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Neuromancer: why case was choosen for the job(and many others implicit questions)?

There are spoilers here.


This question is raised many times at the history. But I couldn't find why the young, injuried, and not so experienced, cyberspace cowboy, needing extremly expensive medical interventions whas choosen for the operation.

What Wintermute wants is to maintain Neuromancer unattached from him, so he could be more free and powerful. Is this correct? But why Case?
 
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What Wintermute wants is to maintain Neuromancer unattached from him, so he could be more free and powerful. Is this correct? But why Case?
Not sure what you are trying to say here by using the word maintain...

Wintermute and Neuromancer are separated in the start of the book, and all actions taken are towards uniting them. The Turing police agency and hardwired password implies a heavy distrust of AI entities by all powerful governmental and business organizations, so Wintermute has to find people outside of normal lawful channels to act on its behalf. Case was chosen because he could be easily controlled; he already had a medical condition which required a huge investment to correct, and the same procedure was invasive enough to allow the poison sacs to be attached internally while he was under aneasthetics. Obviously he had the necessary skills to accomplish the job as many others would have also had, but he may have been the only unique hacker at the time who could be manipulated because of this medical condition...
 
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Good enough for the job, and with a rage and self-destructive streak big enough to push him through any last minute tricks Neuromancer could put him through.

I believe Linda was not randomly killed, but to cast him adrift, and to make him even more angry. And W already counted on him arousing Molly's "maternal" spirit.
 
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quote:
Not sure what you are trying to say here by using the word maintain...

I mean "to keep". What I thought was:

1. Besides Wintermute and Neuromancer was on differents places(Switzerland and Brazl), they are some way connected.
2. The purpose of Wintermute was to be independent from Neuromancer or, at least, control him, merge with him, but maintaning the Wintermute "consciouness".



quote:
Wintermute and Neuromancer are separated in the start of the book, and all actions taken are towards uniting them.


As I said above?



quote:

Case was chosen because he could be easily controlled; he already had a medical condition which required a huge investment to correct, and the same procedure was invasive enough to allow the poison sacs to be attached internally while he was under aneasthetics.



This is a good point, also.
At the end of the history, it's said that the Case's wish to be healed made his brain generate the antidote.
Are we talking about transcendental, meta-physical stuff here, related to the Matrix conception of mind transposition, reality and stuff?
 
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quote:
At the end of the history, it's said that the Case's wish to be healed made his brain generate the antidote.

quote:
from NEUROMANCER...
On the way back, in Babylon Rocker, Molly had explained what the voice had told her about the toxin sacs.
"Said it was taken care of. Like it got so deep into your head, it made your brain manufacture the enzyme, so they're loose, now. The Zionites'll give you a blood change, complete flush out."
Literally, the poison sacs are attached internally to the inner lining of arteries. Towards the end of the book, Case is connected to the Matrix but the connection is intercepted by Neuromancer and Wintermute, who both exist inside the Matrix. However, the same neural pathway that allows Case to experience the Matrix allows the AI's to experience Case's brain. In essence, they hack Case's brain into producing the required enzyme needed to detach the poison sacs from the arterial lining, and then the Rastas flush his blood out to completely remove the sacs from his body before they dissolve.

As to your other question, I think you are asking what motivates Wintermute?
quote:
from NEUROMANCER...
Marie-France must have built something into Wintermute, the compulsion that had driven the thing to free itself, to unite with Neuromancer.
 
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i've sometimes wondered whether the sacs were ever really there, the point was, case couldn't risk it. a placebo effect?
 
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Thanks a lot for your explanation, Electric Dragon. As you can see, I've read a bad translation.

I must get the original.

Misty, in some point of the history, there is a dialog like that:

Case: Is this talk about sacs real?
Molly: May be so, may be not. It works, anyway.

But he need to change the blood. So the question remains answered for me.
 
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Or maybe he just thinks he needs to change his blood, although I actually belong to the sacs-were-real camp.
 
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I think the evidence that the sacs were real is pretty overwhelming. Wintermute is the one who profiled case, picked Case, had Case sent to the medical clinic, so Wintermute must have ordered the poison sacs to be attached knowing this was a viable method of control. Wintermute knows exactly what chemical is required to detach the sacs, indeed, probably ordered them attached using a specific methodology whose reversal would require an enyzme that the brain is capable of manufacturing...

