W2 Commentary: Just Desserts

When Nemo realized he couldn’t keep eating people’s fingers in polite company, he retired above the clouds where he can peacefully practice devotion to the Biggest Bird. Leo follows him to the clouds seeking ‘freedom,’ but doesn’t realize the sacrifices required since his notion of freedom includes immunity from, and power over, all exterior forces. Leo trusts the invisible hand of the free market to buoy him to this lofty, impossible position. Nemo perverts this trust by goading Leo into eating his fingers, softening his ego for consumption. Who can Leo blame but himself? No one controls him, least of all the quadriplegic Nemo. Leo demonstrates his power by self-destructing. In his fervor to prove himself, his own body-parts join the out-group of entities acceptable to destroy—nay, demanding destruction.

O2 commentary: Adam, Eve, and Quetzalcoatl

Nemo’s a pretty good dad considering he’s only a day old: he immediately teaches his children his own name, their own names, and how to eat apples and peel oranges. He even investigates a dangerous invader to keep his children safe—it’s a disembodied arm with two elbows, a mouth, and an eye, and it crawls along the ground like a snake.

In my commentary to M1. The Fall I promised comparisons to Milton’s Paradise Lost, the epic poem about how Satan made a cannon to kill God. The islands Akayama builds become Sheridan, a twist on the Garden of Eden.