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Video: Live-Action Deus Ex Commercial Has A Creepy Touch

You already knew the plot for Deus Ex: Human Revolution was going to bring a touch of the transhumanist into the modern shooter era. With the terseness between protagonist Adam Jensen and the controversial augmentation technology already played upon in this trailer, it's hard to avoid smelling some sort of betrayal creeping about halfway through the game.

Which is probably what drives the slightly unsettling music and camera angles in this brand-new, fully-augmented, live-action commercial for Serif Industries that you see above. Marvel as a young woman plays piano with robot hands! A hiker with too-perfect green eyes captures a sunset with a thought and sends it to his partner's smartphone! Then, watch as a father innocently throws a football to his son--just as the minor chords kick in and everything goes into sickening slow motion! What could this mean for our families?!

If the marketing's message is any indication, it's that transcending humanity with technology is a sin, no matter how much your company's name sounds like 'angel.' It's especially strange that the developments so far seem to make a case for Jensen overthrowing this industry giant, but given that Human Revolution is a prequel, we know all too well that augmentations aren't going away anytime soon in the Deus Ex universe. We'll have to wait and find out in August whether Jensen can affect the future.

Regardless of your position on the science of human augs, this commercial must've cost a pretty penny more than most game trailers, so enjoy the view! (Also, who's hoping this leads to some sort of Deus Ex ARG?)

8 Comments

Benwa said:

OK so I read a lot of Ray Kurzweil and he has said this will come to Humans. At first we'll bring it to the deaf and blind and once it is excepted AND perfected regular humans will start to use them to increase our abilities. This is happening now within the deaf and blind, so I for one can't wait! TRANSCEND ME PLEASE!

matty said:

*ahem*
If youre a upperclass wasp, you'll get it before 'regular' humans xD

Pauwow said:

This reminds me a lot to that "Umbrella Corporation, Our Business is... life itself" advertisement.

Splash Chick said:

You miss the point of science fiction. Sci-fi is not there to tell us what is wrong or what is right, it is to show us the possibilities of human advancement should it be taken and used carelessly. Deus Ex is not about how human augmentation is wrong, it's about elitism and the separation of classes being exasperated USING human augmentation. It is about corruption of the higher classes and government to the point where they no longer care about the lower classes, but crave only power for themselves. Gattaca showed us the pitfalls of bigotry and prejudice through the medium of genetic modification. Minority Report showed us the dangers of reliance on technology, showing people being jailed merely because a technology predicted they would commit a crime.

These stories are not about human augmentation, or genetic modification, or premonition. They're about elitism, corruption, bigotry, ignorance, reliance, and fear. They are not about technology that doesn't yet exist, they are about humanity. That is what science fiction is about.

Caracticus said:

Very eloquent comment, Splash Chick!

Super Swede said:

I second the praise of Splash Chick. Well said!

It's an interesting thing to ponder: a future in which class privilege, particularly family dynasties, is attained not merely through conventional means (access to superior education, growing up in a secure and prosperous community, the material means to pursue one's ventures, etc.) but one in which superiority can essentially be bought -- and as matty mentioned, the well-off will undoubtedly have access to what will initially be extraordinarily expensive technology. To this end, the workings of class structure find themselves fundamentally altered.
To break it down to the simplicity to which we have come to understand it, class is no longer dependent on one's cleverness, drive, ingenuity, etc. -- qualities that allow a small, but not altogether insignificant, trend of social mobility -- in the face of theoretical technologies that bolster the speed, capacity, creativity, and general limits of the human mind, those at the bottom are relegated to their station not merely because they are naturally "inferior;" in fact, they cannot be anything but. This of course leads neatly into the question of power structures, and whether the advantages to which a field like human augmentation (despite its prospects for lucrative business ventures) would ever truly compel those in privileged positions to bring this synthetic evolution to the masses, or whether the shared common interest of those at the top, given their artificial superiority to your "natural" humans, would compel them to hoard such innovations for their own benefit. Even if they were to bring augmentation to the marketplace, the latest cutting-edge technology, and thus the latest "upgrade" to the human form, would find itself first in the hands of those who could afford it, effectively giving the privileged a perpetual advantage over the competition -- i.e., the lower classes.

Then again, maybe not. In any event, it's absolute intellectual masturbation, which is why I adore Deus Ex.

-end tangent-

Splash Chick said:

intellectual masturbation

o___________O

Super Swede said:

ha, it's a term i heard bandied about once, and i found it rather charming.

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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