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O Jameron, my Jameron

I haven't had my jameronectomy reversed, if that's what you're thinking. But it's clear that there was some sort of relationship between John and Cameron in the future that she came from and I've been thinking about what it was and why it came about.

"He wasn't talking to anyone anymore, just her."

I've decided John became attached to Cameron in the future because he was depressed about having sent Kyle away on his one-way mission to 1984 1983. That's no doubt a point when he would've been at his lowest — feeling horrible, guilty and sad and unable to tell anyone why. It was a huge loss and he had to grieve alone. So I think John closed himself off from the people around him and retreated inward. But by then, a reprogrammed Cameron was there (I'm thinking she was his bodyguard) and he found himself talking to her — finding companionship with a machine who would never die.

From a timeline standpoint, I think it fits. Based on what Perry told Derek in D&D, reprogrammed machines were already being used by the Resistance by the time Kyle left. So all the reprogramming started in between Derek getting nabbed and Kyle time jumping. Since the show implies that it was Cameron who interrogated Derek in the creepy basement, Allison would've already been dead by then and her bracelet in Cam's possession. Once she got the location of the bunker from Derek, she would've been on her way to infiltrate and kill John.



Comments

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indiefic
Jan. 19th, 2010 02:32 pm (UTC)
My take is that however manipulative Cameron is, Future!John is a thousand times as manipulative and he was manipulating Cameron so she would/could in turn manipulate his younger self.

As for the "He wasn't talking to anyone anymore, just her." line, meh. I figure General John Connor only lets people see what he wants them to see. In the end, I absolutely do not buy any sort of emotional relationship between Cameron and Future!John (Cameron and Emo!Teenage!John is an entirely different story). And I don't buy the idea that Cameron has any emotions at all, full stop.

Of course, my Jameron denial is mighty.
bobmacpharson
Jan. 19th, 2010 06:47 pm (UTC)
I don't think John and Cameron would ever have the type of relationship that Jameronians clamor for (I confess I am a Jameronian so typing those words is difficult). However, if you don't think Cameron has any types of emotions whatsoever I think you haven't been paying attention. One of best things about the show, IMO, is how it shows robots that are each, theoretically, completely logical, but who have developed very different personalities. And they do this not by saying "oh they just have human emotions" a la Battlestar Galactica, (or any other story with robots, pretty much), but by developing emotions that actually make sense for a machine to have.

John Henry is playful and inquisitive. Cameron (appears to be) both manipulative and, in some way, loyal. Cromartie at first seems ruthlessly effective as Terminators are all supposed to be, but even he got that weird fixation on Ellison, to the point where he killed another Terminator so that Ellison could live and eventually lead him to the Connors. Weaver is has a kind of loyalty/manipulative streak similar to Cameron, but her loyalty is of a more maternal sort towards John Henry. Their thought processes are complex enough that they have attitudes towards people that are analogous to emotions even if they don't "feel" the way a human would.

My original supposition (after Allison from Palmdale and Samson and Delilah) was that there were a small number of Terminators with a "manufacturing error" that allowed one section of their brain to create counter-orders to override their original orders. This didn't eliminate their original orders, just allowed them to surpress them. My theory was that Cameron actually WASN'T reprogrammed - for some reason John needed her memory intact for her to complete her mission, and that instead he had actually convinced her to override them herself. This made her actions in Samson and Delilah make a lot more sense - if she had gotten a clean wipe she wouldn't have identified John Connor as the "primary target," even if she did revert to a "kill all humans" baseline.

(This would also explain why she appears to know Derek way back when they first met him. Earlier that episode she said "I don't remember him" to John, citing the wipe-when-reprogramming policy, but later on Derek says "I know you" and she says "and I know you.")

Later episodes and the commentary appear to muddle this somewhat. Friedman seems to indicate a more generic explanation that I found a lot less satisfying, but this may have been a deliberate attempt to keep things vague until the eventual reveal of her motivations. Dunno. Regardless, Weaver still seems to fit this theory. I mean, she clearly had a choice whether to join John or not, as opposed to being reprogrammed. And until Cameron's backstory gets cleared up I'm leaning towards my original interpretation.

