What It Means To Kill Space Dandy

In each episode of Space Dandy, the evil conglomerate Gogol tries to capture and/or kill the titular character. They consider him the most dangerous force in the universe, and claim that as long as they can capture him, they can conquer the universe once and for all. Near as we can tell, Space Dandy should have no reason to be so important, given that he’s just a loser bounty hunter who goes on random adventures; but when we consider that “Space Dandy” is also the title of the show itself, it becomes apparent that Gogol’s desire to eliminate Space Dandy is actually an allegory.

What Space Dandy represents as a series is unrepressed, boundless creativity. It’s a production wherein a massive number of creative minds have been given free reign to express themselves on Shinichiro Watanabe’s space canvas. In an anime industry that overpoweringly caters to its fanbase, with few original ideas managing to break the mold, Space Dandy is one of the few places where the creators still rule.

Gogol’s space ship is a giant Statue of Liberty head with a ball gag in its mouth. It represents the repression of free speech, which is exactly what Space Dandy stands for. In the first episode, Space Dandy’s crew is killed in an explosion, yet all of them are alive again in the next episode. The timeline of events necessitates that the first episode is indeed the first, and not the last, in the timeline, as if to show that no matter what, Space Dandy can never truly be killed. Creativity will always live on.

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