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Big O Is Just Awesome
So recently, if you've noticed, I did and finished an LP of Geppy X. A game that was going to be a licensed thing based on a giant robot anime. The licensed bit never happened and in traditional Sunsoft (though Geppy was made by Aroma) fashion, the game was rebranded and released anyway.

The game was amazing to say the very least. If you haven't seen any of it, I'd suggest doing so by clicking here.

Anyway... that got me kinda reminiscing about them ol' giant robot's that I was into when I was younger. Voltron, of course, being one. I know that says Big O... stick with me...

Voltron, for as amazing as it was, is really kind of slap dash. After reading some history of the show it's kind of a wonder to me how it ended up working as well as it did. The story, the episodes, the editing... just everything was so thrown together just to make it sell. It worked, and worked in a big way... but still.

I also have some memories of watching Gigantor back on the Sci-Fi channel as well? But that's not so much in my wheelhouse. I need to revisit it.

Anyway that leads us to Big O. I have always loved the show, even with ol' Stevie B doing the voice. I could never really say why I loved it so much other than just a gesture at everything that was happening... at every moment... in every episode... ever.

But As I've gone back and started rewatching it after playing Geppy I think I can, more accurately, communicate why I love Big O so much... and it's not just the giant robots.

First and foremost, this is a noir story above anything and everything else. We've got the detective that's for hire. We've got the look of the buildings and the cars, we've got the ever present amnesia theme going through everything, the colors, even the tropes of noir like the sun filtering through blinds. I'm big into noir just so ya know.

Second, and expanding on that a bit, are the similarities to Batman... of which the animated version I am also a fan. Roger Smith is our Bruce Wayne. He's faithful butler Norman is our Alfred. We've even got a Commissioner Gorden in Dastan of the military police and a Joker character in the recurring character Beck.

That's two pretty good piles of stuff to draw inspiration from. In fact, if I remember right, some of the people that worked on the animated Batman series may have worked on Big O as well at some point?

Third are the giant robots. Cause giant robots are awesome. Nothing more needs said. I will a little bit anyway in that not only are noir films, batman, and detective stories all influences in this... but so are kaiju movies with the robot fights. Awesome upon awesome.

Next is the soundtrack. I stuck this down here though I could really hit these in any order. I've shared it below so give it a listen. Each one of those things I mentioned above is also represented in the soundtrack. Smooth jazz, cool piano, big bold themes, and even a little Queen inspiration in the title theme of the show (Buck Rogers anyone?). It's by far one of my favorite soundtracks... probably of all time. Everything in it just fits perfectly.

The first season of the show presents you individual Acts, as they are called, that in the short term don't seem to have much to do with one another... other than some recurring characters. In fact, each episode is called an Act and ends with either a resolution "We have come to terms" (think The Maltese Falcon) or nothing really being resolved "No side" (think Chinatown). Again, clearly a reference to noir story telling.

I could spend, literally, pages breaking down each and every one of those points up there farther down and expanding on the symbolism of hour glasses that seem to be everywhere... the talk of Gods and the christian imagery all over the place, about the citywide amnesia, about the large corporation that's running basically everything, about the characters that are piecing things back together and going mad in the process, about the phrase "Cast in the name of God... ye not guilty".... and about how each of the songs in the soundtrack fits with everything that's going on in the show.

Heck there's even an episode or two that, no joke, will bring a tear or two to my eye.

Anyway... here's the soundtrack. I think it well worth your time to give it a listen. Maybe in a smokey room with a scotch in your hand, maybe thinking back to a giant monster movie, maybe just... being. People don't do enough being sometimes.

- We Have Come To Terms

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