Good morning citizens. Productivity, prosperity, from sea to shing sea. Nexus can, yes us can. Mexuscan! Yes, us can!
Philbert is a simple man who enjoys simple things, like having a shave in the bathroom in peace. Unfortunately, this is not the case anymore as a holographic advert for shaving cream interrupts his morning routine whilst another hologram is getting cosy with his wife in the living room. His journey to work is far more peaceful but in a far more uncomfortable way. No ideal chat or laughing as background noise. Just a bunch of ugly bags of mostly water on a conveyor belt to their designated locations. I suppose he still has his co-workers Eddie and Lenny to talk too but their idea of a perfect night consists of getting frisky with the Yellow Bunny Cheese girl in the kitchen. Democracy is dead as there is only one candidate in this modern political system. A concerned Philbert is sitting down to watch the one and only candidates speech. She talks about the usual stuff, education, public schools and killing all others! Philbert, shocked at what he is watching, calls for his wife but after a quick rewind, the message disappears.
Philbert is unable to forget about the live debate he watched the night earlier. Kill all others is a pretty big statement. Everyone, including his friends, seems to think this kind of stuff is trivial. On the train home, Philbert voices his frustrations out loud on an empty carriage that is playing more political propaganda on the television. The carriage shuts down and finds himself alone in the darkness. When the power comes back on, kill all others is visible on various billboards throughout the city. Trying to capture all the evidence he needs on his camera; he slams the emergency button, leaving the train screeching to a sudden halt. Imagine sitting in a psychiatrists office trying to defend your actions concerning the hate speech that is popping up around town. Philbert does not feel crazy, but these two counsellors are trying their best to find out why Filbert is acting so bizarre. Transcom does not have accidents like this on their trains unless its anything to do with drugs or alcohol. Philbert watches a scenic video projection on the wall and is asked can he see the snowflakes or sheep on the screen.
I guess some good has come out of this as his wife has finally decided to give up coffee and his boss has given him a brand-new car that will automatically take him anywhere he wants. Back home and the debate of kill all others is in the mainstream media now and some people seem to be accepting it very well. Philbert can feel his anxiety get a hold of him as he believes what he is watching is something pretty terrible. Thankfully with the support of his wife, he manages to switch the television off and act like nothing is going on. I guess you can switch the tv off but in real life has no power button as Philibert tries to protect a woman who is chased down by a group of crazed vigilantes. Philbert tries his best to diffuse the situation but the group begin to turn on him and decide that he is just like the women lying on the ground. Philbert is one of them?
Back in therapy and one of the counsellors from his recent visit tells him that that he is starting to look a little screwy needs to fall back in line to fix things. Okay, just a little pinprick, there’ll be no more nonsense as Philbert is given a free smartwatch at work that can monitor his health throughout the days and weeks coming up. The device is plunged right into his bloodstream, leaving all his information right there for anybody to see. Oh, just one more thing, his boss orders to him to lay off the political talk, company policy.
During a lunch break, Philbert notices another huge billboard, again with the words kill all others emblazed across the skyline, and this time there is a body hanging from it. Eddie and Lenny seem unaffected but Philbert can feel his anxiety rising again. All Eddie and Lenny are concerned about is, who are the others? Later, Philbert decides to stick on some aviators and a hoodie and phone the candidate live on television. He pretends he is Bob Lucas from Sacramento and demands some answers about the billboards and the violence they are creating. Slight problem as his real name and location are shown live on-screen in bold letters, Philbert Noyce from Chicago, leaving him to try and terminate the call as soon as possible. Philbert feels like he is in deep shit now.
