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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • What is the exact reason Alex "RoboCop" Murphy wants to seek and kill Cain. Is it simply because of the Nuke drug ruining so many lives and the damage the drug is causing to the city, or did Murphy meeting Hob the first time press a berserk button due the minor being raised by Cain like a child soldier? At one point when Hob is dying from RoboCain shooting him, RoboCop gets on good terms with him even, suggesting that Murphy only blames Cain for the overall situation.
    • Hob. While lots of people will simply dismiss his death as deserved and be confused or offended that his death is played as a tragedy keep in mind that Hob is 12, seems to have no family other than his gang, has Cain as a father figure, and is routinely exposed to humanity at its worst, is it really any wonder that he behaves the way he does? It's also implied in several scenes that he's not nearly as bad as he seems and a lot has to do with him merely trying to survive his situation. When he abandons Cain to his death it could be because he doesn't care or it could be because he hates Cain for years of abuse and is happy to see him gone. He is also visibly horrified and Forced to Watch another human being being vivisected in front of him. He has to constantly prove that he has value to his gang or be abandoned or worse and that activity always involves crime or doing terrible things. As much as people might dislike Hob, it's almost certain he never had a say in the circumstances he was brought up in and never had the choice to be anything else.
    • Why did RoboCain kill his love interest? Was he offended by what she said about getting used to him being a robot, or does he have an epiphany that his human life is irreversibly over and do his deed out of despair over his situation of having only his brain left, locked up inside a mecha?
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees:
  • Awesome Music: While not as memorable as the first film’s theme, this movie’s theme music is pretty good.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Hob stands out as quite possibly the most divisive aspect of the Contested Sequel that is Robocop 2. Whether you find the sheer audacity of a young boy engaging and reveling in the activities of a ruthless drug kingpin to be entertaining or off-putting will likely play a major factor in your overall opinion of the movie. The tragic portrayal of his death in particular is seen as either a gripping musing on both his and Robocop's humanity and one of the most compelling scenes in the entire film or an insulting attempt at garnering sympathy for a character deserving of none simply because he is a child that ruins the rest of the film by proxy.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: When Murphy is walking around one of Cain's Nuke plants, he takes a moment to examine a strange collective of artifacts on display there, like Elvis' supposed skeleton. It's most likely there because of gang member Catzo, a.k.a. "Elvis guy"; likely also to help reinforce the extreme opulence with which drug dealers often live.
  • Complete Monster: Cain, the psychotic Nuke cult leader, has a long list of crimes. These including blowing up a drug treatment center just because they try to cure people of their addiction to Nuke; using his protege, a young boy named Hob, as a as a soldier in his gang; eviscerating one of his drug-buying cops after RoboCop has forced him to reveal the location of one of the labs making Nuke, an action which Hob and Cain's girlfriend Angie are both Forced to Watch and horrified by; shooting before removing from his limo an illegal immigrant worker from the drug lab, pleading not to be turned over the police; and, along with his gang, dismembering RoboCop. When he's turned into RoboCop 2, in exchange for a big container of Nuke, Cain charges his former gang's hideout and kills almost everyone there except the Mayor, who manages to escape. Cain twists Angie's head around and fatally shoots Hob, leaving him for dead. Cain later without provocation tries to kill RoboCop to settle the score, with numerous civilians and police officers getting killed during the final battle.
  • Contested Sequel: Hardly anyone would say that RoboCop 2 is as good as the original, but there is a debate on whatever it can be an entertaining film in its own right or not. All things considered, it's still better regarded than RoboCop 3. Proponents may cite Tom Noonan's overall chilling performance as Cain plus his visceral transformation into RoboCain, and Peter Weller suiting up as Robocop one last time. One main criticism however is that the film went too far with the bleak atmosphere.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: The proud debuts of the failed RoboCop 2 candidates. A multiple murder-suicide is tragic and horrifying. The fact that the failed candidate keeps mumbling "STOP OR I'LL SHOOT" in increasingly inarticulate fashion, and then after blowing its own brains out, deploys sirens? Hilarious. And the Old Man's response is to apply palm to face as he complains that OCP wasted $90 million.
