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Headscratchers / Infinity Train

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  • How much time has passed in Tulip's world during her months on the train? Her parents do not seem to have been too traumatised by her absence.
    • Word of God confirms that there is no Time Dilation. Season 4 seems to imply that time passes at the same rate between the train and Earth, as young Amelia got on the train in the 1980's. It might be explained by time having passed since Tulip's getting back, as she seems to be going to game camp another year, if in the near future - her parents may have had time to grieve and celebrate since.
  • Were the Ghoms a "natural" part of the train, or were they the result of Amelia's fiddling?
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    • It's a bit of both.
  • Is the train technological, or a higher-dimensional being?
    • Since it only appears when the person boarding it is at their lowest point, it's likely the latter.
    • It is obviously technological (its a train, after all, and its cars environment is controlled by wires and cables), but the technology seems more... complex than early-XXI century human have. Albeit not significantly more advanced. Basically, the Train is what extradimensional beings could construct on their equivalent of early-XXI century technology.
    • It has to be supernatural to some extent given that you can lose your reflections permanently there. No amount of coding would explain that in the real world.
      • "Supernatural" is very broad therm. Steam engine made by four-dimensional creature for us, humans, would probably looks like supernatural, with power & motion seemingly contradict our physic laws. Still, it would be a pretty mundane steam engine in essential.
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    • Owen Dennis said season 5 would answer where they came from and a season 5 storyboard showed them killing a passenger.
  • If it is technological, who created it? Aliens? Humans from the future? Extradimensional beings?
    • Considering that the Infinity Train jingle is based on a story about Clay people and Satan, it may have been invented by Satan himself. Or by clay people. Or by Mark Twain.
    • What if the train is a manifestation of something like humanity's desire for growth?
  • How does Tulip eat onions without crying?
    • According to the Onion Tears trope page, in real life, raw onions don’t cause your eyes to tear up unless they’re green or very fresh. The onions Tulip eats are probably a bit aged.
  • Is the "Ghom tree" world Earth or no?
    • Given the barren wasteland and dark skies probably not. Note that transportation out of the train requires a wormhole.
  • Are the beings inside of the train apart from Tulip from other worlds or Earth?
    • They're projections created by the train's coding orbs. Whereas they're just holograms or something more substantial remains to be seen, but they're clearly alive.
      • Was it ever shown or confirmed that they were projections created by the orbs? Or implied?
      • The fact that there is a corgi orb pretty much implies all sapient races within the train are part of its simulation.
      • Though it seems that something has to be alive to start with to be overwritten as some other creature.
  • How will Tulip go through life without anyone realizing that she has no reflection?
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    • Until we see a continuation of Tulip's story, we'll never know. Although if I had to guess, if people found out they'll probably assume that Tulip is a vampire that can go out in the sun.
    • Season 2 explains that when a person dies, their reflection gets their memories erased and gets reassigned to a new person. Tulip probably got a new reflection assigned to her.
  • Is Tulip still on the train?
    • No. We've seen what the portal/wormhole does from a different perspective in previous episodes: it sucks people into the storm above then shoots them into the ground, sending them home. It just looked like the person who got "beamed" was being disintegrated, as what happened to Tulip when she entered the portal, when in reality it was just standard teleportation as both their atoms were being disassembled then reassembled.
  • How is the train not overcrowded with people going through the death of a loved one or divorced parents or something like that? Many people deal with loss and other similar things in their lives, so what makes the few human passengers on the train so special?
    • Well, there's a WMG that the train specifically takes people whose emotional problems are in danger of getting them killed. But we don't really know yet why the train is so selective.
    • As to why it's not overcrowded, well that one's easy. It's an infinite train. Any finite number divided by infinity is basically zero, so everyone completes the train alone.
  • If the fake Conductor is so obsessed with staying in her position and not having any interruptions, what was stopping her from throwing One-One off the train or at least checking to see if he's been destroyed? That would've been a better use of her time than turning Atticus into a Ghom for no reason.
    • Considering that One-One has the ability to command the train even when he isn't connected to the motherboard, it's possible that the Conductor already tried, but One-One just didn't allow it. So she gave up. It's also possible that the train would just stop working if the real Conductor wasn't on it, which she might have found that out the hard way.
      • If the Grid Car is anything to go by, The Train is capable of functioning even when One-One isn't on it physically, making the original question valid.
  • If Tulip's so smart, what exactly made her think that she could travel 300 miles to Oshkosh in the cold on foot?