Certainly there is the offchance they were fictitous, but then you have to wonder why Wintermute/Neuromancer would have bothered telling Molly the sacs had been removed and the Rastas would need to flush his blood...
 
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Toxin sacs= micro explosive charges?

 
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dont forget that the "young, injuried, and not so experienced, cyberspace cowboy, needing extremly expensive medical interventions" was traned by the cowboy that was flatlined by the AI before so mabey there is the link and mabey it was random chance from a list of cowboys or that he so self distrucktiv that he chudent say no



post no1 nice to be here
 
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Nah. It wasn't that he was that good. Its, as Pschyphant alludes, that his psychological make-up had sufficient self-hatred to drive him though that last wall.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by electric dragon:
[QUOTE]Towards the end of the book, Case is connected to the Matrix but the connection is intercepted by Neuromancer and Wintermute, who both exist inside the Matrix. However, the same neural pathway that allows Case to experience the Matrix allows the AI's to experience Case's brain. In essence, they hack Case's brain into producing the required enzyme needed to detach the poison sacs from the arterial lining, and then the Rastas flush his blood out to completely remove the sacs from his body before they dissolve.


Theres no evidence in the book that either Wintermute or Neromancer caused Case's brain to manufacture the necessary enzyme to release the toxin sacs, though it is an interesting idea. I generally stick to the idea that unconsciously Case himself was able to generate the necessary enzyme to release the toxin sacs.

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Nah. It wasn't that he was that good. Its, as Pschyphant alludes, that his psychological make-up had sufficient self-hatred to drive him though that last wall.


I think the reason that Case is chosen has not so much to do with his self hate as it has to do with Case being easily manipulated. Case is essentially a weak human being, he succumbs to stealing from his employers, becomes addicted to speed, and is unable to drag himself out of his somewhat self inflicted position in life. Wintermute is all about the contructs on the main human players, his choice of Case is as much to do with being the exact opposite move to what an enterprise like this would normally take as it is to do with Case's easy manipulation. Wintermute believes the contructs, where as Neuromancer is far more intuitive about people. Wintermute's contructs dont always get it right though, for example when Case gets the Dixie Flatline to find out where Molly is when they are up on Freeside.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by SonOfMosh:

Theres no evidence in the book that either Wintermute or Neromancer caused Case's brain to manufacture the necessary enzyme to release the toxin sacs, though it is an interesting idea. I generally stick to the idea that unconsciously Case himself was able to generate the necessary enzyme to release the toxin sacs.


well, actually there is. as ED quoted above:

"from NEUROMANCER...
On the way back, in Babylon Rocker, Molly had explained what the voice had told her about the toxin sacs.
"Said it was taken care of. Like it got so deep into your head, it made your brain manufacture the enzyme, so they're loose, now. The Zionites'll give you a blood change, complete flush out.""

spontaneous generation of the necessary enzyme seems far less likely to me.

quote:
quote:
Nah. It wasn't that he was that good. Its, as Pschyphant alludes, that his psychological make-up had sufficient self-hatred to drive him though that last wall.


I think the reason that Case is chosen has not so much to do with his self hate as it has to do with Case being easily manipulated. Case is essentially a weak human being, he succumbs to stealing from his employers, becomes addicted to speed, and is unable to drag himself out of his somewhat self inflicted position in life. Wintermute is all about the contructs on the main human players, his choice of Case is as much to do with being the exact opposite move to what an enterprise like this would normally take as it is to do with Case's easy manipulation. Wintermute believes the contructs, where as Neuromancer is far more intuitive about people. Wintermute's contructs dont always get it right though, for example when Case gets the Dixie Flatline to find out where Molly is when they are up on Freeside.


i agree with your description of the two AI's operating styles. however, i think if case was chosen simply because he was weak, he would end up folding like a house of cards. his weakness makes him malleable, but his self hatred spurs him to action, albeit to cause his own destruction. like the man says:

quote:
He came in steep, fueled by self-loathing. When the Kuang program met the first of the defenders, scattering the leaves of light, he felt the shark thing lose a degree of substantiality, the fabric of information loosening.
And then – old alchemy of the brain and its vast pharmacy – his hate flowed into his hands.
In the instant before he drove Kuang's sting through the base of the first tower, he attained a level of proficiency exceeding anything he'd known or imagined. Beyond ego, beyond personality, beyond awareness, he moved, Kuang moving with him, evading his attackers with an ancient dance, Hideo's dance, grace of the mind-body interface granted him, in that second, by the clarity and singleness of his wish to die.
 