I think that Cameron (and Weaver) came to the realization that there are things they can learn from humanity that they can only observe if humanity is allowed to survive in a "natural" setting. I.e. you can't see us doing the things that make us interesting and special if you have us locked in a cage. If Skynet wipes out humanity... what then? What purpose would machines have? Finding a way to coexist with humanity is a legitimate, logical choice that doesn't hinge on sentimental value of human life.

For Weaver, this means focusing on a means to stop Skynet. For Cameron, I think this means trying to understand human behavior. By all accounts, Skynet should have wiped out the resistance. They were not only more numerous and technologically advanced - they SHOULD have been far smarter. Yet humans won the first time around. They have something machines do not and Cameron wants to know what it is.
bobmacpharson
Jan. 19th, 2010 06:47 pm (UTC)
Some more thoughts:

Throughout the show we see Cameron trying to draw parallels between herself and humans.

1. She tells Sarah "Without John, your life has no purpose," as a way to clarify why Sarah is just as obsessed with protecting John as Cameron is. Later on, she shows some genuine concern when Cromartie has John. "I can't let anything happen to him." John is not merely someone she is programmed to protect. Protecting and learning to understand him is the entire reason she exists. This is not love in a human sense, but for a machine it's pretty significant.

2. In "Self Made Man" we see her trying to identify (badly) with the kid in the wheelchair. When she says "do you ever think about suicide" she's genuinely attempting to empathize with him. Not only is she broken, but she's broken in a way that makes her sole purpose a contradiction. If she's a threat to John, she must logically eliminate herself, but she can't self terminate, and no matter what she does it appears that her existence is meaningless.

Throughout the episode she tries to be a friend (in particular by warning him about his cancer - she had no other reason to do that). This wasn't because she actively cared about Erik, but because she's vaguely aware that friendship is somehow connected to the hidden strength that allowed humanity to wipe out Skynet the first time. Erik also has maintained a positive attitude in the face of adversity, and if she can learn how he did that it gives her another tool to prevent John from cracking under the pressure. It might also help her figure out how to deal with her own contradictory goals.

Right now it looks like Cameron is trying to make John into more of a machine, because she thinks that will not only make him an effective leader but also make it easier to understand him. But I think (hope) that Cameron's overall arc in the show was to find a way to wrap her logical brain around humanity's apparent irrationality, eventually realizing that destroying John's humanity was actively crippling the parts of him that made him a good leader in the first place.
indiefic
Jan. 19th, 2010 07:26 pm (UTC)
However, if you don't think Cameron has any types of emotions whatsoever I think you haven't been paying attention.

On the contrary. I have paid attention. And what seems readily apparent to me is that Friedman and Co. intentionally keep certain aspects of the SCC universe and mythology vague enough that viewers can any number of conclusions to suit their particular bent.

You can apparently make your "malfunction error" terminator theory fit in your interpretation.

At the same time, I truly see no evidence that Cameron has any emotions. Programming yes. Conflicting sets of directives, almost certainly. But emotions? No.

Humans are great at reading emotion into situations where they don't exist. This is evidenced everywhere from The Kuleshov Effect to the teenage girl who is more than willing to attribute the characteristics of dark and brooding to the cute boy in class when in reality he just doesn't want to talk to her.

Cameron is a robot. Program her to stand in a certain proximity, to project her voice in a certain decibel range, and wear a bra and underwear and a teenage John Connor is more than willing to attribute any number of emotions to her.

Beyond the fact that Cameron has certain mission parameters that instruct her to protect John Connor and certain mission parameters that instruct her to terminate John Connor, we know very little about her programming. At this point, I am willing to attribute all of her actions to programming rather than to some emotional development on her part.
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roxybisquaint
Jan. 22nd, 2010 09:10 am (UTC)
Their thought processes are complex enough that they have attitudes towards people that are analogous to emotions even if they don't "feel" the way a human would.

Yes, I agree with that. I think it's like Uncle Bob explained in T2: "I sense injuries. The data could be called pain." And like Cameron feeling temperature. The have a sensory perception and they react to that, but it's not human emotion or feelings.



