PART TWO of my Article 5 Commentary. Part One is here: https://racheliliffe.wordpress.com/2015/05/28/article-5-are-you-going-to-scarborough-fair-part-i/
Half way through!
Chase believes the ratter-outer to be a guy called Tucker Morris, one of the arrester-Embers from Chapter One who she scratched in the face. He explains their history together, how they met in basic training and Tucker was rebellious and a troublemaker; which makes Ember immediately think that she may have had the wrong opinion of him, and start to form a more favourable one of him than she has of Chase!
That’s gratitude for you!
Anyway, Tucker gradually got crazier and crazier, taking his sexual frustrations of not being allowed to see his girlfriend out on everyone else in fighting matches (well, that’s what I inferred anyway) and Scarborough Fair’s administration thought this made him a BRILLIANT prospect for leadership.
And so they started torturing him in the hopes that this would help his leadership skills. GREAT PLAN GUYS!
Ember immediately comes to the conclusion that Tucker and Chase were jealous of each other (?!?), weirdness ensues, Chase gets da fuk out, and Ember has another flashback to them talking about how his family got killed in a car accident. She mills about wondering if he’s been faithful to her while being a soldier, and then he returns with some baddies in hot pursuit, of him and their contact!
The contact gets killed while Chase and Ember hide in the closet (symbolism? Chase does get weird when talking about Tucker…) until the baddies leave and Ember blames herself for… existing. What an egomaniac! Chase tells her they may need to consider the reality of the situation, causing Ember to flip out, which apparently makes it the best time for Chase to whine about his problems. Ember is filled with shame—she hadn’t considered that Chase might have problems!
… except for all the times she did…
Then Ember finally remembers Rebecca and Sean, and Chase tells her that Sean’s probably screwed. Maybe Ember forgot about Rebecca after all, because she doesn’t bother asking about her.
Then there’s a huddling together for warmth scene, yay.
Chase has a nightmare, which makes Ember feel so sorry for him that she immediately forgives and trusts him completely. What. An. Idiot.
Especially since a second later she wakes him and he tries to strangle her. Like I want to.
Tender moments ensue, and Chase and Ember meander about for a few more days then come across a farmer facing off with some thieves. Ember continues her streak of stupid by getting herself and Chase involved and almost getting a bunch of people shot. She tries to get Chase to stop beating up the thief, until the thief hurts his arm, and then decides to root for Chase instead.
What. An. Idiot.
Anyway, the thieves RUN AWAY, and the farmer invites them inside and Ember complains about the fake name Chase gives because apparently only redheads can be called Elizabeth. I don’t know…
Ember then assumes the family are super-rich because they have a generator. Generators must be the sports cars of Article 5-Land, even though loads of people have them these days and Scarborough Fair is supposedly only like ten years away. Anyway, the farmers say they’ll drive them to where they’re going in the morning, and Ember decides to celebrate her newfound trust in Chase by rifling through his things.
She finds he’s got a ton of cash and a copy of ‘Frankenstein’, which was her favourite novel or something, prompting a flashback to Chase saying ‘Frankenstein’ isn’t girly enough for girls to be reading it. I’d point out that Frankenstein was written by a girl… but I have to agree with Chase’s skepticism in regards to Ember having read it. Or being able to read.
However, instead of the pages of Frankenstein, the book is filled with the deed to Chase’s house and a bunch of love letters from Ember. Wangsting ensues.
Ember gets the feeling that the farmers aren’t as nice as they seem, and we all know how great her intuition is, so she steals some food from them. On the radio they hear about La Resistance, and Ember thinks about how EVIL the government is and how they’d be better off without curfews, and statutes, and no-go zones, and reform schools.
Uh, maybe not without those things entirely, Ember. Just not the ones you have now.
Chase angsts over how if Ember hadn’t gotten them involved he could have just let the farmer’s child get killed, and tells Ember he’s afraid that she’s the only thing keeping him human.
She responds to his soulful confession by saying she’s ‘sorry she’s ruining his fun’.
Ember… just never speak again, okay?
But never mind that, the farmers are turning them into to da fuzz because they heard a random story on the radio that could have been about anyone. Chase tells Ember to go on ahead, giving her the kiss of twu wuv, and Ember decides to turn the generator off to cause a distraction, and they steal the farmer’s bike and escape.
The escape doesn’t last long though, because da fuzz is on their tail (or at least I assume they are, because the last time this happened… well, nothing actually happened).
And sure enough… nothing happens.
Anyway, Chase tells Ember he hit a soldier on his way out, and Ember is worried that this might get them in trouble!
WHY NO BRAIN, EMBER?
That’s it. I’m coming up with a new shelf for you—we’ve had personality free protagonists in spades, but you are a brain free protagonist. New shelf; make it so!
Anyway, Ember then slaps Chase for no reason, leading to a discussion of their wuv. Chase had been under the impression that Ember had a thing for Sean the soldier, and Ember refuses to tell him otherwise. Chase then thanks her for saving his life by causing that distraction at the farm. What a doormat.
They then come across a pair who Ember knows with her stunning intuition are twins, and the girl twin is ‘at least six months pregnant’ because Ember is apparently also a long-range midwife. Ember immediately dislikes her for looking at Chase, but they kindly point them in the direction of Knoxville; so there’s more of Ember’s intuition at work.