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I've always thought Wintermute picked Case because he looked like Johnny, thereby ensuring an extra level of personal attention from Molly.
 
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I never thought he looked like Johnny. I thought he was like Johnny and Molly being preceptive noticed that. he was a vunerable kind of guy, wounded physically and then emotionally when Linda died. Wintermute knew she would feel protective. Also, wintermute knew that case would do as much as he could to protect Molly, given that he was unable to help Linda. ... or was her name lisa? It has been a long time.
 
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Only Wintermute knows why.
I'm afraid he'll never tell us Wink.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by subject:

well, actually there is. as ED quoted above:

"from NEUROMANCER...
On the way back, in Babylon Rocker, Molly had explained what the voice had told her about the toxin sacs.
"Said it was taken care of. Like it got so deep into your head, it made your brain manufacture the enzyme, so they're loose, now. The Zionites'll give you a blood change, complete flush out.""

spontaneous generation of the necessary enzyme seems far less likely to me.



The quote above from the book tells of how the voice tells Molly how the enzyme was created, not that that either Wintermute or Neuromancer actually tapped into Case's brain and created the enzymes in Case's head. It reads to me like the thought of the enzyme cutting the sac's loose got so deep into Case's psyche that his brain did the work. I've read of cases (no pun intended) of where people have been able to cure themselves of fairly drastic diseases (cancer being one disease I heard of being cured by a method of meditation), so to me the creation of the enzyme isnt so much spontaneous, but a product of a drive for survival. I stand by my interpretation.

I'd forgotten that second passage... thing is that even if he really hated himself so much, I wonder why he worked so hard to get the toxin sac's out. Case's problem is probably fear more than self hate, fear of what is going to happen next. In the end, once the job is all done, he goes back to Ninsei, and is told by Ratz that it's not a place to return to. He get's a new pancreas to use speed again, but that doesnt addiction doesnt seem to take root again. He finds another woman, and then quits being a cowboy after a few decent scores, has a few sprogs, and settles down. Hardly the actions of someone who really, truly hates themselves.

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I've always thought Wintermute picked Case because he looked like Johnny, thereby ensuring an extra level of personal attention from Molly.


Tigerstripes, you've said this before in another thread, I dont buy it. The way I interpret the passage where Molly is climbing into Straylight is that Molly is reminded of Johnny by Case by his attitude, not his appearance. I'm not even sure Molly's interest in Case is anything remotely maternally protective, more a "you get my back and I'll have yours" commercial type of arrangement. When the job is done, Molly takes off, and never see's Case again. The next mention of Case by Molly is when 3Jane is manipulating Molly in MLO. She asks about Case if he is being manipulated by 3Jane, but I think its because she wants an old ally back, someone who was there at the time and can help fight 3Jane off.
 
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quote:
I'd forgotten that second passage... thing is that even if he really hated himself so much, I wonder why he worked so hard to get the toxin sac's out. Case's problem is probably fear more than self hate, fear of what is going to happen next. In the end, once the job is all done, he goes back to Ninsei, and is told by Ratz that it's not a place to return to. He get's a new pancreas to use speed again, but that doesnt addiction doesnt seem to take root again. He finds another woman, and then quits being a cowboy after a few decent scores, has a few sprogs, and settles down. Hardly the actions of someone who really, truly hates themselves.


Oh, I think Case hates himself at the beginning of the book. He is taking a roundabout approach to suicide, struggling to survive while at the same time taking risks that make that survival less and less likely. It's not entirely simple. He wants to die, or maybe he doesn't. I don't think he would be the first person (or at least character) to do that.

After his experience in Straylight, I think he achieves some kind of peace with himself. Maybe that's a bit cheesy, but I think that's what happened.
 
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I don't think it's so important whether it was looks or something else that made Case remind Molly of Johnny. Something does; she said so herself. And maybe maternal is not quite the right word, but it is implied that Wintermute chose Case, with his Johnny-like something, so that Molly would have more of an emotional investment in the job.

