Welcome all, to another week of The Big O! This week we have robot fights, some existential dread, and even romance for those that are into that sort of thing (Me, I am, Hi). We have a lot too talk about this week, so lets dive right into it!
First up we have episode 19, “Eyewitness”. This was kind of an odd episode, where the central plot didn’t really involve Roger at all. Instead it was mostly about Dastun as he works to solve the case of the Android crusher, a criminal targeting and destroying androids, while also dealing with a special investigator sent from above named Frederick O’Reilly, shortened to Freddy. This is a pretty classic detective story, the twist being the Freddy is an android himself and the focus is less on the criminal and more on Dastun coming to respect Freddy for his work. I call it odd because this sort of transhumanist plot, one all about Dastun accepting Freddy for his commitment to his work, feels a bit out of place with where Big O is right now. Still, it was solid and there were plenty of side-details to help it along.
What’s interesting about this case is that, surprisingly enough, Rosewater doesn’t appear to be involved at all. Instead Freddy mentions that it was “Paradigm” who sent him. I assume this means the Paradigm Corporation, which Rosewater runs, which is what makes it weird that Roger and others imply he isn’t involved. Angel disputes this, but we have little to go on either way. What’s important is that someone within the corporation thinks the best way to deal with androids is to send other androids. Additionally, it feels hinted that the Android crusher might have been involved with them as well? As it was specifically targeting androids friendly with humans, the implication being it was targeting ones with latent memories? But also androids can’t get lost memories back, so I’m wondering why? It’s all a bit poorly explained if you ask me, though maybe it will come up again later.
Outside of that there was plenty of fun stuff to enjoy. A giant construction robot fight, Norman being a chad riding a motorcycle equipped with rocket launchers directly at it, Angel and Roger flirting a bit. Talking about how similar they are, how they both willingly forget things, Angel her name and Roger why he is able to pilot the Big O, etc etc. It comes up much more in the next episode, and it’s for more important there too, so I’ll leave it for later. Suffice to say though this was a solid, but ultimately uninspiring episode for me. Having already watched 20, it felt like the calm before the storm in a lot of ways. One last weekly fun hurrah before we kick off our finale.
Next up is episode 20, “Stripes”. This was by far the stronger of the two episodes this week. Part of that is due to how it feels like this is the beginning of Big O’s finale, things are starting to come to a head. Roger and Rosewater both revisiting Gordon, Angel and Roger, the whole Tomato thing. That last one is a bit odd, I thought we had dealt with that at the start of this 2nd season so it feels like Big O is backsliding a bit. Still we can see where it goes, why he’s freezing up again and why Big O is refusing to move, in the remaining episodes. Personally I think it’s because he’s realizing he’s a pawn in someone else’s game and that Big O is starting to deny him, deem him “Guilty”, the more memories he regains. Will have to see though.
It wasn’t all bad times for Roger this episode though. A good chunk of it was also dedicated to more flirting with Angel! I really liked this bit, especially with how it ended. The two of them flirting back and forth, talking about how similar they are and the slight differences between them, Angel initiating a kiss only for Roger to be unable to commit. Not because he’s afraid of it, or because he doesn’t like her. Rather it’s because he has someone else. A certain… Terse, blunt, android that he works with on a daily basis. As a big Dorothy fan, it shouldn’t be a surprise that I love this. It’s basically confirmation as to their feelings and gives me hope that Big O will commit to their relationship by the end. Because sure if Angel can see it, and directly points it out to him, Roger can too.
Speaking of Angel, she also has an interesting time this week. Apparently another member of her organization, the Union, has come to Paradigm City and has started to act. They’ve noticed Angel’s lack of progress, how distracted she’s been, and have come to take over. What makes it interesting though is that apparently Gabriel is working for them as well? So that begs the question, is Rosewater working with them? Because I thought they were acting to take him down, to take over or destroy Paradigm City? It certainly doesn’t feel like they are on the same side, as he clearly hasn’t been commanding or in control of most of the Megadeus Roger has had to fight. So does he not know Gabriel is their agent? There’s a whole lot of questions here about Rosewater’s relationship with Union that I hope Big O will address next week, because shit’s getting complicated.
As for Rosewater himself, he seems to be having a moment. He’s finally completed his “Big”, dubbed Big Fau, but it doesn’t appear to work yet. He mentions it not having a core memory, but what is that? We know the Bigs are sentient, both Big Duo and Big O have operated without pilots before, and they clearly make judgements as to their pilots. So does Big Fau not have one yet? Or is it rejecting Rosewater? Either way, it’s clear there is a missing piece here and it’s frustrating Rosewater to no end as he has to watch Roger time and again galivant around Paradigm City in Big O.
Finally we have Dorothy, who clearly isn’t having a good time this week. Yeah she heard the weird humming and followed the Union members, spied on their meeting, and will be able to identify them all later down the line. But that’s only if she escapes from Gabriel, the cybernetic madman hunting her down. Tangent real quick, is he a cyborg or an android? Because he has a tongue, and he acts like a person more than any other android we’ve ever met, yet at the same time his hand spins like a drill so like… I’m really not sure what he is. Getting back to Dorothy, I’m really not sure how she gets out of this. Big O has shut down, Roger is in trouble in a completely different part of the city, and her only real hope is Angel. Will she betray the Union to save her rival in love? Who knows. Find out next week I suppose.
So yeah, all in all these were a fine pair of episode. 20 certainly felt better than 19, mostly because far more happened and that’s what I enjoy the most, but both were still a solid time. I said it before but it feels like we’re starting to enter Big O’s endgame. The foreigners are making their move, Rosewater has completed Big Fau, and Big O is starting to act on its own. I wouldn’t be surprised if we went straight from here to the finale, as one single stretch of time. Maybe that’s a bit of a reach but eh, it feels right if you ask me. At the very least I’m looking forward to it, assuming everything makes sense at the end.
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