Philbert tries to go about his business in work but Eddie and Lenny are not allowed to talk to him. Even worse, peace officers are waiting for him at home, along with some graffiti that shows him that things have turned pretty sour. Philbert manages to climb through a window at home to discuss what is happening with his wife. Instead of agreeing with him, she says this is because of the accident when he banged his head and he should get help. The anxiety and frustration for Philbert reaches breaking point when his wife finally asks him “Is he one of them?”. Philbert lashes out and strikes his wife. Philbert makes a run for it and the peace officers finally track him down to one of the billboards that have started this whole mess. At the same time, Eddie and Lenny are happily playing some pool when the news comes on television and Philbert is live, stood on top of the billboard. Lenny cannot believe Philbert is an other but Eddie disagrees and says he is not? One of the counsellors is back and is trying to access his smartwatch to raise his cortisol levels to put him to sleep. Eventually, Philbert manages to get rid of the device and says “They’re not taking our information! We’re giving it to them. We’re giving it to them and they are using it against us. It’s not just me! It’ll be you too. It’ll be all of us. The candidate’s serious. You hear me? This is real. This is real! We are all others! Philbert tries to bring down the body that is hanging right next to him but he loses his grip and eventually falls. Later Philbert is shown hanging from the billboard himself
Before every great truth is spoken, there is an uncomfortable silence. And in that silence, we hear all the things we don’t want to hear, see all the things we don’t want to see, reckon with irreconcilable conscience that must be faced. We want to believe the best of ourselves, but before we can access our best, we must first acknowledge and root out the worst of ourselves. To see such things must mean we are on the verge of a great truth. Tonight, we are a little bit wiser, we are a little bit stronger. We are a little bit safer. Ours is a self-identifying self-correcting democracy. When you see others like poor Mr Noyce here purge themselves, well we can’t help but be a little bit sad for them and their families but you also have to breath a big sigh of relief. It could have been you he flung from the billboard. It could have been your loved ones, your children and not his own disturbed self. But now you know what I have known all along. That if you are not an other, you would have nothing to worry about. That if you were a sane and productive member of this great mega nation, mere words would not unhinge you. And, so, I would like to congratulate you, good citizens, for vigilance and your belief. Based on this great success, we are expanding the K.A.O program to every state and city in the western hemisphere, to finish the good work we have begun. Be well, dear citizens. Be Proud. And God Bless.
There isn’t much to say about the production and design in the episode of kill all others as I feel the story and dialogue take centre stage in this episode. I guess that is the great thing really as it isn’t relying on special effects too much. I will say I think Dee Rees has directed the best episode in the series of Electric Dreams and this is the one I have watched the most as you are always finding new clues hidden in the episode. The casting was pretty fantastic. The main character Philbert Noyce Mel Rodriguez reminded me of Oliver Hardy and I’m not sure that was intentional but it made him look like an old-world kind of the guy. I remember watching those old Laurel and Hardy movies as a child and it made me kind of miss those days. Okay, I know about rose-tinted glasses and all that but it brought back some great feelings of happiness. Also, I was pretty impressed with Vera Farmiga as the candidate. I guess you don’t see anything about her true character in the episode as its always a political broadcast that she is delivering. I guess it’s her perfection and beauty that makes you kind of believe her words and there is a real power in that confidence that people crave.
So, what is kill all others about? At first, it all seemed pretty straightforward as there was something terrible happening and Philbert and the others were trying to make everyone else aware, but? After a couple of views, it didn’t seem that way any longer. I think Philbert was pretty happy in his life till he started to wake up to reality and it was too much to deal with. My theory is that there are others out there that know exactly what is going on and keep their mouths shut to live in peace. When Philbert was with the counsellor, she asked him if he could see the sheep and he said no? At first, I thought it was a smart way to point out that they are all sheep. Later though, I think she was asking him if he knew the way things really work, you keep your mouth shut and life can simple. I guess I should back that up with some evidence but it was a scene with Lenny and Eddie that pointed this fact out. Lenny is in shock that Philbert is an other but Eddie says he is not but it’s his pool room that gives it away. Eddie’s basement is full of memories from a world that has gone, arcade machines and bar memorabilia. Eddie knows what’s going on and chooses to keep his mouth shut and play by the rules whilst still keeping his world, somewhat in the past. Unfortunately for Philbert, he is found hanging from a billboard when the episode ends.
I guess that pretty much sums life up in a nutshell. I have to admit, it was pretty difficult to write this one as I guess it makes you ask a lot of questions about your view on life. Am I doing enough or do I turn a blind eye to what I think is wrong in the world? I guess I think that I choose my battles well and make sure I have all the correct information I need to survive. I think it’s pretty sad that you have to live like that though. When I started my site, I just wanted to have the confidence to write about what I enjoy watching and reading, whilst learning about a genre that I have loved for such a long time. Thing is, the deeper I look into science-fiction, the more I feel like I’m learning so much about life and my place in the universe. I guess that is a good thing and I’m glad stories like this exist.
Well, that’s it for Electric Dreams and I have enjoyed the journey. I do have the original short stories that the series is based on and will also review those at some point. Take care and thank you for visiting. If you have any comments about kill all others, I would love to hear them as I think there is more to this story and I would love to learn more.