  • Where the heck did Amelia get the tech and machinery to make the Conductor mecha bot? From the engine? From some very convenient advanced technology cars? Was the Conductor bot once a real robot from a robot car that Amelia murdered and scooped the robotic version of organs out of to create a mech?
    • Considering that the Steward was removing orbs in the series, and seemingly dismantling piping from the corgi car in the pilot, Amelia most likely commanded the Steward to dismantle cars for her materials (as well as making other cars) so that she can make whatever she needs. But convenient technologically advanced cars is most likely the answer, as she probably has a private car for such things.
    • Book 2 shows that the head of Amelia's mecha bot was created from one of the pods that carry passengers onto the train, so that covers the origins of at least one piece of it.
  • Why is Mirror Tulip referred to by the Mirror Police as a 'sliver'. Am I missing some obscure word play here? I get that the MP are called 'Flecs' as an abbreviation of the word reflection, but why are runaway reflections called slivers?
    • In the episode "The Chrome Car", the cops explain that renegade reflections are called "slivers."
      • I know, but I'm asking "why" they are called by that term? If that was explained, I don't really remember. A sliver is like a small cut or slice of something larger, e.g like a sliver of wood. But why is that term applied to a reflection gone rogue? Just seems like a weird term...
      • Or a sliver of glass, but it still does not seem to mean anything.
      • When a mirror shatters, it breaks into slivers, annoying, hard to find bits of glass that can get under your skin and cause infections. A rogue reflection "breaks the mirror" by staying in the human world and then must be tracked down and eliminated. It's a term of abuse, akin to calling a human a fleck of snot.
  • Is it just me, or does the toad car seem a bit sadistic? Most of them seem to have some kind of point, but there doesn’t seem to be much reason to try and force passengers to kick a clearly distressed toad, especially since your number goes up if you do.
    • Blue and orange morality, it seems.
    • Also, Jesse’s number wasn’t going to go up for kicking the toad. It’s because he was doing what MT told him to do instead of doing what HE wanted to do.
  • Something bugs me about Jesse being on the train. Even though he was the one pressured to hurting his brother, he's infinitely nicer than his "friends" who push him around. Why is he on the train and not them? Even if he does get his number down to zero and grow a spine, those assholes will still be bullies? Why can't the train go to them and teach them a lesson?
    • One might argue that Tulip’s problems were caused by her parent’s divorce. So, why didn’t her parents get stuck on the train instead? The reason is that it’s not about her parents, it’s about Tulip learning to accept their divorce and gain closure. While we don’t understand the exact mechanism of HOW the Train chooses a passenger, it just seems to pick someone who needs to address their own individual issues. In Jesse’s case, while he feels guilt over hurting his brother, he may to understand that those so-called friends of his, weren’t really friends and he should stand up for himself. But if the bullies amended their ways first, then Jesse has no lesson to learn himself. Much like if Tulip’s parents fixed their own problems, then Tulip doesn’t need to get on the Train does she?
      • True but in regards to Jesse, even if the bullies were gone, Jesse still showed doormat tendencies (he mentioned that he wanted to do freestyle on the swim team but his team told him to do the butterfly stroke). Perhaps he didn't realize they were that bad until the bullies came and injured his brother.
  • Considering how fucked up Grace is, this begs the question: What happens to people who don't want to improve and choose to make their numbers go up? Sure One-One is trying to make things easier by saying "0 means gone forever" but Grace was before One-One returned and she worships Amelia/The Conductor as a god. Do they just keep going on the train forever until they die? Does the train put in another punishment for them for those too stubborn to change?
    • Such situations probably should not ever exist, and only became possible due to non-anticipated situation of Amelia's rule over the Train. It seems that One-One is either unaware of the whole Apex cult, or just did not found a working solution yet.
      • It’s quite possible that some passengers never get off the Train, even before Amelia’s tenure as conductor. True to life, some people just don’t learn a lesson or refuse to face their problems. Their numbers just keeping going up. Given the fact that Amelia’s number has gone up well over 10 digits(putting it past a trillion), it’s unlikely she’s going to escape the Train before she dies. Also the fact that Amelia’s number has gone up that HIGH since she’s been on the Train makes it even more likely some passengers simply are doomed to failure from the start.
  • Wait, if the Train can make all those cars then couldn't it have also whipped up some manuals on "How to survive the Infinity Train without dying"? That would've been so helpful during Amelia's reign, you know!
