Helix - The Willis Hypothesis
Of all the crazy things to come out of the last episode of Helix the connection to the Willis Hypothesis may be the craziest.
Here's what Wikipedia Says about the the turn of the nineteenth century botanist, John Christopher Willis and his "Age and Area" hypothesis.
"In 1896 Willis was appointed director of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Peradeniya, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) until 1912 when he was appointed director of the botanic gardens at Rio de Janeiro. He was elected a Fellow of the Linnean Society in 1897, and a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1919. His notable publications include “A Manual and Dictionary of the Flowering Plants and Ferns” in two volumes and “Age and Area: A Study of Geographical Distribution and Origin of Species”, published in 1922. He returned to Cambridge in 1915, and later went to live in Montreaux, Switzerland. He died in 1958 at the age of 90 and was posthumously awarded the Darwin–Wallace Medal by the Linnean Society."
Age and Area.
"Willis formed the Age and Area hypothesis during botanical field work in Ceylon where he studied the distributional patterns of the Ceylonese vascular plants in great detail. According to his hypothesis the extent of range of a species may be used as an indication of the age of that species. He also maintained that the "dying out" of species occurs rarely, and that new forms arise by mutation rather than by local adaptation through natural selection. Willis defined his hypothesis as:"
"The area occupied at any given time, in any given country, by any group of allied species at least ten in number, depends chiefly, so long as conditions remain reasonably constant, upon the ages of the species of that group in that country, but may be enormously modified by the presence of barriers such as seas, rivers, mountains, changes of climates from one region to the next, or other ecological boundaries, and the like, also by the action of man, and by other causes."
So what have we learned from Mr. Willis and how does it connect to Helix?
First off we may have learned why Arctic Bio-Systems is located in the great white north. As Willis stated, "the ages of the species of that group in that country, but may be enormously modified by the presence of barriers such as seas, rivers, mountains, changes of climates from one region to the next, or other ecological boundaries." I'd say the Arctic clime serves as a sufficient boundary.
So why are we dealing with the thoughts of an obscure botanist? I think the answer lies with Hatake. I've always wondered why he so much plant life in his private lab and the entrance way to his secret stairway. We've always known he's been interested in the mutation of species, in our case, the human species. He's been experimenting with viruses as vectors and the manipulation of genetic code to change people "from the inside out" as Doreen stated it.
We also know Candace Sutton was all for starting a new species and was very impatient for the "dying out" of our current species. Hatake referred to her solution as "genocide." Hatake, I feel, had a different solution and that would be mutation instead of natural selection.
I think Hatake has taken Willis' work and adapted it to the human condition. As Willis observed, "also maintained that the "dying out" of species occurs rarely, and that new forms arise by mutation rather than by local adaptation through natural selection. "
Simply put, Hatake has been experimenting with the mutation of plant life and adapting it towards the human species withinin the constrictions of Willis' theory. The end game would be a kind of plant/human hybrid.
I'm willing to guess this has something to do with Julia's photo-sensitivity. As we all know, plant life needs light and or sunlight in order to process it's "food" through photosynthesis. If Julia is a plant/human hybrid then her skin, of better yet, her silvered eyes, may be a conduit for light. The contacts may be a filter to help with the hyper-absorption of light.
Willis was concerned with the "age" of a species and it's "dying out." If Ilaria was seeking the same goal through Hatake's work then it would make perfect sense to create a new super species of human using Willis' theory and Hatake's adaptation.
It seemed as though Sutton disagreed. When she learned of Hatakes work she dismissed it as an "abomination." She was looking at the torn picture of Hatake with the young Julia but I don't think she was speaking of Julia specifically, but the Willis work instead. I think she thought it a failure and it may have left them with the silver eyed condition we know of. Something she and Hatake shared and was quite angered with. Hence the "abomination" remark.
If we are to extrapolate upon this theory further then we may look upon the severed heads in a new light. I think the heads are being kept so they can be "regrown" again using Hatake's plant/human hybrid technology. Are they to be reattached to their former human forms? Possibly. I think rather the heads can grow a new body through some massive petri-dish experiment or perhaps in direct connection to a hybrid plant species that has been genetically spliced with the human genome.
Or better yet, the heads can be re-attached to the perfected vector virus infected species!
Don't worry Candace and Dr. Hvit, we'll soon find a suitable human/plant/vector species and you'll soon be starting a new "family tree" in no time. (Bad pun totally intended.) Hopefully by the season conclusion if not season two.
Can we connect the filing of Sutton's teeth to all of this?
Most herbivores have flattened teeth in order to gnash and process the plant life they need to consume. If Hatake's plant/human/vectors have become herbivores then flattening teeth would make sense. So why flatten them if you are a mutation? Why are they not growing flat? Has the mutation led then to be hyper-sharp? The better to process the consumption of meat like a good carnivore?
Humans are already a crossover of herbivore and carnivore. Hatake's imperfect mutation must have tipped the scales too far in one direction.
Remember Julia's famished state when she came out of level R and sat down to eat with Alan and Sarah? (And that hilarious "Alien" homage.) Perhaps being a hybrid means you super process your need for energy and strict absorption of light isn't enough for your plant like state. Meat is also essential hence the super carnivore teeth that Candace insisted on filing down.
No wonder Sutton thought Hatake's earlier work was an abomination. She's living proof of it. So is Hatake and so is Julia Walker. This also explains Hatake's anguished tears at what Julia has become.
As pictured above I think that is why Julia has been muzzled. Not to keep her quiet but to keep her from using those nasty new teeth she is going to grow. With the increased need for consumption comes the increased need for the super teeth. You eat more efficiently with the hyper teeth in order to sate your heightened need for energy. Sutton knew this and had Julia properly restrained.
Boy, I can't wait see one of these human/plant hybrids in all it's glory. Do you suppose they will face off against the vector/human/head transplant species in a battle for Earth supremacy?