Chien Ting Chin (chinc@sten.sunnybrook.utoronto.ca)
Sun, 12 Mar 2000 18:44:23 -0500 (EST)


Mark Simmons wrote:
> I'd say the '90s specialty was super robots - Gaogaigar, Giant Robot,
> the Kishin Corps 'bots, and the very retro Getter 1 were some of the best
> designs of recent years.

Like I said, I haven't seen a modern mecha I like yet. :) Hmm, ok I
haven't seen Kishin Corps...

> Patlabor (late '80s, 8 meters), Layzner (mid '80s, 10 meters)...? Giant
> robot heights have always been all over the place, whatever suits the

Ok You got me there. But still IMHO, anything over 12m should be
considered more of a fantasy then scifi. (unless you are fighting
Godzilla I suppose) SDF-1 anybody?

> Another interesting trend in recent movies (including The Matrix,
> Office Space, Fight Club): The concept of modern-day society as a
> coercive, oppressive system that must be literally battled and destroyed.
> The Matrix and Fight Club both view modern life as an invisible prison, a
> form of mental slavery that can only be opposed by violence. I'm reminded
> of the "invisible prison" concept of Philip K. Dick's later books, the
> notion that we're living in an "iron empire" that's enslaved our minds to
> the point that we can't even see the chains any more. Why this renewed
> streak of paranoid morbidity, in a time of unprecedented prosperity and
> opportunity? What do you think?

Right on Mark! Except that fighting the invisible system with violence is
kind of futile isn't? (oh no, not the 2nd Amendment again!) The
insurgent tool of choice seems to be hacking. But that's not the only
way. Dilbert fight it by slacking off, the guy in American Beauty fight
it by becoming a "free" re-hippie.

You are very careful to call the iron empire a "concept", well I myself
think it's the reality, and I argue that more and more people (both in the
poor youth and well-to-do professionals) are beginning to feel that way.
Otherwise why would subversive movies like these be so successful?
(Runaway Bride anyone? Or Pretty Woman?)

Anyway back to Gundam, that's why I think Cyberpunk or Post-Cyberpunk or
Neo-Cyberpunk will rule over mecha shows for a while. G-Gundam is not
Fight Club.

CHIN, Chien Ting
Dept of Medical Biophysics, Sunnybrook Health Science Centre
... o O *
Man is a bubble

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