"Let's look at the facts, shall we?" The Editor snaps his fingers. "Ah, hidden behind a genetic graft, but that's still you: Eva San Julienne, last surviving member of the Freedom Fifteen! Self-declared anarchist, is that right?" She pulls on him out of nowhere, voice completely different, real and hard and cold, Sophia with a gun, on a mission to find out what's gone wrong with God: "Who controls Satellite Five?" The Editor, looking surprised, slowly raises his hands...and then bursts into laughter: "There's the truth!" Eva (ask Milton) tells him that the "Freedom Foundation" has been monitoring the Satellite's transmissions, and has "absolute proof" the facts are being manipulated: "You are lying to the people." The Editor loves it: "Say it again!" Eva tells him that the system is corrupt, and moves in on him: "Who do you represent?" He says he's just a "humble slave" who answers to the "Editor-In-Chief." Eva asks who, and where, this EIC is, and the Editor tips his hand: "He's overseeing everything. Literally everything." Eva narrows her eyes, and the Editor begs pardon, but he's "going to have to refer this upwards." He snaps his fingers, the lion roars, Eva points her gun at the demiurge, and actually sounds scared: "What is that?" And the Editor smiles. "Your boss. This has always been your boss. Since the day you were born." Well, what would you do? She fires on it, and it bears down, and Eva screams.
Just because the search for information can go rotty on you doesn't mean you shouldn't try it. We wouldn't be here if apples weren't mighty tasty, and anyhow, death is preferable to slavery, even unwitting slavery; I can't stand to see anyone caged. We move, from Eva to Adam, who's also on a path to information he'd be happier without. He spends a few seconds looking around at Earth, on the observation deck, before grabbing the first computer he sees. Placing his hand on its screen, he asks for access. It comes to life. "I can learn anything," Adam says, breathlessly. He looks around sneakily, making sure nobody's watching. Which is weird, because nobody would care, but he's suspicious by nature. That's what comes from living in the Vault. "Let's try, uh...computers. From the 21st Century to the present date, give me the history of the microprocessor." The computer streams in the info, and Adam is amazed. To kind of an oh-face degree.
Cathica leads the Doctor and Rose into the ritual room: "Look, they only give us twenty minutes maintenance. Can't you give it a rest?" The Doctor's like, "You've never been to another floor? Not even one floor down?" The Doctor moves freely in four dimensions. Cathica lives in two. It's creepy to him. And creepy, intransitively, but this is a parable, after all. The Doctor sits down in the center chair, and Rose leans on the back of it, easily and comfortably. What the hell do they need Adam for, anyhow. Cathica says that she went to Floor 16, Medical, when she first arrived -- that's where you get yourself trepanned to start with, and by the way, why does spellcheck know "trepanned"? Bill Gates is so fuckin' weird -- and then came straight to Floor 139: "Satellite Five -- you work, eat, and sleep on the same floor. That's it, that's all." Because if everybody stays in their little cells, nothing changes -- but also cognitively, like, if you don't link up the information and use what you know, little synapses sparking, your brain stays a prison. "You're not Management, are you," Cathica finally breathes. The Doctor smiles, and congratulates her eventual cleverness about the obvious, and Cathica, after a short pause: "...Whatever it is, don't involve me. I don't know anything." And again, that line in the sand between real information and the kind of information she deals. "Don't you even ask?" says the Doctor, and Cathica can't imagine why she would do that. The Doctor: "You're a journalist! Why's all the crew human? There's no aliens on board. Why?" She puts him off and puts him off: "...No real reason, they're not banned or anything...." And he puts the damage on just a bit: "Then...where are they?" Cathica gets very Shiz U. about this whole "immigration's tightened up" because of "all the threats" about this and that, "I don't know, the usual stuff," the price of "space warp," et cetera. Because if humanity stays in its little cell, hearing about itself from itself, with no separate division for the fourth estate, nothing changes -- so no interaction with aliens: "Oh, and the government on Traffic Five's collapsed, so that lot stopped coming, you see. Just, lots of little reasons, that's all." Which, as the Doctor points out, generally constellate a big scary fact or two. Cathica notes that Satellite Five would know whether there were any huge conspiracies: "We see everything." And the Doctor, outside the cell: "I can see better. This society's the wrong shape. Even the technology." Cathica gets defensive, and he says that it's backward, with the holes in the heads, and that they should've "chucked this out years ago," and Rose Excellent Questions him something fierce. The Doctor: "It's not just this space station, it's the whole attitude. It's the way people think. The Great And Bountiful (Fourth!) Human Empire's stunted. Something's holding it back...Trust me," he says, to Cathica's protests, and then gets specific on her ass: "Humanity's been set back about ninety years. When did Satellite Five start broadcasting?" Bingo: "Ninety-one years ago." He nods, Cathica looks away, and gets all synapsy with herself.
Commercial. Now's a good time to apologize for another spot in "Aliens Of London" where I Cathica'd when I should have Suki'd, w/r/t the closed-caps. Before freakin' Harriet calls me again: the doctor in high heels I liked so much, that released the pig fauxlien, was Dr. Sato, played by Naoko Mori, whom I thought I recognized. But then when the caps called her Dr. Ru, I thought that meant I was an American kind of racist. Even though it was actually her voice I recognized, and not the fact of her being Asian. So I dropped the whole thing, when in fact, yes, it's the magnificent Titicaca herself, and the character will be on an upcoming BBC show called Torchwood that you just might be interested in watching, if you're into anagrams. Oh, and apparently, in some edit of this episode, Adam wanted this information and the wealth it could represent because his father was sick, but I imagine they left that out because it diluted the central themes and also made the Doctor seem like a nutsack. On the other hand, it would make last week's "in league with assholes" issue a bit easier to deal with. On balance, I like that it's gone.