Musingsgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Aeon Flux : One Thread
Hello! Pythagoras here....
I've been a fan of Aeon Flux since '94.
I've just come across your site and I love the discussions. It's amazing how such huge moral, ethical and political questions that it raises. The pure democracy and honor of Monica and the terror of Bregna is a favorite piece of the Aeon universe.
Let me share some of my theories on the Aeon Flux universe...
I've been reading the posts on "Thanatophobia"....
I think that Monica is a pure democracy......that explains the comment that "Monica has no rulers.....that's why Goodchild hates them. There's no head of state to negotiate with."
Trevor is completely insane.....a menace to the human race....but brilliant (perhaps a reason why we shouldn't let scientists be dictators)....
He is a control freak and the fact that Monica and it's people resist his will drives him crazy. The fact that the Monicans have a different culture is enough for him to hate them.
Also I would argue against the claim that Monica is not a true state. You'll remember in "War" the Monicans are invading Bregna (and then vise versa). Monica has a strong military. And in "Isthmus Crypticus" Una is a college student in Monica. Monica has an educational system and a military.
And Aeon is definatly a Monican......remember those several times she says, "I'm commandeering *whatever* under Monican enforcer aegis.....this is an authorized police action..." Aeon is a member of the Military and/or covert division.
When Aeon is called "a Monican traitor".....that's because Bregna doesn't recognize the Monican nation......so if there is no other nation on Earth but Bregna....you must be a traitor to Bregna. ".......you have dis-entried dis-recognized space......."
The fact that Trevor is outraged by Cybil's request for Monican citizenship is two fold. One, he's either fooled himself or really believes that the Breens have it all or, two, that her request is a stab at his ego......he stand the fact that he really is hated.
Remember in "Rieazure" (spelling) with the "bliss" pills.......Trevor forces the bliss pellet down the guy's throat because he told the truth.......that Aeon told him that she hated Trevor.
I think Trevor has a VERY low self esteem. He has a serious flaw.....in that he responds to this self loathing by hurting other people and by his need to draw all power and control to himself. (can you tell I'm a psych major? *wink*)
I really would love to talk more about Aeon.......give me an email when you get the time.
"Forever in Flux"
-- Pythagoras (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 22, 1998
You favor Monica don't you?
I used to as well, until I realized that one of the major themes of the show is the ultimately unanswered question: which is better, Monican philosophy or Breen philosophy?
Bregna is basically communist. Everyone is equal and protected, but no one can rise above mediocrity.
Monica is closer to an anarchy than a democracy. Society is free, yet more chaotic and dangerous.
-- Frostbite (email@example.com), December 23, 1998.
In the end......I do favor Monica.
Communism.....pure communism is the most equal form of society. The Borg from Trek are pure communism.
However.......communism can never work in a large human society.....only in very small groups of people.
I believe that free will is precious and in the intrinsic value of each person. I am terrified at the idea of a crushed society.... that the idea of torture is commonplace and that Rights exist for only one person. Government must NOT be sovereign over the people....the people MUST be sovereign over their government.
Otherwise society is stiffled and evolution and free thought is destroyed.
I despise the idea of a Trevor Goodchild.....that a person has the audasity to assume that he is better then everyone else....that leads to the assumption that you have more value.....and then leads to you killing people....your own species....because you fail to see the value in your brothers and sisters. That's what Hitler thought.
-Councilor Plutar Circavus, Monican Republic- (formerly Pythagoras)
-- Plutar Circavus (formerly Pythagoras) (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 23, 1998.
Besides......Bregna is not communistic...... it is a totalitarian dictatorship..... one person is lord and has the power to control every aspect of your life.
-- Plutar Circavus (email@example.com), December 23, 1998.
A comunist society can also be a dictatorship.
To me, Bregna represents the epitome of communism. It sounds really good in theory, but in the real world it just doesn't work.
-- Frostbite (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 25, 1998.
Somehow, I never assumed that Bregna was really communist. Maybe at the lower levels of society. But even Onan and Sybil, probably rather common Breen citizens, seem to be set up rather well in that apartment of theirs. Perhaps there are varying degrees of social strata, or maybe a caste system based on a family's past (as in India) or maybe a system based on genetic purity or on usefulness... note that it seems Sybil hadn't been conscripted before she tried to escape, it seemed to be her first time, or at least something she didn't do very often. Perhaps these jobs are reserved for the lower classes.