    • Life is a journey, but life doesn’t nesscessary come with a manual, does it? Each car is essential supposed to be its own kind of challenge and lesson that the passenger must figure out on their own. But consider this, not ALL cars have a lesson that would be applicable to every single passenger. This is why some cars the passengers go through don’t seem to serve any real purpose. Because whatever lesson they may offer doesn’t help the particular passenger or maybe the lesson is interpreted incorrectly. For example, the Toad Car affected Jesse’s number because it related to how he allows himself to be pressured into doing unpleasant things. Now say Tulip ends up in the Toad Car, it may not affect her number because her problems are completely different to Jesse’s. Basically, the Train does not tell the passengers what to do more so than it gives them infinite opportunities to learn.
      • While it works for those who are capable of understanding their problems, do you expect most of the kids who enter it to understand what's wrong with them?
      • Well there doesn't seem to be an age issue with the Train as we have seen adults and old people get on as well. Thus far, how the Train chooses passengers is a mystery. But not everyone is even capable of understanding their problems in the first place. That's what the Train is for. Even then, it's probably a case by case basis. For example, Jessie gets his through his issues with the help of M.T(Lake), not on his own. Whereas we also see kids in the Apex group who think they need to make their numbers go up. This is implied to be something that will be addressed in Book 3
    • You can make the argument that if the passengers don't learn their lesson on their own and are simply told how to progress through each car, they lesson may not really "stick," since now they're just doing the correct actions because someone gave them a guide and not because of Character Development.
  • Just a theoretical question: if Amelia would appear and shoot Grace dead, thus correcting the consequence of her actions & helping a whole lot of other passengers - would Amelia's number go up or down?
    • That would make her number go up by a large margin. Grace's influence will already be spread out upon these children and killing her won't make them change their minds immediately. The best thing she can do is try, one by one, to convince them what they're doing is wrong, what she did was wrong, and make them consider what their parents (if they have any) would think about their behavior. Now if Amelia shot Grace and made her a Ghom, well that's a different story since we know that one needs a particular "Orb" to turn things back to normal (Atticus) but there's the question if one should turn them back if Grace is still gonna be a bitch.
  • How did the Flecks escape the Toad Car? There was no toad to kick, no reflective surfaces to get them back into the mirror world, and the Lawbreaker's power cord was cut.
    • It’s possible One-One may have had to intervene in some way, seeing as how that car had officially been ‘broken’. Without Terrence (the Toad), the doors to the car cannot open, meaning passengers can’t get past it, so One-One would have to bring the Toad Car in for decommission or to have it fixed.
      • It's confirmed that car puzzles reset after some time passes, which could mean the car simply regenerated the toad, allowing the Flecks to kick it.
  • Why does One-One/the Conductor allow Grace and Simon to keep Apex going? Think about it: even if the two are acting like jerks now, they entered the train during Amelia's rule, when no passengers had any clue what the train was all about, so it's not unreasonable to think they made the same flawed deduction as Tulip originally did, that when your number goes all the way to zero, you die. Considering how high their numbers are, it's likely they entered the train as kids, becoming traumatized by the whole experienced and coming up with a belief system to explain the whole experience. And even if this doesn't justify their actions now, surely the younger kids they've recruited to Apex are not to blame for joining them? Since it's been only a few months since Amelia was dethroned, most of them probably entered the train during her rule too, and were equally clueless why they were there. So when these kids, who were most likely traumatized and scared, meet two adults who have an explanation for all of it and offer a safe haven, of course they're gonna join them. But because of this, their numbers keep going up, and they'll be stuck on the train for months or years, while their parents and loved ones probably think they have died. So they're basically being punished disproportionately for things that were beyond their control (the real Conductor being away when they entered the train), and for being a bit gullible. Shouldn't the Conductor (or whoever it is who really controls the train) just disband Apex and send these poor kids back home immediately instead of waiting their numbers to go down to zero?
    • Simple answer: a passenger getting their number down to zero is the ONLY way back. Once a number has been given, One-One can’t undo it or send them home. Remember when Jesse got back on the train, his number was unstable, because his wanted to save M.T., which the Train could not allow. So why didn’t One-One simply send Jessie back? Because he can’t. The purpose of the Train is to help a passenger solve their problems, which take the form of the numbers. If One-One tried to send them off the Train himself before their numbers hit zero, he would likely get stuck in another logic loop like he did with Jesse.
