Aya vs. The Big Boys

AYA VS. THE BIG BOYS: ROBOCOP/SE7EN + THE MATRIX

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Stop, drop, and roll me a fat doobie, brother, because Saturdays are for the boys!!!

On this week’s offerings, Kevin and Aya scream “ACAB” from the rooftops and welcome a sci-fi aficionado to school them on The Wachowskis.

As always, the most direct way to support AYA VS. THE BIG BOYS is by supporting the Merry-Go-Round Patreon, but if money’s tight, we completely get it—the free option is rating, reviewing, and subscribing on whichever podcast service you fancy. Specifically, rating us Apple Podcasts is beyond helpful. Believe it or not, a simple click can help boost our visibility. One day, Joe Rogan will eat our asses: it’s not a dream, it’s a promise.

OK, folks, let’s talk about pigs.

It’s important to note that the crew recorded this ROBOCOP/SE7EN episode in the midst of the anti-police uprisings of summer 2020—Kevin thought it’d be fitting to talk ROBOCOP, because duh, but it didn’t quite hit the way he was hoping. Perhaps it’s unfair to expect modern radical answers from a nearly 35-year-old piece of anti-Reagan, tongue-in-cheek, quasi-agitprop maximalism, but it’d be difficult to see Verhoeven accurately prophesy our social decay and do nothing but laugh. There’s inherent value in the pompously aggressive act of taking purposely D-grade action dogmeat and selling it back to fascist whitey for three times the price, but, hey, Dutch boy, you saw we were headed into our steep downfall and did nothing about it but capitalize on our demise? That’s kind of hard. But, also, fuck you. So they watched SE7EN instead, a seemingly dissimilar grisly detective thriller that ended up being a worthy companion piece to Verhoeven’s anti-authoritarian cult masterpiece. Both movies hate the cops with a burning passion, but while ROBOCOP gives the goons the benefit of a doubt by portraying them as union workers hassled by higher-ups, SE7EN is 100+ minutes of unfettered contempt. It’s unpleasant and gross; it’s also scrumptious.

On this episode of AYA VS. THE BIG BOYS, the duo dives into Aya’s very first viewing of Paul Verhoeven’s ROBOCOP and David Fincher’s SE7EN, an oddly affecting double feature, with observations on the value of satire against a lethal nation-state, how Fincher may be one of our most definitively American directors, and just how badly we want to abolish the useless, dumbfuck, serial-killer-breeding police. And for good measure, they return to a previous conversation from their FIGHT CLUB episode about how badly they want to suck Brad Pitt’s co-

The Matrix Screenshot

We at Merry-Go-Round Magazine apologize in advance for this episode on THE MATRIX. It is likely to make you a lil angwee 🥺.

Look, let’s be realistic here: THE MATRIX is a boat-load of cringe dialogue offsetting the fascinating design decisions both deconstructing and reinforcing the facsimiles of existence via action cinema. Yes, the gun-fu is fucking dope. The lobby shoot-out is iconic for a multitude of reasons. You’re left awe-struck by how crystal-clear an action sequence defined by explosive debris can be: how did they do that? Then again, while a cool sequence, why not just pop in HARD BOILED instead?

On this episode of AYA VS. THE BIG BOYS, the duo logs into Aya’s very first viewing of THE MATRIX, wherein they largely agreed that, uh… Yeah, this isn’t really their type of movie. Aya hates sci-fi, and Kevin hates fantasy, and THE MATRIX is a deep concentration on both. They talk the Kult of Keanu, the Wachowskis’ possibly self-sabotaging dorkiness, and whether “the red pill” can ever be reclaimed from incels with guest Kelsie Adams, noted superper-fan of THE MATRIX. Also, naturally they discuss how badly they want to suck Carrie-Anne Moss’s co-

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Kevin Cookman
Kevin Cookman is a Film Editor for Merry-Go-Round Magazine. Deserted in a video store as an infant, Kevin was raised on Fulci, Tarantino, Kubrick, and Whoppers. Now he's a graduate of Chapman University who acts as editor for Merry-Go-Round on the side: what a success story.

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