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What happens at the end of the Big O anime series?
January 25, 2005 11:12 PM   Subscribe

Umm, what happens at the end of the Big O anime series? Its such a great little sci-fi story that ends with an Evangelion-like mindf*ck. Does the Angel character ends up being a Megadeuce which controls reality? Was the entire show a Matrix/Dallas dreamworld?
posted by skallas to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Short answer: dude, it's a cartoon.

Long answer: Angel was a robot/Megadeus to begin with. When her operator died, she became human (!), essentially becoming a physical resemblance of her operator, but without any memories. Because of her ability to rearrange much of her own matter, mass, and size, she was the "key" to altering reality.

There was evidence, however, that the world the show was set in was nothing more than a malfunctioning hologram - running in an endless loop - long after humanity died out on Earth.
Roger Smith, the Negotiator, refused to believe this, and merged with Angel in hopes of offering a better way of life - if not for Paradigm City & the "world", at least for himself, Angel, and R. Dorothy...

The ending is subjective, deliberately, so. From an optimist's perspective, the world and humanity are saved, as are Roger, Dorothy and Angel, due to Angel's ability to rearrange matter. Given the number of fragments of Angel (in her Megadeus form) which came crashing to Earth and were still in orbit, as well as the Conservation of Energy Principle, a realist could argue that Roger was well-intentioned, yet deluded. If the "world" was really a hologram, Roger would've merely re-booted the main program; a "better" Paradigm City, etc. would appear, but it would be as much of an illusion as the last, in spite of Roger or any of the others being able to express "real" emotions, such as love.

But at the end of it all, it's a cartoon. [AskMetafilter]
posted by Smart Dalek at 3:56 AM on January 26, 2005


I don't follow this series, so minor spoilers aren't a big deal to me, but a spoiler warning plus an [MI] might have been better. FWIW.
posted by ruddhist at 4:44 AM on January 26, 2005


A cartoon that forever changed the way we look at tomatoes.
posted by ulotrichous at 6:32 AM on January 26, 2005


For that matter, what happens at the end of Neon Genesis Evangelion (and its sequel, Radon Second Corinthians Apostleopard....)? I saw the first couple-few dvd's and then noticed that the video store didn't actually have the rest.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:53 AM on January 26, 2005


For that matter, what happens at the end of Neon Genesis Evangelion?

The director, Hideaki Anno, blows the animation budget three quarters of the way through and ends with a slide show that doesn't really wrap up the loose threads.

(see also the end of His and Her Circumstances, by the same director.)
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:44 AM on January 26, 2005


What ruddhist said. I know people who would have your spleen for this.
posted by squidlarkin at 8:21 AM on January 26, 2005


He asked how it ends, for God's sake! Is that not enough of a clue that there are spoilers inside?
posted by kindall at 9:36 AM on January 26, 2005


He asked how it ends, for God's sake! Is that not enough of a clue that there are spoilers inside?

You miss the point. There's a spoiler in the post itself.
posted by GeekAnimator at 9:56 AM on January 26, 2005


what happens at the end of the Big O anime series?

Bad writing, unfortunately. As much as I enjoyed the show's style, it seems very likely to me that the writers simply didn't have a plan for the overall story. They made it up as they went along, with all the attendant contradictions and unsatisfactory plot resolutions. As far as I know, there is no "grand unified theory of the Big O" capable of explaining what was going on.
posted by gd779 at 10:47 AM on January 26, 2005


There's a spoiler in the post itself.

Right-o. Like I said, not a big deal for me personally. But if I'd been right in the middle of the series, I'd probably be pretty pissed off right now. It's just bad form. Obviously anything's fair game inside the thread itself. (I've actually been studiously avoiding reading Smart Dalek's post so that, on the off chance I ever do get around to watching Big O, I won't know more about the ending than I already do.)
posted by ruddhist at 2:51 PM on January 26, 2005


I could never get past the queen rip-off opening titles.
posted by dong_resin at 12:27 AM on January 27, 2005


The director, Hideaki Anno, blows the animation budget three quarters of the way through and ends with a slide show that doesn't really wrap up the loose threads.

But End of Evangelion does tie many of the loose ends, sorta, well at least it's a more (less?) satisfying ending and less of a mindfuck than the tv series. It's an animated movie that takes place in parallel with the last two episodes.
posted by bobo123 at 12:59 AM on January 27, 2005


Spoiler warning (natch) for this link, but it's the most comprehensive writeup (in English, anyway; I'm sure there's plenty more details in Japanese) on the series I've ever seen. Unfortunately, he never finished writing the summaries and analysis for season 2, except for the last episode, but since your question is pertaining to the ending it's not a huge loss in the scope of the question. :)
posted by Kosh at 1:21 PM on January 27, 2005


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