In this issue: Everything from Halloween costumes to Fate are discussed in this issue of the Major Spoilers Podcast.


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  1. I hate the concept of fate almost as much as I hate the concept of secret societies running the world. I know people, smart, educated people who believe beyond the shadow of a doubt that the Franc-Maçon run the hip hop industry. Kids who spend long hours listening to music not for fun but to look for hidden messages that prove their favorite rapper is an illuminaty and such, Hell I once had a discussion with a kid convinced that Michael Jackson was killed by the secret society running the world because he was a Franc-Maçon. What bugs me about this and other conspiracy theories out there, which brings me back to the idea of fate, is that these kids use this concepts as crutches to explain why they can never achieve anything: “the secret society doesn’t want our people to succeed”, “The gays and jews who run Hollywood will never allow a none jew or gay to be a big hit” (and much worse) “what’s the point to fight our governments bad decisions, it’s the secret society that tell them what to do anyway”.

    On the subject of cyborgs, a manga I love Gunmm based in the futur where people in the lower city (dumps) have all sorts of mechanical enhancement to the point of full cyborg bodies with human brains in them is normal, but what I found fantastic was the revelation that the people of the high society (living in their own city above the sky) are human who have their brains surgicaly removed and replaced with a chip that has all their memories and emotional paterns inscribed in them. Makes neithr fully human, yet both human very much human at the same time.

    Ghost in the Shell SAC is also an interesting take on what makes a human, many are still flesh and blood on the outside but most have a “cyber brain” which allows them to connect themselves to electronic devices and dive into the net among other things. The main character has had a cyber body since she suffered an accident that left her paralysed and killed her parents, she’s basicaly just a consciousness in a female robot frame that has matured since infancy in disposable bodies, yet she is human and considered as such by all.

  2. litanyofthieves on

    Small side note, Johnny Mnemonic is William Gibson, not Philip K. Dick. But seriously, this was a great saturday show, I really enjoy them.

    Halloween is my absolute favorite holiday, and I have many memories from the years. I enjoy halloween as an adult too, though since I’m a wierdo I don’t need a specific excuse to dress in a costume, especially what with comic cons and all that.

    Personally, I don’t believe in predetermination, but I am definitely a hardcore determinist – I believe that every choice we make is influenced by so many subconscious desires and prejudices we aren’t even consciously aware of, so “free will” in the purest sense doesn’t exist, but it does exist in the sense that we can consciously shape what is to come to the best of our knowledge.

  3. Blackthunder01 on

    I don’t know where the line between Cyborg and human are being drawn here. I have metal fillings in my teeth. Am I a cyborg? I doubt we’ll ever be at a place where we can pop on and off limbs and organs and replace them with machinery. I’m a man who was married to a woman with titanium rods and screws in her body and an uncle who has a leg amputation near the hip and a father with a leg amputation below the knee and a glass eye (and his name is Bill so yes we call him One Eyed Willy and joke about buying him a parrot). That being said, the one thing that all of them have in common is how they all tell me how their bodies are rejecting foriegn objects (internal and external) and cause them trouble. Recently in work, a coworker’s father-in-law was in the hospital in a medically induced comma with a tube put down into his lungs to breathe for him. This tube had to be removed after so many days because of the threat of infection and really nasty diseases.

    Mankind and machinery do not currently live peacefully together. At best, we are tricking our bodies into not over reacting towards a foriegn presence in us. At some point, the trick stops to fool and we have what doctors call “complications”. Then we try a new trick. … … … sorry to drop reality on the fantasy.

    But back to the fantasy element of things, this weekend I was at a dinner with Vic Mignogna who is best known for voicing Edward Elric in the popular anime FullMetal Alchemist. The character of Ed Elric is a boy who performed a tabooed alchemy with his brother to ressurect their mother and lost his right arm and left leg in the process (his brother lost his whole body and had his soul bound to a suit of armor). Edward had his arm and leg replaced with a type of prosthetic called automail. It’s because of these metal limbs, he was granted the surname “Full Metal”. Throughout the show we see many different characters with replacements. A girl in Rush Valley with 2 legs that are probably the most well built in the world but have no bells and whistles to them, a man who’se arm was grafted into a gun (not Barret from FF7), and a guy with two giant hulking arms that he uses to hustle arm wrestling matches. The most interesting of course is Edwards arm. Because Ed is an alchemist, he is constantly performing alchemy on his metal arm for combat advantage. His trade mark is usually creating a giant blade that comes from the back of the wrist.

    The concept of amputation and regaining a whole body is the driving force of their adventures. There are many discussions where Alphonse (the brother; “Al”) can no longer feel the sensations of hot and cold … or touch. He is alive as a suit of armor that neither eats, sleeps or feels and all he has is his memories to remind him that he’s human. I think if you guys watched this show, it could/would open up a whole new area of discussion for this subject. The fact that i think it’s the single most incredible show ever created has nothing to do with it. :)

  4. After listening to the Fate podcast, I had to pipe up about the artificial heart Rodrigo mentioned. I think you’re talking about the LVAD, left ventricular assist device. Many people that have it have no pulse or blood pressure because it pumps the blood in a steadier flow than a regular heart does. We talked about this and other devices because we were planning what to do with patients in the event of a power outage. The LVAD is nice but it needs either batteries or a wall plug in at all times.
    Hey, maybe the manufactures of the LVAD could put in a port to charge an iPod as you’re charging up your batteries? It would relieve some boredom at least.

  5. This is one of my all time favourite shows. There’s a ton of real thought provoking discussions that take place, and you guys give the subjects the respect they deserve.

    Halloween is my favourite holiday too… I love walking around the neighbourhood and seeing all the cool decorations people have put up. One day when I have a house of my own, I’m going to go nuts decorating for Halloween. As for costumes, I tend to stick with the same costume for a few years, until my tastes change and I try something else. The past 10 years or so, I’ve done anime characters… everything from Yuugi to Tuxedo Mask. This year, I want to do a Matt Smith Doctor costume… Don’t have the legs for Amy Pond.

    I am an absolutely fierce Determinist. I’m an Agnostic, so I believe that there is a G-person in the sky. The metaphor I use to explain my concept of free will is a 24 hour grocery store late at night. A customer comes to the checkout lanes and checks the first few lanes and doesn’t find anyone, then she the next cash has someone working there so she chooses to go to that cashier. Now, as it turns out, she went to the only cash that was open… so she didn’t really have a choice but to go to that cashier. But as far as the customer is aware of, she made a choice. I think that free will is very much the same kind of thing. Free will is an illusion, but we don’t have all the information necessary to realize it. So for us, we make a choice, but in the grand scheme of things we had no other option. But that’s not the same thing as saying that free will does not exist… the illusion of free will is there for a reason, to keep Nihilistic ideas from gaining too much traction.

    The topic of amputation and cyborgs was also a very interesting discussion, but for a different reason… it touches on a similar train of thought as why I am uncomfortable with organ donation. To me, if I donated a kidney (for example) I wouldn’t be… me in a sense. Now I know that’s a somewhat horrible thing to believe because organ donation saves a lot of lives, but for some reason, I just can’t shake that believe that I want to die with all the parts I was born with.

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