Invasive

One of the issues of Global Frequency that stood out to me was Invasive. One of the things that I liked from the series overall was having a new focal character in each issue. Even though there are core characters like Miranda and Aleph, introducing a new person each time allows for the story to veer in any direction. This type of writing style makes me call to mind The Sense of an Ending by Frank Kermode. A core argument in his writing is the idea that we should be satisfied with having our place in life in “the middle” rather than over analyzing what our connection could be to the beginning and end. In this sense, it lends well to the writing style of Ellis because we are presented with a new character each time without introduction or explanation of what this person has experienced in life. We are ultimately given an ending to the plot of the comic but not necessarily an ending for the character.

Reading a narrative through the form of a comic is a new experience for myself personally. Initially I found the format to be a little underwhelming in not allowing gathering great detail from the text like that of a typical novel. However, after spending some time with Global Frequency I was finally able to draw most of the meaning and intention of from the artwork. In most cases I was able to understand a follow the story before even reading the spoken passages from the characters. Having a comic format to present a narrative was a tremendous aid for this issue in particular. The plot was that an alien virus was infecting people and causing them to bleed from the eyes. Without mentioning that a virus is endangering others, you can clearly see from the artwork that people are becoming ill somehow. Another aspect about Invasive that stood out to me was when the virus was being referenced to as a meme. A meme is an idea that spreads and becomes infectious on the Internet. The use of this word shortens the bridge in my mind of what it means to be human or what it means to become a machine.

In terms of Global Frequency in a bigger picture there are some aspects that I find interesting. The Internet, and modern technologies allow for the whole world to be connected, in this case, via cell phone. It makes me think, with that level of hyper connectivity the ability to stay anonymous is pretty incredible. Also, when the mayor had to turn away the media from the situation that was occurring is a definite correlation to news coverage in today’s society. The public has to know everything the moment it occurs and there is little concern over privacy when it comes to getting the story on camera. Lastly, this comic series goes to show how modern technology is able to unite total strangers in order to do some good for the world. Within seconds we are connected with people across the globe that share common interests and without the use of this technology it would be hard for the Global Frequency to even exist.

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4 Responses to Invasive

  1. ideasbylocke says:

    I could not agree more with you regarding the importance of the artwork. The first time I read through Global Frequency I didn’t pay much attention to the detail of the illustrations, but more to their “first glance” appearance. While studying the artwork more carefully, I noticed the increased detail that was given to character personalities, plot and themes. This extra detail given through illustrations is very important for me when attempting to understand exactly what Ellis is attempting to convey.

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  2. cso9 says:

    First and foremost, I had also found the point of view to be a prominent factor in Global Frequency. When I had first begun reading it, I was under the impression that Aleph was going to be the main character. As I had continued unto the next chapters, I realized that I was mistaken, and that not only did was I able to learn more about her, I could discover the perspectives of Miranda, Stav Bursik, Lana Kennedy, and countless others. (To be honest, I did not know Aleph was female until later chapters, honest mistake.) I feel that this style of writing offers a more well-rounded understanding of the book, particularly the characters’ actions and their roles in Global Frequency as a whole.

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  3. aminoacid2020 says:

    I can relate to reading a graphic novel for the first time and becoming mesmerized with the format and attention to detail that the images provided to the overall narrative. I agree with your ideas about how technology has the capability to connect strangers and their lives together; which is paradoxical to the fact that people try to keep their lives private in a way. I thought you had some really good beginnings to ideas in your first and last paragraphs, but I wished you would’ve provided more detail or specific examples. I got the drift of where your thought process was headed but i wasn’t entirely sure of what specific parts of Invasive you were referring to or had the most connection to. For example, you first said that you liked how Invasive introduced new characters to the overall storyline, but what about those characters and which characters spoke most to you? Also I wished you would have elaborated more on your thoughts about Kermode’s argument in relation to Invasive, although I do agree with how the novel randomly introduces characters with no background story. For me, this is very much like real life; you meet people, don’t know anything about them initially (or never have the opportunity to know), yet it doesn’t even matter in most situations. At first this can be a very uncomfortable feeling while reading but I think that Ellis does a phenomenal job at keeping the audience engaged and like Kermode, keeps the audiences’ thoughts in the present ‘middle’ instead of worrying about the beginning or ending of the scene and/or novel.

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  4. I think you’ve misinterpreted some of the reading from Kermode. If you look at the text carefully, he doesn’t argue that we should be satisfied with having our place in medias res. He doesn’t really describe satisfaction or displeasure about the “middest,” just that humans just arrive on the scene in the “middest.” Kermode also finds great importance in analyzing how we look at the end of humanity and encourages careful examination throughout his chapter “The End.” Also, I think your argument is somewhat unfocused. When I’m reading your post, what I’m seeing are just observations without more deliberate analysis. I like that you specifically bring up the meme, but it feels like an afterthought rather than a conclusion. You could’ve really elaborated on it and used Heidegger’s “The Question Concerning Technology” to closely look at how Ellis is using the meme and its spreading infection to discuss humans and technology. A lot of your comments seem general and vague rather than specific and detailed. In an argument, you need to bolster your thoughts with specific moments, not sweep over the texts on a wide scale. If you want to talk more about this blog assignment or the next one, feel free to email me (gjk20@pitt.edu) or talk to me after lecture. I’m always happy to discuss what we’re reading in class!

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