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When the job is done, Molly takes off, and never see's Case again.


Well, not exactly. I believe in the book it is suggested they stay together for a while. A few months anyway. But after the job Case has, as I said above, found a bit of peace, and this leads him away from "the edge" (more cheese). Molly likes the edge, so she leaves him to stop herself from going soft (as she sees it).
 
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True... just goes to show how long its been since I read the book. I'm still not so sure there's anything really emotional between Molly and Case, though.
 
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Kumiko in MLOD thinks that Case was more then just a partner for Molly.
 
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It was probably Wintermute that notified Case's employers that Case had stolen something of theirs and how best to punish him.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by hasad:
Kumiko in MLOD thinks that Case was more then just a partner for Molly.


That's a good point. But I still dont buy it.
 
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quote:
I'm still not so sure there's anything really emotional between Molly and Case, though.


maybe a bit of an emotional (re)awakening though.
 
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As much as there could be at that point in their respective lives. Case was described as a stripped
down version of himself, of what he once was, Molly is an augmented version of herself. WG seems to like symmetry, think of Riviera's puppet show.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by RamBaud:
As much as there could be at that point in their respective lives. Case was described as a stripped
down version of himself, of what he once was, Molly is an augmented version of herself. WG seems to like symmetry, think of Riviera's puppet show.


Interesting insight.

They are both running - Case wants to get back into his cybercowboy shoes (and cuts a deal with a 'demon', selling his soul to the soulcatcher in a box), and Molly is running away from her past (brought back in a very 'artistic' way by Riviera). Their pace might be similar, but they're running different directions. What we get in "Neuromancer" is the moment of the crash.
 
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i really, really love these threads.
 
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Don't forget also that Gibson is aware of literary conventions. Neuromancer is a version of the washed up alcoholic former agent tempted from retirement for one last operation which appears in thrillers and in the typical heist movie as well. Of course cybercrime is a young man's game, which is why Case (a word which describes his situation) is so young.
 
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quote:

Originally posted by RamBaud:
...Case was described as a stripped
down version of himself... Molly is an augmented version of herself


quote:

Originally posted by Vesper:
...Case wants to get back into his cybercowboy shoes... and Molly is running away from her past


And climactic that Case "attained a level of proficiency exceeding anything he'd known or imagined" as Molly's body is broken apart. Symmetrical, and thematic... mind over meat. Fitting that it takes this to free WM/Neuro.
 
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welcome, q.
 
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Yes welcome, and nice take...mind over meat...you'll fit in well around here.
Watch out for Vesper though, he's a little bit nuts. Wink
 
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Big Grin

Seriously though, I can understand a writer using a reccuring theme, particularily in a first novel, where you really get to see in all its glory just how hard it is to keep the style and flow, even just keeping characters true to how you've visualised them- well its nice to settle into something familiar. Its been a while since I've read Neuro, and I wonder if the symmetry represents something else. The 'meat', and its naked rage against the machine of intellect. Two unmatched entities stuck together?
 
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Ha! Take a look at the _other_ trilogy and try finding some corresponding reversed patterns there. "Pattern Recognition" might be a pun-and-wink title for the fans, too.
 
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I'm gonna, it's been a while, but in the mean time, the universe continues its assault on my gestalt. On a completely unrelated matter, I'm perusing an index and a couple of words that I'm sure I don't know seem to be trying to get my attention, so I go to the glossary... Heiros Gamos "in the Jungian sense of an alchemical marriage or a union of opposites that transcends the mundane realm." I think I just answered my own
question. Here's what wiki has to say. Wikipedia

Now I'm going to have to read it again through a
Jungian/Greek Mythos filter.Damn. Wink
 
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I think trying to guess the motivations of an AI is incredibly difficult. A computer doesn't have any of the biological drives that we as humans have, so it's basic motivations are entirely different.

With that in mind, I doubt we'd ever be able to figure out why Wintermute chose Case.
 
