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Severance (Apple)


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Finally caught up with this, and have to say this was awesome, despite the finale- I hate episodes structured like this

Spoiler

Character has something obvious to do immediately, doesn't just because the writers want to artificially prolong the tension and the suspense)

Apart from Helly, any of characters could have at least written down everything they know, even if telling someone else was hard, though not impossible.

That said, it overall was a great show.

I also figured out Helly was an Eagan because it would make no sense for them to not just fire her for the problem she caused.

I'm also very curious about Gemma/Mr. Casey's role in all this.

I'm also fascinated by the implications of the process- while ending the program is the only reasonable thing to do, wouldn't that also lead to the innies death, so it would also be murder?

Also, in a show with Adam Scott, Patricia Arquette, John Turturro and Christopher Walken, Britt Lower just might be the MVP. Fantastic work, specially because her "outie" version is the most different and she has the biggest emotional arc, specially in the earlier episodes

Looking forward to season 2 however, since this was a great setup.

 

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2 minutes ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

Finally caught up with this, and have to say this was awesome, despite the finale- I hate episodes structured like this

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Character has something obvious to do immediately, doesn't just because the writers want to artificially prolong the tension and the suspense)

Apart from Helly, any of characters could have at least written down everything they know, even if telling someone else was hard, though not impossible.

That said, it overall was a great show.

I also figured out Helly was an Eagan because it would make no sense for them to not just fire her for the problem she caused.

I'm also very curious about Gemma/Mr. Casey's role in all this.

I'm also fascinated by the implications of the process- while ending the program is the only reasonable thing to do, wouldn't that also lead to the innies death, so it would also be murder?

Also, in a show with Adam Scott, Patricia Arquette, John Turturro and Christopher Walken, Britt Lower just might be the MVP. Fantastic work, specially because her "outie" version is the most different and she has the biggest emotional arc, specially in the earlier episodes

Looking forward to season 2 however, since this was a great setup.

 

I wonder if season 2 will start full tilt or go with the slow burn that was so effective in season 1?  

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 6/17/2022 at 3:58 AM, Winterfell is Burning said:

 

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I'm also fascinated by the implications of the process- while ending the program is the only reasonable thing to do, wouldn't that also lead to the innies death, so it would also be murder?

Here’s a comparison I never thought I’d make; I’m reminded of Iron Fist Season 2, in which a character with dissociative personality disorder has to learn to accommodate her two personas and try to balance both their needs. I think that would be the humane option; give them the ability to switch and essentially have a time share on the body (assuming PD’s attempt at remerging isn’t a goer).

Really loved this season, and such a tense finale. 

Spoiler

All the more impressive that the tension stems for a fairly mundane set of circumstances; ultimately they just need to talk to someone and tell them how they feel. The outies would’ve had a largely unremarkable time in the same period.

I was hoping this had aired last year and the second season was imminent, sadly not the case. Also, @Heartofice I feel for you, I’ve done that before and not known I was watching a finale and it completely unbalances your perception of an episode. Apple TV does need a “1 of X” episode display. On the other hand, I’ve hugely appreciated that the still image they use for the next episode never spoils anything. Noticed that with For All Mankind as well.

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On 4/12/2022 at 5:55 PM, Heartofice said:

ARGH. There are only 9 episodes!? 

Apple TV+ has a really crappy interface and its very hard to see how many episodes are in each season. So I finished episode 9 last night and literally couldn't wait to see the 10th and final episode (because 10 is a good number of episodes in a season.. who does 9!?)

But no, that was it. 

They left us at that point.

 

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I mean I loved that last episode, but I really feel the show could have been wrapped up in one more outing. Is there going to be enough material for an entirely new season? Will they just spoil it all by dragging it all out again. It better not be a case of 'oh this season they get thrown back into severance and forget everything and have to start all over again'
 

 

I've only just recently watched it but fell for this as well. I was expecting there to only be 8 episodes as I got into the second half of the season so was pleasantly surprised at the 9th but assumed that meant there were 10...

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I found the Innies trying to figure out what was reality to be the most entertaining part, and using the company manual like a Bible.  They each had they're own theories and fears, and it was like the history of humanity spanning various metaphysical approaches to finding meaning and truth.  And that struck me as the most true thing about the premise.  Here are the rules, and there are consequences if you don't follow them, and we're telling you your suffering is your own fault.  But the company loves you, right?  Or it's all an experiment.  Or the company's purpose is unknowable.  Or we can use trial and error to objective, scientifically find out what it's all about.  Or no, we can't and if we try we'll be punished.  Or there is no meaning and yada yada yada choose between existentialism or nihilism.

