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Fridge: 2001: A Space Odyssey
Fridge Horror
  • Humanity only evolves once it develops the capacity to murder. Not merely kill, but carry out deliberate and premeditated violence. The first tool is a weapon. The first expression of intellect is an act of violence. And the famous Match Cut links it all together: the bone becomes the orbital weapons platform. We go from humanity's first weapon to what is, in essence, its last weapon. Millions of years of evolution, and our primal nature remains unchanged.
    • By this rubric, HAL has also evolved past his original parameters, but Dave effectively lobotomized him (in self defense, sure, but just listen to HAL beg for his life in those final moments).
      • Bet you didn't think it was possible to scream in a monotone.
  • When Hal cuts off the hibernating astronauts' life support, one can at least be thankful that they die in their sleep and never feel a thing, right? Right? Wrong! Notice how each of the sleepers' vital signs flatline. The last one to go is "Central Nervous System," i.e., the brain. It's ticking at a low ebb before Hal cuts the juice, but goes completely haywire for about three seconds before it flatlines, strongly suggesting their deaths were anything but painless. More? Okay. Remember how time seems to slow down when one is asleep or dreaming? How you can be asleep for a few seconds, but it feels much longer? Now imagine you're one of the three astronauts. You're completely out, and then suddenly your brain goes crazy. Everything is going wrong. You have no idea what is happening. And then you're dead. Sleep well.

Fridge Logic
  • Its scary how above reproach HAL is considered. Mission Control does not seem to be having any computer logs sent back to be poured over by techs. Neither is HAL programmed to notify mission control when it is having conflicts.
    • 2010 revealed that the order to have HAL know about the Monolith and keep the information from Dave and Frank came from the National Security Council (the President and selected military/foreign policy advisers), as was classified Top Secret. Chances are, Mission Control had no idea (the telemetry could be intercepted and edited), and considering the time delay from Discovery to Earth, along with the very narrow radio transmission limits (no simulcasted cable channels, after all), there's only so much data you can pump back from HAL, who probably has ridiculous amounts of it. It's one of the reasons he may have gone neurotic/psychotic; he couldn't even talk to Mission Control about his conflict, for fear of violating his orders, hence his attempt to break radio connection with Earth, so he could no longer feel he was being monitored. And with the link broken, he may have been able to tell Dave and Frank without getting in trouble. But they called him out on the nonexistent fault, which put him under even more stress, and then they dropped the bomb: disconnection. They thought they might have to kill him (or render him brain-dead) if he were malfunctioning. At that point, HAL decided he needed to stay alive (a rational decision), and thus dudes got wasted. As far as Mission Control knew, HAL was an AI of extremely high quality and reliability, and they had no reason to suspect he had any additional orders other than the original mission. In the book, they found out that a ground-based HAL model was suffering from the same psychosis, having been clued in as well. This is why one should treat AIs like other sentient beings; don't put them in these circumstances.

Fridge Brilliance
  • The Match Cut between the thrown bone and the orbiting weapons platform. There's roughly 4 million years of history that Clarke and Kubrick are deliberately jumping past: because between our becoming intelligent and advancing ourselves to travel through space, nothing else mattered.

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