    • And while you are correct about the Apex kids be punished unfairly, remember that even if they were sent back, their underlying issues that led to them being on the Train would still be there. Not to mention any increase on their numbers as a result of Grace will go with them. Imagine if Jesse stuck with the Apex for a while, letting his number go until One-One sends him off the Train. So, he’d ultimately be even worse off than when he had started. But that is more on Grace and the Apex than it is the actual Train and One-One, isn’t it?
    • Basically negligence and the creators of the show have said the Train isn't fair so people like Simon and Grace can get shafted by it.
  • In "The Tape Car" and "The Number Car" we see that all the passengers of the train are humans... Yet the train is made with technology far beyond human understanding, which would suggest it has an extraterrestrial origin. Why aren't there any animal passengers or from other planets, then? Does every planet have its own Infinity Train?
    • I don't see why not. If there are infinite cars, why not infinite trains? That would be another nice nod to Georg Cantor.
    • The train is likely set in another world. Note that to get there, one must take a wormhole.
  • How come Atticus is the only one in Corginia who can talk/have a higher intelligence than the other Corgi’s? And as funny as the “ugly Irwin” joke was how come a dog of another breed is in Corginia?
    • Atticus isn't the only one who can talk. There was the other corgi who delivered the news about the river. It's just that most of them don't talk on camera.
    • Yeah but that was only in the pilot so I’m not sure if they can actually talk in the canonical show though.
  • Why was the train unable to give Jesse a proper number when he re-boarded to save MT? The train isn't here to solve peoples problems, its here to help people cope and grow. Tulip's number reaching zero wasn't contingent on her parents getting back together, it was contingent on her learning to move past their divorce and forgive them. As cold as it might be, if the train truly saw MT leaving as an impossibility (which One-One makes pretty clear it did, even if there was a loophole in the end) then the lesson Jessie would have to learn upon returning is that sometimes, even when your intentions are good and you try your hardest, you can't help everyone, and you can't dwell on those failures, or else you'll hold yourself up to impossible standards and let that self doubt consume you. The problem the train needed to fix shouldn't have been the physical absence of his friend, it should have been to fix the psychological stress the absence of her caused him. Otherwise... wouldn't Amelia using the train to bring her husband back from the dead also have brought her number to zero?
    • In Amelia's case, she wasn't trying to bring Alrick back from the dead; she was trying to create a facsimile of him, which, leaving aside the fact that she couldn't do it, would have been impossible anyway, since she could only recreate his outward actions; she had no true knowledge of his inner life. As far as Jesse's number goes, well we don't know enough yet, but from the way things played out it seems that the train has some kind of connection to potential passengers. They call the train as much as the train calls them. The train doesn't so much offer a lesson as allow you to learn what it is your subconscious is telling you you actually need. Jessie called the train back and his subconscious need was for MT to be with him.
    • A big part of Jesse's problem was that he was something of a doormat. He would let other people walk over him due to peer pressure, as in with his friends back home and with the Apex. We saw his number go up when he gave in to other people's wishes and we saw it go down when he refused to. His number hit zero when he stood up to Grace and Simon, because he finally was being more assertive about what he wanted as opposed to what others wanted from him. It wasn't really about accepting his limitations in helping others. Every passenger has different problems. Tulip and Amelia's just happened to be similar, in that they both couldn't accept change and or loss. Jessie on the other hand was about gaining self-confidence. But once Jesse had that self-confidence, he only thing he cared about was helping Lake. Not because someone was pressuring him into it, but because that's what he wanted more than anything and he couldn't have any closure unless he saved her.
  • Is the mirror universe real, or simply a product of the train?
    • It does seem like the mirror universe is actually real, since Lake had memories of being Tulip's reflection even before she came into the Chrome Car. Not to mention that there's an entire police dedicated to capturing 'rogue reflections', despite the fact the Chrome Car is not designed to allow reflections like Lake to escape. She only did so because Tulip cheated the system. The Chrome Car itself may just be a means of accessing the mirror world to test the passenger.
      • Somewhat jossed in a Reddit AMA. Dennis and Queripel said that yes, the mirror universe was real, but that the real question was whether it was always real, or if the Train retroactively made it that way.
      • Well, let's see. By taking the memories of its passengers and turning them into tape, the train steals their memories. As seen with the cat, through various means such as video tapes, memories can be stored as video tapes. Because the passenger's memories are so manipulable through the trains' abilities, it should be possible for the train to just give life to reflections as well as give them copies of memories.
