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Ergo Proxy 22 (Raw)

A long time ago, God created man in his image, and machines in the image of man. Perhaps we'd like to think he did it out of love. Perhaps he did it because he hated being alone. Whatever his reasons, God tired of it. He tired of having to create anew. He tired of ever living. He tired of worship, and praise, and how, even in a crowd, he was still essentially alone. God abandoned everything.

Life went on, in slow iterations of falling apart. Because life could continue, had to continue without God, but without God, there was nothing new to look forward to, no innovation, and no evolution. But life went on.

Until God returned from his holiday, even angrier than before. You see, God never wanted to continue, and believed, wrongly, that he could somehow die of unbelief. But the great part about being God was, God was eternal, and indestructible. Neither by destroying his mind nor by giving up his body. And not even by abandoning his very self. So now, God is coming back to destroy everything else, one piece at a time.

From the very first scene, when the First Proxy rips out his rapidly deteriorating arm, only to see it grow back, the frustration in his person is a force all his own. As he turns to face Real, you genuinely begin to fear.

Pino, safe in her home, the mysterious pianist nowhere to be seen, draws the picture she stole from Timothy -- the two children riding a giant rabbit.

Real awakens in front of her grandfather's throne. Her grandfather lies prone on the floor behind his gate. She rubs her neck as if she'd been gripped quite hard around there. Kristeva looms over her. She asks after Vincent, who is nowhere to be found. Kristeva wants to know if she'll destroy him, and wonders if her own master has been destroyed. When Real asks why she'd even want to search for him, Kristeva responds that she is an Entourage, and that's what she was made to do. Real gets a flashback to Iggy's own grasp of his purpose as she watches Kristeva leave.

Pino is drawing again. The piano music from before ebbs out of a record player behind her. She hears gunshots, and looks out the window. Sadly, she asks where her Papa has gone.

Real crouches over her grandfather, telling him Romdeau is at its end. She hates this path. She hates what the world has become. But it's the truth.

Out of the darkness, cloned Real appears with her ball of red yarn (credits call her Real Mayer, and "riiru Riiru" Re-l, but I'm happier with real Real and cloned real for now). Interesting thing, red yarn. It often symbolizes a tie between people. I wonder why cloned Real carries it. She recognizes her own face on real Real, going so far as to greet her with, "the other me." Real Real flatly denies this. Cloned Real explains their existence as people who think like Monad -- our first hint that they really are both cloned from her genes? More than that, she also wants to save Vincent from himself, just like real Real.

Daedalus appears to reclaim his missing Real doll. He also restates how Vincent is the creator of Romdeau. As for cloned Real, she's just a handful. And she really wants to be next to Vincent too. Daedalus is very not happy.

Hint: When creating cloned specimens of girls you like, it just doesn't work to clone the girl who likes someone else by adding to her the genes of another girl who really liked the same someone else to death. This also helpfully reminds us that in our terrible, evolutionarily constipated future, we can at least make people to hump manically with to order.

So off Daedalus goes, to look for his Real, because the Real he knew clearly can't love him.

Here, the Council wakes up, fully aware. They tell Real that the truth is Romdeau coming to the end. Vincent and Ergo Proxy are the same. Vincent, our miserably flawed God, created Romdeau, but seeing it as flawed as himself, abandoned everything. As Real ponders the flawed God, she ponders existence, and in her mind's eye sees a forming zygote. Connecting that with the pregnant lady in the cave, and the drawings of developing embryos on the cave walls, it seems she has either realized that the way to save humankind is to summarily [polite language for a bodily function] Vincent blind, or...seriously, I don't entirely know what else her revelation could be here.

Along comes shots of cloned Real, with her ball of red yarn, saying she's not that desperate yet.

(I thought that was horrifically funny, timed where it was.)

Her monologue regards how Vincent's pain can end, over a shot of Vincent watching Romdeau standing on the tip of a spire.

Raul is busy rifling Daedalus's console for bullets. He ran off after Vincent ripped off his arm, earlier. Cloned Real reaches him, and he connects her ball of yarn (again, that great symbolism with red yarn) to the little girl he saw playing outside Daedalus's office. Daedalus follows Real's train of yarn to where they are. When Raul utters, "Daedalus Yumeno...", Daedalus's full name, I realized that if we looked at this name, it literally translates as, "Of Daedalus's dream". Daedalus is the great inventor in Greek mythology, and like our Daedalus, lived to create until such a time his envy of competition to his skill caused him to fall. He became the partridge, a bird said to possess a great fear of heights because of his metaphorical and physical fear of falling.

Raul, by the way, just wants more bullets. Daedalus doesn't care, and takes great pleasure in Raul's pain. Raul points his gun at Daedalus and shoots. There's quite a bit of blood.

Out on the streets, humans are banding together to destroy every autorave they meet. Vincent walks the alleyways, oblivious to everything. It's eerie to think that his creations and the images of his creations are killing each other, and in its own way, this was his predetermined plan, though he himself is too wrapped in his own loneliness to notice. The question for God, therefore, would be that if he created out of a need to spare himself loneliness, could he actually survive being alone again? Theological logic would suggest he could, that he could create and uncreate in cycles, but until then, he could just as much hate himself for it.

