How Into the Dark updates A Clockwork Orange

Into the dark is a horror anthology series from Blumhouse Productions for Hulu that debuted in October 2018. The full-length episodes correspond to a holiday and tell stories that deal with current social issues. Everything we destroy is the eighth part of the first season, set on Mother’s Day and telling the story of geneticist Victoria and her son Spencer. The two share a unique bond as Victoria creates clones for her son to kill to quell his violent urges and prevent him from becoming a full-blown serial killer.

Although distinctly different from Stanley Kubrick’s classic, Everything we destroy effectively serves as an update for A Clockwork Orange, a film that follows a similar narrative about trying to quell violence in an individual. Where A Clockwork Orange is rather satirical Into the dark takes the premise and presents it from a more humanistic perspective. This is most evident in the main characters Alex and Spencer, both of whom are deeply affected by their inner demons.

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Let’s take a closer look at how this episode builds on the themes A Clockwork Orange and puts them in a modern context through the characters and their relationships.

Spencer in all we destroy

Everything we destroy

Everything we destroy focuses on a complex view of the relationship between mother and son, propelling them towards an exploration of nature vs. nurturing. The film is set sometime in the future, where the lines between technology and genetic engineering are blurring. Spencer, who has struggled with violent and homicidal tendencies since childhood, lives a reclusive life with his mother, Victoria.

Related: Why ‘A Clockwork Orange’ Is More Relevant Today Than When It Was First Released

Victoria uses her gene lab to create clones of one of Spencer’s previous victims to stop him from killing any more people. On the surface, it appears to be a mother’s desperate attempt to prevent her son from becoming a monster. But as the story progresses, the viewer gets a glimpse of what kind of mother Victoria actually is. She is willing to manipulate her son’s existence and even create clones for him to murder to control his behavior, but she is unwilling to let him try to deal with his own demons by living a normal life . While he needs consequences for his actions, the question arises as to whether Spencer is truly protected or a victim of those around him.

Much like controlling Alex, Spencer is also forced to contend with controlling forces. Alex was subjected to the Ludovico Technique while Spencer tried to deal with his mother’s bossy ways. This is one of the possibilities Everything we destroy Update A Clockwork Orange for a modern audience by addressing issues such as parental control, mental health, and the use of technology to control behavior.

Alex in A Clockwork Orange

A Clockwork Orange
Warner Bros.

Also discontinued a futuristic time period, A Clockwork Orange follows Alex, a young man drawn to a life of crime, violence and rape. He is eventually arrested for murder and sentenced to prison. There he undergoes the Ludovico Technique, a form of psychological conditioning designed to transform him into a model citizen. The treatment consists of Alex being strapped down, having his eyes forced open and drugged to watch incredibly violent movies, leaving him feeling shattered and ill. Aversion therapy causes Alex physical and psychological pain and conditions him to despise anything violent or sexual.

This type of forced behavior change is presented in contrast Everything we destroy, where Spencer’s mother essentially gives him permission to pursue his violent tendencies. Alex, on the other hand, has to suppress her. Ultimately, both characters face the same problem: unable to decide for themselves what actions are right or wrong, they must contend with external forces trying to control their behavior.

Related: A Clockwork Orange: Deeper Meanings and Why It’s Controversial

Today’s audience will understand, because most of us are used to following the rules and regulations of our society. That’s where Everything we destroy manages the themes of A Clockwork Orange into a more understandable context while exploring the idea of ​​free will and personal choice. The episode also challenges us to reflect on what happens when external controls are imposed on us and what impact this has on the development of the mind.

As both present themes such as control and violence

A Clockwork Orange 1971
Warner Bros.

Basically both A Clockwork Orange And Everything we destroy Explore similar themes of control, dysfunction, and societal pressures to conform. The main difference between them is how they present these themes to viewers.

In A Clockwork OrangeAlex’s reformation, while controversial, is described as a success, whereas in Everything we destroyVictoria’s attempts to control Spencer ultimately fail. Both endings leave more questions than answers, but the films share a common theme: how people struggle to stay true to themselves in a world where extreme measures are being taken to make them compliant.

Is Alex just another product of his environment or an example of organic violence? Is Spencer a victim of his mother’s manipulations or is he the real threat? Everything we destroy? The decision is up to the viewer. Although their stories are different, these characters share the same theme: they are being controlled and they are struggling to maintain their identity. Both films are about how, despite differences in time, technology, and our acceptance of mental health, the underlying struggle for autonomy still exists.

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