After War Gundam X is getting a Blu-ray box set in Japan to celebrate its initial airing in 1996. The series is infamous for having its episode count cut from 49 to 39 due to low ratings, but reception towards the series has been kinder in recent years.
Still, After War Gundam X receives negative stigma for being “canceled,” but character designer Nobuyoshi Nishimura disputes these claims. He wrote:
— 西村誠芳 (@NISHINOB) August 28, 2017
“To be honest, I don’t know if it should really be said that Gundam X was ‘canceled.’ It’s a fact that the broadcasting time was shortened, but we just redid the structure and animated it to the end in a bit of a hurry. ‘Canceled’ means a series that didn’t make it to the end. The broadcasting time for the first Gundam was shortened too, wasn’t it?“
After War Gundam X was initially set to run for the whole year with 49 episodes, but it’s runtime was cut to 39 episodes following a decline in viewers. In fact, the series has the lowest average viewer rating of all Gundam series produced in the ’90s.
According to Nishimura, and a later Tweet by screenplay writer Hiroyuki Kawasaki, After War Gundam X was restructured with a proper ending. A canceled series is one that ends abruptly.
The canceled misnomer tends to be a trivia piece among fans, and one that Nishimura would like to see disappear.