Which leads into the other thing -- and settle in because it's a biggie, with its fingerprints all over this episode, and the entire show, which is why I'm doing it upfront even though doing that invariably earns me even more hatemail than getting the fanfic people all riled up -- which is the purpose of Matrix metaphors to begin with. And I've thought about going here but second-guessed, which I should know by now means I'm going to end up taking too long for having not built it in advance, so whatever, page forward until I shut up.
Before this job, before I even knew television was okay, I did the kind of drastic overthinking you regularly see on display here, but silently. And on comic books. (You were warned.) I make knowing references to comics but I don't ever really talk about how important they were to me growing up, because that's not really how I see myself now so I don't think about it a lot. But three writers in particular -- Gaiman's Sandman, Milligan's Shade and Enigma, and Morrison's Invisibles -- left the same mark on me that they've left on anybody you've ever met that gets all woggle-eyed if they talk about them. Which is why we don't.
Before The Matrix, before Dark City or eXistenZ or any of the other ones I glibly noted last week (although around the same time as Snow Crash, speaking of things that saved my literal life) there was this: These three writers who brought the Matrix metaphor to life. (The Invisibles, which is the most important comic book ever written in my opinion, was openly a huge inspiration for those movies... And come to think of it, suffered exactly the same way for the same reasons and along basically the same timeline as BSG's overall arc, which is a discussion for another time).
In every case, you've got somebody who for whatever reason has control over the mutable world -- like Neo, like Tamara -- which is itself a recapitulation of the particular Hero's Journey iteration that goes into wizards and shamanism: Guy (or Gal) goes with the Guide and has all the Quests and everything, and eventually learns the Language of the Birds, which is just code for rewriting the code.