My theory was that Cameron actually WASN'T reprogrammed - for some reason John needed her memory intact for her to complete her mission, and that instead he had actually convinced her to override them herself. This made her actions in Samson and Delilah make a lot more sense - if she had gotten a clean wipe she wouldn't have identified John Connor as the "primary target," even if she did revert to a "kill all humans" baseline.

In Gnothi Seauton, though, Cameron confirmed that any machine that identified John Connor would "know what to do". So that was the base programming: KILL JOHN CONNOR (not KILL HUMANS). Remember, the cyborgs are infiltrators, not just grunt endos. If they killed any and all humans, they'd be exposing themselves instantly. I do agree, though, that Cameron never had her memory wiped:



This would also explain why she appears to know Derek way back when they first met him. Earlier that episode she said "I don't remember him" to John, citing the wipe-when-reprogramming policy, but later on Derek says "I know you" and she says "and I know you."

Cameron knew who Derek was the first time she saw his face (on John's laptop when he hacked the LAPD files). She said he was one of John's best soldiers and she gave more info about him later when they had him in the house after his gunshot wound.

The thing you're thinking of is when Cameron was standing over Derek with a pillow in her hand and Sarah asked if she'd done something to him in the future. Cameron said she didn't know because "when they reprogram us, they wipe our memories." I think that was simply a lie because she didn't want to have to explain how she knew him (creepy basement interrogation!). Clearly her memory was never wiped because even if we could believe the base Skynet programing is always there no matter what, she still had memories of Allison that would not have been there had she been wiped.



Weaver still seems to fit this theory. I mean, she clearly had a choice whether to join John or not, as opposed to being reprogrammed.

I believe Weaver is the exception — liquid metal and more advanced and has no Skynet programming. My theory on her is that she was an advanced machine Skynet developed as a more powerful infiltrator. Problem was, she was too powerful and Skynet couldn't control her — couldn't program her. So Skynet boxed her up.



If Skynet wipes out humanity... what then? What purpose would machines have? Finding a way to coexist with humanity is a legitimate, logical choice that doesn't hinge on sentimental value of human life.

I don't think Weaver really cares about coexisting with humans. Her only concern seems to be the usefulness of humans. At the moment that includes an alliance of sorts — a partnership to defeat Skynet. She's not going to go out of her way to kill humans, but she doesn't think twice about killing any human that gets in her way or makes her plans difficult.



For Cameron, I think this means trying to understand human behavior. By all accounts, Skynet should have wiped out the resistance. They were not only more numerous and technologically advanced - they SHOULD have been far smarter. Yet humans won the first time around.

As an infiltrator, I'd assume it's parts of Cameron's programming to learn human and understand behavior as much as possible. Gong back to Uncle Bob in T2, "the more contact I have with humans, the more I learn." I think Cameron's the same way. She absorbs the behavior around her — learns how to mimic it and learns why people do what they do and act how they act.



They have something machines do not and Cameron wants to know what it is.

If humans didn't have something more than machines, it wouldn't be Terminator! Are you suggesting, though, that Cameron is a Skynet agent?

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roxybisquaint
Jan. 19th, 2010 08:36 pm (UTC)
he was manipulating Cameron so she would/could in turn manipulate his younger self

Ooooo. Now that's an interesting spin on manipulative John. I never considered that he was pretending to be close to her just so she'd be better at manipulating his younger self. I think that would cause trouble for my future!John is dead when Cameron jumps to 1999 belief, though.


I absolutely do not buy any sort of emotional relationship between Cameron and Future!John (Cameron and Emo!Teenage!John is an entirely different story). And I don't buy the idea that Cameron has any emotions at all, full stop.

I tend to think future!John was too emotionally attached to her and what Jesse said about him was true at face value. But I also think that John Connor was kind of fucked up because he lost his mother too soon (my theory is that Sarah would've ended up in prison when John was still 15 in the timeline that preceded Cameron). And I think the story we get in the show is meant to be how John Connor ends up such a great leader and the savior of humanity. Though they made it really hard to believe that since he was so douchey and jumping through time for Cameron!