Real realizes the road out of the same thing -- that Vincent hated himself enough for being the creator he set the world's end in motion, and to make sure it did end with him, a person to end him too. He chose her to kill him. And I think here, she understands that he chose her because he loved her, staring at the hand he ripped out, the same hand that handed her the same gun she'd have to use to destroy him. And I wonder too, if she realizes that part of the reason he must love her so, is because she will, ultimately, destroy him. The mind of the suicidally depressed is a malformed thing.

Reinforcing her will, the Council reminds Real that the truth is struggle, and she seems to accept this.

Raul arrives home. Pino is gone. On the piano bench, he finds a series of pictures she's drawn. Pino, it seems, has finally taken Timothy's advice to heart and learnt to draw her own thoughts. It's a heartbreaking sequence on many levels -- Pin(occhio) is finally a real girl, her Papa has just found the first sign that his raison d'etre is still alive, in the pictures: Pino as a sad girl alone, growing up in his house; Pino and Vincent on a giant flying rabbit; Pino, Vincent and Real holding hands and, the thing that she really wanted, Pino and Papa together again, at the square, beneath the clock tower where everything started. In a move that just about made me cry, Raul smiles his first, actual human being smile.

Pino wanders the square, where a lonely heart-shaped balloon also roams, calling for Papa.

Real prepares her gun as the lift takes her down to the city.

From the moment Vincent first stared into her eyes, her fate was sealed. Real remembers that scene by putting her thumb to her lips in the way that Vince did at their first meeting, and connects that with how he seemed to stare at her in the same way when they met again in Donov's chambers.

Kristeva arrives at Raul's house, and starts at the trail of blood inside. Raul is stepping slowly through the streets towards the square. It's the last thing he ever wants to do.

Daedalus is washing the blood off cloned Real's hands. He says he'll protect her, but it's not her she's worried about getting destroyed...

Raul is still walking towards the square. He's propped up by his daughter's happy words in his mind, telling him how happy she is with him. Pino plays the tune of the clock with toy soldiers as she waits there.

The First Proxy is also walking the streets of Romdeau. Real checks her gun.

Pino will always follow -- implied Raul, since we are hearing this from his memory -- overlaid with a shot of the First Proxy. "Will Papa always stay beside Pino?"

Death, as it has hounded this series, that poor child, claims him first. I write this crying. As you might've known from my previous posts, it is the story of Pino and her Papa I loved best out of the many arcs this story has turned. It is a horrible, horrible way for it to end. Pino plays her father a dirge from the top of the stairs overlooking the square. She still waits for him.

The First Proxy returns to Donov Mayer's corpse. He remembers the time he gave the man his revelation, and the power to lead Romdeau. Real steps up behind him, her gun drawn. She starts to call him Vincent, but ends up calling him Ergo Proxy. It's never really made much sense before, why anyone would name something "Ergo (a) Proxy", but when put in this context, the story is about a chain of command, people acting on other people's behalf, like predetermination. Real is acting on predetermined grounds to kill Ergo Proxy. Ergo, Vincent is the Ergo Proxy because he is a proxy of the personality he suppressed.

Real gets her answers. Yes, Ergo Proxy really did set all this in motion. Yes, he did give power to the Regent. Yes, he does want, very badly, to be killed. But Real refuses to. She sees why it's been rubbed into us that this is an "awakening" and why he wears two pendants, and wants to know a more important truth -- why they both even exist. (Because yes, it's great that God's a suicidal maniac, but there has to be a point to the cycle higher than God.) Out comes a voice from the sky, saying it takes a Real one to foresee one (throwback to Episode 3).

A door opens behind Ergo Proxy, revealing a stairway. Both Ergo Proxy and Real ascend. At the top, sitting on a throne, "(not really) naked under the blue sky", is the real First Proxy who looks like Vince. Actually, he looks like Ergo Proxy sans mask, who has the face of Vincent. The version of Ergo Proxy standing next to Real, as we have known him thus far, does not have Vincent's face, looking instead like the First Proxy we were shown during the quiz show. Ergo Proxy clutches his head in despair as the First Proxy tells him he's on his way out of the labyrinth.

Real, who looks like a beautiful Siamese cat, stares God, on his throne, in the face.

Next: No tanks full of floating Reals, thank goodness, but there is... a deus ex machina! Because they had to end this somehow!

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Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
jbramx2
Aug. 15th, 2006 09:42 pm (UTC)
omigod! That totally broke my heart too! Raul's happy smile! my god, he looked so young and happy! and HE DIES, WTF?! before he meets Pino. That made me tear up too. ToT But yesh, I noticed that too, Pino drew an original pic. Good for her! ;o; Nuuu Pino-chaan! why? WHY IS FATE SO CRUEL!! ;o;
vampyrichamster
Aug. 16th, 2006 05:24 am (UTC)
It's harsh, but, I think the price of Pino's humanity is her loss. And it broke my heart to watch her lose so much, but she's a great character, Pino is.

Raul's happy smile was very sad. But at least, through that, we know that Pino did manage to save him.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )