DM Haight



In the exhibition of superheroes that is the Disney acquisition of Marvel, we’ve seen snarky scientists, lab accidents, gods, and cryogenic freezer GIs. It’s been a ride that the world can’t seem to get off of, not that they want to. The newest step in Disney’s Marvel phases has already taken shape, and is nominated for an academy award this year (2015). Based on the comic of the same name, Big Hero 6 follows Hiro Hamada (Ryan Potter), as he copes with the death of his brother. Hiro becomes acquainted with Baymax, the medical robotics project his brother was perfecting before his tragic death. With Baymax, and a few inherited friends, Hiro seeks revenge against his brother’s killer.

It’s been done before, that much is clear. The animation style is the same we’ve seen in the last three or four Disney Animation Studio outings. Big Hero 6 has a bright, colorful world with fun characters that are just as bright and colorful. What’s nice about this outing is the absence of the princess. It’s the geeky equivalent of traditional Disney storytelling. Much like a great director tends to have a formula, Disney too has a pretty clear course of expositionary dumps, but much like Spielberg, Disney can have that formula and still maintain an incredible journey of either self-discovery, or worldly discovery. Big Hero 6 has both. I mean, the story takes place in San Fransokyo, a hybrid of Japanese and American culture, where kids destroy sumo wrestler wannabes in a game of robo fighting. The world is unique, which makes up for the predictable story and borderline-cliché character development.

Although Hiro’s development is slightly at odds with Disney tradition. Of course, these types of heroes have their flaws, but not in the way Hiro does. We don’t tend to see Disney tackle the themes of revenge that play out with a robot mindlessly destroying everything in site in order to kill a villain. There’s a real fear and concern for Hiro’s development as a person with morals. Without the intervention of his friends, we could have seen Hiro become the villain himself, which is new approach Disney has taken since last year’s Frozen. The blurred lines of good and evil has left a lot of grey areas for Disney to create newer and more complex personalities. I, for one, have enjoyed it for the most part.

The relationship between Baymax and Hiro is something we’ve experienced before, even from Disney. I guess the audience is a sucker for friendships between big and little heroes. Supposing Big Hero 6 hits a similar audience, we could very well see a Frozen-esk following. No doubt Disney plans to do a few sequels, and I’m betting that we’ll see more of the heartwarming relationships we all enjoy from Disney. Hopefully we’ll find our heroes doing more heroic feats in the next few films.

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