BioShock Infinite 22: How To Make A Songbird

In which we turn a giant clock, visit the first of several medical institutions and find ourselves confronted with a sudden yet inevitable betrayal.

We’re at the top of Fink’s tower, and we need to find a secret laboratory. I have a strong feeling that we need to go down.
On our way we see Fitzroy meeting the Luteces, who are very clear about what happens next: “You wont see the end of this”. Someone will enter as a girl but has to leave as a woman – if this seems to be a twist on the “you’re not a man until you kill someone”-narrative to you, you’re totally right. Fitzroy never intended to harm the young Fink during the events of the main game. She had to make it seem like there is no choice but to kill her for Elisabeth. So, the Luteces made Fitzroy threaten a child she never wanted to kill to trick Elisabeth into slaughtering Fitzroy for personality development. What the fuck.
We move on into Fink’s tower, into his private quarters. Where we are greeted by four doors (sleep, pray, leisure, and work) and a giant clock. Seems like Fink created a giant clock to open or close doors according to the time of the day and the appropriate activities. There are people, and then there are engineers…
We find the clock handle in his bedroom. A five TV bedroom, showing CCTV-footage from around the factory compound, together with three telephones next to the bed. This isn’t “sleep”, Mr. Fink, this is “workaholism”.2015-01-09_00095The prayer doors leads to a chapel, where someone seems to have been before us. There are bottles of booze everywhere, graffiti on the statues and a knife through the Comstock bible. This, or Fink wasn’t quite as pious as expect.
In the leisure room we find some blackboards and a confiscated kinetoscope. Yes, blackboards. Let’s have a look at what Fink sees as leisure.2015-01-09_00097I’ve been over the whole vigor debate before, I wont start is again now. Don’t worry.
When we take the elevator down to the laboratories, we pass behind the DeWitt, Complicator of Narratives-scene of main game. Luckily we didn’t turn around back then, or we might have seen us…
We sneak down a multi-story lab complex, passing the Handyman operating wing on our way down. It’s basically as creepy as it sounds.2015-01-09_00102Our goal however is the Imprinting Studies lab. The old, closed down lab where Suchong sent us turns out to be the biggest installation in this building, and the only thing preventing entry is a “do not enter”-sign. Okay, these things usually work, but still…2015-01-09_00104Within the lab, we pass several rooms full of imprint studies and the pitiful test subjects.

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¬†Finally, we stumble upon a film depicting the bonding process between Elisabeth and Songbird: Songbird was hurt after crashing into the tower, and Elisabeth saved his life – a lion with a thorn in its paw. Which she actually regrets, but hindsight is 20/20. She wonders if she will ever escape Songbrids claws, ever escape the wheel of exploitation, the wheel of blood set in motion by Comstock. On our way back after grabbing the hair sample, Elisabeth wonders if she ever had a choice after all, if all the possibilities, all the doors, all her knowledge of past and future are not meaningless after all. DeWitt sold her, Comstock locked her away, she traded a little girl in for revenge… Rapture runs on children, and she cannot break this circle of exploitation and violence, but hopefully she can dent it.

Back in Rapture, we get a message from Ryan. He offers us our life, should we betray Atlas. We wont, as we came here for Sally and we will not leave without her. So Ryan sends his goons in, we enjoy have some sneaky shooty times. We make our way through the Manta Ray Lounge, which was the single most frustrating part of the game for me – until I remembered that I have other plasmids besides Peeping Tom and other weapons besides the crossbow. Some liberal use of possession and subsequent shotgunning ended an hour of frustration in seconds. We take the elevator up towards Atlas’/Fontaine’s office, activate the particle, place it on the junction of the load bearing supports of the building, and the whole thing starts to rise. I have NO idea how the particle knows when it can stop rising, as we have no control machinery here. But the plot demands that everything works, so everything works.2015-01-09_00140And, of course, Atlas doesn’t hold his end of the bargain. He drugs us instead, takes us away and leaves us in the loving hands of Lonnie who is experimenting with a truth serum. I guess it was sodium thiopental, but I’m not sure here. Something that will kill us if used wrong. He uses it wrong. We black out. For two weeks.2015-01-09_00147A two-week coma shouldn’t be survivable outside of professional care, but for plot reasons we need a two-week break. Why? So that Atlas’ campaign can move to the brink of failure. So he has a reason to do what he is about to do. So he can get desperate.
While we wake up, we hear a radio announcer talking about the losses of Atlas’ troops, that they’re about to lose due to the troops of Ryan and the general population of Rapture. During this, we see ourselves in a mirror.2015-01-09_00143See the blood on Elisabeth’s face? Any idea where this is going?

See you next time.

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