This Space Dandy review contains spoilers.
“Is it just me, or is this kind of weird?”
My favorite episodes of Space Dandy are the ones that find such an incredulous idea and then double down on the science behind it in wonderful, different ways. The sort of moments like when the Time River devolves a spaceship into a pirate ship that simultaneously make no sense at all and all the sense in the world at the same time. This is, fortunately, one of the better examples of one of those sort of episodes, even though it might initially seem weird that directly after an episode focused on dating and relationships, we’d get another one. This couldn’t be more of an inverse on last week’s romp though, as it wallows in the pain and fragility of love, and the idea that impossible obstacles will always get in the way. And then there are also alternate dimensions.
That’s right, alternate dimensions that are forcing themselves into ours, and while Dandy has certainly explored different universes, time travel, and a wealth of “What If?” like bizarro situations, this is certainly a different take on it all.
Basically, another universe shows up, which would be a complication in itself, but it’s also two-dimensional.
This flat, two-dimensional universe is beautifully depicted here, almost like something out of Minecraft, but this stuff really starts to shine when you get things like the visuals of missiles being into the 2D universe, only to be rendered into 8-bit like copies. It’s classic Space Dandy, and exactly the brilliant, weird stuff I watch this show for. If this wasn’t enough, the renderings of Dr. Gel, Bea, and their ship into this two-dimensional universe are impossible not to grin at, even if it is something that’s been done before on shows like Futurama. Space Dandy is continually adding to this concept though, and seriously pushing all of this as far as it can go.
We see this in another drastic way in which this episode is different than last weeks with how it’s a love story between other-dimensional beings, with warping as an obstacle. A bit of Dandy’s past is learned through the appearance of his ex-girlfriend, Catherine, who, by the way is a disembodied heart in a wireframe grid box. She’s from the fourth dimension, and broke up with Dandy for Paul, an alien from the second dimension (where it’s also hinted that Dandy might originally be from), the one that’s recently appeared in our world. That’s three different dimensions/planes so far.
As this space rabbit hole (rabbit black hole?) is gone down even deeper, we learn that Paul has brought his universe into ours as a means to get Catherine back, and harnessed the power of a one-dimensional universe to do so. We in turn see Gel and co eventually get rendered into this dimension too, becoming merely chaotic lines that fill the screen in a faint Gel-esque shape. Then, in the episode’s equivalent of its mic drop, a zero-dimensional universe appears, co-opting everything, leaving us merely with a blinking dot. A lot of shows have had fun with this idea, but never gone to such lengths and pushed the science this far before. There’s not even that much plot and story going on, with most of it being taken care of right away. The whole thing is an exercise in this equation of insanity, and it works so well.
There’s also crazy things said about how there’s really no such thing as warping, and that really we move in the space between universes, meaning there’s several parallel versions of us. Two of you, watching this episode at the exactly same time. Reading this review at exactly the same time. You’ll both smile at the same time as that significant other you’ve had eyes for returns your call, but who knows when the moment will come when they leave you for you?