Questions regarding The Purge and the Demiurge

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Hello!

Long time fan of Aeon Flux, I have recently paired with a younger colleague of mine in attempts to finally decipher some answers to the puzzles, we have two questions perhaps Mr. Chung would be willing to give insight on:

1. Is the Demiurge some kind of extra dimensional or extraterrestrial virus?

2. Is the Purge some kind of interactive dream, similar in concept to the Christopher Nolan film "Inception"?

-Keith and Richard

Phantos, Thursday, 6 March 2014 02:15 (five years ago) Permalink

Hi Keith and Richard,
Thanks for joining the discussion and for your interest.
The simple answer to both questions is -- no.

Of course, if reading them that way somehow helps in your appreciation, then I won't argue. It's not the author's intention, but sometimes the meaning you get is not the one the author intended. That's fine.

On a more general note, I don't get why you are bringing these ideas to bear on these stories.
The Demiurge is a supernatural being. You can compare the spread of religious belief to the spread of a virus if you wish. But are Shiva and Vishnu extra dimensional viruses? If words are to have specific meanings, then -- no.

The Purge is not an interactive dream. The custodians (within the world of AF) are physical, material, cybernetic hardware.

Peter Chung, Thursday, 6 March 2014 18:35 (five years ago) Permalink

Mr. Chung,

Thank you so very much for your reply! To even exchange thoughts on this matter with you means very much to me, and I am grateful to you for making yourself available to regular people like myself and Richard.

As far as the answers you provided to us, I see that we have more work to do! I've spent many years analyzing and studying AF, and I am only now beginning to feel like I have an understanding of what the deeper meanings to the episodes are, much of which I owe to my friend Richard, who's objective eye and attention to detail have revealed things that I never before noticed in the episodes. Now, having some concrete answers from you shows me that I still have a long road ahead of me! It is, however, a labor of love that I would undertake gladly. To achieve any kind of understanding of something that has intrigued and perplexed me for so long is a reward in and of itself. Even if that means I am wrong about my convoluted theories! :)
This is a part of my appreciation for your work, and I endeavor to try and uncover the answers, the author's intention, or the "why" of it.

As to my question about the Demiurge, concerning why I applied such an idea to the story:

One of the theories I was entertaining, (Richard didn't so much agree on this one.) was that the Demiurge is some kind of entity from space or another dimension which functions in a similar way as a virus does to a cell in the human body. In my theory, Earth could be seen as the cell, the universe being the body, and the people inhabiting Earth could be seen as cell functions, organelles, etc.... with the Demiurge being like a virus, which functions to "reprogram" the cell to create copies of itself. I came upon this theory at first through observing the Demiurge's behavior, how it seemed to replicate versions of itself all over Bregna and Monica, IE: the bird, the cat-thing underneath Nadir's bed, Nadir himself after his resurrection, and so on. I saw a parallel between the Demiurge and viral behavior, in my mind at least. I guess I was examining the episode and specifically the Demiurge through a scientific lens rather than a religious one. I don't mean to make the argument that the spread of religion is comparable to the spread of a virus, as that is not a belief that I hold. I think I have made some analytical "leaps of faith", so to speak, without weighing the idea that the author's intention was to have the Demiurge actually be a supernatural being, not some kind of alien or entity which is assuming the guise of a demigod, for whatever reason.

Going forward, I think I have a better understanding of the episode than before.

As far as the Purge:

My theories pertaining to the Purge was that Aeon is in a dream, perhaps artificially induced or made interactive with some kind of neural interface, and that the dream is Trevor's, with Aeon attempting to infiltrate his subconsciousness. Aeon's interaction with Breen boy at the Food Bank, where she retorts: "-You- do not exist." was particularly intriguing to me.
I return to the drawing board on this one, armed with the knowledge your answer has given me! I just am so perplexed at the very end of the episode, which the "dirty carbuncle" leaps out of the head of Trevor's custodian. If there is ANY insight you would impart to us to gain understanding of what is going on there, I would be eternally grateful! I believed I was close to "cracking the code" so to speak, with my "Purge-as-a-dream" theory, but I can retire that line of thought and proceed with fresh eyes.

I apologize for going on at length here, I have quite a bit on my mind regarding the world of Aeon Flux. I do so hope that you see my endeavors in the spirit in which they are undertaken, which is that of utmost respect and admiration for you work. At the expense of being repetitive, Richard and I are very grateful for your work, your contribution to art, and for your time and consideration of our thoughts.

That being said, if I may be so bold as to ask another question, specifically on Richard's behalf:
Is there a specific meaning to the symbol of Bregna? Specifically, it is the insignia on the shoulders of Trevor's uniform in the Demiurge, a kind of broken circle with legs. It seems distinguished from the insignia worn by lower-ranking men in Trevor's military, such as Rubio.

Thank you again for your time and insight,

Keith and Richard

Phantos, Thursday, 6 March 2014 23:00 (five years ago) Permalink

http://www.uiowa.edu/~c08g001d/Sontag_AgainstInterp.pdf

Keith and Richard,
Your comments exemplify a tendency that seems to me a learned response rather than a spontaneous one.
In relation to reading the meaning of a work of fiction, I've always disliked the mention of interpretive "theories".
An artist almost never wishes his audience to come up with the correct theory for understanding the work.

A film is understood by an act of "reading". "Theory" is not the right word, as a theory is, by definition, a proposal subject to proof.

There are general filmmaking theories, just as there are theories guiding the creative processes of music, poetry, dance, painting, etc.
But those exist as a set of principles to allow the artist (and audience) to judge the execution of the work. Those theories govern the application of technique within a given medium.
I wonder if that is the source of confusion for some viewers.

I recently posted some thoughts to address questions similar to the ones you're asking.
http://www.pelleas.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=807&sid=05118b8a78573fdde9d1104f828c383c

Peter Chung, Tuesday, 11 March 2014 08:46 (five years ago) Permalink


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