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Vault Review: The Big O’s
R. Dorothy Wayneright (Figma #102)

It boggles my mind that eight years after its last episode aired The Big O is finally getting some decent toys.  Even during its heyday on Cartoon Network the best we got toy-wise was a couple of Megadeus figures.  So I was truly blown away when Figma announced an R. Dorothy Wayneright.

You might have heard me say this before, but I’m going to say it again.  The Big O is my favorite anime.  Ever.  On the surface you get an entertaining noir story about the Batman-esque Roger Smith and his adventures in Paradigm City.  He’s aided by his butler Norman, and his maid/ward/friend Dorothy.  When negotiations often break down and trouble rears its ugly head, usually in the guise of a giant robot, Roger ditches the subtle approach and battles it in his own giant robot, Big O.

All in all, pretty fun to watch.  But what I truly love about the Big O are the multiple layers and serious depth that encompass the overarching story.  Scattered amongst the anime clichés of giant robot battles are questions about who we are, what makes us human, and whether we get to choose our own destiny or if we are cursed to repeat our mistakes in a never ending cycle that leads to destruction.  The metafiction of The Big O runs just as deep as Evangelion, but in much more subtle ways.  So much so, that I’ve even written notes of commentary on the episodes and someday I might actually get around to publishing them.

We are introduced to R. Dorothy Wayneright in the first episode.  She’s been kidnapped for ransom and Roger is hired to negotiate the terms by her father.  But, in classic noir style, not everything is as it appears.  Dorothy is actually a robot, and the old man who built her, her “father”, is murdered.  Now Roger must figure out why he was killed and connections it has with the giant robot that’s now attacking the city.

Dorothy is one of the most interesting characters on the show.  As a robot, she claims to have no emotions, yet she’s displayed fear and even jealousy.  Throughout the series she’s even shown to have a strong sense of sarcasm, especially when it comes to giving Roger a hard time.  She’s extremely guarded, even if she doesn’t know it herself.  But these traits work to make her very likeable, not just to the fans but also the other characters on the show.  Even in a world of domed cities, giant robots, and amnesia, Dorothy stands out as truly unique.

Looks wise, Dorothy is perfect.  Although she has a couple of different outfits in the series she’s almost always seen in her maid outfit.  The design is extremely simple, but there are a couple of things to note.  First off is Dorothy’s hair.  She’s got a pageboy haircut, which is something you don’t see that often.  Not just in anime, but anywhere really.  I really appreciate how well the sculptors did with her hair.  Looking at the anime it may seem simple, but when you transfer it into 3D it gets much more complicated.  But they nailed it, and it looks right from every angle.

The second thing I wanted to mention was more interesting than anything else.  Since she’s wearing a dress, the sculptors had to give her underwear.  What’s curious is that they chose to give her white bloomers.  They look fine, and they work great with the look of the outfit.  I just want to know where the decision came from though.  It’s been a while since I’ve watched some of the episodes, but I don’t remember seeing a peak at Dorothy’s underwear in the entire two seasons of the show.  The Figma people are pretty spot-on with detail, so I’m wondering if this information actually came from the creators of the show.

Dorothy’s paint job is even simpler than her design.  Although she’s seen in both a green and red dress originally, Roger’s house rules dictate that the people who live in his house wear black.  Almost her entire outfit is molded in black and given a few spots of white for detail.  The most color she has on is the shiny teal button on her collar.  Dorothy’s hair is molded red, like it should be.  But instead of giving her white skin, like in the show, they molded her with a very pale flesh color.  This originally bothered me in the promo pictures, but now that I have her in person it’s not so bad.  The pale skin is just different enough to help differentiate it from the whites of her costume.  Which I think is why they chose that color.  Continue to page 2…

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20 comments to Vault Review: The Big O’s
R. Dorothy Wayneright (Figma #102)

  • Myxlplyx

    I can’t help but notice that your Figma reviews are always glowing. Curious if you think this is because you only get the best of the Figmas or because Figmas are intrinsicly superior to the average US “collector” toy?

    • AdventureVault

      I’m pretty selective with the Figmas I buy. There are a lot of characters in the line that I just don’t care about. So when I do order one it’s because I already like either how she looks or the character itself. That’s half the reason my reviews on them are so glowing.

      The Japanese market produces some truly fantastic toys that are meant solely for adult collectors. They’ve made advances in articulation and figure design that are way beyond what the US companies have produced so far. So in that way I do think they are superior to the US collector products. But whether that quality is worth the higher price is another issue. As the dollar to yen conversion rate gets more expensive I’m finding myself cutting back on what I order because it’s becoming less worth it.

  • Calvin D.