  • Fetish Retardant: Fabiana Udenio in a bikini is awesome, but not when covered in green and blue goo (Sunblock 5000).
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • As this New York Post report points out, while the Amazon itself hasn't seen a nuclear meltdown yet, one could compare it to the Fukushima Daiichi plant and its aftereffect. Later in 2019, several fires would consume the Amazon and make this a grim reality.
    • Faxx saying that part of the reason Murphy didn't snap is due to his upbringing as a Catholic and the scene of Cain and his gang stripping Murphy, when compared to the plot of RoboCop Versus The Terminator, as Murphy tries to kill himself to stop Skynet from coming online when he realizes the technology that made him a cyborg will ultimately cause humanity to become endangered; Skynet sends two Terminators back to ensure he doesn't do that—which involves removing Murphy's head and keeping him alive to force him to usher in Judgment Day.
    • Almost twenty years later, the City of Detroit actually defaulted and declared bankruptcy.
    • The argument that Hob and Angie make to the mayor, that ignoring them will allow them to market a cheap, and safe version of Nuke, sounds similar to the argument of decriminalizing drugs, Marijuana in particular.
    • When Duffy is submitted to Cold-Blooded Torture, his chest gets cut open first, resulting in a lot of blood spurting and Duffy screaming in horror and pain. This is more unsettling when in 2014 Duffy's actor Stephen Lee passed away from a heart attack.
    • The Magnavolt ad became prophetic in a way as 30 years after the film, the COVID-19 Pandemic left many cars stationary and prime targets for theft or catalytic converter theft. Fortunately, electronic immobilizers are the typical sane solution for preventing theft of the entire car.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Belinda Bauer stars as psychologist Dr. Faxx, and later went on to become a qualified psychologist herself.
    • The scene in which several Robocop 2's malfunction gets an extra layer of meaning since the film Robocop 2 is generally considered inferior to the original.
    • The second Robocop prototype share an uncanny resemblance to super battle droids a decade later.
    • RoboCop essentially performs a spine-rip Fatality on RoboCain. Mortal Kombat 11, added RoboCop as a Guest Fighter with Peter Weller even reprising his role.
  • Jerkass Woobie: While Hob is as bad as most of the adults in the gang bar Cain, he's also 12 years old. It's likely that he's an orphan and has no choice but to rely on the gang as his family. He also has Cain as a father figure which doesn't really give a kid the most stability or safety growing up. Given his behavior and the way he carries himself and the fact that he's a victim of circumstances beyond his control it's hard not to see that he's a product of his environment and never had the chance to be anything else.
  • Love to Hate: Cain is one of the creepiest villains in the series. He likes to kill minions just for being loose ends who have outlived their usefulness, and is utterly sadistic to those who rat on him. Tom Noonan really makes the character his own, with his emotionless delivery and confident gait like he's one step ahead of his enemies. The fact it's implied that he raised Hob into ruthless child soldier, can make it cathartic once RoboCop starts the final battle with him as a giant cyborg. Robocop confronts Cain for a climatic battle and delivers his comeuppance, even getting ahold of Cain's spinal cord and brain.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Bad language, makes for bad feelings." Explanation
    • "Behaaave yourselves!" Explanation
  • Memetic Molester: ProtonJon and friends found the way the sprite!Murphy holds a child in the Gameboy game really creepy.
  • Narm Charm: "Behave yourselves!"
  • One-Scene Wonder: John Glover as the Magnavolt salesman at the beginning.
  • Realism-Induced Horror: Cain's drug lab operation brings to mind Human Traffickers as he is shown using Ethnic Menial Labor with some form of coercion, a scenario that is very real. The fact that he also raised Hob to be a child soldier is also in the realm of reality. Cain himself and his gang is like a cautionary tale of becoming addicted to drugs, narcotics in particular, as they have become so addicted that they need Nuke just to feel stable, and have very low inhibitions to the violence around them.
  • Special Effect Failure:
    • Some of the stop motion effects on RoboCop 2 AKA RoboCain haven't aged well, especially when Murphy is grappling with him. The Go-Motion blurring also comes off as overdone at some points.
    • During the arcade scene, some of the Data East logos applied to the cabinets don't hide the original companies all that well.
