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« In Which We Await The Imminent Robot Takeover »

The Deserted Robotic Future


There are really only two reasons to watch Cherry 2000.

1.) You’re an insomniac whose penchant for Battlestar takes you to the SciFi channel at 3am, or

2.) You have this theory that you tend to divulge whilst intoxicated on dates about how exactly the inevitable robot takeover is going to happen, and Cherry 2000 happens to be a 1987 Melanie Griffith film about futuristic sex robots.

You watch it all Tylenol PMed up on late night cable or you Netflix it with the intention to learn.

(The theory goes something like this: In five to ten years the first specially designed sex robots will be ready for the market, but too expensive, they’ll first appear in brothels. Theeeeen the crazy people who salivate over stab sex fantasies will start being extra violent to robot prostitutes because they’re just robots, you know, and some people will even tout this development as good — like in the same way people thought that child molesters could safely and discreetly exercise their craving for 9 year olds on Second Life and avoid To Catch A Predator camera time.

But eventually all this violence towards sex robots will start to make us feel bad. No one likes to see any sort of being-ish thing victimized, and we’ll begin to lobby for sex robot rights. And the sexbots will win more and more rights and gain greater and greater access to resources, because it seems like the humane thing to do, but then one day they’ll plug themselves into the power grid and OMGOMGOMG...EVENT HORIZON...I can barely see it, it’s so hard to describe, but stock up on Diet Mountain Dew and regional topography maps and prayer books and please, someone hold my hand as we run. (Nitasha?) Also see: Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles.)

Beyond the evolution of sexbots, Cherry 2000 is about the impotency of the middle income male yuppie, a man who has no power at his job but makes decent money, who vaguely looks like a pervy version of Seth Meyers as if Seth Meyers wasn’t pervy-faced already, and whose greatest comfort is coming home to a hot yes woman who cooks his favorite dinner and spouts pre-programmed compliments about his dick. I feel like maybe it’s a portrait of an I-banker.

The first scene of the movie is man-bot frottage on the kitchen floor. Suds from the overflowing dishwasher pour down on the two. The sexbot’s breasts look incredibly supple. Then the suds short-circuit Cherry’s wiring causing sparks to fly everywhere, and right away you realize that you’re not actually dealing with a normalish well dressed office drone, but a guy who is willing to stick his cock in an electric box. There is just so much room for character development.

Sam’s friends try to take him to a bar to meet human ladies, but, like, blood-based pussy is just so frakking difficult. One lady calls him an asshole for a minor faux pas. All the women kind of look tired and saggy, and there are CONTRACTS REQUIRED FOR CASUAL SEX (actually, is this maybe a good idea?) He decides he won’t give up the dream of getting a new Cherry, but his favored model is only stored in a dangerous robot graveyard somewhere near what used to be Las Vegas, because in the movies the future always is a desert. SRSLY, THINK ABOUT IT. And he needs to hire Melanie Griffith, a brassy tough-as-nails tracker with a phone sex voice, to help him. Lover-like bickering, shooting of bad guys, and sexually tense montages to Moog-y music ensue. Between Griffith's breasts and a recording of Cherry's coos, Sam has a constant face erection.

I would divulge more of the plot, but it seems a little silly since you already know what happens. Sam chooses to love the human woman, of course, because this is a film made by 1980s humans. Though his sudden decision, coming moments before the film's end, doesn't mean so much — it happens after he's already taken his new Cherry model and flown off in a plane that can only seat two, leaving Griffith to essentially die by the guns of the bad guys.

A few minutes after takeoff he looks back down at the pathetic figure of Griffith hiding behind a barrel, and with a pained look, he decides to land and switch out the robot for the real girl. AIEEEEEEEEEE! What's maybe even scarier than my vision of the imminent robot takeover, is that in the future a real grrl's standards are so low she'll smooch a guy who five minutes ago left her for dead.

Lauren Bans is the senior contributor to This Recording. She blogs here. She is a writer living in New York City. She last wrote in these pages about Green Day's Dookie.

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Reader Comments (6)

running just as fast as we can! holding onto one another's hands!

September 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternitasha

Test question: when do you know you are safe from robots?

September 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternitasha


September 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterlauren

Good girl. NEVER FORGET: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joehK-w2bCc

September 15, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternitasha

are female robots necessarily lesbians?

September 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteralex

sometimes they pretend if joe francis is watching.

September 16, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternitasha

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