No, I don't buy Cameron having emotions either. At all. Any emotions see ever seems to have are just mimicry of people around her and of Allison. So when I say "relationship" I mean a one-way thing where John became emotionally attached to her. Like current John did in the show. From Cameron's side of things, John is her mission, her job, her purpose and nothing more.
bobmacpharson
Jan. 19th, 2010 08:56 pm (UTC)
I'm willing to believe all kinds of things about Cameron's motivations backstory, because they've deliberately left that so vague. But I think they've gone to such great lengths to show John Henry developing at least a form of empathy that, by extension, Cameron is at least CAPABLE of something similar, even if she doesn't actually have it.

Summer Glau is on record saying "Cameron's deep love for John is because he is her whole reason for existing... I think that is love, and I think she would do anything for him, and in her reality, I think that's what love is for her." She added that she's not sure where Friedman is going with the character, but she always plays it as if she does feel something for John.

Obviously that's not remotely conclusive, and I can't really speculate on the degree to which Friedman may be keeping her in the dark so that she can't give stuff away to us. (Hehe, Friedman is kinda like the Future!John in Indiefic's theory, manipulating Glau in one way so she'll manipulate us in a different particular way.

Regardless of whether Cameron has "emotions" in any meaningful sense, I think it's perfectly legitimate to say that she and John have a relationship that does go both ways. It's just that each of them is attached to the other in a completely different manner - John!to!Cameron through traditional (albeit disfunctional) emotion means and Cameron!to!John through a few layers of conflicting orders and at least some degree of free will, however emotionless it may be.

>>"he was pretending to be close to her just so she'd be better at manipulating his younger self."

I actually do think that's a really cool theory.
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indiefic
Jan. 20th, 2010 01:20 am (UTC)
I never considered that he was pretending to be close to her just so she'd be better at manipulating his younger self.

In the Terminator 'verse that lives in my head, John Connor is essentially God, pulling all the strings ;) To that end, he uses Cameron as nothing more than a tool to manipulate his younger self. I figure everyone is a pawn as far as he's concerned; his parents, his uncle, even his younger self.

So ...

Cameron = Tool.
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valhallalilly
Jan. 19th, 2010 03:03 pm (UTC)
I don't think it was because of Kyle at all.


And maybe one day I will be able to exound on that statement but today is not looking like that day ;)
roxybisquaint
Jan. 19th, 2010 08:15 pm (UTC)
Well until you do, your comment doesn't count!
gega_cai
Jan. 19th, 2010 04:57 pm (UTC)
I agree, I've always thought Kyle being sent back was the catalyst for John's attachment to Cameron and overuse of machines once Derek has returned to see
gega_cai
Jan. 19th, 2010 05:01 pm (UTC)
That is to say, I think Kyle would have it known that using machines was wrong and Kyle's influence on John is far more gospel than Cameron's

Though, maybe John is still capable of being steps a head of Cameron (and Skynet)
roxybisquaint
Jan. 19th, 2010 09:18 pm (UTC)
Oh goodie. I like when I find out other people are thinking along the same lines. It makes me feel like I'm not so wacky!

And it totally makes sense, doesn't it? There has to be a motivation for the son of Sarah Connor — the man who lives through the apocalypse, witnesses the slaughter of humans by machines, and is imprisoned in a Skynet work camp where the human race is that close to going out forever — would anthropomorphize to such an extent.
equustel
Jan. 19th, 2010 07:22 pm (UTC)
Hmm, I like this theory. It ties in with what John tells Jesse in Today is the Day, Part 2 - that he finally understands why his future self decided to depend on machines so much. "Human beings can't be replaced. They can't be rebuilt. They die and they never come back."

Present John is already dealing with the loss of his father, so it makes a sad sort of sense that he'd come to the same conclusion, and confide in Cameron for the same reasons he might have in the future.
roxybisquaint
Jan. 19th, 2010 09:09 pm (UTC)
Exactly! I think John's closeness to Cameron in the future she came from parallels his closeness to her in the present timeline we've seen in the show. The loss of people he cares about (even the loss of people he doesn't know, like all those FBI guys) ultimately push him toward reliance on (and companionship with) machines.