    Not to be that guy, but can you go back to putting a continue link in the articles? I know that the big 2 is right there, but the last couple reviews without the continue have thrown me.

    • AdventureVault

      Sorry about that Calvin. I’ve started programming my own articles and I’m still getting used to it. So if you see any bugs here or there just mention them and I’ll try and get them taken care of.

  • dayraven

    hey! we got a comparative scale shot! well done sir.

    she looks like fun if you’re a fan of the series, which you apparently are, but for just random toy chicness… too damned skinny and short for my tastes. i likes ’em busty and built. i think i could do a good lengthy riff on my quest for the ultimate female figure though, and i’m always on the lookout, so any chic figure review is always helpful.

    • Cade

      She is more a girl than a women, so she is built that way.

      • AdventureVault

        Yeah, she’s supposed to be small. She’s like 16 and comes up just under five feet tall.

    • AdventureVault

      No prob DR.

      Speaking of busty and built, have you ever looked into the Queens Blade figures? I think they’d be right up your alley.

      • dayraven

        i have, but they’re cost prohibitive… not that i won’t get any, but i have to chose carefully… and really, they haven’t gotten to my favorite characters yet. plus, revoltechs tend to be a tad smaller than i like.

      • Battle Catman

        A friend of mine collects Queen’s Blade figures. The articulation and accessories are great, but I just can’t bring myself to buy one (even though there are a few I’d like to get). There’s no denying it with those girls; you can tell people you bought them for the quality and craftsmanship, but once they find out you can take their clothes off, there’s no turning back.

        As far as “built and busty,” my favorite female figures are the MOTUC ladies. A few nitpicks, but when it comes to having the realistic amount of “thickness,” these girls got it, unlike those poor DCUC girls.

  • Braystreet

    Great review, thanks, I just had a few questions though.

    What figure is the piano from? The only figure I can think of is Palisades Muppet Rowlf, but you’ve never mentioned a history with that line. Also, were you able to get her into any natural poses in which she holds the kitten? The preposed nature of the accessory makes me doubt it, but sufficient articulation can work magic.

    Thank you for any possible information.

    • AdventureVault

      Steve’s right. The piano is from the doll house section of Hobby Lobby. If you’re interested in picking one up, check out their website. They have different coupons every week and usually once a month they put up a 40% off one item coupon.

      She can hold Pero, but it doesn’t look entirely natural because of how he’s posed.

      • Braystreet

        That’s great to know, thanks. I definitely will check that out.

        That’s too bad about Pero, seems like pets either can’t stand on their own (M.U Kitty Pride) or seem to float about disconnected from the figure. I guess that is better than some sort of contrivance to justify it.

        “That’one weird hat, Batman!”
        “Ace needs his food and water, old chum!”

  • I think the Piano is a commercially available doll house accessory. It has the look.

    Another outstanding review, Vault!

    I never really got into The Big O due to my mind having kneejerk reactions to a show with such obvious ‘We don’t cater to the outside world but hey we made this as if we might sell it to America anyway’ vibe. See also the current ‘Tiger and Bunny’, also from Sunrise.

    Saying that, I stumbled on to the original Opening credits and fell on the floor in love, not just the riff on Flash Gordon in the theme but the Ultraman-like use of black cutouts of key images.

    Ah, Sunrise, when you’re not forced to obey your masters at Bandai you still have the chops. 🙂

    • AdventureVault

      Thanks Steve. You might want to give it another shot. The producer and director also created Giant Robo together. When making Big O they wanted to have a lot of allusions to older Japanese shows like Ultraman and newer shows like Batman the animated series.

      I forgot to mention this in the article, but those two actually created the show because they wanted their own giant robot toy line. Although the show is much more than that, ten years later they finally get their wish.

  • Mecha-Shiva

    Great review!Hah,you can see her undies when she rides this bike with the butler and the gun mechanism makes her spread her legs apart for a looksie,saw it on some GIF. somebody posted…

    • AdventureVault

      That is an awesome moment, but you don’t actually get to see anything. Her hands are between her legs keeping her dress down.

  • Dorothy is still hawt! Was recently reminded of her by this character from Tatami Galaxy, not quite as appealing – but something there in the appearance and reserved personality type: http://tinyurl.com/3lgfkrb

    Have also been vaguely reminded of the Morton’s salt girl.

    At any rate, figure looks awesome and you’re right about Pero being the ideal accessory…

    • AdventureVault

      Yeah, Dorothy’s just got this really unique appeal to her. But that Tatami Galaxy looks interesting. I’ll have to check that out.

      Also, hi!

  • nice&toasty

    That SD Big O figure on the right side of the sixth pic…it’s not one of the SRW gashapons, is it? I’d like to get my hands on one.