Even humorless Booker you can picture standing there, just trying so hard not to. Or at least failing to suppress a tiny smile.
The revelation that Elizabeth is Comstock's daughter and he wants her to follow in his footsteps has probably the most adorable response.
Elizabeth: Well, I want a puppy, but that doesn't mean I'm going to get one!
If you pay attention, seeing the difference in strength not to mention hand size between Elizabeth and Booker is quite amusing:
After Booker unceremoniously falls into Elizabeth's library and scares the crap out of her, while trying to calm her down he puts a hand on her shoulder. She shrugs it off and tries to strike him with her book. She's using both hands and mustering a fair bit of strength, but Booker stops both swings in their tracks with one hand and almost no effort. Here is one of the few instances that you get to compare hand sizes, too. Booker's are frigging enormous.
Another good hand comparison scene is when Elizabeth takes Booker's hand and then puts it around her throat when begging him not to let Songbird take her back.
He takes her hand in his when helping her out of the torture device in Comstock House, giving you another chance to see that Booker's hands are at least twice the size of Elizabeth's. They're literally the size of her entire face.
More strength comparison: Elizabeth finds the door to the outside of her tower, but can't make the handwheel budge an inch, even putting her whole upper body into it and bracing against the floor. Booker gets it open instantly.
When she's trying to activate a gondola, poor Elizabeth can't get the lever to move at all when she's pushing on it with everything she has. Because she didn't pull in the latch that allows the lever to move. Not her finest moment.
Speaking of Elizabeth and levers, if you listen to her trying to push that lever for any length of time, it starts to sound...pretty...wrong...
Elizabeth ganking Booker with a wrench is actually pretty funny. As is a Vox man punching him in the face just when he starts to come to. And then hanging him out of the airship to rouse him. And then throwing him out of the airship from a pretty fair height.
Booker's too busy running for his life to consider that telling someone who's never used an elevator to "call" the elevator may result in some confusion:
Booker: Call the elevator! Elizabeth:[from around the corner] What?! Booker: PRESS THE BUTTON!
As horrific as the situation itself is, Elizabeth's screaming when they fall from the top of the tower is kind of hilarious, both visually and aurally. As is both of their screaming when they fall off the skyline into the water.
Booker coughing up a lung after almost drowning sounds pretty funny. Not to mention he sounds pretty punch-drunk:
Elizabeth:[trying to help him up] Here, let me. Booker:[weakly]I'm fine. Elizabeth: You almost drowned, you need to Booker: I said, I'm fine, just...[not sounding fine]...just, just gimme a minute. Elizabeth: ...Do you hear that? [joyously] Oh, it's music! Booker:[groggily waving a hand]Go on, I just...jus'need'a...[passes out]
One can't help but want to paraphrase that last line as, "You go on, I'll just...lie here and...die..."
Even funnier: After he finally gets up, when he asks two men if they've seen a girl around, they snidely reply, "Look at this one." "Why don't you just sleep it off, chum?" Later, Elizabeth comments, "That fall in the water did you no favors." The implication seems to be that Booker was staggering around like he was plastered. Just picture that.
There's a hilarious scene where a black man scrubbing a floor is muttering to himself about having to clean up after his employers, in clearly educated language:
"I must take any task with more than the slightest complexity, or they simply leave it in ruins for me to clean up later!"
When he realizes he has company, he immediately switches to "just an ignorant negro" mode and says he was just joking:
"Oh! Ahah! H'lo, suh! Don't you pay me no nevermind! Jus' sum foolish-ness, y'know, ha ha! Jus' monkeyshines!"
A player may have a quiet chuckle at how bad his lie is...until you rememberthe racial dynamics at play and the fact that he might well be lynched if Booker tells anyone. If you really listen to that last bit, the man's voice is shaking like mad he's terrified. Makes you feel bad you can't reassure him.
On the note of racial dynamics, Elizabeth's ignorance of them is both charming and hilarious:
In the same vein, he's hilariously reluctant to let go of the idea that Columbia is held up by giant balloons, because he can understand giant balloons.
Elizabeth: They well, she invented the technology that keeps this city afloat! Booker: Giant balloons? Elizabeth: Quantum particles, suspended at a fixed point in space-time. Booker: So...not giant balloons?
And when she asks him an unrelated question a little bit later, she finds he's still stuck on that one.
Elizabeth: How do you suppose they manage that? Booker: I'll get back to you after I figure out the floating city bit.
