The live-action re-interpretation of Ghost in the Shell hit cinemas last week and now we’ve all had a chance to see it (what do you mean you haven’t seen it yet? Go away now because spoilers), let’s talk about the burning questions we need answered. How many more cyborgs are there out there? Was Major actually Asian all along? Is Kuze ‘dead’ or has he just been uploaded to the Cloud? I try to answer all this and more below.
1. Just how many cyborgs like Major are there?
We know that Major was not the first because of Kuze, but we also know that there were many ‘experiments’ before Major because Dr. Ouelet told her so when she confronted her. It’s a safe bet that a lot of them never made it past the operating table, especially in the early stages, but if Kuze survived what was done to him and even managed to escape, who’s to say that there aren’t more out there? And given Major’s reaction to finding out about her ‘siblings’ it wouldn’t be a stretch for her to want to find out what happened to them, would it? If we get a sequel, perhaps it will see Major seeking out other cyborgs and helping them reclaim their lost lives.
2. Will Major return to work for Section 9?
Something tells me that Major won’t be too keen on returning to work for District 9 now she knows that her ‘memories’ of her family dying in a terrorist attack are fake. Having said that, her skills (like the fact that she’s nearly indestructible) make her the perfect weapon so I can’t really see her working in a kitchen either. Perhaps Major will continue to fight crime in her own way by seeking out those responsible for what happened to her and her friends (don’t tell me Cutter was working alone) or maybe she could even lead a cyborg revolution?
3. Where is Kuze now?
I know it looks like he died but given the fact he was connected to the internet and he asked Major to go to a ‘special place’ with him, I think there’s a strong possibility that Kuze uploaded himself online before his cyborg body was completely destroyed. This would be more in line with his original anime storyline which saw him infect the internet without actually ever taking physical form. Something tells me we haven’t seen the last of Kuze.
4. Is Major actually Asian then?
Unless you’ve been living under a rock somewhere you can’t have failed to notice the controversy surrounding the casting of Scarlett Johansson as Major, a Japanese character in the original anime and manga. Quite rightly, Johansson and director Rupert Sanders have been dealing with accusations of whitewashing from day one, but the movie actually revealed that Major was Asian all along when she is reunited with her Mother. We even see a young (Asian) Major being kidnapped in a flashback which would seem to confirm that it’s simply her Shell that appears Caucasian. So, does this make her Asian? I honestly don’t know, but it does lead us onto another question…
5. Why would Major’s Shell be Caucasian at all?
Even if it is just Major’s Shell that is Caucasian, why would Dr. Ouelet and her team create Caucasian Shells when the brains they’re using come from Japanese citizens and the movie itself is set in Japan? Well, the obvious answer is that Dr. Ouelet herself is Caucasian and so she created Major in her own image, but this does also raise the question of why the majority of the cast aren’t Asian despite the Japanese setting. You could argue that Sanders intentionally created a futuristic setting which sees the world as more of an international melting pot… but you could also argue that the studio just felt an all-Asian cast wouldn’t have made much money.
6. Is Ghost in the Shell 2 in the works?
As with any blockbuster, as soon as it’s released, questions start over whether they’ll be a sequel or not. However, as with any blockbuster, it usually depends on how well the movie performs at the box office on whether it will get that sequel, and Ghost in the Shell hasn’t done that well. I did ask Sanders if he had any plans to work on another Ghost movie and his answer was optimistic: “I think the Ghost universe is vast and infinite, and I think if people like the story… relate to the story and want to see more then [yes].”