If you didn’t realize, tomorrow is July 14th. That’s worldwide Nicolas Cage day according to my circle of friends. It’s Casey Poe’s birthday and the first time she got to see her Daddy, Cameron Poe. The film Con Air takes place on July 14th, and I can think of no better way to celebrate the golden age of Nicolas Cage other than making July 14th a Holiday. Celebrating July 14th is easy. You simply watch Con Air on that day and can add in other festivities that the film hints upon. Might I suggest tying “yellow ribbons ’round old oak trees?” Or perhaps you can “break out the fine china and chill the lemonade” for the event? You can always have a good ol’ fashioned BBQ, but you have to remember to tell Cyrus that “it is his BBQ and it sure tastes good!”
As you can tell, I’ve got much love for Con Air. I’ve always been more of a fan of The Rock but Con Air somehow snagged away its own day once a year for my friends and I. But as we watch Con Air as part of our yearly event we begin to ask ourselves the question of “Why exactly is Baby-O on the plane in the first place?”
Baby-O played by Mykelti Williamson is probably more famously known as Bubba Gump from Forrest Gump. It turns out that Williamson must have had a thing for befriending actors with sub par Alabama accents, as Forrest Gump and Cameron Poe both sport some pretty awful dialects. The point is though in Con-Air he plays the insulin needing, friend of Nic Cage’s character. But again, why is he there?
As you already know, Con Air, as told by the story line, has the who’s who of criminals on board, and Nicolas Cage who just so happens to be hitching a parole ride home to his wife and daughter. As we go down the list of crimes of “The Jailbird’s” inhabitants, we have Cyrus the Virus, Diamond Dawg, Garland Greene, Johnny 23, Billy Bedlam and more. All are described as horrible rapists and killers and are headed to a maximum security prison. We know that Baby-O is also being transported to the same prison, hence being on The Jailbird and Poe being worried about him in that “new place with no one to watch [his] back.” None the less, we’re never lead to believe that Baby-O fits into that mix. In fact, it seems the only crime he has ever committed was simply being a “nice diabetic.” Last time I checked that wasn’t a crime.
To further my thoughts that Baby-O is the nicest con flying the friendly skies it’s important to look at other fine details of the film. Every other person is cuffed up and or locked in chains ore safely behind bars. The prison system doesn’t trust them with anything. Yet in earlier scenes we have Baby-O mopping the prison floors and and enjoying one of those “pink coconut things” with Cage. They didn’t even trust Nicolas Cage enough to ever let him out of his cell through the opening sequence of the film, yet we let someone being transported to maximum security prison out mopping the floors and sharing snack cakes with the inmates? We can also look at the way Baby-O tries to rescue the female guard. The only other person who does that is Nic Cage. When the rest of the inmates would rather beat or rape the female guard, Baby-O is looking out for someone else despite dying of a near fatal lack of insulin. Even when the plane crashes and horrible criminals are running around in Vegas, the ambulance rushes up and takes Baby-O away to the hospital with out a single hand cuff on him. In fact, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t even get a a police escort. I don’t know a ton about police security but if you were transporting him to maximum security prison with Cyrus the Virus wouldn’t you be a bit concerned about him taking the ambulance hostage and driving across 3 states? The point is, we never know what Baby-O is in for, and every scene makes him seem like the nicest diabetic in the world.
Obviously we know this is not true, as he had to have done something that found him wound up in jail. If he was innocent or in a similar situation to Nic Cage, I feel as though it would have been mentioned. And besides, Baby-O tells Cage that it is going to be ” a long time” before he ever sees parole papers. That means he’s probably done something to wind up in there, and it probably wasn’t just being a nice guy. Then again how do we know? Maybe the secret behind Con Air is that people like Baby-O can be imprisoned for being too nice and too diabetic. It’s a frightening thought.