Friday, 24 October 2008

Reed Richards Is Brane Smart (2)

From Fantastic Four #542, written by Dwayne McDuffie, pencilled by Mike McKone inked by Andy Lanning & Cam Smith, with colours by Paul Mounts. Reed Richards explains to his former nemesis The Thinker (formerly Mad, now just extra pensive) why he helped create the Superhero Registration Act.







"That's all very interesting, Richards, interesting enough to give me a terrible headache. If anyone was going to be able to make something like this work it would be you. However, surely a plan like this only works in terms of determinism, which presupposes a closed system where you know all of the variables and can extrapolate from them. But what if there is a variable introduced from outside that closed system, something that you know nothing about, like, say, a long-planned and secret infiltration of our planet by shape-changing aliens. Like the Skrulls, perhaps. What about if something like that happened, or was already happening? I'm speaking of a hypothetical situation, of course. If something enters that system from outside, such as hundreds upon hundreds of Skrulls, all acting with an agenda that you have not factored into your equation, then perhaps your calculations are wrong, and there was no need for you to throw away our civil liberties in this way, as your calculations are utterly wrong. However, if your calculations are so complex and so far-reaching that you can take into account any and all possible variables, i.e. using the universe as your closed system and therefore making calculations for all matter that exists, then you would know about any future invasions of Earth and would be able to counteract them before they could cost the lives of millions of innocent humans, right?"

"SHUT UP MAD THINKER I AM SMARTER THAN YOU!"


(N.B. This is not a criticism of Dwayne McDuffie's short run as writer of Fantastic Four, as his work was superb, second this decade only to Mark Waid's run, but even though I loved his effort to prove Reed Richards is not just an reactionary dick as portrayed during Civil War, it might have worked better if he had been able to plan around Secret Invasion.)

1 comment:

Adams said...

"But what if there is a variable introduced from outside that closed system, something that you know nothing about, like, say, a long-planned and secret infiltration of our planet by shape-changing aliens."

Or like the fucking Mule, which wrecked the Foundation's own neat set of equations. Reed Richards, you are a bootleg Hari Seldon.