Saturday, February 6, 2016

A Question for the Ages: Can Mega Man X Take His Helmet Off?

Or Zero, for that matter?

We see both Mega Man (Rock) and Proto Man (Blues) remove their helmets in the classic series.

A helmetless Rock.

Yes, this is official art. It's from Mega Man 8.

But we never see X or Zero without their helmets. Are their "helmets" actually their head, or are they a literal helmet that they wear over their head? I took this pressing question to the GAF forums. Most users, however, were more interested in commenting on Proto Man's normally elusive hairstyle.

"Proto Man was Elvis the entire time!"

"I feel like the more important question is why does Proto Man have sun glasses under his visor (which is basically sun glasses)?"

"Of course Proto Man is wearing sunglasses under his helmet's built in sunglasses.

And of course he has a Pompadour worthy of admittance to Egon's fabulous pompadour association.*"

*This reference is to Egon from Ghostbusters, known for his extravagant hairstyle.
"Sunglasses = Cool
2 * Sunglasses = Double cool"

"Proto Man really needs some kamina glasses."

"He looks like the kind of person you just wanna hit in the mouth."

"Proto Man be like"

Once reactions to Proto Man's pompadour subsided, people decided to actually discuss the question I had asked.

"That said, I wonder how Zero would look without his helmet. :O"

"They never remove their helmets officially, presumably because X & Zero are always on duty and constantly in conflict. Not hard to imagine that X has Brown hair like his predecessor since Dr. Light is the designer. Zero's hair is way too amazing. We only get the ponytail, and look how awesome that is. The full reveal would blind us.

Then again, even when X was being designed and wasn't complete he had a helm on, so I don't know. :o Maybe the helm is just built into his design."

"I just assumed X's helmet was actually an integrated part of his architecture. But the idea of him having hair intrigues me..."

"X and Zero can definitely take their helmets off. At least, we know Zero can since Zero's helmet is seen lying on the ground in the ending of Mega Man Zero 4. Considering how many Reploids do have have hair, it seems likely that X does as well (since they are all ultimately based on his design). Reploids that are not animal-like bosses all either are wearing hats/helmets or have hair of some kind. Besides, X was designed by Dr. Light, who designed all of his other robots to be as humanlike as possible, including having hair."

Another user posted an image of Zero from the Mega Man Zero manga.

Zero looking flustered.
My own research into the topic had led me to manga before, which does indeed show Zero helmetless at times... and, unsurprisingly, in possession of a luxurious head of blonde hair.

A helmetless Zero speaking with Storm Eagle.
Another Brazilian manga shows X with a full head of hair, as well.

X removes his helmet to reveal a head of brilliant blonde hair.
Of course, these manga sources, even if officially licensed, aren't considered canon to the Mega Man story. So, is there any supplemental material out there that answers the question as to whether or not there is hair underneath X and Zero's helmets? It turns out that there is. User Mellahan came to the rescue with definitive evidence.


The evidence!
This is concept art for the Bandai figures from the early 90's. 

Eyebrows but no hair."

Could it be? X and Zero are bald? Zero is rocking a skullet?

"Well, let's have a look," says Scavenger. Normally this would be a joke, but combined with the evidence above...


The horrible truth is that underneath their helmets - which are not meant to be removed - there is no hair. Saddening. Perhaps the original Mega Man was superior after all?

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