Sunday, January 19, 2014

Helix - The Trojan Horse Virus



In computer speak aTrojan Horse Virus is a " type of malware program containing malicious code that, when executed, carries out actions determined by the nature of the Trojan, typically causing loss or theft of data, and possible system harm." (Wikipedia.)  

I don't think we have to question the "system harm" aspect of the virus in Helix.  I've been scratching my head on how many forms this virus takes and I stopped counting at three.  Of course it may be less as the symptoms take time to manifest and it may react differently according to the host type.

I thought of this pondering the fate of  Dr. Walker or Julia.  The viewing audience all knew she was infected thanks to Peter's "kiss" at he end of the last episode.  Her ex-husband Dr. Alan Walker discovers her in the shower and naturally she doesn't tell  him anything about her attack.

Naturally!

She's paranoid of course and her paranoia may even be a symptom of her infection.  (Plus, it makes a handy sci-fi trope.)  But I began thinking that her silence and paranoia may be a way of the virus protecting itself in a human host.  That way should could be a silent vector as opposed to Dr. Suliman's violent vector and Peter's passive aggressive vector.


I was a little surprised to see Peter give himself up.  Pleasantly surprised.  How long could he be the "Jaws" of the Arctic circle swimming around in the ducts and waiting to strike.  Now, not only has he given himself up for study but he has retained a modicum of humanity wherein he can actually ask for help instead of bouncing off the walls like Dr. Sulemani. 

Or, his type of Trojan Horse Virus is clever enough to get him into the lab where he can attack and eliminate the very few people positioned to save him and the rest of the infected.  Peter's intelligent vector may allow him prey upon the sympathies of those who love him like Alan and Julia.

Not good.


Dr. Sulemani's vector is the aggressive type.  The "Blue Screen of Death" type.  Too far gone to help and probably beyond saving in any fashion.  This is probably a more primitive form of the virus, one that acts out in order to spread itself as quickly as possible in order to grow and survive.



There is an easy way to stop her type of the virus.  It's hardly a cure but it is effective.  Sadly for Dr. Farragut it is not what he had in mind.  (Such an ironic twist of fate from his earlier stance when Daniel shot Sulemani.)

Is there another form of Vector?


Has Dr. Hitaki been infected and cured?  Is he still a host despite the cure?  The most intelligent vector of them all?  We all know he is hiding something (many things) and he may be one of the 25% that survived the SODRA cure.  He's paranoid which is in keeping with the infection and he is hiding in plain sight, pulling all the strings and in complete control of the facility. 

This is just a guess at this point.  The project is his baby and he may do anything to protect it any case.  But think of this, by giving Alan just enough rope, Alan may be able to perfect the SODRA cure to 100% making Hitaki's virus a complete success and allowing Hitaki to market his invention as he ultimately intended.  Whatever that is.  Now that would be an intelligent host.

It doesn't answer why Hitaki doesn't have any super human powers.  Perhaps he chooses not to exhibit them or perhaps the initial SODRA cure lessens their effectiveness.  In any case, Hitaki needs Farragut to perfect his infection/invention if my theory is proved to be correct.



 We'll have to keep a close eye on Julia.  She's infected but not too far gone.  She's paranoid but intelligent and self aware.  She's not a screaming banshee like Sulemani nor is she dripping with ooze like Peter Farragut. 

Maybe she is "progress" like Hitaki uttered when he first found Peter and forced water into him.

Other odds and ends...
  • Doreen keeping her monkey secret from Alan.  Good or bad paranoia?
  • Sergio blowing up the satellite disk.  Is is not with the Army?
  • The scar on Sarah's back.  What is up with that?







14 comments:

  1. I'm not completely convinced that what Hatake squirted into Peter's throat was just water. Maybe SODRA? I thought there was just a hint that Hatake's relationship with Daniel isn't what they profess. When Daniel told the "boss" what had to be done, it sounded to me more like a requirement than advice. I am also keeping my options open on whether Balleseros blew up the dish or just someone else in ACUs. The "first five" of next week are intriguing.

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    1. Good thought Jim, maybe he did squirt some SODRA into Peter. Peter didn't look to happy to receive it. So you think Daniel might be the big bad? Or is he something else? The episode didn't get much critical praise. I saw it as one of those "narrative fillers" that'll give us signposts for future episodes.

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    2. We're an impatient people. We complain that we're not treated as adults then wee want to be told everything the first week. I'm trying to figure out hallucinations. Was Julia really talking to Peter (after removing her mask!) about their relationship and her problems or was she hallucinating? Sometimes, it seems like there's a "jiggle" in the camera action before strange things happen or are said.

