Baymax !, review: a sweet return after Big Hero 6

Baymax !, review: a sweet return after Big Hero 6

Baymax !, review

It has been 8 years since Big Hero 6 arrived in theaters. After a creative process that lasted 3 years, hampered by the pandemic and the lockdown, Don Hall, Roy Conli and Bradford Simonsen sign Baymax! along with Walt Disney Animation Studios. The new miniseries, previewed, is available on Disney Plus from 29 June 2022. The cuddly white robot is the protagonist of 6 short films that, together, give life to a whole new little story, with unpublished characters and important messages to be transmitted to children and adults.

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Sweet and funny short films

Return to the technological fictional city of San Franstokyo (San Francisco + Tokyo), where Baymax can perform its original functions: taking care of patients. Each episode focuses on a different character; each one, stubborn in admitting that they need help, will do everything to thwart the robot's actions. Sooner or later, however, the problems must be addressed.

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The new Disney series also aims to send the public precise messages, with a narrative that never falls into extreme simplicity or banality, but rather shows new scenarios, with unexpected solutions. The rhythm is so well marked as to give ample space to the individual plots, even if for a few minutes. It must also be said that the chapters are by no means an end in themselves; in short, it is a bit like watching a medical show in miniature. Baymax! it hides a very special ending, an indication of a cohesive and complete project.

Baymax! and the new concept of superhero

While never denying the origins, the choice to move away from the imprint of Big Hero 6 is evident. Since 2014, the franchise has not died out. On Disney Plus, in fact, two animated series are available: Big Hero 6 - The series and Big Hero 6 Shorts, united by a very different design from the first feature film, much more similar in fact to the original Marvel comic.
| id: th_culturapop_d_mh3 "); } Baymax Baymax! it is not mere entertainment, but has a specific goal: to find heroism in the common man, devoid of superpowers. That Hall and the producers no longer love superheroes? Impossible. However, there is a need to create something totally new, more linked to the true origins of the character. It is curious to note how the protagonist approaches others, advancing into the life of ordinary people and - why not - radically changing it with small and simple gestures of care and affection. Baymax's trump card is empathy for others, and he is the living demonstration of the fact that no particular powers are needed to do good. Listening, using one's skills to lend a hand and being available for those in difficulty are what this miniseries feels it wants to communicate to its audience, made up of people of all ages.

In the wake by Red

Each episode shows the viewer plausible situations, related to small or big problems in a person's life. Not surprisingly, the new characters are varied. Here are some of them: Kiko is an elderly lady with joint problems; Mbita runs a family business and discovers he has a sudden allergy. Sofia, a middle school girl, is struggling with her first menstrual cycle, a subject - apparently - still very uncomfortable. The narrative choices of this particular episode closely match what Disney accomplished with Red (Turning Red), a great metaphor for female puberty. The dialogues between Baymax and the little protagonist are devoid of any sweetening, as it should be. The animation indulges in creating the most realistic packages of sanitary pads and tampons of all sizes and types on the market.

As happened for Red and, on other fronts, also for Lightyear (there is a kiss between two women), the fear is that of the usual discontent of that part of the public that struggles to accept the normality of life. Baymax, helping Sofia to face the first big change of her body, wants to represent what many little women have never received in time and in an adequate way. The accuracy of the words that the robot hands to the girl is disarming, a great slap in the face of those who in the media still try to hide everyday realities, on which there is inexplicably so much prohibition. Baymax is that friend, that confidant that everyone would want or would have wanted when they needed it.

The realization of Baymax!

Realize 6 episodes directed by four different personalities (Dean Wellins, Lissa Treiman, Dan Abraham and Mark Kennedy) means being able to work simultaneously on each chapter. A team effort that manages to be distributed differently than the arduous task, years ago, of having to produce a single film lasting almost two hours. Baymax shorts! they are therefore the result of a creative and working process that knows how to streamline, in line with the needs of a streaming platform like Disney Plus. The format, in fact, is perfect for its complete use.

Quotes and Easter Eggs

Baymax! he cannot help but contain frequent references to other elements of Disney filmography, as often happens. It is not up to us to reveal which ones, but we can quote the reference which, at the same time, is both the most obvious and the most surprising. The characters, in a certain context, cheer "Big Hero 6" unaware of the meta-theatrical aspect, but Baymax's response comes quickly: "The height of irony is that there is actually a Big Hero 6".

As mentioned, the reference to Red is easy to notice. More difficult to find are the numerous Easter Eggs, almost never recognizable at a single glance. Just mention the first: Kiko checks the mail and a letter says the name “Conli Insurance”, a clear homage to one of the producers. Ironic how the old lady throws the envelope away, calling it garbage.

In conclusion

Baymax! it is a pleasant surprise, a project created with love for an audience that will be able to grasp the importance of representing the everyday realities of the common man. The new miniseries, with a modern design that does not deny its origins, knows how to concentrate all its potential in just 6 short episodes, full of emotions and teachings told with a carefree but also moving narrative at the right moment.

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