There's also his reactions to the Luteces.
Robert: If only one of you had the ability to alter the fabric of space and time. Rosalind: Yes, that would be a blessing indeed. [They vanish.] Booker: Well. They're sarcastic.
At one point, the Luteces are engaging in some painting: Rosalind is posing, and Robert is painting. Except if you look at the canvas, Robert is painting himself.
Then moments later you see them dancing while lampshading the fact they finish each other's sentences, while still finishing each other's sentences during the conversation.
The sentient gate at the Comstock House mistakes Elizabeth for her mother in an excessively cheerful manner.
Gate: Lady Comstock, how lovely to see you! Wonderful of you to make the journey, considering your painful death nineteen years ago!
Gate: Your fingerprints aren't your own today, Lady Comstock. Are you feeling unwell?
Similarly, earlier in the game, a Possessed automaton ticket taker admits you into the fairgrounds with this comment:
Ticket Taker: Well, if it isn't Assemblyman Buford! Your spot at the raffle awaits! Don't know why I didn't recognize you before. Odd.
The fact that it even has this phrase programmed into it is also snicker-worthy.
Fighting a horde of giant mechanical George Washingtons...or siccing them on giant mechanical Abraham Lincolns.
When you are in people's good graces they always remark how handsome you are, but when you become the public enemy number one, the city suddenly becomes convinced that you are a deformed mulatto dwarf.
Or a Frenchman with one eye. Tomato, tomahto.
Or Sander Cohen apparently, if you notice Booker's eyewitness sketch.
Perhaps because of this, after Booker's cover is blown the "False Shepherd" still attracts some admiring comments from the blissfully unaware:
Random Woman at Battleship Bay: Mmm...look at him, ladies. It's a crime someone doesn't get him a nice set of trunks.
Doubly funny in that picturing Booker in the kinds of swimming trunks all the other men are wearing...is just...*snort*
Customer: Um...have you got sauerkraut? Hot Dog Vender: Sauerkraut? Uhh...I guess so. Customer: I'll take, um, one please. How much? Hot Dog Vender: Um, one Silver Eagle. Customer: Heh...all right.
As Booker tries to talk with the ticket agent, the man with the hot dog is apparently staring directly at you in anticipation, prompting Elizabeth to say, "Hey, mister! You're going to get mustard all over your nice suit!"
Robert's annoyance that he has once again won the coin-toss. Judging by the results on his sandwich board, he's been hoping for some variation for quite a while.
Arguably anything involving the Lutece twins. They're either engaged in an oddball activity or in Snark-to-Snark Combat.
In a Freeze-Frame Bonus, if one looks through the telescope shortly after arriving on Columbia, Robert can be seen juggling in the background, while Rosalind looks on in irritation.
When Booker chases Elizabeth (who's still pissed he lied about taking her to Paris) through Fink Manufacturing, she uses tears to conjure up a number of ludicrous things to impede his progress, like a bunch of party balloons, a passing freight train, and even a marching band. Made even funnier when he starts yelling at the marching band and they stay in perfect formation despite it.
A little later, Booker tells her that he can get their airship back, but that there are... conditions. He tells her what those conditions are in an extremely matter-of-fact way, but also awkward and talking quickly, as he was dangling from a rope on a balloon at the time—a balloon that appeared through a rift and could just as easily disappear if the still angry Elizabeth wishes so, which Booker seems to realize.
Elizabeth:(Incredulous) You can get us out of here? Booker: Yes! I just... (starts mumbling quickly) need to supply enough weapons to arm an entire uprising.
(Title Card 1) Battleship Falls - William R. Foreman 1909 No.99 (Movie shows the scenery, then the camera drops into the waterfall) (Title Card 2) William R. Foreman (Oct 13, 1867 - July 2, 1909)
It is even funnier if you realized that he essentially invented modern filmmaking by accident - notice that all kinetoscope movie shots you have seen before are filmed from a static position and angle. (Actually moving the camera to tell a story is pioneered by a certain film in 1915.)
When Booker and Elizabeth enter the tear into the world where the Vox Populi were successfully armed, Elizabeth happily declares that they'll start a revolution that will improve everyone's lives, "just like in Les Misιrables." Clearly, she only skimmed the book. On top of that, a bit of ironic Black Comedy is added in that after this comment, you can hear panicked shouts and the sounds of a firefight outside.