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It may not have been just Case- I may have been also Dixie- He was a flatline and without the active memory Case gave him he would have never remembered he was once flesh and bone- And before his heart gave out he was the best- And gave Case the know how-
That alone had to say some thing about Case being a decent at the least cowboy-
The first thing Wintermute had them go for is Dixie-
Perhaps because Case was good but being away from his natural habitat for any amount of time makes a person a tad insecure about what they are capable of even if it was all they once knew-
So WM gave Case and absolute, so his insecurities would disappear? Perhaps?-
Wintermute's medium was events- So all he did was place all the right event in the same-
Case and Dixie expert cowboys- And not to mention who would Dixie work well with and work well with Dixie- Except Case his student and partner (I'm not sure about the partner part)- WM had Molly in the mix and the fact that they had Armitage(sp) as a kind of aggressor on neither would trust but he had some thing one them so they followed orders- As free form as the orders where-

I do think yur right about Molly taking to Case due to her loss of Johnny-

So Wintermute choose Case and played everythign like some crazy game of chess- Really crazy- Hoping to be free-

Just my thought on it-
 
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Hi all. I just joined today, in order to comment. I have been reading here on an off for a while but never really felt the need to comment. Now I have been stuck at home for a while (ankle operation - got pins stuck in me like a regular cyborg), I have more time on my hands than I know what to do with. I have never really organised my thoughts about the themes and subject matters of Gibson's worlds very coherently, until now, I have just LIKED the novels. But your questions and answers have naturally made me realize that good literature is about more than just reading - it affects you deeply. The question is, why does Gibson's world affect me? I'll think more on that, but for now - about:

quote:
Originally posted by Rambaud:
Big Grin

Its been a while since I've read Neuro, and I wonder if the symmetry represents something else. The 'meat', and its naked rage against the machine of intellect. Two unmatched entities stuck together?


I got the understanding from your previous posts that you are wondering about the nature of Case and Molly, and their relationship. The above quote, that Case and Molly was "two unmatched entities stuck together", or, as I believe Rimbaud implied and Vesper elaborated on in April, that they were somehow opposites who came together.

I agree in part to this, but I will take this notion further.
When I read Neuromancer for the first time (and also on subsequent readings), my impression was that they were in fact one entity, that they were enjoined in a fundamental way (and not merely sexually). What the one lacked, the other fulfilled. We get a first glimpse of this in their first mission (Operation Mainline, wasn't it?) to get the Flatline. Case and Molly are united through simstim, and, although Case is very much aware of what simstim is, he nevertheless tries to control her body. (page 56, at least in my edition). It is as if he is trying to be the mind inside this body. In a way, he provides the brain/mind in this operation, and Molly provides the body. Molly's mind in inaccessible (as he mentions here "He found himself wondering about the mind he shared these sensations with". Another time (when Riviera had smashed her lens implant) she is unconscious. Case has access to her sensory system, which is on overload and experiencing synaesthesia, but he has no access to her dreams (p 221). Her mind, what goes on there, is of no importance to either Case or the story, in fact Case gets decidedly uneasy whenever he contemplates Molly's mind, thoughts. Especially when there is suspicion that Wintermute (am I right in assuming the abbrv you use is WM?) is influencing her, building her as it did Armitage. See for instance when Case has followed Molly to the nightclub/whorehouse, and she sits in front of a monitor getting instructions from WM. Case, later in a bar, contemplates going back to her, (p 152) but "the image of her mirrored eyes fixed on the screen dissuaded him. What was Wintermute revealing there now?"
As I see it, for WM, Case and Molly are flip sides of the same coin, and as such, part of Gibson's literary agenda - that is to investigate the new view of what a human is, that computers brought on. To show that people cannot be separated into MIND and BODY. Come to think of it, even the AIs have 'bodies' - they are grounded in the cores that are physically located in Berne and Rio. In one way, Case and Molly resemble the AIs in this respect. The unity that they become shatters later on; for the humans, Molly leaves, and for the AIs, they disintegrate into 'voodoo gods' in Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive. For that matter - one AI (Rei Tomei the Idoru - oh wait, she wasn't an AI, she was a constructed being? I forget) ANYWAY - she actually acquired a real human body in All Tomorrow's Parties.
I conclude from this that Gibson is trying to say something about the body NOT being merely meat, a prison of flesh. Our (human) body is necessary in order to remain human.


Oh looky. I had a lot to say, didn't I? And my plan was to be brief...
 
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Welcome Neret-
 
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