This week on Big Hero 6: The Series, most of the gang had midterm exams, so with Fred the only member on active duty, Hiro created Mini-Max to keep an eye on him. Hiro, meanwhile, was preoccupied with finding out the circumstances behind Prof. Granville’s departure from SFIT twenty years ago…
1. No Escape
I’ve never thought about superheroes being in a class they couldn’t lie or make an excuse to get out of before, we’re so used to Spider-Man et al. being able to skip class to save the day so often it doesn’t cross our minds at all. I imagine Marvel Comics never considered it for the simple reason that a high school hero can just shrug their shoulders and let the Avengers or the Defenders deal with whatever’s reared its head. Of course, the animated Big Hero 6 have been removed from the Marvel Universe, so they can only rely on the one member who’s too wealthy (and not smart enough) to attend school.
2. Cute but Competent
In less capable hands, Mini-Max could’ve been as irritating as Scrappy Doo or Mighty Mouse, but fortunately kids’ TV has come a long way since the ’70s. The writers are well aware that Fred is the show’s annoying idiot who leads the team astray, and they create a fun Big Hero in Little China-esque dynamic between the two, where Fred believes he’s the hero, not the sidekick, while Mini-Max makes sure he’s not causing too much havoc in the city. There’s how he doesn’t know his strength, his awkwardly long laughs, and I also love the contrast between him and Baymax, with him possessing the barrel-chested, “Here I come to save the day!” voice you’d expect from his big brother instead. I’m so glad he wasn’t destroyed in some cruel mockery of the characters he’s based on.
3. Visiting an Old Frenemy
Hiro’s inquiry into Granville’s past leads him to visit an old colleague of her’s in prison – Robert Callaghan (Yokai), the film’s villain, voiced again by the great James Cromwell. It’s a surprisingly heavy and heartfelt scene, especially given the show’s tone, with Callaghan thanking Hiro for saving his daughter, and apologizing about Tadashi, and Hiro expressing hope that he can one day forgive him for his brother’s death. Given how expensive how it must’ve been to get Cromwell back for this brief scene, I bet I can look forward to seeing how his redemption plays out.
4. A Mirror Image
We eventually learn from Granville that she left SFIT because she gave Obake free rein at SFIT to do his experiments, when one eventually blew up in his face: she took the blame for his accident, and resigned. It explains why she’s so strict towards Hiro, as she knows now the dangers of indulging a protégé beyond their abilities. It also means Obake has become the Doctor Octopus to Hiro’s Spider-Man, the darker, older, bitter version of the hero, cementing the character as well and truly one of Hiro’s most personal enemies.
5. Secret Identities
I thought Go Go, Honey Lemon, Baymax and Wasabi not helping Granville was a bit contrived, especially as Wasabi points out that no one recognizes them in their gear. Still, it was fun seeing Fred and Mini-Max go it alone, especially when they used hare-brained Captain Kirk style logic to disarm Granville’s hacked security system. It’s interesting that Granville knowing their identity is of a big concern to the team, given it seems she’s aware (she makes an unsubtle jibe at Hiro about the big increase in crime in the city, for one). Right now, I’m also wondering if Hiro’s joined the dots like we have regarding Obake’s identity, as it’s not been outright said yet, given his comment about her old student at the end (it’s not like she knows who Obake is anyway).
– Globby’s powers are just ridiculous now, but I like him turning into a giant coin as it resembles the big one Batman has in his cave.
– “I’ve never even been to Cockney” – OK, I’ve never thought an American would reckon Cockney is a place, I’ve died of laughter now.
– Loved the animation of Fred sashaying out of Hiro’s garage.
– The team unwind watching The Mermaiden’s Tale: I really want to watch this movie now.
– Loved seeing Baymax go into his compact form to escape from Good Luck Alley: guess they finally learned from him getting stuck last week.