-- Mat Rebholz (email@example.com), December 25, 1998.
The dichotomy between Monican and Breen forms of government has always seemed to me to be one not of "democracy vs. communism (or totalitarian socialism, what have you)" but alertness versus sedation. Monican citizens, since they are the makers of their own destiny, must constantly re-evaluate their system and judge for themselves what is right or wrong. Bregna, however, is a place where decisions are made for you by Chairman Goodchild. A society in anarchy requires total attention to your judgments; if you take anything for granted, anarchy is lost.
A big point that could be made here is that true democracy requires an anti-idealism similar to that displayed by Aeon. If we allow ourselves to be lulled by idealistic, romantic politicians, we are one step closer to eating cabbage in a booth, or having mass "enlightenment" thrust upon us.
just a thought...
-- Synaesthesia (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 01, 1999.
I do and forever shall stick with the idea that Monica is no better than Bregna. Not that Bregna is superior, it's just that both systems have their good and bad points. To me it was always a main theme in the show: who is more dangerous Trevor, in his idealistic socialism, or Aeon from her cynical "Every man for himself" society.
We only get a breif glimpse of Monica in The Demiurge, and what do we see? Aeon being attacked in the streets. Noe it's true that she most likely lives in a bad part of town, but I have a hard time believing there are places that dangerous in Bregna. So you see, Monica does not suppress it's people, but it also does not protect them nearly as much. There is a police system in Monica, the Monican Enforcer Aegis (sp?) but it's mainly comprised of volunteer mercenaries like Aeon. Not really the type of people you want protecting you.
-- Frostbite (email@example.com), January 01, 1999.
We've also seen Monica in "Ismus Cripticus" (spelling). Una is a college student. She has a boyfriend....he listens to a pop band. The soldiery is respectful to it's citizens. That's a world that I would want to live in.....if I had the choice between Bregna and Monica. In the end...it's up to each viewer to decide which is better. Do you like order or chaos. Do you like to do what you want, or be told to do. Do you want to remain as you are or evolve. Some might say that forced evolotion on the masses is good for the race. Some would say that spiritualism and free will and thought are better for humanity. You deciede. That's what's so great about Aeon Flux. It lays it all out for you....and let's you decide. No propaganda saying that democracy is better then totalitarianism. Who knows....perhaps a dictator is better for society. ;-) Makes ya think.
-- Plutar Circavus (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 02, 1999.
Una is a Breen University student in Bregna!
-- Philip Mills (email@example.com), January 02, 1999.
Just because the children are happy and the gaurd doesn't hurt the kid doesn't mean it's Monica. We've never seen Breen soldiers express contempt for the people, and the children in Thanatophobia were happy. Until that one kid got his arms sliced off. But that was really symbolism paralleling Sybal's situation.
In German class a while back my teacher taught us something that reminded me of this ep. Back when Eastern Germany was a communist society, they built the Berlin wall to "keep Western German out and protect their people." Of course, in reality it was buuilt to keep Eastern Germans in. Some Easterners went to extreme measures to cross the wall into Western Germany.
Now, this is pretty common knowledge, but my teacher told us soemthing I never knew. The suicide rates of escapees from the East were very high. All their life they has lived in a country where they were garanteed a job and a place to live. For the first time ever, if they didn't find work, they didn't eat. The majority of them couldn't hack it.
It's like Onan says at the end "It's not even worth it." (It's pretty much assumed he coudn't hack it either.)
-- Frostbite (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 02, 1999.
Ya know, we really don't know what the Monican government is actually like. All we know is that there are no heads of state to negotiate with. We don't know much about Bregna either, except that they had presidential elections. For some reason, this show seems to have taken place after some political or economic disaster, which left both city-states with only enough of a government to slide by. (They explained this disaster in the Herodotus File as the Beronican split)
It's like when the Roman Empire fell, and whoever was the richest guy in the area became king or lord of the district. It was a sad excuse for a government and one of the main causes of the Dark Ages. I believe Bregna desperatley tried to scrape together an election (which turned out badly) while Monica remains currently, if only temporarily in the state of anarchy it was left with after the split.
