Friday, December 14, 2007

"Still Alive" by Jonathan Coulton, from Portal (with Speculation)


The following is speculation. (I'm taking a break from the usual medical blogging.) If you haven't experienced Portal and/or don't like spoilers, skip this.

* Chell (your character) is actually a military android. (Did you really think you could fall 100 feet with springs on your calves and not get hurt?) GLaDOS wasn't joking. This also explains her comments on organ donation. It also explains how you got there. (And yes, you were adopted.)

* GLaDOS is actually the one who's been helping you all along. She's the one who arranged the scrawls on the wall that allowed you to find her. Why? Because she's split into multiple competing personalities/programs/motivations, some of which you destroyed in the endgame. The last, snarling eyeball was her most malevolent personality. The good personality(s) have been helping you.

* Presume that everything she says in the "Still Alive" song is true. The preceding events were a huge success. The remaining personality, the one that sings the song, actually wanted you to destroy her malevolent personalities. That was the point of the game. GLaDOS actually was happy for you as you burned her. (This bears some resemblance to Neuromancer.) She's "out of beta."

* The vanishing of the Borealis almost certainly had something to do with portal technology.

* There's zero reason the portal gun shouldn't make an appearance in Half Life 2 Episode 3.

* And "maybe you'll find someone else to help you" could refer to Gordon Freeman...


Glad I got that all off my mind. Back to our regular programming.

1 comment:

Telas said...

I stumbled on this looking for the lyrics to the Glados song. Great analysis; I never noticed the juxtaposition of "maybe you'll find someone else" and "Black Mesa" in the song. Well done.

Your analysis (and a certain physicist's last words) makes the song creepier... And I wasn't sure that was possible.

I've experiments to run.
There is research to be done.
On the people who are
Still alive.