Monday, January 25, 2016

Tokyo Ghost #3 (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

Remender lays out a world here that makes you want to quit coffee, swear off booze, and cancel your Netflix subscription.  Consider yourself forewarned!

As Debbie realizes that she has finally found the place where she belongs, Teddy struggles with the legacy of his years connected to the Internet.  He initially rejects Kazumi's (the Gardener's) description of the Garden, where everyone lives in harmony with nature and each other.  But, Remender cleverly uses Teddy's skepticism to call into question whether the Garden really is the Utopia that it appears to be.  Kazumi heals Debbie's arm at the start of the issue, and Teddy doesn't buy into Debbie's wonderment, postulating (possibly correctly) that she has access to technology that the emp field doesn't restrict.  However, slowly but surely, he becomes the man that he was meant to be, had he not become Led Dent.

The problem for him is that he now has to deal with the emotions that he buried for all those years as well as the fact that he's now as weak as he was when he decided to become Dent in the first place.  Moreover, one of the other refugees, Mash, recognizes him as Constable Dent, and it's pretty clear that it was Dent who amputated his leg.  (I'm guessing anesthesia wasn't involved.)  Mash's need for vengeance not only makes it clear that Teddy isn't going to be able to leave Dent easily in his past, but also, again, that the Garden might not be the Utopia that we're led to believe.

As a result, Remender is actually, for the first time, making it clear that it might not be as easy as unplugging to save our souls.  We might be too far gone.  Maybe we really are where we should be as humans.  Maybe our greed and lust and pride has brought us to the only society we could ever have, and it really is just fantasy to think that it could be different.  The fact that I'm even thinking these thoughts while worrying about Teddy shows how brilliant this story is on so many different levels.

**** (four of five stars)

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