He's totally right about why they're useful — human beings can't be replaced. But until he finds the balance, things are kind of messed up for John, both in the prior timeline (future!John) and the current one (our John).

Edited at 2010-01-19 09:12 pm (UTC)
bobmacpharson
Jan. 19th, 2010 09:20 pm (UTC)
For the record, just so I feel like I'm at least SOMEWHAT contributing to the original conversation thread, I also agree with this idea.
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tackdriver56
Jan. 20th, 2010 01:59 pm (UTC)
"They Never Come Back..." advert idea / ripoff
Rather like good sci-fi shows on Fox? (Sorry)

A.D. Detour:
Actually that line ... "they never come back", stimulated a flashback to an old advertisement for Brylcream (TM) hair tonic. I had visions of Kyle "I came back", Derek "I came back", Cameron "I came back",
(all) "We all came back... for The Sarah Connor Chronicles".

As for John dealing with the loss of his father, I don't buy it. Kyle was a follower of John Connor, but he was never a father to John, other than in the biological sense. John would feel the loss of a friend, but not the loss of a parent.

Perhaps he would confide in Cameron, because she would be the one left standing, while ALL the humans seem to "die and never come back".

equustel
Jan. 20th, 2010 04:53 pm (UTC)
Re: "They Never Come Back..." advert idea / ripoff
I respectfully disagree.

John has always very keenly felt the absence of his father. It's why he attached himself to Charley, and why he's initially so excited when Derek comes into his life. Family is very important to him, precisely because he has so little of it. Just look at his reaction when Derek is screaming "my blood!" in Dungeons & Dragons; the whole idea of sending the father he never knew (and can never know, beyond a guarded comradeship) to his death depresses the hell out of John and is, I would argue, one of the key things that isolates him emotionally in his life. To his mind, it's the biggest personal sacrifice he will ever make, and it becomes a stand-in for all the other horrible things he'll have to do as the adult John Connor... because he already knows how this sacrifice feels. "My father's always a hero, and he's always dead."
roxybisquaint
Jan. 22nd, 2010 10:32 am (UTC)
Re: "They Never Come Back..." advert idea / ripoff
I don't mean he'd feel the loss of a parent, he'd just feel the weight of what he'd done and he'd grieve for the loss of the father he never got to have. Something like that. Having to send the guy who looks up to you as sort of a father figure back in time, knowing he's going to father you then die... kind of a big burden to carry. So once Kyle was gone, I think it would hit John pretty hard.
phantomwriter05
Jan. 20th, 2010 01:58 am (UTC)
Oh Rox the stories you tell ... ;)

I can acutally get on board with your theory where it relates to Derek's and Cameron's Timelines.

but once we get to Jesse and Riley I think we're getting into a Future!John who has spent twenty years with Cameron and has started the Resistance with her by his side. as well as given up on any attenable normal human relationship and has chosen to all but marry Cameron.

thus the comment "Telling me is the same as telling John."

notice how she doesn't say "General Connor or Connor" she says John.

but that's my theory since Strange thing happen at the 1,2 point.
fig_aruna
Jan. 20th, 2010 03:46 am (UTC)
notice how she doesn't say "General Connor or Connor" she says John.

Hmm..! Never really thought about that before...
schmacky0
Jan. 20th, 2010 03:50 am (UTC)
So because Cameron calls John John they're basically married? I don't buy it.

Like indiefic said way up there, they left things so vague that all of us can come to our own conclusions.

But outside of the married bit.. I'm not too sure about Cameron being with John for 20 years anyway. I don't think she was. I think the Jesse's future is where Cameron is from .. our Cameron. And I don't think she was with John for 20 years.

I do like Roxy's theory on why John has built this companionship with Cameron.. after he sent Kyle out.
phantomwriter05
Jan. 20th, 2010 06:14 am (UTC)
I think you're right about the way things where written schmack.

but I think that's what the shows weakness is. to people who love it ... it's the greatest thing ever.

but I've talked to people who hated the show because that kept being done.

but anyway I don't agree that Jesse and Cameron are from the same timeline because She didn't know a fisher and niether did Derek.

how ever Jesse knew him, therefore in relation to roxy's theory.