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    3. You're right about the "camera jiggle" technique Jim. You never know when we've bridged into non reality or not. I think it is kind of cool and it keeps the audience on their toes.

      I confess I've impatient with serialized TV before it seems to be getting better though. The TV that is. We don't have to wait for a whole season for a reveal. Now we get a much more pleasant Chinese water torture of information.

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  2. I'm not convinced it was water either... Pretty much anything Hatake does is suspect, at this point. Your thought, Dave, about him possibly being a host, or infected, or cured, also crossed my mind. I guess we'll see where that is going...

    The Trojan Horse theory is excellent - it fits quite nicely. I'm wondering if the virus also hijacks the natural aggressiveness, or passiveness, of the host as well? Or is the virus really that individual? If so, that raises even more questions: how intelligent are viruses to begin with? What was the company REALLY developing?

    I'm very much enjoying the partnership with Doreen and the army guy... interesting. Good one she kept the monkey thing to herself.

    Julia. Hatake had an inordinate interest in her - was it the first episode? He asked her if she'd had kids (and seemed to be drooling, just a bit?), and now she is infected but it seems a little different with her. Hmmm, I don't know... the connect-a-dots seem a bit too connected. There must be something there.

    Sarah's back... strange indeed. Isn't the nervous system in the spinal cord? Is a certain amount of intelligent located there? I've no idea what that is about.

    Really enjoying the show so far!

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    1. Glad you are buying into my wacky theory Ingrid. Things like these make me nostalgic for Fringe. I had a lot of wacky theories for that show. A few panned out!

      Part of my theory entails the virus becoming symbiotic with the host and using the host's intelligence to help it proliferate and survive. Otherwise it would be dumb as a rock.

      !!!Spoilers!!!!

      I looked at Doreen's IMDB page the other day and **spoiler alert** things don't look good.

      ***Unspoilers***

      Like your thoughts on Hatake. Do you think Julia is pregnant and she is actually two hosts? Maybe the virus needs a different type of incubation and pregnancy provides it. Now that's creepy.

      Maybe Sarah's scar is indicative to a surgery that may leave her vulnerable to the virus in some strange fashion.

      Anything's possible. Glad you like the show too!

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  3. When they were promoting the series before it premiered, all eight of the regulars were listed as stars. In the episodes, the actors for Alan, Julia, Hiroshi and Sergio are stars and the other four guest stars. Does that say something about their life expectancies?

    May I plug the wiki I'm working on? http://helix.wikia.com/wiki/Helix_Wiki is alive but participation is low. Anyone can edit.

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    1. Plug away Jim, it is ok with me. I've looked at the IMDB cast list and seen the number of episodes some of the actors are committed to. It doesn't bode well for some!

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  4. Hi Dave,

    I like your thoughts. I'm trying hard not too restrict my thoughts on this show to the rules of actual science, because frankly you can make up any rules on a Scifi show.
    We have a base where many known deadly viruses were being experimented on with a variety of mutagens, likely including radioactivity. Apparently a new strain emerged that can take control of the victim's nervous system and that manifests in a variety of ways both mental and physical. The mode of transmission has me a little stumped, it's not really efficient, just gross.

    I'm going to theorize that whatever surgery Sarah had, that is likely related to her tremors, rendered her immune. That said, the failure of the test bugs me, did she intentionally botch it? If so, why? Did someone plant her with Alan because she is just his type?

    I don't know if anyone has posited the theory that the "virus" is actually nanites, but since "they" seem sentient, why not? Too Revolution?

    Sorry, more questions than revelations this time. -Lynne

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    1. There is such a thing as real science?

      Did you see "World War Z"? In it, anyone that was already sick or damaged was ignored by the zombie virus. A cool concept I thought and it seems to apply to your thoughts on Sarah.

      Has Revolution tackled this? I hope it isn't nanites. We've already seen them on Fringe.

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  5. Nanites... It's too Revolution. :-)

    I read the spoiler note, and I'm not surprised. She is a different and refreshing character, one that could evolve over time. Oh well.

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    Part of my theory entails the virus becoming symbiotic with the host and using the host's intelligence to help it proliferate and survive. Otherwise it would be dumb as a rock.

    This is precisely what I was thinking. What I'm wondering is if it is really engineered or if they discovered it...

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    1. "Engineered, discovered or EVOLVED!" That would be nice. Something that has grown out of control. That's what happens when you play God!

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  6. Love everyone's ideas. It takes me a bit longer to just know their names, much less their personalities. This is somewhat like auditing a class.

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    1. But you earn three credit in Humanities!

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