Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship}'s Reviews > Red-Eye Dawn

Red-Eye Dawn by Jordan Castillo Price
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"Riveting stuff, Mulder and Scully. Please, continue your good work," Skinner said.

Yes, I'm continuing with The X-Files comparison. I'm determined to wring every last drop out of it.

JCP, I love you. You're one excellent writer. This episode just about knocked my socks off. And that's without any sex scenes...yet. ;)

Hitherto, we've had only theories based on assumption about the ins and outs of how the turbulence-induced split realities/bodies/personalities work. Now we have actual science experiments! I love science. Except when it means testing on animals. Yet JCP skirts this by using cockroaches. No one likes cockroaches. The relief I felt at Marlin and Dallas's refusal to act on Kaye's mouse suggestion, was palpable as I silently hailed, "Thank god," at my ceiling.

Marlin's Animal Experiment #1
Roach in the cockpit (in a margarine tub) was duplicated when he rode the turbulence, just like Kaye and Me. I flattened post-turbulence roach and left his carcass in the container. After the return turbulence, his counterpart was not flattened, but he was legs up.

So, dead in the unnatural plane = dead in the normal one.


Marlin's Animal Experiment #3
I removed the left rear leg of Roach 3 inside the turbulence. Not only was he still alive when we embarked on the return flight, but when we came back through the turbulence, HIS LEG WAS STILL INTACT.

So, injured in the unnatural plane = healed in the normal one. Strange, very strange.

Conclusion
'Was the Autopilot body the "real" body, and his post-turbulence existence some mental construct?' We're straying into The Matrix territory here. Die in the Matrix, die in the real world. Hmm.


The Matrix, a mental construct.

Besides having the mechanics to chew on, we also have the four main characters and their relationships with one another to contend with.

Marlin: "If you walked into a crowd and lobbed three water balloons at random," Marlin had once said, "you couldn't nail three people more different than you, me and Kaye."
[...]
Marlin: "You seem to think everyone's well-being is your personal responsibility. Kaye is reliable, your're nurturing, and I'm bold -practically fearless"
Dallas: "And so modest, too."
Marlin: "Think about it: we're archetypes. The Leader [Captain Kaye], the Keeper [Flight Attendant Dallas], and the Guide [First Officer Marlin]."


At first, like Paul, I thought Marlin had been playing too many video games and read too much epic fantasy, but then Marlin writes the following:

'So from now on, the two of us [Kaye & Marlin] rode the turbulence together, while Dallas stays whole and does his best to wrangle the Autopilots. It's the only way. These are the roles we've been waiting to play all our lives. Maybe they're even roles we've played in previous lives. Kaye the Leader, Dallas the Keeper, and me the Guide. Maybe we slogged though the fields at Normandy together. Or stormed the Alamo. Or lopped heads in the Crusades. ~An excerpt from Marlin's notebook


And it all makes an odd kind of sense. When Marlin as the Guide suicides out, Paul replaces him. He happens to have the exact qualities that would make him the perfect Guide. He's rigidly OCD and by the book about everything. Science and rational thought will give him answers, not conjecture. And so he tries to reason his way to understanding. So perhaps Marlin's at-first-glance crazy ramblings have weight.

In the end, Paul decides he's going to sign-up for all future flight 511 shifts, however as he decides this he gets a glimpse of his self-absorbed, id-centric Autopilot as his two selves reintegrate.
Paul stared at the drink, then raised it and gave it a sniff. Orange juice-and champagne. Mostly champagne.
"What the-?"
Captain Kaye said, "You'll want to dump that in the toilet before we touch down."
"I'm so sorry. I can't believe-I'd never-oh, man."
"I know." Completely unfazed. "That's how it goes when Dallas doesn't stay behind to keep us in line. I'll probably throw up once we land." She sighed. "That's probably for the best."

If you're wondering, Kaye's Autopilot is a glutton. She races to the restaurants credit card at the ready, stuffs herself with good food and drink until she's full-to-bursting. She's put on a few pounds as a result.

The complex plot, level of depth, and character development, is pretty amazing when you realise how these three episodes in total contain only 25,900 words, that of less than half a short full-length novel. This takes real talent. Also, I heart the covers, and I know JCP made them herself.

New episodes can't come soon enough! They just keep getting better.


Previous installments:
Review of Turbulence #1: Into the Bermuda Triangle
Review of Turbulence #2: Autopilot Engaged
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Reading Progress

08/03/2012
13.0% "'"Look, it's easy to do the right thing when the right thing is obvious. But when you don't know which end is up, that's when you got to dig deep. For me, that's when I listen to that still, small voice inside me, and I let my faith be my guide."
Faith? Paul put as much trust in faith as he did in those computer generated penis enhancement emails.'

LOL! Me too."
08/03/2012
16.0% "'"What about the air? Paul said, low and urgent. "What about the oxygen? Does it disappear from our bloodstream when we hit the turbulence? Can a person even survive something like that?" Paul clamped his mouth shut and concentrated on taking only the smallest sips of air,'

This is probably the worst thing that could happen to a stiff, OCD personality like Paul, poor guy. Try not to hyperventilate, 'kay?"
08/03/2012
29.0% "I know recent events have skewed my thinking when I read 'sock puppets' and felt a little sad. For a moment I wondered if JCP had made a subtle reference, but no, it was entirely appropriate to the plot."

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