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  • Alas, Poor Villain: Stella and Durandal.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Ridiculously common, as a result of an excess of Your Mileage May Vary. Notable examples are Durandal (either a villainous Magnificent Bastard able to twist nearly any circumstance to his goal of World Domination, or a Well-Intentioned Extremist trying to bring peace to the world), Lacus (either a Purity Sue played sickeningly straight or a Machiavellian Villain with Good Publicity using the two most badass people on the planet to Take Over the World or a genuinely decent person who's the only hope the world has for peace) and Shinn (either a borderline psychotic Wangst factory, or The Woobie engaging in Age-Appropriate Angst while suffering through a Trauma Conga Line).
  • Americans Hate Tingle: A number of American Gundam fans (the UC fans in particular) really, really loathe this series, declaring SEED Destiny to be the worst Gundam series ever made. Why? Because of this one particular character's Hostile Show Takeover (you know who he is.)
    • Americans are also annoyed with Kira's and Lacus' peace-or-else behavior turning them The Scrappy for a large number of fans.
  • And The Fandom Rejoiced: The casting of Shuichi Ikeda (aka Char Aznable) as Gilbert Durandal, in his first AU Gundam work (second if you count his role as Commander Sazabi).
  • Author Avatar: Kira & Lacus for Mitsuo Fukuda & Chiaki Morosawa, respectively. Morosawa was rumored to have cosplayed as Lacus at various anime conventions in Japan, and tried to get her husband to cosplay as Kira. Here's a fan-made pic of them to see what they would look like.
  • Author's Saving Throw: The four-part compilation movie 'Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny: Special Edition' retelling the entire series from Athrun's perspective with some Revision. See the list of changes at The Other Wiki.
  • Base Breaker: Kira and Lacus again, as well as Shinn.
  • Better on DVD: Many of the artistic changes seen in the Special Edition movies were originally present in the DVD release.
  • Broken Base: Do you even need to ask? Hell, even the staff didn't like how it turned out. Matt Hill and Sam Vincent -- the English dub actors for Kira and Athrun -- have expressed dissatisfaction with how the series was handled, while Kenichi Suzumura, the Japanese actor for Shinn, has stated that the Super Robot Wars Z incarnation of Shinn is "The True Shinn Asuka" as far as he's concerned.
  • Complete Monster: Lord Djibril's plans fail so often that he would have been nothing more than a Smug Snake if not for the fact that he successfully and enthusiastically mass murders hundreds of thousands of civilians with WMDs. Twice. He even pulled the trigger personally the second time and bragged about having guts to do this.
  • Compressed Adaptation: The manga. The 50-episode series gets condensed into 4 volumes (19 chapters), and becomes incomprehensible at times due to the heavily rushed pacing.
  • Contested Sequel: Hoooooo boy....
  • Critic Proof: Gundam SEED Destiny is very popular among the Japanese audience, despite the disappointing reviews the series received.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: The debatable quality of the series does not extend to Toshihiko Sahashi's soundtrack, which is some of the best composed for anime with a seamless combination of orchestral, electronic, rock, and cloral numbers. The theme songs are no slouches either (with the arguable exception of the 4th opening).
    • The 4th opening's actually remarkably good, it's just not a song for an opening. The real problem with the 4th opening (not to say it worked as an opening), was that it came at the point in the series which is generally accepted to be where the show Jumped the Shark, which was also not helped by the fact that the new ending theme and previous opening themes were still much stronger than it was, so Wings of Words never stood a chance.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Shinn and Kira may both be this for Athrun.
  • Die for Our Ship: It's hard to know which girl of the Athrun Harem takes more bashing from fans of the other girls, though Meer and Meyrin get it particularly hard. Not even Cagalli was safe.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Chairman Durandal gets the biggest pair in series. There's a difference between being the Well-Intentioned Extremist Dark Messiah he is, and The Messiah that some fans turn him into. Ditto for Auel, Stella, and Sting, who while sympathetic are not the Purity Sues some fans turn them into. Rey manages to suffer from both this and Ron the Death Eater depending on which side of the Broken Base fans are on.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Despite not getting any actual lines in the series, minor ZAFT pilot Shiho Hahnenfuss managed to gather quite a following. She was a major character in a Spin-Off manga, so it explains this a bit.
    • Though he's never The Hero, Athrun is one of the more generally popular characters in the Western fandom.
  • Evil Is Hammy: Djibril is without a doubt the most over the top character in show, followed by Dirty Coward Yuna Roma.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: As far as some fans are concerned, this series never happened.
  • Fashion Victim Villain: Lord Djibril. The man is running around in pajamas for crying out loud. Ditto Yuna and his sleepwear.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Many people complaied about this series having lots of Clip Shows. The real-life reasons behind them are really harsh: Chiaki Morosawa's health had begun to decline sharply by the time she was working in Destiny, she went through a huge Creator Breakdown over it, and as a result the clip shows were a vital need to keep up with the schedule. Morosawa would ultimately pass away in 2016.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Despite the lack of buildup between the two, the relationship between Shinn and Lunamaria was made even more hilarious when their respective voice actors Kenichi Suzumura and Maaya Sakamoto do get together and got married a few years later.
  • Hostile Show Takeover: Some profess that Kira becomes the de facto main character, limiting Shinn to a secondary role.