Probably the most fair comparison is to the Good Place, rather than the Matrix, but both are valid.

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  • 2 weeks later...
56 minutes ago, kairparavel said:

I binged this while off sick earlier this week. Loved it. During the last episode I yelled at the TV when he slipped up!

But he didn’t “slip up”.  He had no idea Kobel went by a different name on the outside.

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Binged it today.  Fucking love it. 

My questions:

1. Why is the tech 80's mostly but yet has cell phones and such?  Like all the stuff at the office has the 80's a/v club look.  Cobel drives a Yugo, Mark drives a K Car.  Constant use of cassette tapes and vhs recordings. Is this city of Kier.... in a bizarre time bubble? 

2. Did the picture in Cobel's......... shrine not look like Paul Rudd? 

3. The MDE was amazing.  Sad it was cancelled.

Edited by Slurktan
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  • 5 weeks later...

I've binged 8 episodes in 3 days.

First of all, Patricia Arquette is fantastic in this.

Spoiler

The cold menace, and then "Selvig's" fake, creepy sweetness.... Oh, and I knew she must be far older than she looks, ever since she mentioned Clark Gable as if he was still a thing. So I suppose this experiment is about finding a drug for eternal life or something like that?

And what's with all the retro tech, furniture etc.?

Also, I believe Helly is a journalist or some kind of investigator.

I suspect Mark's wife will die, as the show is shipping him so hard with Helly.

Why is Harmony (har, har) so particularly focused on Mark?

 

I love the suspense, the weird humor in between, the cinematography (colors, framing etc) and the score.

I hope my favorite, Irving, will be alright.

LET'S BURN THIS PLACE DOWN!

On to the finale today or tomorrow, then...

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Those bloody bastards. And I don't mean

Spoiler

Lumen,

I mean the showrunners.

I don't like these artificial delay when

Spoiler

our heroes know they have to tell someone immediately, and then find 100 reasons not to. OK, that was mainly Mark, but still.

Was Helly's supposedly dead father alive or a hologram or did I miss something?

Also... poor Irving.

So... break room for everyone?

Btw, I love how a particularly badly written self-help book made them see the light!

Hmmm... I wonder if Gemma left voluntarily because she wasn't happy even thogh Mark was? But that would be extremely cruel. So, maybe they kidnapped her, but why? What was so special about her? Or is it Mark again? At least Cobel sees something in him she doesn't in others.

Is the Mark/ Gemma thing her little side project? Or is Mark The Chosen One to bring about a New Testament (largely influenced by Rickon's trite wisdom) to Kier's OT?

And what are the goats for, or are they just a symbol?

 

Edited by Mindwalker
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Couple of things:

The state abbreviation on Irving’s mail was “Kier, PE.”  Additionally… the embosed image in the center of Irving’s license plate is of “Kier Eagan”.

I can’t wait for the next season.

Edited by Ser Scot A Ellison
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Neither can I!

Yes, it's apparently an alternate reality, probably diverging when Kier did something significant... Which would also explain why some of the tech looks very retro.

So...

Spoiler
  • Outie Irv has been investigating Lumen. Something to do with his father? Innie Irv has used some military expressions and also medical ones (full toxic screening or sth like that). He also always stood up when a superior entered the room etc. Also, his dog is called Radar - is Irv military/ military medic?
  • He tried to stay awake and pass his Innie subconscious an image of the elevator shaft to the "place of no return" - where probably Ms Casey, the waffle party sex slaves, maybe Irving's father are?
  • Do the Innies' jobs have a deeper meaning, or are they just a device to keep them busy/ experiment on them?
  • I assume enslaving everyone is Lumen's main objective or is it ultimately about something like cloning, eternal life etc?
  • Why is Cobel so interested in reintegration? Is Charlotte her mother?
  • What is Helly's dad's "Revolving"?
  • Are Devon's weird friends just very weird, or are they severed, maybe unbeknonst to them?
  • Will Mark, Helly, Irv get their minds wiped after their return?
  • plus about 1000 more questions...

 

Edited by Mindwalker
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2 hours ago, Mindwalker said:

Neither can I!

Yes, it's apparently an alternate reality, probably diverging when Kier did something significant... Which would also explain why some of the tech looks very retro.

So...

