Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Surrogates

Imagine a world where you didn't have to be you. One where you could look like whatever you wanted to, be whoever you wanted to without fear of repercussions. You could be instantly thin or instantly beautiful with no surgery involved.  This concept is the basic premise of Surrogates, which I watched a couple of nights ago on Netflix.  Admittedly, I selected the movie and expected your standard Bruce Willis action movie with lots of gun fights and explosions. It delivered at least a few of those things, but it left me feeling a little unsettled.

More after the break

Let's take World of Warcraft as an example, you log in, you have an avatar and you control that avatar. You decide whether you want to be a jerk or whether you want to be kind.  You can try on personalities and qualities that you might not portray in your day-to-day life.  Are you timid and shy by day? You can be loud and obnoxious by night in World of Warcraft! This is essentially what Surrogates felt like to me, World of Warcraft for the real world.

The thing about Surrogates that bothered me the most was the "instantly thin" idea. It can be likened to the insane desire of so many who want quick fixes to their weight problems. Quick fixes only fix the cosmetic portion of the issue, but leave the root cause completely untouched.  Most people, myself included, got fat for a reason.  If we don't attempt to discern that reason and learn from our pasts, we're bound to repeat it.  Weight problems are never easy and are rarely a simple issue.  It takes hard work, dedication, perseverance, and a lot of self reflection.