The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

Gundam has long been called the Star Trek of Japan, because of its long-running popularity, and its many, many incarnations. This means there have been hundreds, if not thousands of Gundams and other assorted mecha designed for the Gundam anime series, and not all of them have been winners. For every RX-78 from the original series there's a goofy-looking Z'gok, for the sleek designs of Gundam Wing and Gundam Seed, there's the borderline insane mecha from the phenomenally goofy G Gundam. Of those thousands, here are designs that are less "Gundam" and more "goddamn."

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

1) Big Zam
The original Gundam series' Big Zam is more a mobile fortress than a mobile suit; it towers over most mecha, and has been known to take out battleships in a single shot. On the other hand, it's basically giant, unwieldy battleship on two spindly legs. Two Gundam kicks to the back of the knees would send this thing crashing down, never to get back up. Which shouldn't be that hard to do, because the Big Zam uses so much power it can only operate for 20 minutes at a time.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

2) Gundam Maxter
G Gundam is easily the most infamous Gundam series, as it eschewed a semi-realistic look at future warfare in order to make a show about robots based on national stereotypes fighting in hand-to-hand combat. But while it was easy for the makers of G Gundam to distill most countries into a single idea for their Gundam designs — sometimes too easy — America posed a bit of a problem. America is a vast land, full of distinct interests and cultures. What to do? Here's what you do: You make a Gundam wearing a football helmet and boxing gloves, wielding two pistols, and riding a surfboard, that's what you do. Honestly, it's only about one crying eagle picture away from being perfect.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

3) Sandhoge
Appearing in the not particularly loved Victory Gundam, the Sandhoge is actually a mobile repair suit, which uses its spider-like shape to crawl on the outside of space colonies and make repairs (although it was stolen and used in a combat a few times). While putting human-esque hands at the end of all its limbs seems both odd and creepy, it's the "string"-shooter in the ass that disturbs me most. I understand it works with the spider-theme, but wouldn't it be slightly more practical for the pilots to be able to see where they're shooting that thing?

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

4) Zebra Gundam
This is Neo Kenya's entrant in the G Gundam tournament. Whether you think it's indicative of racial stereotyping or a misguided attempt by Japanese people to imagine how Kenyans might celebrate their heritage via giant robot design, please note that the Zebra Gundam's shoulder are actually zebra heads. These don't transform, they don't do anything, they're just decorative zebra heads, hanging off the Gundam's shoulders. I feel like this is the kind of design choice committees are supposed to prevent.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

5) Zeta-Zaku
This is the Zeta Gundam, but with an enemy Zaku head instead of a Gundam head. In its defense, its not an actual Gundam model, but something cobbled together after a fight left the Zeta Gundam headless. It's still really, really dumb. Moving on.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

6) Tequila Gundam
Neo Mexico's infamous Tequila Gundam — renamed in the English dub as Spike Gundam, for reasons that should be obvious — is actually a perfectly fine Gundam. It has no particular design flaws, and visually it doesn't scream Mexican stereotypes as hard as many of G Gundam's other Gundams do. On the other hand, it is a giant mobile suit wearing a mustache and a sombrero, and thus will go down in history as one of the most ludicrous robots ever. Hell, it makes Neo France's Napoleon-hat-wearing Gundam Rose look almost restrained.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

7) Mandala Gundam
I appreciate the sentiment that went into the design of Neo Nepal's Mandala Gundam, what its lower half being a giant prayer bell and all. And I appreciate the creativity they put into trying to make it useful — retracting the Gundam's limbs and torso into the bell as a defense mode, or springing out like a jack-in-the-box to attack its enemies. But the bottom line is that Mandala Gundam's opponents have legs, and Mandala Gundam doesn't. This is an issue.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

8) Zogok
Another mobile suit from Victory Gundam, the Zogok is a "prototype amphibious mobile suit," which looks a little goofy, but not prohibitively so. But see those fins on the Zogok's shoulders? Those are giant bladed boomerangs. They raise so many questions: 1) Why keep 10 sharp boomerangs right next to your head (and the cockpit)? If they're boomerangs and they come back, do you really need more than one or two? How does a robot throw boomerangs under the water, anyways?