      • A valid theory. But the initial question was wherever or not the Mirror Universe is real or a creation of the train. Even if the train gave the reflections the passengers memories, then why does also have another dimension for the reflections to inhabit? There's also the fact that Tulip no longer has any reflection, further hinting, the that the mirror dimension at least, is real.
  • What is even the point of the Ghoms? While some of the cars we have seen seem dangerous, they aren't entirely life threatening. Ghoms on the other and are feared even by members of the train itself and their first instinct is to attack and suck out your life force (causing them to explode). At first I thought they were a way to keep people on the train after Tulip tried to run away, but in Book 2 we see that the train has a kind of gravitational pull when MT gets far enough away from it. They really just seem out of place as they are way too dangerous to help people with life lessons.
    • There's still a lot of things about the nature of the Train that have yet to be fully explained such where it came from or how it chooses passengers. If the show gets more seasons, then we're likely to get more answers. The Ghoms were only officially named on-screen in Book 3, whereas they're names were simply listed in the script in the previous seasons. As to what the Ghoms are for, this is difficulty to say, but unlike denizens, they appear to live in the wasteland rather than the train. And unlike Lake, Mace and Alan Dracula, they were not shown being pulled back to the train, hinting they aren't themselves are not denizens of the train but possible the natural inhabitants of whatever the wasteland is. Of course, that doesn't explain how Amelia could turn Atticus into a Ghom unless they were in fact somehow created by the train as well.
      • Remember, the Tape Car is the only car where the universe is projected on the outside. The wasteland is the projection, and the Ghoms are its Denizens, for whatever reason.
    • Its been confirmed things like the Docent do kill passengers. That aside, word is season 5 would've revealed where Ghoms come from and given it stars Amelia, their creation may be linked to her.
  • How did Simon get his number so high after trapping Grace in her tape? It is understandable his number increased after trapping and essentially torturing her, but his number seemed to increase way more than it should have, relative to his crime.
    • Trying to trap your best friend since you were 10 in an endless loop of nightmarish memories, intending for her to either die or be completely mind-raped, seems like the kind of thing that would cause your number to massively shoot up.
      • It also doesn't seem like the number is representative of transgression, so much as the action would push one away from fixing whatever their initial complication was. While we don't know exactly what Simon is there for, there's an indication that it tied into his rigid way of thinking and refusal to accept things like being wrong or people changing. Locking Grace consequently ends up with a large boost because its him doubling down on so many of his problems, like refusing to believe the story Grace told him was inaccurate even though that's what she's come to believe through the experience herself.
      • Supposedly the number represents inner turmoil and Simon thinking Grace, the only person he could trust and confide in, was leaving him was enough for his psyche take a massive hit.
  • If a child were to be born while its parents were passengers on the train, would the child be able to leave the train with one of its parents, or would they be stuck on the train because they don't have a number?
    • Owen Dennis has said in both a video interview and a reddit AMA that its entirely possible the baby may be born without a number and could be stuck on the train. He noted in the same interview, the train isn't fair.
  • Why was One-One quarantining the cars in book 3? Was it because they were all created by Amelia and he is trying to collect them for destruction (despite Tulip teaching him that This is out of his control) or is it because of Hazel's presence being an anomaly in the train, which One One is attempting to detect and that's why he collects all the cars Amelia made so that he can detect it better?
    • Amelia said that the cars were to be quarantined, not destroyed; presumably that means sent off to the end and locked away from passengers. The initial quarantined car was Amelia's big project, but every other car was tainted by the presence of Hazel.
  • I think I discovered a potential plot hole in the end of season 4. In "The Pig Baby Car", the exit to the next car is in Pig Baby's mouth, making it almost impossible to leave his car. But in a later episode, Pig Baby is shown chasing after Kez, alongside all the other denizens Kez agitated. This begs the question: With the exit to the next car being in Pig Baby's mouth, how did Pig Baby even manage to leave his own car?! Did someone just take the exit out of his mouth and stick it somewhere else?
  • Were there freighthoppers who accidentally followed a passenger to the Infinity Train? Furthermore, if passengers are prematurely released from their pods before they can be processed, would that technically make them freighthoppers?
    • We know you can't leave the train except through your door, so presumably you can't enter it except through your door either.
  • If The Cat knew what numbers meant, why did she never tell this to Simon back when he was just a little kid in socks and sandals? Doing this would've prevented him from becoming the sociopathic co-leader of the Apex!

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