Fink's oblivious certainty that Booker will work for him is amusing. The Good Time Club marquee even reads BOOKER DEWITT AUDITION TODAY!
The sign is equally funny once you emerge from the Club in an alternate reality — it instead reads, "SANSMARK RETIREMENT GALA". You know, Fink's head of security, whom you probably just "dismissed" via exploding his head with a shotgun on the way out of the club.
After Luteces explain the significant connection between music, instrument and the Songbird, they disappear (again). To which Booker comments dryly, "At least they left us the piano..." which he has to push out of his way. If ever there was anything the Luteces did specifically to annoy Booker, that was it.
Incidentally, try not taking the note Robert gives you right away. "Perhaps a waltz?" Elizabeth's dumbfounded expression just completes the scene.
When Lady Comstock showed up in Lutece lab acting like most women who just discovered their husband fathered an illegitimate child, Rosalind gave us this gem in an almost cheerful tone. It's arguably made funnier by Lady Comstock's freakout.
In Comstock House, the scientists screaming and cowering by the generator switches when you show up is funny enough that you almost don't want to kill them because then they would stop.
When your first heard the anachronistic songs all around, from 'God Only Knows' to 'Girls Just Wanna Have Fun', you might expect a weird and otherworld explanation to whatever causes these, with some gamers theorizing that the musicians were out of their time and so on. Turns out, composer Albert Fink, Jeremiah Fink's brother, is nothing more than a plagiarizing bastard, using the space time ruptures to look at other times and copy the songs lyrics, and modifying their tunes so they could be played by barbershop quartets and other musicians.
When you reach the boardwalk area, you find a one of the black menial workers taking a smoke break behind the carousal. He nervously claims his friend gave him the cigarette and he's never smoked before a day in his life. Booker calms him down saying it was fine by him. "Hey, smoke 'em if you got 'em."
Go in the white men's bathroom at Battleship Bay, Elizabeth won't follow you in, but she'll ask you "Are you okay in there?" if you're in there long enough.
And if you enter the women's bathroom, she'll berate you for trying to get them both arrested.
The whole sequence through Battleship Bay basically provides Elizabeth's first impression of her would-be rescuer. Depending on the player's actions in the game, this could involve Booker rooting through trashcans for spare change or food (which he eats), walking into women's washrooms to empty the contents of any purses or handbags he finds, or even stealing from a cash register in the same room as the shop's owner. Elizabeth will more than likely have a few choice comments on your total disregard for social niceties or apparent poverty.
For more bathroom fun, walk into the bathroom on the way to the Hall of Heroes. You find two Columbian Soldiers, one of which is using the urinal, the other the toilet.
Don't interrupt Elizabeth when you find her dancing. Booker's frustrated reactions are hilarious.
"Hey, Miss, I ...Miss! ...Could you just ? ...Hey, I need you to stop! ...Please stop!"
The longer you wait, the funnier his line is once you finally do interrupt her:
"Hey, Miss! Miss! Elizabeth!"
But as great as dancing is:
Booker: Hey, Miss! Miss! Elizabeth!" Elizabeth:[exuberant] Hello! Oh, this is wonderful! Oh come dance with me, Mr. DeWitt! Booker: I don't dance, come on, let's go. Elizabeth: Why?! [twirling] What could be better than this?! Booker: Well...how 'bout Paris? Elizabeth:[agog]Paris, how I-I don't understand, how could we get there? Booker:[pointing] Well it's where that airship's going, but if you wanna stay and dance, we can Elizabeth:[bursting] No! Let's go! [pulling him by the hand] C'mon, let's go! C'mon, let's go right now!
Even Booker probably couldn't suppress the tiniest of smiles at that amusing bit of adorableness.
This is also our first, entertaining glimpse of Booker's sense of humor. "But if you wanna stay and dance..."
On a somewhat related note...try to picture Booker dancing. Keep in mind he's almost a Perpetual Frowner and doesn't seem to like dancing (assuming he even can), so if Elizabeth somehow convinced him to dance a reel, it's unlikely he'd crack a smile during the ordeal and his dancing would probably look pretty stilted whether or not he knew what he was doing. Somehow that just makes the notion ten times funnier. Whether you picture him dancing well or poorly, the incongruity is just hilarious.
this exchange becomes heartwarming after you discover Booker and Elizabeth's relationship, given that it's a very parental thing to say
Booker: A city...at the bottom of the ocean? Pft. Ridiculous.
