Big O
The Big O
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: KIYOKAWA Motomu
R1 License - Bandai (Defunct)
TACHIKI Fumihiko
Japan does it's version of Batman: The Animated Series with Roger Smith playing the part of Bruce Wayne. Roger lives in a domed city known as Paradigm City. Apparently some 40 years ago, something happened which caused everyone to lose their memories. Sometimes people begin to remember and problems are caused because of this.

Roger was a cop but now is a negotiator, who's services are highly sought after assuming you have the high fees. Like Bruce Wayne, Roger has a secret life. Rather than doning a mask and cape, Roger summons the giant mecha known as Megadeus or Big O. As expected, this causes tons of destruction. Roger is joined by his Alfred-like butler Norman Berg, and the android Dorothy, who comes into his service as a maid after her creator is killed. You also have the Police Commander Dan Dastun and the mysterious lady named Angel, who works for the city but appears to have her own agenda.

[26 TV episodes.]

OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Rent 9 8 8 8 8 8 Ggultra2764 [series:614#1552]
Baffling and confusing, Big O features a plotline that will greatly confuse those who watch it. While the series has the approach of a mecha title featuring Roger Smith pummeling mechas with Big O in a "monster of the day" approach in most episodes, the mystery behind Paradigm City's problems is the focus of this series. Various clues are dropped throughout the series hinting at the true nature of the city and what led to the loss of everyone's memories in Paradigm. Whether it's the mention of tomatoes or being part of a role on stage, the slightest details that may seem insignificant reveal much more than assumed. However, much of what the series unveils is open to enough speculation as the ending doesn't directly explain what the true nature of Paradigm was and only raised more questions.

In terms of setting, Big O sets itself apart from most anime titles I've come across by taking much of its influence through popular Western characters like Batman and James Bond. Paradigm City is created much like the Gotham City of Batman with a dark, mysterious feel full of uncertainty. In the case of Paradigm, people are baffled over the loss of memories or consumed by them to fulfill their own selfish desires. Roger Smith felt like a cross of James Bond and Bruce Wayne with his wealthy lifestyle like Bruce, the attention he gets from women much like James and Bruce, and use of gadgetry to get him out of some tough situations like Batman and James.

In terms of artwork, Big O makes use of dark color to go with the mysterious setting and characters that inhabit the world of Paradigm City. Mecha designs looked slick and decently animated during battle scenes. Character designs, on the otherhand, looked kind of plain as facial details were rather simplistic with many characters in the series.

Big O makes for a decent watch if you are into mecha titles. However, the show itself is an acquired taste due to the baffling mystery surrounding the true nature behind events that occured in Paradigm City.

Last updated Saturday, September 27 2008. Created Saturday, September 27 2008.
Buy 10 10 10 Violet D [series:614#1393]
I like to watch it because I'm still trying to figure out what is going on with this anime. When it comes back on cartoon network I always like to watch it. The robots and the bad guys. Roger smith is kind of a mediator with the law and the bad guys. He doesn't carry a gun but he has the robot called Big O that he alone controls. He negotiates between the bad guys and doesn't always have good final results. However there is one thing I have figured out. That is he is love with the android Dorothy and this is actually like Batman with butler and his deep dark secreats.

Last updated Wednesday, June 22 2005. Created Wednesday, June 22 2005.
Rent Forbin [series:614#1573]
Drama : Med / High
Action : Med / High
Comedy : Low / Med
SciFi : HIGH
Ecchi : Low
The Big O. A cartoon that in Season 1 was SO confusing that it didn't know what direction it was going. In Season 2 though (Paid for by Cartoon Network) they finally decided the direction and proceeded to a smashing conclusion that had people talking about just what they did see for about a year.
It's all about Mecha's and government conspiracies, and the love between a Woman and a Man :) (Got you thinking eh? Well GO SEE IT!)
Big O Trivia : Before the last episode (26) Aired someone at CN loaded Up Episode 20 by accident. You could hear the Screams of all the Big O fans when they found out they had to wait another week for it. As a side joke when CN did finally air 26 they replayed the first 45 seconds of 20 AGAIN to just mess with their fans.

Last updated Monday, February 07 2005. Created Monday, February 07 2005.
Watch 7 9 8 6 4 Kari [series:614#798]
Big O is Batman meets Gundam...that's pretty much all there is to it. It's what Batman would have been like if you took Bruce Wayne out of Gotham City, shoved him in a Gundam, and then put him in Paradigm City instead.