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

9) Matador Gundam
You might be aware that Spain enjoys bullfights. So what did the G Gundam folks use as inspiration for Neo Spain's Gundam, That's right, a matador –- wait, what? That's not a matador. That's a giant bull head with arms and legs on it. But it's still called Matador Gundam! It even has an attack where it uses "beam cloths," like the regular Gundam's beam sabers! Sigh. Well, I'm sure having an almost perfectly spherical body with an easily grabbable ring up front doesn't pose any risk at all.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

10) Fuunsaiki
This robotic horse is the ride of Master Asia's Master Gundam. Now, in G Gundam, the Gundams are controlled by pilots wearing skintight suits, and the robots mimic the pilots' movements. So who do you think is piloting Fuunsaiki? A HORSE. THERE IS A HORSE INSIDE CONTROLLING THE GIANT ROBOT HORSE. That… seems like a poor idea to me. Yes, horses are generally docile creatures, and Master Asia seems to have it under control. But what if it gets loose? What if it stampedes through a city? "Crushed by giant robot horse" is not what I'd want in my obituary.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

11) Guntank
The Guntank is one of the original Gundam's most iconic Earth Federation vehicles, combining the agility of a tank with the giant target that is a Gundam. No, seriously — this is either a Gundam that has had its legs chopped and was glued on top of a tank, or a tank that had its turret removed to stick on the top half of a Gundam. How do either of these things constitute an improvement over the original?

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

12) Nether Gundam
Neo Netherland's uncreatively named Nether Gundam — sometimes referred to as Windmill Gundam, for obvious reasons, and called Hurricane Gundam in the U.S., to make it seem slightly more exciting — does, in fact, transform into an apparently normal windmill. It's actually more useful than you'd think: In the G Gundam tournament, the Nether Gundam stayed in disguise for weeks, reaching the finals without ever fighting an opponent. On the down side, though, he kept having kids tried to putt golf balls through him.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

13) Zakrello
The original Gundam's Zakrello is an experimental Zeon mobile armor, and that experiment is "What is the dumbest mobile armor we can make?" It's the only possible explanation why the Zakrello's head extends far past its dual cannons, why its blade arms are situated almost directly in front of its cannons, why it has a mouth, why it has a mouth that is open, and why that open mouth has fangs. It doesn't even have a jaw to close its mouth, so it's not like it's going to bite anything. This looks like something the emperor of Zeon's grandchildren drew, and then Grandpa forced his military to make it anyways.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

14) Mermaid Gundam
What can you say about Neo Denmark's G Gundam entrant? It's a Gundam wearing a fish suit. A giant robot. Wearing a giant robot fish suit. Admittedly, the Mermaid Gundam has a little trouble during land battles — cumbersome (fish-themed) armor, a massive tail he has to drag around — but man, get him in the water, where he can transform into its full-on fish-mode, and watch out! Seriously, watch out — just don't get in the water, and you'll be fine. Neo Denmark should have gone with Hamlet Gundam instead.

The 15 Dumbest, Goofiest, and Otherwise Most Impractical Gundams Ever

15) Jumping Gundam
Like Fuunsaiki, Jumping Gundam is an animal-shaped mobile suit piloted by that same animal, in this case, a kangaroo. But unlike Fuunsaiki, which is essentially a mode of transport for another Gundam, Jumping Gundam here is Neo Australia's entrant into the G Gundam tournament. So let me make this clear: there's a giant robot-fighting tournament to determine which control rules the planet for the next four years. And Australia puts a boxing kangaroo in one of the most powerful weapons on the planet, and just sends it out to raise hell. Can you imagine the craziness if a regular boxing kangaroo got loose in an urban area? Now imagine if that kangaroo was 60 feet tall, made of metal and was also wearing steel boxing gloves. That's a horror movie right there. But do you know what the best part about the Jumping Gundam is? It's that the robot has a baby Roo Gundam in a pouch at its belly — controlled by a baby kangaroo in the pilot kangaroo's pouch. The fact that Jumping Gundam was stuck in the G Gundam manga is a crime. A crime, I tell you.