Booker's reactions to a lot of things are hilarious, but notable is his sheepish stammering when Elizabeth tells him it's okay to ask about her pinky. He actually sounds pretty mortified.
Elizabeth: If you wanna ask me, ask me. Booker: About what? Elizabeth: My finger. Booker: I-I, uh-uuuh...I'm sorry, I didn't Elizabeth:[chuckles] It's alright. It's as much a mystery to me as anyone else. Maybe Songbird knows, but he's not talking. Booker:[chuckling nervously] Aheh...I, I'm sorry.
It's kind of adorable hearing Booker, Mr. Gruff Hardass, get so embarrassed that he just chuckles awkwardly. And the image it conjures up is pretty hilarious, too: It's hard to imagine Booker getting embarrassed about much of anything, but if one could ever picture his face turning red, it would be during that exchange. Hell, you can practically see him do a Hand Behind Head!
Booker: ...Come on, it ... [long, uncomfortable silence] ...Hey, uh, Elizabeth...it... It's gonna be okay. [silence] ...Come on, it [sighs] Everything's gonna be okay. Will you just turn around and talk to me, and we can *THWACK*
There's a fitness class at Battleship Bay whose members will give Booker a lot of grief for interrupting them.
Due to Elizabeth's programming, she'll inspect her surroundings. Sometimes she'll stick her head in a urinal.note Though this is somewhat understandable, as they'd be as much a novelty as pretty much everything else in the real world. Doesn't make it any less funny.
There's something hilarious about Booker, ex-Pinkerton, brutish cynic and all-round gruff hardass, stuffing his face full of cotton candy in the midst of a fight.
Many players find the idea of Booker scavenging and eating anything he can find equally hilarious. Just how long has that hot dog been in the trash can?
Banzaii: You literally eat everything. There's never like, "Uagh I'm a little full now I'ma keep this for later", it's like, FOOD, EAT. Biggi: Booker see food, Booker eat.
From that same video, the pair get distracted by a hummingbird and accidentally leap off Columbia whilst trying to look at it. ...Oh hell, just watch the whole video, pretty much all of it is hilarious.
In Downtown Emporia, there is a candy store, where boxes of chocolate contain hot dogs (which shouldn't even be able to fit in said boxes), and a box of candied almonds actually has a can of beans inside. Yeah. It made this troper snicker.
Something is just amusing about the fact that despite being so utterly backwards in so many social standards, even for 1912, the people of Columbia have such progressive attitudes about women and women's rights. You even come across a few guards discussing just how much they hate sexism, while enforcing the law in a culture whose casual racism could give North Korea a run for its money.
Though Columbia does have its moments. For instance, the documentary on Lutece posits that the city floats due to "woman's intution."
Don't react right away during your encounters with the Luteces. They'll make little quips concerning Booker's intelligence.
Even better: Stay on the boat at the beginning. They panic.
At Battleship Bay:
Elizabeth: Did you know this artificial bay was built in six months? Booker: How'd you know that? Elizabeth: Those books I threw at you. They work passing well for reading, too.
While wandering around Soldier's Field, Booker will show off his dry, smart-ass sense of humor:
Elizabeth: Are you interested in gardening, Mr. DeWitt? Booker: They frown on gardens in my part of town. Elizabeth: And where is that? Booker:[dryly] The part with no gardens.
Elizabeth: What if they catch us here? Booker: We'll tell them we got lost on our way to the bathroom. Elizabeth: ...And that works? Booker: Not usually.
The first few times Elizabeth opens a tear are for endearingly mundane reasons. While painting the Eiffel Tower, she opens up a pathway to look at the real thing did she just tear reality open in order to check if her painting looked right? And the second time, she rips the fabric of spacetime asunder because she's afraid of a bee and wants to get rid of it without the risk of it stinging her. And on that note, their dialogue during the bee encounter is pretty great:
Elizabeth: Ah! Ugh, it's a bee! I, I hate these things! Booker: Ah jeez, just kill it. Elizabeth: No, it'll sting me! Booker:Elizabeth!
The petulant way Elizabeth says, "It'll sting me!" is chuckle-worthy, but it's Booker's Parenthetical Swearing that makes the scene: He says "Elizabeth!" in such an exasperated tone that he might as well have said, "Oh, for fuck's sake!"