  • Internet Backdraft: Oh dear Lord, the flame wars started by the mere mention of this series, as well as Kira and Lacus' names in fan forums...
  • Jerkass Woobie: Shinn's an unpleasant little jerk a lot of the time, but that doesn't make what he went through any less horrific. You want to hug him and slap him at the same time. To a lesser degree, Auel and Sting seem to count for some fans since neither of them (plus their "sister" Stella) had the chance to get anything similar to a normal upbringing and that causes them lots of fatal trouble.
  • Large Ham: Lord Djibril. Just read his page quote.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Athrun. There's Meer, Luna, Meyrin, Cagalli, and for those willing to stretch the Meer thing, Lacus. Leads to much Die for Our Ship.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Durandal is quieter than many, but nails the archetype. He manipulates both people and events like a pro, rolls with unexpected events and incorporates them into his plans, and remains stylish and sympathetic while doing so!
    • The character who's ultimately able to match him in this regard? Lacus.
  • Memetic Mutation: "I know what you're saying, but at this moment, Cagalli is crying her heart out!"
  • Misaimed Fandom: The people who wanted Durandal to win and impose his Social Darwinist Utopia.
  • Moe: Stella and Meyrin for some.
  • Moral Event Horizon: For some fans, Neo Roanoke crossed it when he put Stella into the Destroy Gundam, particularly as he'd previously promised Shinn to keep her out of combat. Other fans are more willing to give him a pass on account of the fact that he was brainwashed by Blue Cosmos.
  • Never Live It Down: During one of her first sorties with the Impulse, Luna has an opportunity to destroy a shuttle carrying a fleeing Djibril into space. She misses and he escapes. This one thing has eternally defined her character for some people, though it was already established in episode 7 that Luna was a lousy shot during her target practice sessions.
    • Gundam Seed Destiny itself is considered a huge case of Never Live It Down. After seven long years since the end of the series, and even after it's better handling in the Super Robot Wars games, haters will never get over their hate towards the series and its characters.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Djibril's vaporization, one of the most graphic of such deaths in the franchise.
    • Not to mention the episode where the Minerva crew finds the facility that made the Extended pilots like Sting, Stella, and Auel, which actually causes Arthur to vomit.
  • Pandering to the Base: One of the more plausible reasons why Kira was thrust back into the spotlight from episode 39 onwards, was because he was (and still is) the one of the most popular characters in SEED, and perhaps, in the Gundam franchise... in Japan.
  • Purity Sue/God Mode Sue: Kira is referred to as Jesus Yamato by his detractors. Kira & Lacus are derisively referred to as "The Fukudas" due to their perceived Mary Sue tendencies.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: The view many fans (and Shinn's voice actor) take to its handling in the Super Robot Wars games. Super Robot Wars Z in particular is seen as one of the best versions of the story, although Fukuda himself was less than happy.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Shinn, who seems to have been an attempt at creating a darker, more conflicted Kira. It didn't work. Or more accurately, the production crew mistook being less popular than Kira for being outright hated, despite Shinn consistently ranking just behind the top stars of SEED in popularity polls (and ahead of fan favorite secondary characters like Yzak).
  • Ron the Death Eater: Fans who disagree with Kira and Lacus' tactics often forget their motives and try to turn Kira into Rau 2.0. The actual Rau 2.0, Rey, also suffers from this at the hands of fans who Flanderise him into a Complete Monster, while forgetting his genuine friendship with Shinn, admiration for Durandal, and good intentions.
  • Scapegoat Creator: The level of hatred that the most rabid anti-fans deliver towards Fukuda and Morosawa sometimes reaches disturbing levels. It doesn't help that they have a reputation as Lying Creators that may be entirely due to poor fan translations of the relevant interviews.
  • The Scrappy: The Broken Base may fight over just about every aspect of Destiny, but just about nobody on either side likes the DOM Trooper pilots. Poor characterization plus overuse of Zeon Expies equals Black Tri-Stars clones who spout lines like "You'd have to be pretty messed up to disagree with Lacus-sama!" Shinn fans hate them for being one-dimensional zealots, while Kira fans hate them for Not Helping Their Case.
  • Strangled by the Red String: Shinn's and Lunamaria's respective first loves are Stellar and Athrun. Stellar dies tragically, Athrun, along with Lunamaria's sister, Meyrin, defect, are shot down by Shinn and presumed to be dead. They got better. Lunamaria and Shinn end up together but due to the way it was handled, they are widely believed to have been this. The Special Edition is a little better about this.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Basically nothing about Neo Roanoke's identity is played to its full potential; most of the implications (such as the parallels between his situation and the Destiny Plan) are never even addressed.
  • Villain Decay: Yuna Roma Seyran started as a very promising Manipulative Bastard and was smart enough to corner Cagalli with a Scarpia Ultimatum, then ended up... the way he did.
    • Alternate Character Interpretation: Yuna was always a coward, who was very skilled at manipulating a distraught eighteen year-old girl who was dependent on he and his uncle for political support, but failed the minute things didn't go his way.
  • Vindicated by History: Many will outright praise its handling in Super Robot Wars Z.
  • What an Idiot!: While most instances can be easily disputed, Athrun has a severe case of Aesop Amnesia that causes him to make poor decisions in situations where fans think he should have known better. However, Athrun's Patriotic Fervor may have also been a factor in the amnesia's onset.