  • Squick
    • The demonstrations of initial attempts post-Murphy RoboCops are Nightmare Fuel.
      • Attempt #1 says "Stop or I'll shoot," then shoots two of the testers before shooting itself.
      • Attempt #2 removes its helmet to reveal a screaming skull.
    • Cain gets a spiffy new robot body and kills most of his old gang. Upon seeing his former wife/prostitute however, he opens up his head to reveal his screen-face and makes suggestive expressions and weird electric moans as she giggles for about a minute of film. It was almost a relief when she offended him by mistake and he killed her.
  • Too Bleak, Stopped Caring: The main issue most people who didn't like the film had with it. It was one of the reasons Peter Weller did not return for the third movie (along with how uncomfortable the suit was). A few scenes showing Robocop's humanity were also cut from the final film. In particular, many critics (including Roger Ebert) were offended by the character of Hob, thinking that putting a murderous Sir Swears-a-Lot 12 year old in an R-rated movie was taking things too far; and an even greater level of violence compared to the first film and the frequent, explicit hard drug use (albeit of a fictional drug).
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: Leonard Rosenman scored this one instead of Basil Poledouris, and believed it was much better than Poledouris' score (female choir singing "Ro-bo-cop!" and all). Unfortunately for him, nearly everyone else felt it was a case of this trope - including the filmmakers themselves, who brought Poledouris back for the third movie.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: There are enough story ideas here to fill two movies. Having them all stuffed into one results in a script that jarringly jumps from one plot thread to another, and then gives a hurried resolution or just drops it. For example Cain having shades of being a messianic cult leader amounts to him having two or three lines with general religious connotations.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Mayor Kuzak is presented in a mocking fashion as an ineffectual liberal politician out of touch with the realities of his office. However, everything he says about OCP's Evil Plan is 100% correct and he's absolutely right to be furious with them.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: A lot of people were confused or even annoyed when it came to the death of Hob. He acts like a dying child—which of course he is—and Robocop obviously treats him with some measure of implied sympathy, particularly since he was murdered by his old boss Cain. The problem is that Hob is a really, really evil dying child, who was involved in Murphy's dismantling, shoots two police officers and we've spent the movie watching him establish himself as an extremely ruthless Manipulative Bastard and aspirant drug lord. Basically the problem is, if he wasn't a kid, the audience probably would have been cheering. It has also been said, according to some fans, that Hob brought his death on himself. Hob was the one who made the decision to leave Cain for dead, which likely factored into Robo-Cain killing Hob, and there was the glee he took in damaging Robocop and trying to garrote Officer Lewis (even taunting her about it: "You're looking a little out of breath, bitch"). Opinions of Hob eventually softened up as Hob was exposed to some of the worst of humanity being raised by Cain, and Hob had to constantly show his value to the Cain's crime family under the presumed threat of being abandoned or worse.
  • Values Dissonance: Mayor Kuzak being willing to legalize Nuke as part of his campaign in order to save Detroit from OCP is shown to be a Deal with the Devil and a horrific idea. However, many parts of the country are now debating legalizing even harder drugs with Oregon having done so.
  • Vindicated by History: While still not as well regarded as the first movie, its nowadays considered a decent film and a lot better than the other sequels. It helps that the film still had memorable one-liners from Robocop that made it into Mortal Kombat 11 for RoboCop's Guest Fighter role. The film also introduced the memorable and nightmarish Cain with his tendency to have a blank expression even as he watches someone get tortured to death. He gets transformed into RoboCain and does battle with RoboCop for a fitting finale. His robotic body has creepy awesome (for its time) stop-motion animation to match Cain's menace. This vindication got further reinforced with Robo Cop Rogue City, a more immediate sequel to this film preceeding RoboCop 3 that continues the Nuke and RoboCop phase 2 plots.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome:
    • The very impressive stop-motion work done for RoboCain. Especially when rising out of the ground towards the end.
    • The 3D model on RoboCain's screen holds up well, and evokes Uncanny Valley very effectively. It was done by laser-scanning Tom Noonan's face in real time as he made the expressions.
    • The animatronic face of Peter Weller on the disassembled RoboCop wincing in pain is very convincing.

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