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YMMV / The Big O

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  • Broken Base: The ending. It went for a Gainax Ending and left a lot of questions unanswered and that's split fans. Some view it as suitably strange like the rest of the series and the whole sequence being a play made sense within the strange narrative of the themes of the show. Others view it as a grand scale equivalent to the All Just a Dream trope and made most of the questions and mysteries raised by the series ultimately meaningless.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Alan Gabriel is a terrorist, Serial Killer, thrill-seeking psychopath and traitorous agent of the group the Union. Carrying out the assassination missions of Alex Rosewater, Alan delights in hurting others and particularly enjoys targeting cyborgs. Regularly organizing destructive terrorist attacks on Paradigm City, Alan frequently casually adjusts his allegiance between the Union and Rosewater, basing it on whichever side is currently partaking in attempted devastation. Ultimately choosing to serve under Rosewater when he offers Alan a giant robot "Megadeus", Alan breaks a death row inmate out of prison and oversees an attack on hero Roger Smith's manor, capturing the android Dorothy Wainwright for Rosewater while enjoying the destruction his robots bring upon the city. Piloting his Megadeus to combat Roger, Alan goes on a rampage, intending on slaughtering and massacring everyone he can.
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    • "Missing Cat": Eugene Grant is a truly despicable Mad Scientist convinced that he is a god due to his recent discoveries in transmutation. To constantly improve his alchemic transmutations, Eugene kidnaps innocents by the dozens and transforms them into pain-stricken abominations that he keeps alive and on display for no particular reason. When many of his old partners abandon him because of his depravity, Eugene has one mauled by one of his monsters, and kidnaps two of his former compatriots' son Roy before turning the boy into a cat, following this up by murdering said couple in front of their son. Eugene proceeds to transform Roy into a monstrous chimera, then sics it on Roger Smith while he holds Smith's partner Dorothy at gunpoint, ordering Roy to destroy first Smith, then all else in his path. Despite being a Villain of the Week, Eugene Grant handily stood out as the most wicked and irredeemable monster in the series alongside Alan Gabriel.
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  • Crazy Is Cool: Schwarzwald lost his mind before the series began but he's still a hammy, quick thinking, powerhouse who manages to be a serious threat with his own Megadeus.
  • Cult Classic: While not nearly as popular as the manga version that would come out in the following decade, it has a cult following. It being the last fully hand-drawn anime series before its second season as well as its Westernized style gives it a unique identity in the anime world. It also helps that Cartoon Network loved the show so much that they created a second season for it.
  • Fanfic Fuel: At the end of the first season, only terrestrial Big O and flying Big Duo were revealed. So what about the third Big? Is it aquatic? Is it Big Solo? This gets answered in the second season, but since there are Bigs for 0, 2, and 4, now the question is what about 1 and 3?
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Roger/Dorothy. In the English dub, this is made even more textual by Roger in season 2 by saying to a then deactivated Dorothy that if they had met in another time and another place and if Dorothy were human, then it would have been very likely that they would have fallen in love.
    • Dorothy's dub voice actress outright states Dorothy is in love with Roger.
  • Genius Bonus: The trippy opening sequence features newspaper clippings in the background, announcing veridical events such as the death of the 1950s jazz musician, Lester Young.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The series wasn't very popular in its native Japan. America, on the other hand, liked it so much it got a second season designed specifically with Western fans in mind. Appropriately, this is exactly what the designer of the series wanted.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Given a lot of similarities and homages to Batman, this happened a bit...
  • Magnificent Bastard: Once a reporter searching for the truth of Paradigm City's mass amnesia, Michael Seebach survived an assassination attempt and became the vigilante "Schwarzwald". Burning a group of the city's classist elites to death, Schwarzwald exposes Paradigm's corruption to hero Roger Smith, before engaging Roger in their giant robot "Megadeuses". Even after death, Schwarzwald's spirit continues his work, passing along the truth of the amnesia to Roger and repossessing his own Megadeus to have it devour the vile Alan Gabriel.
  • Memetic Mutation: It's anime Batman!
    • CAST IN THE NAME OF GOD, YE NOT GUILTY. explanation 
  • Narm: "I'm one of the tomatoes!"
    • The English dub's stubborn insistence on pronouncing 'megadeus' as 'mega-deuce.'
  • Narm Charm: The tomatoes line to some people.
  • Nightmare Retardant: Schwarzwald is significantly less scary/intimidating when he looks uncannily like Getter 2 with all those bandages.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • This may have a Fan Nickname of "Batman with mechs" but prior to this, Bruce used robots called Bat-Knights extensively in the 1996 Kingdom Come Elseworld to patrol Gotham remotely, which were then used to wage war just like the mass-produced Bigs, after his body gave out to years of physical strain.
    • On the flip side, Schwarzwald, a man in a trench coat and face covered in bandages, does predate Hush.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The opening theme sounds suspiciously similar to Queen's Flash Gordon theme. To the point that when Bandai remastered the series on DVD, they had to replace it with a new song. Meanwile, the second season's opening, "Respect," never even made it to the first DVD release - it was almost a note-for-note copy of Gerry Anderson's "UFO." Both openings ended up airing on Adult Swim.
  • Too Cool to Live: Schwarzwald, the only Megadeus pilot that ever gave Roger any real trouble. And the only proper Megadeus pilot other than Roger. Alan was deemed unworthy (the message was "ye guilty" instead of the usual "ye not guilty") and eaten by the revived Big Duo, and Alex's Big Fau shut down on its own accord ("ye not" instead of "ye not guilty", thus rejecting him as a Dominus) before 'merging' physically with him.
  • Villain Decay: The anime version of Beck, though considering many people found his Laughably Evil nature to be amusing as hell, it's not necessarily a bad thing.

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