype pilots and shown exclusively in the post-credits sequence of December Sky. Like the High Mobility Psycommu System Zaku II, the Zeong is equipped with Mega Particle Gun hands, but is also armed with multiple particle beam cannons on its head and waist. In the event of critical damage, the pilot can eject the Zeong's head as a secondary unit. After the Earth Federation captures A Baoa Qu, it is discovered that multiple Zeong units are housed in the asteroid base.
Gattle (ガトル Gatoru)
The Zeon's space-type bomber unit.
Dried Fish (空母ドライドフィッシュ Kūbo Doraido Fisshu)
The Living Dead Division's Papua-class mobile suit carrier and flagship. It suffers heavy damage from attacks by the Full Armor Gundam and is captured by the Moore Brotherhood before Zeon forces recapture it and evacuate all hands prior to its destruction.
Musai-class Light Cruiser (ムサイ級軽巡洋艦 Musai Kyūkeijun Yōkan)
The Zeon's mainstay mobile suit carrier. Several Musai-class ships flank the Dried Fish as part of the Living Dead Division fleet.
Chivvay-class Heavy Cruiser (チベ級重巡洋艦 Chibe Kyūjūjun Yōkan)
The Zeon's heavy space cruiser.



Yasuo Ohtagaki put his Moonlight Mile manga on hiatus in November 2011 to write a Gundam series.[6] He began serializing Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt in Shogakukan's Big Comic Superior magazine in March 2012.[2]

North American publisher Viz Media announced their license to the series during their panel at Anime Expo on 1 July 2016.[7]


No.Japanese release dateJapanese ISBNEnglish release dateEnglish ISBN
1 30 October 2012[8]ISBN 9784091848109 [8]April 22, 2015[9]ISBN 978-981-09-4369-1
2 30 May 2013[10]ISBN 9784091853073 [10]May 27, 2015[11]ISBN 978-981-09-4370-7
3 28 February 2014[12]ISBN 9784091860804 [12]July 22, 2015[13]ISBN 978-981-09-4371-4
4 28 November 2014[14]ISBN 9784091867186 [14]April 2016[15]ISBN 978-981-09-4372-1
5 27 February 2015[16]ISBN 9784091868558 [16]
6 30 October 2015[17]ISBN 9784091872692 [17]
7 25 December 2015[18]ISBN 9784091875389 [18]


A 4-episode original net animation adaptation, produced by Sunrise, was confirmed on 28 October 2015.[19][20] It was directed and written by Kō Matsuo, with character designs from Hirotoshi Takaya and mechanical designs from Morifumi Naka, Seiichi Nakatani and Hajime Katoki. It premiered on 25 December 2015 with the last episode officially aired on 8 April 2016 via pay to watch service in Japan, with early access from the Gundam Fan Club app service on 11 December 2015.[21] The first episode was streamed outside Japan for a limited time from 25 December 2015 to 7 January 2016. A second season was announced by Bandai Visual on 18 November 2016, which is scheduled to premiere in Q2 2017.[5]

Episode list

No. Title Release date
01  25 December 2015
The Moore Brotherhood's Beehive flagship launches a squadron of GMs across the Thunderbolt Sector to break through the Principality of Zeon's defenses, only to be shot down by the Living Dead Divison and their Big Gun units. Io Fleming, who manages to eject from his GM, guns down a Rick Dom pilot before commandeering the mobile suit and returning to the Beehive with the sniper location data. He is then assigned to pilot the new Full Armor Gundam prototype, which he uses to flush out three Big Gun units. Living Dead Division ace sniper Daryl Lorenz vows to avenge his fallen comrades and kill Io. 
02  12 February 2016
During the Full Armor Gundam's second sortie in the Thunderbolt Sector, Io once again confronts Daryl. Daryl narrowly escapes after throwing a Cracker grenade at the Gundam, but he loses his left hand in the process. As the Living Dead Division is desperate to hasten the Reuse P. Device project to combat the Gundam, Daryl has his right hand amputated so that his body will have full control of the experimental Psycho Zaku. 
03  18 March 2016
The Moore Brotherhood receives reinforcements from the Earth Federation, but the new mobile suit pilots are young teenagers, much to Io's chagrin. Feeling the pressure of the war, Claudia resorts to drugs before Io snaps her out of an overdose. Io leads the young cadets to break through the Living Dead Division's final defenses, but the battle becomes a massacre due to the young pilots' inexperience. 
04  22 April 2016
With both sides suffering massive casualties, the Full Armor Gundam engages in a final showdown with the Psycho Zaku. Meanwhile, the surviving members of the Moore Brotherhood board the Dried Fish to take it over, but the remaining members of the Living Dead Division refuse to be taken prisoner and plan to self-destruct the vessel along with everyone on board. 


A theatrical compilation of the ONA titled Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky (機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト DECEMBER SKY Kidō Senshi Gandamu Sandāboruto Dissenbā Sukai) was released in Japanese theaters on 25 June 2016 with the Blu-ray release on 29 July 2016.[22][23] Sunrise and Anime Limited distributed the film outside Japan.[24]


  1. "機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト DECEMBER SKY (2016)". allcinema (in Japanese). Retrieved 6 August 2016.
  2. 1 2 "Gundam Thunderbolt Manga Gets Anime". Anime News Network. 28 October 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  3. "太田垣康男が描く新たなる一年戦争「機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト」アニメ化決定!". GUNDAM.INFO. 28 October 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Gundam Thunderbolt Anime Gets 2nd Season Next Spring". Anime News Network. 18 November 2016. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  6. "Moonlight Mile's Ohtagaki to Start Gundam Manga Mini-Series". Anime News Network. 20 December 2015. Retrieved 29 October 2015.
  7. "Viz Manga Adds Dragon Ball Super, Gundam Thunderbolt, Rei Tōma's The Water Dragon's Bride". Anime News Network. 1 July 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2016.
  8. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 1 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 1]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  10. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 2 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 2]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  12. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 3 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 3]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  14. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 4 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 4]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  16. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 5 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 5]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  17. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 6 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 6]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  18. 1 2 機動戦士ガンダム サンダーボルト / 7 [Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt / 7]. Shogakukan (in Japanese). Retrieved 30 March 2016.
  19. Komatsu, Mikikazu (28 October 2015). "Yasuo Ohtagaki's "Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt" Manga Gets Anime Adaptation". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  20. Barder, Ollie (28 October 2015). "'Gundam Thunderbolt' Manga To Get Anime Adaptation". Forbes. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  21. "Gundam Thunderbolt Anime Staff, Cast, Distribution, Episode Count, Designs Revealed". Anime News Network. 19 November 2015. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
  22. "Gundam Thunderbolt Director's Cut Edition to Get Theatrical Screenings on June 25". Crunchyroll. 21 April 2016. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
  23. "Gundam Thunderbolt Anime Gets Director's Cut Screening, Home Video Release". Anime News Network. 21 April 2016. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
  24. "Anime Limited to Distribute Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky". Anime News Network. 27 April 2016. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
Preceded by
Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans
Gundam metaseries (production order)
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team
Universal Century
U.C. 0079-80
Succeeded by
Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket
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