When walking around Battleship Bay, it's possible to half-recognize the carnival music and hum along with it. It then hits you that it's an anachronistic cover "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" by Cyndi Lauper, a song all the way from 1983.
The entrance via trolley to Soldier's Field features, on the pier overlooking the falls, a shotgun sitting in a deck chair next to a bunch of strung-up dead seagulls.
Sometimes the game mechanics themselves cause the most fun. Elizabeth somberly regards the dozen of dead civilians left lying around in the wake of the Vox uprising, kneels by a dead man and saying, "Look at this one...do you think he wanted any of this?" You turn away as she leans over them, folds their hands and puts a rose in their hands... "Hey Booker, want some money? Catch!" She turfed the dead guy's pockets!
This can happen during even bigger scripted events, such as Elizabeth talking to Lady Comstock's statue.
Elizabeth: (To the statue) Rosalind Lutece is not my mother...and neither are you. But he killed you both...because of- Wanna hold on to this? Catch!
When escaping Elizabeth's Tower: If you pay attention, you can hear the elevator ding shortly before it comes down to smack Songbird on the head.
Inspecting a booth at the fair:
Booker: What's a voxophone? Voxophone:[click] "What's a voxophone?" Barker: Exactly that! A personal record of voice. Booker: Hey, just so we're clear, I'm not payin' for this. Barker:[sheepish] Just a demonstration, sir.
Doing the optional objective to rescue "Sally" will leave Elizabeth a little miffed upon realizing that she and Booker just risked their lives backtracking all the way back to the Salty Oyster to find "some light titillation" a pin-up poster. Not helped by Booker (possibly* almost assuredly jokingly) saying he thinks he knew the woman in the poster.
It is fun as hell to jump off edges into the abyss because no one even freaks out that you've basically committed suicide. Plus, there isn't a single consequence to it, so you can spend long periods of time jumping off just trying to get a look at other parts of the city.
In the "Clash in the Clouds" DLC, one of the trophies you can earn is Rope-a-Dope. To earn it, you have to use Undertow on an enemy to knock him off the city, use it again to rescue him...then knock him off again.
There is some humor to be found when Elizabeth is trying to have a meaningful conversation with you, and continues to speak as guns blaze all around her.
When Fink calls Booker in an elevator and says he's the top candidate, Elizabeth makes a goofy, "Get a load of this guy" hand/face gesture.
A little bit of Snark-to-Snark Combat between Booker and Elizabeth in the elevator up to the First Lady Airship. Really, it's the perfect voice acting that sells it:
Elizabeth: How do you think they knew you'd be coming here? Booker: Either they've got a prophet on their side Elizabeth: Har har. Booker: or them that hired me also wrote the signs.
In Fink Manufacturing, Elizabeth has agreed to work together with you again, but is obviously still mad at you for the stunt you pulled back on the airship. This is probably not meant to be funny, but there's something about Elizabeth's defiant attitude towards you (crossed arms, pouty face, trying very hard to not meet your eyes) that's downright adorable, if not funny.
At Finkton Manufacturing, you'll see a sort of auction for job positions (hauling coal, crimping wires, etc.) listed on a huge board. But when you travel to another world in order to get weapons for the Vox, you return to that same place, only to find that every entry on the board has the same job: KILL THE FALSE SHEPHERD.
This little moment, when you're on your way to the raffle, you come across two women sitting on the bench. One comments on Booker's attractiveness, to her partner's chagrin:
Woman 1: That man looks lost. Woman 2: He looks just fine to me! Woman 1: *gasps* Mary, you are a living, walking, scandal!
Early in the game, while passing a couple of citizens looking out at Monument Island:
Man 1: Clear enough, you can even see some of the World Below today. Man 2: Huh. I've always pictured it being more, y' know... on fire.
This Video claims that Elizabeth is escorting YOU.
In Finkton, a radio plays a made-up news story about a man in Texas being burned by a mob for praying to the Founding Fathers. The newscaster says this is typical in "the United States of un-America". It's just such a childish insult for a grown man to be using.
You know all of those songs you are hearing that are early 20th century renditions of songs that came along decades later? Turns out that Jeramiah Fink gets these songs through tears, then markets them as his own music, plagiarizing the artists through time travel. The example they give you of this is when you approach a tear in Fink's factory that is playing Credence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son". While the idea of Jeramiah stealing songs from the future to sell in his time is amusing enough, it gets even more amusing if you know about the legal problems lead singer John Fogerty has had with record companies and copyright infringement claims. Poor John, now he's getting screwed by a corporation that could claim copyright retroactively through time travel. Sheesh!
