7.09.2011

YORI: Horror vacui


Something is happening because Disney created a vacuum. Out of the machine cometh a ghost, and with that, an old idea has become new again. Nature abhors a vacuum. In physics horror vacui is a theory first proposed by Aristotle in the Fourth book of Physics (or Physica) that nature abhors a vacuum, and therefore empty space would always be trying to suck in gas or liquids to avoid being empty.


TRON LEGACY had three major flaws in my opinion, and one of those flaws was not necessarily because YORI, LORA BAINES, nor Cindy Morgan were absent, and though it contained certain flaws, it still managed to shine in the face of them, and mean something, but with the absence of Yori/Lora Baines/Cindy Morgan, it essentially forces the issue. What happened to Yori? To Lora?


The first flaw was 3-D, and essentially because this may have lost them many viewers. I did not go to the theater to see TRON LEGACY, I bought it and watched it on DVD. I don't wish to be distracted while being absorbed in a story. When 3-D crap comes flying off the screen, it is only distracting from the story, by taking you and somehow giving you this artificial sense that something is 'three dimensional' or 'real' while you're sitting in a movie theater is a really bad idea from a storytelling sense. The second flaw was computer generated Jeff Bridges. It would have worked better if they only used that effect while inside the 'computer world,' and not in scenes at the beginning which are supposed to reflect 'reality' or normal life outside the Grid. It is somehow more believable inside the 'Grid' because these are, after all, computer generated people. The third flaw is character development of "TRON" and "QUORRA."


However, I do think this movie was even still good enough to survive, entertain, make people think and be 're-watchable' though it contained these obvious flaws. That is saying something. It is still the sort of movie one can watch again and again, for there are many other layers to it which are fascinating. It also brought "TRON" back into public consciousness, thus inspiring a massive amount of artwork, both audio and visual. The "Tron Phenomenon" is back, and is still lurking around. Who's still painting themselves blue because of Avatar? Anybody make Avatar Furniture? Anybody do Avatar Remixes?


The absence of Cindy Morgan however has done one thing in particular, and that is to magnify what her characters were, and what they represented in the original TRON movie. What Disney has done here is they've ignored something that really shouldn't

have been ignored, and though they have two more opportunities to explain, right now what matters is that we look at who YORI and LORA were in this crazy movie which has inspired so many people. In a way, by not developing 'TRON' or 'RINZLER' in TRON LEGACY, they have made people only more curious, they have in effect created a new 'Boba Fett.'


'Boba Fett' is a character created by Ralph McQuarrie for Star Wars, which barely appeared, but when he did, it made quite an impact, and so much so that Boba Fett is one of the major 'iconic' characters in Star Wars. His lack of dialogue, mystery and obscurity brought him to the forefront in ways that George Lucas had never really intended. "Rinzler" ends up with a motivationally flawed 'redemption' in terms of the story, but has captured the imaginations of many new TRON fans. The character has been the focus of countless speculations as to what happened to him and what will happen to him in future installments.


What is evident now, regarding "YORI" is that we have a character who, while the TRON story continues, is left in the shadows. Nature abhors a vacuum. The story of Lora and Alan, and Yori and Tron is yet to be told. But even more interesting is what can happen with a character after movies have come and gone, and to what status the public holds them, and what kind of icon they became, and still can become. When one looks at "YORI" one finds something interesting when placed into the context of the world of internet memes and pop-icons, mythological ideas. A meme spreads generally on its own, a 'viral video' is what it is because people will find it fascinating for whatever reasons, and though it takes some time for many of these things, others take no time at all. In this case, YORI's time hasn't fully come, but it is really just around the corner, and perhaps if DISNEY is smart, they will see just what is going on here.


YORI ended up in a void, probably because the young writers had no idea how to interpret YORI or what to do with the character, but possibly for other reasons, which no one can speculate on, but one thing YORI does represent is the currently unfulfilled potential of

the internet's "USERS" to take their inspiration from the TRON MOVIES, and fuse them intellectually with their own artistic talents and abilities. YORI in a literal context of the story, is a 'design program,' in an allegorical sense, the fulfillment of the USER to utilize the creativity, which may not have yet fully been explored. YORI is the element of 'chaos' inside the computer system, which ends up rebelling and overthrowing the status quo, aiding programs such as TRON, and FLYNN himself, in attaining true 'usefulness' of her technological application. This concept in TRON, is the 'meaning' of which the 'programs' seek. When they are cut off from their USERS by the MCP, they begin to act on their own. They retain some sort of echo or reverberation, and likeness of their creators, or Users. YORI gets TRON to his User, Alan One. Lora gets Alan to Flynn, so they can hack into the system. Lora gets Flynn into the Grid, in a way, and in a way, gets him to the beam, to get out. She is a means, and without her, our heroes would be still battling on the Grid against Sark.