Derek and Cameron came to from a timeline where John had confided in Cameron and started to plan out the events of what we know as the main TSCC timeline.

so in essence Derek and Cameron come from a Pre TSCC timeline

While Jesse and Riley come from a Universe where there have been changes implimented by Future!John but it's a timeline without weaver. So John and Cameron have surived J-Day and put together the resistance.

But Mad Scientist Savanna Weaver creates T-1001 and sends her back therefore the timeline shifts again to a Born to run future.

for instance look at the list. How do we know that 16 year old John from Season 3 didn't send the fighter back with the list?

holy crap!!

I pulled a Fig-Aruna and wrote a essay responce LOL!!

Sorry rox dor the geek out rant ;P
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roxybisquaint
Jan. 22nd, 2010 11:44 am (UTC)
Oh Rox the stories you tell ... ;)

It's entertaining, though, right? :P

Mostly I was looking for a motivation because no matter what kind of relationship anyone thinks young John and Cameron they have now, it started in the future with future!John and Cameron.


once we get to Jesse and Riley I think we're getting into a Future!John who has spent twenty years with Cameron and has started the Resistance with her by his side

That's one I've gone back and forth on because of the way Jesse says... "Imagine if he spends the next 20 years with her. Imagine what hell become, what she'll turn him into." ... I always think she means that it's bad enough close John is with Cameron in the future she (Jesse) came from and if he now spends the next 20 years with her it'll be MUCH worse.

But Then it doesn't make much sense that way since the only reason to come back in time to stop Cameron is if Jesse knew Cameron jumped. And if she did, then why worry since that would mean Cameron was no longer even in future!John's life anyway? There's just something that doesn't quite add up for me with Jesse and Cameron. And I have argued myself into different conclusions before. Yes I argue with myself over TSCC sometimes... don't judge ;)

Anyway, I'm now leaning to your view on that and it;s also sparked a total crack theory about Cameron that will likely consume my every thought for the next few days! And if I end up not discarding it, I'll post about it next week and heads will probably explode... but in a good way.
phantomwriter05
Jan. 22nd, 2010 11:16 pm (UTC)
"Imagine if he spends the next 20 years with her. Imagine what hell become, what she'll turn him into."


I think that what Jesse wanted to give Derek some prospective on what she is use too. on what the outcome was when John Sent Cameron back. But then that would mean that Jesse understands that they come from a different Universe ...

either way I think that you'll have two Cameron's

Cameron A: the machine that was sent back and stayed with John for 20 years.

Cameron B: New TOK sent after John then later sent back.

thus Cameron B would have observed the closness of Future!John and Cameron A therefore her comment that her and John will talk alot in the future.

there was also alot of dicussion on the wiki that John was Dead and that Cameron is leading the resistance while pretending that John is alive and Just doesn't want to talk to anyone ...

ah well this post went no where fast LOL ...

hope you find something useful in all this.

:)



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Roxy Bisquaint

Roxy Bisquaint...

Is self-indulgent. Over thinks everything. Tweets too much. Looks really good in these jeans. Wants to eat butterscotch. Makes herself laugh. Obsesses about aging. Does some crunches. Lives with two ghosts. Procrastinates daily. Measures once, cuts twice. Hates Foo Fighters. Drinks lots of coffee (keep it coming). Puts spiders outside. Brings balance to the force. Draws a perfect curve. Enjoys dark chocolate. Bangs on the drums. Always gets in the slow line. Orders from a menu. Hopes to be reincarnated. Speaks fluent Sarah Connor. Cooks tasty crack theory. Loves a good storm. Dances like a dork. Picks some locks. Tips well. Refuses to share the popcorn. Dreams about the future. Ignores the clock. Sings off key. Has a superpower. Shoots the paper bad guys. Needs some eyeliner. Goes to bed at dawn. Can't resist good smut. Quotes movie lines. Eats whipped yogurt. Lets the story tell itself. Maintains a rich fantasy life. Knows all the mysteries of the gods and of the universe.

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