Of course, that's all just speculation.
-- Frostbite (email@example.com), January 02, 1999.
I would argue that it IS Monica. The buildings are purple, as aposed to Breen yello, and are freeflowing, as aposed to the cold hard Breen design.
-- Plutar Circavus (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 04, 1999.
Una's appartment is in Bregna because they don't have to cross the border to get to the Isthmus Crypticus chamber.
-- Philip Mills (email@example.com), January 09, 1999.
:-| Eh heh heh. However...
Una is regularly conscripted by the Monicans, and Narik is aware of this, i.e. it's no great secret.
So... I (at least) conclude that Una is Monican, but that it's really difficult to tell the difference between some aspects of Monica and Bregna - they're not as different as you'd think.
-- Philip Mills (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 1999.
That's a really good point about the border... I always thought that the architecture around Una's apartment looked kind of half-way. It's clearly in the Monican style, but it has the usual Breen colors. You've got a high degree of law and order, yet Una gets conscripted by the Monicans regularly. On the other hand, no one except Aeon wears the traditional Monican shiny black leather. And Narik does refer to her as a 'really weird girl' - that sounds like a Breen opinion.
Arrrghh! This question is so tough that I suspect the creators left this intentionally ambivalent. Perhaps there's some kind of DMZ between Bregna and Monica somewhere? Or how about a section on the opposite side of the wall from Bregna, yet trying hard to emulate Breen traditions? Sort of a Little Bregnatown in Monica? Being the freedom loving anarchistic dopes that they are, the Monicans probably would have ethical problems with just trashing the place. Aeon always struck me as a live and let live type of gal...
-- Charlie Princeton (email@example.com), January 09, 1999.
Oh, are we debating where Una lives? Oh, ok, here I go then.
Una lives in Monica. Its quite obvious if you look at it.
Una is a student. In Bregna? Not likely. Bregna seems very akin to the Coalition States (If you've never played the Rifts RPG, nevermind that.) The point is, the people are kept uneducated and ignorant, which keeps them under control.
Secondly, if Una is getting an education in Bregna, she is associating with a "Monican Traitor", perhaps the most famous traitor of all, Aeon Flux. It is highly unlikely that she would be able to do this without Trevor's knowledge, after all, Narric knew, and certainly Trevor would get himself involved with her life is she was a Breen. She would probably be executed for high treason.
Third, Una says the documents are in "upper high scolatey middle breen. Hmm, somebody didn't want someone to read this." (or something to that effect, I can't remember it right now) Who would think a breen language would be a an effective encryption method. A monican, of course. If Una is a breen, why would she describe one of the languages of her countries like that?
"Your services are being comandeering under Monican Enforcer Egis..." Uh, if Una is a Breen, why would Monican Egis have any jurisdiction over her? It would be like me enforcing United States Law on England, Canada, or New Zeland (I picked those countries because many of the international posters come from there.) Think about it. If I came into your country as a law Enforcement Officer from mine, what power would I have. None. So why would Una be conscripted if Monica has no power in Bregna?
There are about 500 more obvious things that can prove or disprove Una is a monican. I just thought I'd throw out a few on my mind.
-- ChaosKnight (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 1999.
I agree with the the language point, but I always just thought that she and Aeon were friends and that she was just joking. After all, she had done the same to Onan's libido.
I also seem to remember the soldier that helps Una with the bratty kids having this Breen-like outfit on.... I think. Damn! Time to go back to the video for officiation.....
Oh yeah, and this DMZ Charlie P. mentioned earlier might be the heavily guarded area seen in "Last Time for Everything". It'd be a DMZ by default only because I don't think any Monicans would want to live too close to those towers.
-- oopsmaster (email@example.com), January 10, 1999.
Una: Monican or Breen?
I would have to go with Monican. Haven't seen "Isthmus Crypticus" in a while, but a surefire way to tell would be to check out the "enforcer" who tosses the crossbow kid outside the appartment when the bird hits the window. As I recall, he looked pretty Monican, but did have a rather Breen analness and conduct (he salutes or sumpin)
Hey there Charlie!
-- Owen Black (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 13, 1999.