Apparently La Resistance is hanging out in Knoxville, where we learn that Scarborough Fair also hates poor people, because even though he feeds them he makes volunteers distribute the food so he and his boyz don’t have to get too close.
Then there’s a riot and Ember is separated from Chase, and gets picked up by a soldier who knows her name!
(My moneys on the soldier secretly being with La Resistance).
… and the soldier is Sean!
Huh, didn’t think we’d see him again. Also he’s part of La Resistance now, so I won that bet. He’s in town because it’s where they hold prisoners like Rebecca before trial… right in the middle of the rebels’ stronghold? Wow, they’re dumb.
Sean takes them to a secret hideout, run by a guy called Wallace, so Ember can feel ‘violated’ when she’s patted down for weapons. Wallace has a ‘head shaped like a can’, apparently, so how he hasn’t been caught by now with such distinguishing features I have no idea.
Wallace doesn’t trust them, which bothers Ember, because how dare someone not trust her! She snipes for a few pages and eventually Wallace agrees to send them on to South Carolina, probably just glad to be rid of them. Sean asks after Rebecca and Ember proclaims her a friend, which is rich coming from her, but Sean doesn’t blame Ember for what happened because I guess he’s an idiot too.
Ember feels it’s about time she has a stupid freakout so she and Chase can have a wuvvy duvvy moment, and then she can tell him to piss off as soon as done protecting her. What a bitch!
And somehow this leads to twu wuv again! WTF!?
Then Sean and Wallace reveal that anyone who violates Article 5 is executed, which doesn’t surprise me, but for some reason does surprise Ember, even though she should be used to Scarborough Fair’s crazy ideas.
Ember throws a hissy fit, and yet it’s only after that that Chase reveals poor old mum has been Dead All Along. What a twist.
It turns out the Scarborough Fair troops graduated from the School of Dumb, and train their men by making them murder their former friends. They wanted to break Chase by bringing him along to the arrest (break him from what I don’t know) and then they ordered him to kill mummy because they didn’t like how he reacted, and said they’d kill Ember if he didn’t.
And even then it was his CO who killed mum, not Chase. Sad tiems.
As you might have guessed, Ember beats Chase up for this, but then realises it’s just what her mother’s abusive boyfriend would have done and stops. Wow—that’s actually a fair comparison in a way. But she still blames him for her mother’s death, what a surprise.
Then Ember leaves the safety of the compound and gets immediately picked up by da real fuzz, who take her off to prison.
What. An. Idiot. I mean, I know she’s in breakdown mode and all, but still, what an idiot.
Tucker randomly shows up to say he’s going to make her clean some floors before they execute her, (the bastard!), and Ember proclaims him ‘even worse than Chase’. Seriously, Ember, after everything Chase has done… you know what, fuck it, this’ll just be a straight recap until the end of the chapter.
Ember and a woman called Delilah clean stuff, until Ember realises part of the prison has adopted the Delirium-Land method of security by way of not having any security, and she may as well leave and give Wallace some info about the prison.
But she’ll need to come up with a cunning plan…
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Ember and Cunning in the same sentence!
Okay, Tucker has been tortured into insanity and he belongs to the crack troops of Scarborough Fair, so perhaps they’re evenly matched. She asks Tucker if Rebecca’s been executed yet, and he says that under Article 7 of the badly written villains code, that information can only be given if accompanied by sexual assault, and Ember decides she doesn’t care about Rebecca that much.
Then when he locks her in her cell for the night, she realises for no apparent reason that Chase actually isn’t responsible for all the evil in the world, and that she does care about Rebecca that much after all, so Tucker gets a kiss and tells her that Rebecca’s in Chicago, while Ember accuses him of having a thing for Chase, so maybe my earlier remarks were more accurate than I’d intended.
Also, since Tucker’s a moron, he doesn’t notice Ember steal a handgun. But sadly, Ember’s master plan is thwarted by the fact that Chase has now been captured too. Oh noes!
Well, Chase has been beaten to a pulp, and done so on purpose, ready to sacrifice his life to atone for his many sins of rescuing Ember and protecting her from harm, but since Ember loves him again they can’t do that.
So she pulls her gun out on Delilah, ties her up and walks out the door with Chase. And it was that easy.
Until Tucker comes running up the hill after his one true love, of course. I guess he’s supposed to be the main villain of the book, so that makes this The Final Battle.
Then Tucker reveals it was actually him who shot Ember’s mother, because why not? Are these the shades of Drina and Raven I see before me? Anyway, Ember threatens him with the gun and Tucker caves, letting them go free to join La Resistance without any Battle, what a dumb conclusion.
An entirely pointless chapter, tacked on to the conclusion for no apparent reason. The End.
Well, I’m tallying up the results and it looks like King Dumbass from ToG is still the most competent evil dictator on the show. Scarborough Fair comes in at a close second though, which shouldn’t be all that surprising, given his competition.
Actually, come to think of it, the morons from XIV, while having some really stupid ideas, didn’t do anything that would sabotage themselves nearly as much as Article 5 does, so I guess that puts Scarborough Fair in third. Oh well, at least he can still lord it over the Delirium-landers and ‘Our Saviour Greg’!