Let me start by saying I have not seen The Boss Baby in theaters, nor do I intend to. I will be spending my hard-earned money seeing Beauty and the Beast for a second time. But I do not need to see Boss Baby to understand that it is a work of existential comedy on par with the work of Samuel Beckett. Just by reading the Wikipedia page, I feel as though I’ve discovered a work of psychological science fiction that will be examined by scholars for decades—centuries, even—to come.
The following are excerpts from The Boss Baby “Plot” section on Wikipedia, along with my analysis. Enjoy. Contemplate. Discover.
“…One day, Tim is surprised when a business suit-wearing infant shows up in a taxi at his house and Ted and Janice proudly call him Tim’s little brother.”
In this world, do infant children arrive by taxis? Do Tim’s parents (Ted and Janice) not realize that this baby has been gestated and delivered via conventional pregnancy? Already, the film plunges the audience into a science fiction world in which parents no longer conceive their own children. Perhaps this film is a companion to The Handmaid’s Tale.
“Soon, Tim learns that the baby can talk like an adult and he introduces himself as ‘The Boss Baby’.”
Babies no longer have names—they only have titles. This is truly a capitalist dystopia.
“Seeing an opportunity to be rid of him, Tim decides to record a conversation between him and other toddlers who are over at Tim’s house for a meeting (under the guise of a playdate by the parents) to do something about how puppies are receiving more love than babies.”
In this world, “love” is a limited resource, and evolution has failed if human offspring are no longer proper care that instead goes to dogs.
“The Boss Baby comes to Tim and has him to suck on a pacifier that transports them to Baby Corp, a place where infants with adult-like minds work to preserve infant love everywhere. They are virtual, so they cannot be seen or heard.”
A technology that will never be explained, or given to the masses. Capitalism does not improve things for everyone. It keeps the power of transportation out of the hands of the general population and has turned love into a business commodity. Is it Tim and Boss Baby that cannot be seen, or is it the working class?
“The Boss Baby explains to Tim that he was sent on a mission to see why puppies are getting more love than infants. He has infiltrated Tim’s residence because his parents work for Puppy Co., which is unleashing a new puppy on the day that employees take their children to work.”
A world in which child turns against parent. This is 1984, in 2017.
“The Boss Baby also explains that he stays intelligent by drinking a “Secret Baby Formula” which enables a baby to act like an adult. However, if a baby does not drink it after a period of time, he or she reverts to a regular baby.”
A world in which youth is fetishized above all else. Why can the employees of this company not be adults? Clearly they use “Secret Baby Formula” to undermine child employment laws.
“He hopes to receive a promotion after dealing with Puppy Co.’s new puppy, but when they overhear Boss Baby’s boss threaten to fire him for not bringing in information, thereby stranding him at the Templetons, he and Tim agree to work together to keep that from happening.”
If “Boss Baby” (again, nameless, his entire existence defined by his job) is hoping to receive a promotion, then he is not the “boss.” Who is the real Boss Baby? Perhaps there never was one.
“They discover that Francis used to be the head of Baby Corp. (and Boss Baby’s idol), but was forced out when it was discovered that his lactose intolerance kept the secret formula from working properly.”
This is a society in which transportation and virtual temporal projection exists, but not a baby formula without lactose: capitalism is a flawed system.
“Furious at their interference, Francis proceeds to lock Tim’s parents up so he can burn them with exhaust from a rocket used to launch the Forever Puppies.”
Ostensibly, the “Forever Puppies” were a concept that would be launched like a business, but in this terrible universe, they are physically launched via rocket. “Francis” plans to murder his own employees (Tim’s parents work at Puppy Co.) just as revenge against Boss Baby, who seemingly does not care for these parents at all, and was only assigned to their home as a corporate spy. There is no logic in this world, nor loyalty.
“Boss Baby opens the rocket to let the dogs out, so they can save Tim’s parents. After he successfully does that, he returns to baby state while still on the rocket, but Tim sings to him with a family song to show his appreciation, causing him to jump off of the rocket before it launches.”
An act of compassion forces Boss Baby to sacrifice his intelligence. Emotions are the enemy of logic.
“Francis, having reverted back to baby form, attempts to attack them again, but his brother interferes, stating that he’ll ‘raise him right this time’ now that he’s a baby again.”
Time is an endless loop, and there is no escape.
“Tim and Boss Baby, having grown closer, start to miss each other. Boss Baby, fed up, decides to be part of the Templeton family. He returns to the Templeton family as a regular baby named Theodore Lindsey.”
Give up your dreams, your career, your identity. We can give you a new one.