This is the definition of a ripped off series. Roger's rich like Bruce Wayne, drives a less beneficial 'Batmobile', and even has a Batman-like butler...who also happens to be British. Instead of Catwoman or Batgirl, Roger has a heavy android for a companion. Roger lives in a city encased in domes, where some of the people lost their memories of their pasts years ago. That's basically the only difference between Big O and Batman.

Big O has a great dub, and like with the Cowboy Bebop dub, I prefer it to the original Japanese's the same actors after all.

I didn't find Big O interesting at all, but if you want to watch some mecha battles, this is the show for you. However, if you want to watch good mecha battles, Gundam's the show for you...or even Escaflowne for that matter. If you want to watch a show with a rich guy in black suits, fighting to protect his city, go watch Batman...since that's the comic/series the theme for Big O was stolen from anyway.

Last updated Wednesday, September 27 2006. Created Wednesday, July 14 2004.
Watch dhrachth [series:614#962]
Really neat characters, generally neat plots, extremely repetitive and overly long mecha battles every episode.
The characters, setting, and plot start ups could have resulted in a quirky Cowboy Bebop-ish show. Instead they went the lots of fighting robots route--which isn't a problem per se, I'm just bored with long drawn out robot battles.

Last updated Wednesday, September 10 2003. Created Wednesday, September 10 2003.
Rent Stretch [series:614#628]
I thought FLCL was a difficult series to make sense of--but I doubt if I have ever watched a series so cryptic, so enigmatic, as Big O (well, there's always .hack/SIGN). Though individual episodes can be a lot of fun, I must admit I'm getting nowhere trying to make sense of the series as a whole. Concepts like "memories of the future", "Tomatoes", Barcodes on people's eyeballs, memories being referred to as if they were objects that could be dug up--I just don't get it. Instead, I'll concentrate on what's happening in the short term, and get as much enjoyment as I can out of that. I almost get the impression that the giant robots were added to this series as an afterthought--it might have done just fine had it been solely about the unmechanised adventures of aristocratic negotiator Roger Smith, but surely nobody ever lost money producing mecha Anime, so why not tack a mecha fight on to each episode? Roger and Angel sound so much like Spike Spiegel and Faye Valentine that when I see Dan Dastun I sometimes expect him to have the voice of Jet Black. I do like Dorothy, though--without her I might have given up watching after the first few episodes. Perhaps my favorite scene featuring Dorothy came in episode 18 (I think) in which she responds to a crisis by peeling out on an ordinary bicycle (and outruns a police car)! I noticed an interesting point--in one episode, it's mentioned that a character fell into "the Hudson", which suggests that Paradigm City is none other than a post-apocalyptic New York City!

My favorite line: "Stupid punks! Even my patience has limits!" --Roger

7/03 #45

Last updated Tuesday, February 05 2008. Created Wednesday, July 23 2003.
Buy 8 8 7 8 8 7 AstroNerdBoy [series:614#436]

After watching the first 13 episodes, I wasnt sure really how to rate this show. By chance, I watched Cartoon Network replay episode 1 of the series and I was stunned. In the first episode, clues had been dropped which related to episode 13 and to the big picture as a whole. Watching the series through a second time, I found that there had been layers Id missed the first time around. Now into its second season, Big O has turned into one of the surprise series Ive seen.

There is a problem I have with Big O though the required mecha-battle-of-the-week between Big O and an unknown megadeus. While there have been hints that maybe Big O is something more than a giant mecha, this hasnt been explored enough in my opinion. So instead we have battles. Id much rather the time were spent exploring characters or the reasons behind Paradigm Citys memory loss. To the shows credit, there has been some exploration of the relationships between androids and humans, but the ending of season 2 didn't go anywhere with that. Instead, it ended up being an exploration of the megadeus's and their ultimate purpose (which R. Dorothy plays a role).

Speaking of androids, the character R. Dorothy is the shows shining character. Lia Sargent does an outstanding job of bringing her to life in the English dub. Stories with her playing a larger role are some of the best and/or funniest of the series. Too bad the series wasnt called R. Dorothy instead of Big O.

Bottom line: I gave this a "Rent" initially but changed it to a Buy now that I the title. The required mecha battles suck, but that aside, it has been an enjoyable and surprising series. Season 2 ends in what some will find to be a cop-out, but ultimately it was the only ending they could do.

Last updated Monday, March 29 2004. Created Thursday, July 10 2003.

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