From the early gameplay trailers, some laughs that didn't end up in the finale game:
After Booker takes out an assault blimp by himself:
Elizabeth: Booker! That was amazing! Booker:[sounding pained] Great! 'Cause I don't think I could do it again.
Elizabeth: (After Booker shoots a Handyman.) That's just making him angry! Booker: He was already angry!
"WE'RE CLOSED!" (BLAM)
Naturally, Booker rips the gun out of his hands with telekinesis and shoots him with it, sending him crashing into the piano. Funniest thing about it? His last words were "Give it back!"
When Elizabeth finds a bunch of what she thinks are "gold" statues. Plus Booker's response:
Elizabeth dons a large novelty Lincoln head. Made funnier by her voice echoing inside it, and her grandiose gesturing:
Elizabeth: Booker! Booker:[turns to see her with the Lincoln head on] Elizabeth:[dancing] Fooour scooore and seven yeaars agoooo...! Booker:[sounding amused despite himself] Keeeep lookin', Lincoln.
From Burial at Sea:
In order to distract the Rapture Records store owner, Elizabeth feigns rather breathy arousal while hearing "Beyond the Sea". The attendant is predictably flummoxed.
As Booker searches through the back room of The Golden Rule, Elizabeth angrily claims that the diamond ring in the showcase was stolen off her mother's body in the Twilight Fields Mortuary. When the formerly-composed clerk calls her a "little tramp" and moves to throw her out, Elizabeth kicks him hard in his ownjewels. What's better is that it's exactly the same technique she used during the first fight after you meet her in Infinite.
As usual, some of the things the Splicers say are absolute gold:
(After you possess a turret near them) AFTER ALL I'VE DONE FOR YOU?!
(Shot at) Annihilate your own goddamn self!
During Booker and Elizabeth's dance, this Black Comedy moment about Booker's "investigation" methods.
Booker: If Suchong had Sally, I'd know it. Elizabeth: How? Booker: Because I tied him him to a chair and asked him... Elizabeth: So? Booker: ... For fifteen hours.
Elizabeth has a few things to say if you get drunk or gamble.
Elizabeth: I see you've earned your reputation as a gambler, Mr DeWitt. Perhaps you'd like to earn your reputation as a detective.
A lot of players have taken note of the utterly hilarious expression on Elizabeth's face when Cohen is talking. It's like she's thinking "Whatever you say, weirdo!"
The "Ryan the Lion" preparatory academy, which Crosses the Line Twice hilariously. Children presumably as young as 5 receive punishments for sharing any of their toys, watch lectures about how eating nothing but candy is admirable if you buy it with your own money, and are taught to shoot high-powered crossbows at stationary targets.
Near the start, when you get off the Luteces' boat, if you linger instead of moving on, they start to sing "row, row, row your boat" in harmony with each other. In the bleak moment that comes out of nowhere and is absolutely hilarious by the simple virtue of being so unexpected.
This poster reveals what exactly Elizabeth did in Rapture at the time. For two months.
Look at the erotic books and Elizabeth will comment that her tower didn't include any of that kind of literature.
The whole sex shop exacts more than a chuckle. Just look at the poster right of its entrance◊, or the one just inside. And also consider when you first see it: it's just the other side of a small square, in front of a children's school (which also speaks volumes of Rapture's society and lassez-faire attitude).
Near Fink's lab you can find a chalkboard with various suggestions for new Vigors and Fink's sarcastic responses to their uselessness. For example, one that lets you communicate with dead housepets.
Fink: Nobody wants a moldy puppy.
Upon reaching Atlas' hideout for Old Man Winter, you can find a kinetoscope of Atlas' anti-Andrew-Ryan propaganda. It's actually quite unsettling for the most part, up until a shot of gigantic statue of a fist holding a chain with the description of The Great Chain is Guided By Your Hand, and then...
Elizabeth's ciphers are real. That being said it seems development time ran out before Older Elizabeth's message to Booker could be written. It says, "I AM A CODE: I SHOULD PROBABLY BE CHANGED OVER FOR SOMETHING MUCH MORE OFFICIAL IN THE FUTURE, BUT I'LL DO AS A STAND-IN FOR NOW I SUPPOSE."