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    • CommentAuthorNakedCelt
    • CommentTimeJun 11th 2010 edited
    @longtimelurker: What @~lis said. No real-world instance of cannibalism has ever involved the practitioner detaining and provisioning the victim. Meat is wasteful, resource-wise. Typically about 90% of what you put in is wasted; it takes 1 tonne of feed to make 100kg of meat. We can keep other animals for meat economically because they eat things we can't -- grass, rubbish, human waste; it's a method of turning non-food into food. A "baby farm" would be a method of turning food into less food, and anyone who tried it in a post-apocalyptic situation would starve quickly.

    EDIT: And, @bobsyuncle: I'm certainly not asking for eating babies to "be made somehow more horrifying". For the vast majority of the time, FreakAngels is a thoroughly absorbing story, one I can completely "believe" on a visceral level. As in, my "willing suspension of disbelief" takes zero effort. The baby farm bit spoiled that for a moment: it yanked my horror lever too hard and broke it off.
    • CommentAuthorGraizur
    • CommentTimeJun 11th 2010
    You say case closed. So case is closed. Too bad the characters never gave the girl a chance to speak. At all. Not even a whisper. But since the God of the freakangels universe says it's case closed then it's case closed. Wow. Never thought I would get such a clear image.
  1.  (8362.103)

    You are using non-fictional evidence to disprove what people would do after a fictional time-and-space-changing event. You could just as easily say STAR TREK's not possible because warp speed can't go faster than light. That's fine. But is STAR TREK really ABOUT whether warp speed is possible, or is it a story about people in unique, never-seen-before situations, and how they deal with them? That's how I approach it.


    You're remembering the scene wrong. It was actually LUKE who didn't give that girl much chance to talk, not even to introduce herself. The author is simply letting us know that there isn't more to the scene than what we saw on the page.

    Luke has his fans. So did Lono in 100 BULLETS. A villain is a hero who crosses the line.
    • CommentAuthorNakedCelt
    • CommentTimeJun 14th 2010
    @longtimelurker: Telepathy and psychic powers aren't possible either (Luke's babble about "electromagnetic fields" is a load of hooey; the mind is a dynamic information-structure), but you won't hear a complaint about them from me, because -- like warp drives in Star Trek -- they're part of the set-up. I accept that the FreakAngels' world, like the Star Trek universe, has rules that are different from ours. However, fantasy should be an inspiration, not an excuse. There's a difference between presenting telepathy and psychic powers as something new and strange to be investigated, as FreakAngels does, and presenting an impossible situation as if it was the sort of thing one could naturally expect, as with the "baby farm".
    Put it this way. Suppose we were to introduce, as a fantasy premise, the idea that humans could genuinely be domesticated for food. A good science fiction story should then follow up on that premise. What does it imply about the local biology and physics? Either that pregnant women in this world draw sustenance magically from the air and earth or some such, or that in this world you can break the laws of thermodynamics and get something out of nothing.
    In the latter scenario, the question still applies -- if you can break the laws of thermodynamics, why do you need to eat babies? For that matter, why do you need to eat anything? The whole horror of the post-apocalyptic situation vanishes, because there's no reason why people should be in poverty.
    The magic-pregnancy scenario could make a promising fantasy setup, although it jars somewhat with the gritty hard-science feel of FreakAngels. But you would have to draw it out, play with it, explore its implications, as has in fact been done with the FreakAngels' powers.
    I suppose you could imagine a ghastly other-world where human flesh is a delicacy and humans can be farmed economically because their meat brings such high prices. But such cannibalism would be a symptom of decadence, not desperation. Jeffrey Dahmer, who might be seen as an exception to my claim above that no-one has "ever" detained and provisioned human victims for food, was getting something out of it other than sustenance (namely, sexual satisfaction).
  2.  (8362.105)
    Wow. Never thought I would get such a clear image.

    Yeah, we all got a pretty clear image of you, too.