January 29, 2011

Fractale Ep3: Viva La Revolucion!

Posted in Fractale tagged , , at 12:54 am by meotwister5

… Is what I’d like to say really, but when you start gunning down even innocent civilians who you claim have been brainwashed, who then are you “liberating” for your cause?  Clain can only look on in horror as the world he knows gets revealed to him in the middle of spouting blood and automatic rifle fire.  With the inclusion of a Phryne that is so much different from the one he knows and a second Nessa, naivete begins to crack under the weight of truth.

So what then is this world?

Sanity doesn't come cheap.

As a group claiming to want to free humanity from the authoritarian bonds of the Fractale system, Lost Millenia brings Clain and Nessa into their town in order to study for themselves this supposedly awesome new technology to study, thinking it will be that which will allow them to gain victory over the Temples that control Fractale.  It is actually a town not so much different from a rural community in the early 20th century: a predominantly agriculture-based society with bits and pieces of modern technology integrated into daily life, life which is very much communal living on whatever resources you can sustain for yourself.  As Clain puts it, a society very much different than his own where he gets all his food from a tube and everyone’s connected by their terminals.  A very peaceful existence indeed.

At least until he joins them on a trip to sabotage a gathering of people that the leader claims is nothing more than mass brainwashing.  As bullets and blood fly in all directions, Clain is faced with reality crumbling before his eyes as Phryne comes in with a mysterious chant and a second Nessa greets her “Older sister”.

Privacy not included.

Clain could hardly believe that such “old school” living could exist in a time when everyone is essentially wired together.  He finds it utterly fascinating that something so primitive yet so modern could co-exist.  He knows nothing of organic foods or communal gatherings and the like so all of this is new to him, like a baby that has taken it’s first steps into the world outside his home.  Yet, as mentioned before, he is both someone who loves ancient technology but scoffs at ancient society.  I don’t know how much in the past such life was but he’s clearly not old enough to have known it.  At the medical center and at the airship he displays the ignorance that has been programmed into him along side his natural curiosity.  He still maintains his internal opposition as someone who seeks to understand the life of people past but cannot himself seem to actually live it.

The naive man finds himself speechless when faced with the truth of the reality he has been programmed to accept.  Clain could only stare at the people and at the forming stars when he sees them devolve into mindless figures who can’t even react when they are shot to death.  This is not the humanity he knows of, even if he knows very little.  We don’t yet see him react much to the bloody spectacle that unfolds before him, but the cracks are starting to form.

Just dance!

If Lost Millenia is indeed a terrorist organization, then the almost blatant disregard for innocent human life surely validates that claim.  For a group that espouses the desire to free humanity from it’s bondage to the Fractales, with their methods they’d sooner free humanity from their mortal coils than their brainwashing masters.  Their leader whose name escapes me reminds me of the blind idealists of early revolutions that declared idealistic promises of change under the corpses of fallen citizens.  Can you really free humanity from it’s shackles through sheer violence?  History has shown how this can both succed and fail.

I can see Lost Millenia as nothing more than a symbol of the inner contradictions of idealist revolutions espousing lofty goals that are ultimately unattainable and ultimately devolve into nothing more than a regime change.  I don’t even know if they’re taking this seriously.  This is a movement wanting to bring down the Fractale system and free the minds of people, yet they don’t bat an eyelash when civilians get caught in the crossfire.  They intend to use Nessa or whatever technology they can find to their advantage, yet they hastily get themselves caught in the middle of firefights.  The seemingly peaceful and organic township they have belies the radical intentions of their rebellion, as if to doom their peaceful ways by smothering it in gunfire: an attempt to bring out the way of life they desire by doing almost the exact opposite.

He seriously needs to stop getting shocked with women.

I’m seriously starting to think that as per his approach to what I assume to be philosophical and sociological critique, Azuma Hiroki is a bit heavy-handed with his presentation of a future society that is nearly an obvious illustration of the modern internet age, the Lost Millenia as the opposing force of returning humanity to a simpler era, Clain’s life as a naive and ignorant person faced with the real world, and the writer’s attempt to break them down piece by piece.  Not to say that this is bad actually, because it’s an interesting approach and this isn’t a philosophy class, but some of the more obvious things (like the leader’s boisterous idealism and his sudden shift to bloodlust during the ceremony) makes things a little less than subtle in my opinion.  Maybe again he does fully intend to bring it out for everyone to see rather than having everyone look for the subtext, but of course I can’t claim to know what his intentions are.

With regards to the Lost Millenia at least, I presume he’s trying to drive home the point that the radicals of social change aren’t any different from their older historical counterparts.  From what we’ve seen so far, there is a stark contrast between their life in town and their military affairs.  Such groups start out as idealists trying to begin their lives in small practice, yet when they go out into the world where they must impose their wills, things change and methods change, ultimately culminating in violence as cultures clash.  In the end when reality hits, these radicals may be no better than the ones they have dethroned.  As I have said previously, merely a regime change.

Those are not rose-tinted glasses.

The saying goes that one must take of rose-tinted glasses to see the world as it truly is.  On that statement, it feels oddly ironic that it took a pair of glasses for Clain to actually see reality for what it is.  What he will ultimately believe or react after seeing Nessa and Phryne, of course, remains to be seen.

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