Her integral 'usefulness' also plays on the idea of both what she is as a program, as well as who she is to these characters. Yori's creativity in her apartment in the deleted scene shows that she's standing up to the system to fulfill herself in one way, and this creativity by elaborate artistic decoration or expression, is also something by which TRON or the audience can have an admiration for, even romantically, as it is presented in the deleted scene. She isn't just a design program, she's a design-er. The value of this cannot be discounted, especially in the importance of defeating the tyranny represented by the MCP, but also it is important to responding to the terror of these new technologies we create. If we do not apply art to these things, not by designing them, but by examining them, by abstractly imagining something 'about' them, we will all fail miserably, and this technology will overtake us all.


We may need the spirit of Freedom and courage of Tron, and the cleverness and ingenuity of Flynn, but we will also need the Chaos of Yori. In Tron Legacy, because the roles become reversed to illustrate a point, that Tron and Clu have become evil, our creations have gotten away from us, they will hold us to the 'perfections' we demand of them, we would have probably seen Yori as the Chaos of destruction, and had they thought about it, they would have included her, as probably designing the weapons by which CLU would destroy the ISOs, however this is not particularly necessary, and by being the 'odd man out,' or woman in this case, YORI's chaos could very well have brought the ISOs into existence. I cannot write TRON 3, so I cannot tell you what they will do with the character, and I cannot tell the writers what to do with the character, but I can recommend what you can do with the character, and that is to see it for what it is.


Some may consider this whole idea, "a nerd's conceptual view of the world" with his silly cult film icons, catch-phrases and mythic symbols, but tell that to those guys who named the space program going to the moon, "Apollo." It is just the way things seem to happen. In this case, and perhaps even this site we're caught up in the Yori meme, maybe we're responsible for it, maybe not, but all we're saying is that there is something to this. Its there in the void, ready to be reached for, and it can happen and Chaos can then spread through the Grid.


Yori ends up being something particularly 'needed' at this time, and because this character isn't a cliche like Quorra, and represents something to us in our endeavor to understand technology and the world, acting as an Icon for these ideas, once people begin to grasp the significance, they will see, that even while TRON is still becoming an internet icon of freedom, Yori has another dimension to add, which is nowhere else to be seen, from any other cultural meme.


Yori not only 'Lives,' Yori's chaos will flow into this vacuum, and in this very odd way in which these things work, restore balance to the Grid.


3 comments:

  1. Cindy Morgan should return not only as Lora Baines, but Yori in the Grid as well, but an evolved Yori. She's now like a Queen or Goddess in the Grid. That over sees part of the World and has followers. That would be amazing!

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  2. I personally believe that the original conceit of the first film: That what we were seeing was the correlation of what the users where taking for granted in the "real world" and what the programs to seriously within their "system". As well as giving the programs distinct functions again. "The Grid" was only a part of the ENCOM *system* that connected the company users to it's intranet. In legacy the programs did not seem to have any other reason to be there besides being NPC's(non-playable characters) in Flynn's version of an MMORG. That should be "rectified" (pun intended). A missed opportunity would have been to see the program's realization after Flynn's first visit that he, in fact, was not some sort of deity. What we got, in my opinion, was a bunch of imagery that only superficially connects TRON (1982) to this movie. Gone virtually is the title character, Yori- who along with Flynn served as the first films emotional core and most if not all connections to a reason why Flynn would build this thing at all. There are others, but i hope these things will be addressed in the sequels and "Legacy" was just ironing out the kinks. YORI LIVES ROCKS!!!!

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  3. Yori's application has yet to be fully explored. There is new technology on the horizon which fits in perfectly with what Yori could be in a future film. And yes, it could almost be, a kind of hyper-icon. We shall see what happens here on this Grid first...

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