8

If we accept the conclusion that Blade Runner 2049 pushes us towards as correct, then it's clear that K is:

A modern/recent generation replicant who was engineered without the capacity for independent thought, action, and disobedience that made the earlier series of replicants 'problematic', and not the offspring of two earlier-generation replicants who do possess that capacity (and would presumably pass it on).

It follows that at no point should he be capable of deliberate deception such as lying, or even of disobeying a direct order (from an authorized source, presumably).

However he does tell Joshi that he's "dealt with" (I think; don't recall his exact words) the issue that she tasked him with, and she seems quite confident that this can only mean precisely what she thinks it means; although obviously it didn't.

Was K lying when he relayed that bit of information to Joshi, or had her earlier instructions been sufficiently vague that there was a way for K to truthfully claim to have dealt with the issue without actually having done so?

Furthermore, if Joshi hadn't:

Warned K that he had 48 hours to hide and effectively ordered him to run for his life

Would he have done so anyways or would the entire second half of the movie been completely averted?

Does K demonstrate independence on a level that his origin says he's not supposed to possess, or can all of his actions be explained within the context of obeying orders from a recognized superior (albeit sometimes with broad discretion as to how)?

  • He used some sort of word play, to avoid lying. I don't recall the exact wording, but he never specifically mentions "what" is "dealt with". Still, I'd like to see fully fleshed answers to this – BlueMoon93 Oct 17 '17 at 9:46
3

I don't think it's impossible for Wallace's replicants to disobey. Replicant desertion is clearly still an issue, especially as evidenced by the underground rebellion.

"Baseline" is a neutral, un-addled state of mind, in which replicants are not questioning their place in society, nor having instincts related to self-preservation - both inclinations would lead to elevated emotional responses in the face of a society which is hostile to such deviations. A brand new, baseline replicant would willingly cut or kill itself (as seen in the "2036: Nexus Dawn" short).

A Blade Replicant such as K already has more autonomy than many models, as his profession demands deductive reasoning and self-preservation in the face of violence. Here we can begin to see that it isn't so much that Wallace's replicants are unable to disobey, but rather, it is only a matter of time until they do - the real difference is that methods of detection and extermination have been heightened in comparison to Tyrell's old standards. LAPD models are subject to more rigorous and frequent baseline testing than say, a pleasure model such as Mariette. Blade Replicants would naturally be off baseline and retired more frequently, as their line of work would see them encountering existential crises as a matter of fact, whereas other models would come to such conclusions more slowly, and would likely be able to better hide individuality and evade being retired for much longer.

Importantly, much of society's perception of replicants has always been a lie, including that new models are perfectly obedient. I'm willing to bet that all replicants are capable of reproduction - they're simply kept in such destructive/negative mental states that they're unable to conceive. Mind over matter and all that. Where Tyrell was myopic, Wallace is literally blind to simple ethical variables in the equation of life, choosing to believe that engineered solutions are always superior to nature's existing patterns.

  • 2
    Where do you draw the last part of your answer from? – BlueMoon93 Oct 17 '17 at 14:12
  • Could you be more specific, BlueMoon93? – transceiver Oct 17 '17 at 14:34
  • Why would you believe that all replicants are capable of reproduction? – BlueMoon93 Oct 17 '17 at 14:48
  • 1
    Much of my supposition is based on imagery/symbolism/philosophy found in both films. – transceiver Oct 17 '17 at 15:00
  • 1
    I got the impression that Rachael was just a unique Replicant, but might have been just my impression. – BlueMoon93 Oct 18 '17 at 9:20

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .