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Relena as the Protagonist of Gundam W

by Arima

The most important character in any work is the protagonist, by definition. A protagonist is a person that drives the story along, and causes change in the plot. Now, in the anime Gundam W, you are presented with several characters, all of whom which could be the protagonist.. Heero, Duo, Trowa, Quatre, Wufei. But in reality, the character that is driving the action is Relena. In order to support this conclusion, I will be examining the general plot structure of Gundam W, and examine the initiator of all the events.

The plot of Gundam W consists of several key arcs, which lead up to the final battle. First, we are introduced to the pilots. The next arc consists of events after the Oz coup until the pilots go into space. The third arc consists of events up until Heero acquires Wing Zero, and the fourth consists of the Peacecraft kingdom events. The fifth arc consists of the events leading up to the final battle between Oz and White Fang, and the last arc consists of the final battle. Now, we can examine who is responsible for each arc change.

First off, the change between the first and second arcs are mainly caused by the pilots; after all, it was by their stupidity that the Oz coup went through. Again, the Gundam pilots in general decided to go into space, and Heero is the main initiator for the events that lead to the fourth arc. It is here, however, that Relena shows her importance to the plot. She was the primary person who built up the Peacecraft kingdom, and it was through her actions, and her avocation of total pacifism that made it possible for the last events to occur. Without that philosophy, there would be no reason for the Romefeller foundation to fear her, and attack, giving that arc action. As well, that philosophy gets her sufficient popularity to be elected figurehead of the World Nation, which directly leads to the Treize coup of the World Nation, which directly leads to the final battle. So, for the last three arcs, events were mainly spurred by Relena.

As well, Relena is responsible for most of the actions of a central character, Heero, in the fourth through sixth arcs. In those arcs, Heero defends Relena's kingdom, and more importantly, goes off into Libra in order to save her at the end. As well, her presence impacted Noin to go into the Peacecraft kingdom as well, who is another key player at the end.

In conclusion, after examining the general plot structure of Gundam W, one must conclude that Relena is the protagonist in the second, and most important part, of the series. Outside of that, there is no other character that you can conclusively say is the initator of action.