Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Forever People 10: It Meets My Every Attempt to Regain the Initiative!

"There's nothing in the world so demoralizing as money." – Sophocles

With Billion-dollar Bates, Kirby showed us his idea of the "Super-rich"…people who can (and do) buy anything. With The Scavengers, we are shown Kirby’s idea of the "Super-sellers" who will supply billionaires with those items, inventions, or armies that they seek to purchase.

In the introductory sequence of this issue, we quickly move from a futuristic "pollution-free engine" hijacking at high-speed, to a modest office where simple plans are devised to swipe an ancient Egyptian Pyramid. This shows us that the Scavengers are willing and able to steal both our past and our future. Having received reports of strange happenings in Metropolis, a Scavenger agent has obtained video of The Forever People and their version of a Follower (an super-powerful, organic, soulless shell that Deadman will enter in answer to his body-less predicament.) The Scavenger Director, an egg-shaped and wrinkled blob of a man with a hook in place of his right hand, orders the agent to grab the Follower, suspecting it has something to do with the late Boston Brand.

We then shift to The Forever People’s own attempt at gaining money: Beautiful Dreamer has got work as a swimsuit model and Big Bear has become a chauffeur. As they both want "to be present for the ritual" of grafting Deadman’s soul to the Follower, they decide to take time off. This is an obvious counterpoint to the lengths the Scavengers will go to for their money.

The Follower is stolen and after being tested by The Director, he realizes that the creature is meant to house "something," so he orders it destroyed. Deadman is able to take hold of the Follower, and violence ensues when he realizes the Director is (probably) the man who killed him. A gauntlet of symbolistic violence is directed at Deadman and the Forever People in the form of a Freeze-Rifle (representing both the cold and calculated technological extremes the Scavengers go to, and the cold embrace of Death which Deadman has tried to reject) and in a mechanical Circus, specifically the Mechan-Apes who attack Vykin, Big Bear, and Serifan (the computerised creatures literally represent a Primitive Technology that is used to destroy Gods. Also, Deadman was killed at a Circus, so it must have seemed appropriate.)

After defeating the Scavengers, Deadman finds out that the Director (probably) isn’t the guy who killed him, but now that he has a permanent physical body, he’ll be able to eventually find out who did. The Follower is, apparently, the answer.

And it is in The Follower that I find the answer to Infinity Man. In the same way Boston Brand’s consciousness can enter the Follower, The Forever People’s combined consciousness can enter Infinity Man. As I’ve pointed out in previous postings, The Forever People experience what Infinity Man experiences. It’s true that their transformative "ritual" involves Mother Box sending "out the signal to the farthest reaches of infinity," suggesting that Infinity Man is in a far-away place, and he just switches spots with the teens. But infinity doesn’t describe a space…it describes everything. In fact, as the Follower "can be grown from anything organic…and re-shaped atomically," the teens likely aren’t switching places with Infinity Man at all…instead, the five of them are reformatted as Infinity Man by Mother Box.

Throwing a wrench in this theory is the fact that, in the next issue, Infinity Man is independent from the Forever People, acting and thinking for himself, having been separated from the teens by Darkseid in an earlier story. But who knows what sort of freakish things can happen with the Omega Effect, and I still consider my theory to be less lame than having Infinity Man be Darkseid’s brother, or whatever it is Wikipedia says.

My Zimbio
Top Stories