  Hide contents
  • Outie Irv has been investigating Lumen. Something to do with his father? Innie Irv has used some military expressions and also medical ones (full toxic screening or sth like that). He also always stood up when a superior entered the room etc. Also, his dog is called Radar - is Irv military/ military medic?
  • He tried to stay awake and pass his Innie subconscious an image of the elevator shaft to the "place of no return" - where probably Ms Casey, the waffle party sex slaves, maybe Irving's father are?
  • Do the Innies' jobs have a deeper meaning, or are they just a device to keep them busy/ experiment on them?
  • I assume enslaving everyone is Lumen's main objective or is it ultimately about something like cloning, eternal life etc?
  • Why is Cobel so interested in reintegration? Is Charlotte her mother?
  • What is Helly's dad's "Revolving"?
  • Are Devon's weird friends just very weird, or are they severed, maybe unbeknonst to them?
  • Will Mark, Helly, Irv get their minds wiped after their return?
  • plus about 1000 more questions...

 

er... ok this made me realise I really need to rewatch that season as none of that occurred to me at all.

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3 hours ago, Mindwalker said:
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  • Do the Innies' jobs have a deeper meaning, or are they just a device to keep them busy/ experiment on them?
  • I assume enslaving everyone is Lumen's main objective or is it ultimately about something like cloning, eternal life etc?

 

Spoiler

What's that old saying, something about if you can't find the product, you are the product?  So that was my guess somewhat early on, that the workers are the product, either in collecting psychological/neurological data, or subjects in those sort of experiments (seems that the severance project is an experiment in and of itself already).

I'd guess severance is just the usual sort of capitalistic product, making workers with little to no freedom to quit, plus the rest of the benefits (can't steal trade secrets, etc.), along with other side applications as well, as we see with the pregnant woman who seemingly has been severed as well.

 

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*unbeknownst

 

1 hour ago, Heartofice said:

er... ok this made me realise I really need to rewatch that season as none of that occurred to me at all.

Well, if you read my previous post, I'm probably totally off with most of this!

That said,

Spoiler

two of the switches in that control room were "Branch Transfer" and "Clean Slate". The latter making me think "mind wipe," plus without a reset, the show would be over soon...

As for "Branch Transfer", I was thinking maybe Irv and Burt used to work together, got too close, then - Clean Slate (in that basement?) and - for one of them - Branch Transfer. Pre-wipe Innie Irv (this is getting complicated) could have "sent" his outie the image. Maybe sleep, dreams or other altered states of consciousness blur the boundaries between the severed personas. Lumen knows this, hence the no-sleep rule. And Innie Irv began to see the black color when he dozed off.

For all we know, they all might have been mind-wiped several times, e.g. because the rebelled.

 

I also suspect the "wellness" sessions were some from of re-programming/ check-up on how good the severance is working. "Enjoy them all equally!" For Irv and his dozing, and Mark whose outie seemed to get suspicious (turning up at Petey's funeral etc).

Cobel's special interest in Mark and her keeping tabs on his outie seem to be her own initiative. She also made sure that his presumably deceased wife's candle was burning during his session, potentially subconsciously reminding him of his outie persona. Maybe he ist just "special" to her because reintegration is more likely, what with his ex-wife's innie around. (Otoh, she doesn't show the same obsession with Irv/ Burt, so maybe my previous assumption is wrong.)

And sheleft Rickon's book in the conference room on purpose. They have cameras everywhere, why let them keep it?


I'm probably overthinking this. I mean, the symbolism alone makes me dizzy. (Eggs, baby goats - also called kids...)


I'm curious about outtie Dylan. Other than the fact he has a kid or three, we still know nothing about him.

 

50 minutes ago, .H. said:
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What's that old saying, something about if you can't find the product, you are the product?  So that was my guess somewhat early on, that the workers are the product, either in collecting psychological/neurological data, or subjects in those sort of experiments (seems that the severance project is an experiment in and of itself already).

I'd guess severance is just the usual sort of capitalistic product, making workers with little to no freedom to quit, plus the rest of the benefits (can't steal trade secrets, etc.), along with other side applications as well, as we see with the pregnant woman who seemingly has been severed as well.

 

 

Spoiler

True. And sorting the numbers into different bins might be them learning to compartmentalize their feelings/ identity aspects/ whatever. The eggs and the pregnant woman point to attempts at breeding that slave race (maybe chipping the babies right after birth).

FWIW, Devon and Rickon have goat figurines in their house...

Can we mark this as a spoiler thread and discuss it out in the open?

Edited by Mindwalker
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4 hours ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

The tech at Lumen is very retro because they don't want innies online, I assume.

 

 

Oh, sure, that explains their not having access to the internet etc. But the graphics looked very Nineties, too. (Kier on that cliff.)

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11 hours ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

The tech at Lumen is very retro because they don't want innies online, I assume.

 

 

So why is the "tech" outside Lumen also have stuff that is retro?  I'm speaking of the cars.

I think Irving originally got severed for military purposes. Then the innie got put down in the testing area and has been modified to be an office drone but stuff is bleeding through hence the paintings of the elevator going down to the testing area.

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