Mar 18, 2009

Friends of the Ood

The Doctor blew my mind again. Season Four's 'Planet of the Ood' is set in the 42 century (Yes, that rainbow number again), when the human race/empire/virus has expanded to three galaxies (continents). The humans have a servant race called the Ood, who's tentacled visage resemble Cthulhu, or maybe the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

It dawned on me that the Ood represent gay men when we find out that the Ood have a "second brain", that they lovingly hold in their hands? Ahem. The Ood sing a psychic song that happens to sound exactly like a (male) monastic choir, and their speaking voice is a dead ringer for C3PO - the gay droid. I have a feeling the Ood eat at Hamburger Mary's.

The Ood had their secondary brain cut off by the human "Corporation", replaced by a "translator orb", which "civilizes" them. I'd call this a castration, which makes the Ood into a eunuch. Interesting that "Translator" is also one of the functions of C3PO.

The Ood, being faithful and loyal servants of the human race for hundreds of years, suddenly begin exhibiting decidedly anti-social behavior - the "red eye" syndrome. This synchs with the eye color change in 28 Days Later, which I examine in The Gay Virus. Curious that in homoerotic transformation fiction, the eye color change is often the first "symptom".

What's really wild is that the Ood have a third brain, which is a gigantic, central, communal brain. This is called the Ood's "Daddy" by the human antagonist, which synchs right around to the Abba (Daddy) of Jesus, AKA the Father. The Ood central brain represents Cosmic Consciousness (KK) - the universal intelligence that vibrates (throbs) in sync with the "second brain". The Ood Mega Brain is held in captivity in Warehouse 15, a nice reversal of Area 51.

The episode ends with the Ood gaining their freedom, and making their human tormentor into one of their own - transforming him into an Ood. In other words, making him queer. It might be a good idea... to keep an eye on the eyes of your gay hairdresser.


I found this episode of Doctor Who remarkable, so I checked out who wrote it: Keith Temple. It is apparently his only Doctor Who episode. It makes me wonder... perhaps the Ood have infiltrated deeper into the matrix than I ever dared hope.

The Ood with the highest rank in the human system (reflecting the prophet Daniel in Babylon) wears a distinctive mark: a Greek Sigma. I'll keep my red eye on that.


Devin said...

Very very interesting Michael! I have a lot of catching up to do-good old 42 again! best to you and Varen as always!

Thuth said...

Abba (Daddy)

Where do you get this?


Michael said...

Hi Devin, thanks for stopping by!

Thuth - New Testament bible study! Abba is ancient Greek diminutive for Father.

Anadæ Effro said...

Yeesh, that d-Ood (I just couldn't resist) looks like Cthulhu sump'n orful, 'cept that, unbeknowst to most of the New England Gent's fan base, the grandaddy Deep One was originally meant to have been depicted with 3 orbits, á la the telescoping pineal gland in the Saturday afternoon scare fare seen here, although with a new twist, to appeal to the BDSM audience. Still, if any one wants to familiarise themselves with the Lovecraftian menagerie, then this is a good source.

Night-night, kiddies,
Anadæ Effro ( :-)}

Michael said...

Thanks for the Cthulhu bible lesson, Anadae. The Ood also look like Davy Jones, that Captain of drowned souls in Pirates of the Caribbean, and lets not forget the squid-like attackers of Team Nebuchudnezzar in The Matrix.

Esperanto Grrl said...

Oh, now c'mon, Mike, I gotta cry foul on this one. The Ood were an analogue to everything except homosexuals!

If there is an analogue to the Ood in human experience, it would be to immigrants or colonized workers who are often exploited and cut off from their native culture. It's significant this is a British series, because of the following:

The Ood were conquered by the Human Empire. They were considered to be "uncivilized" and were subjected to something that removed them of a big part of who they are in order to "civilize" them, as well as cutting them off from the spirit of th rest of their race.

Did I mention the Ood were exploited for labor, a slave race for humanity? There's no parallel for this in the gay experience. In one episode, they even say "every human, even the poorest, has an Ood servant."

This is clearly meant to be a parallel for the truly rotten treatment for how western colonizers have enslaved and mistreated native peoples (and the dehumanzing effect of immigration and exploitation), not an analogue for homosexuality.

There was one great science fiction story by Harlan Ellison that actually was explicitly about homosexuality: in it, a pair of alien lovers from a race that refused contact with mankind fled to planet earth. The reason? We learn at the end that their race has truly shocking sexual dismorphism - the females are snail creatures or something - and thus, they're disgusted by humankind because to them, with our far less noticeable gender difference, we all look "gay" to them!

Michael said...

Hi Esperanto Girl, thanks for the comment. I'm pretty sure that you are correct and Temple was making obvious parallels to human slaves. He points out to (Ma)Donna that "slaves" made her clothes on earth, and then we had the ironic scene were the black man (former slave) was chasing down the Doctor and enforcing the rules of the new slavery.

However, the writer's intent has never stopped me from putting my own interpretation on it! The fact that homosexuals in the modern Western world are now "free" to be as economically enslaved as the rest of humanity, doesn't change the fact that eunuchs were castrated slaves in ancient cultures. Many bible scholars have theorized that the character of Daniel was most likely a eunuch (which may or may not have involved actual castration, because homosexuals were also considered "eunuchs").

And besides, it is entirely true that men often let the "second brain" lead us around, for better and for worse.

Cheers, Michael

Christopher Knowles said...

Whoa- Daniel was gay? Not that it surprises me given my views of the Bible, but I'll have to google that.

As to Doctor Who- I think that's a show I could get into before BSG. Too much sci-fi (er, SyFy) too little time...

word-ver sync: "mistic"

James Ratte said...

Cillian Murphy was in Red Eye (2005)

1221 ABBA


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