My article, published by Overland Literary Journal:
There’s a chilling scene near the beginning of Ray Bradbury’s 1953 classic, Farenheit 451, where Guy Montag discovers that his wife has overdosed on sleeping pills. When the nonplussed emergency technicians arrive they pump Mildred’s stomach using enormous machines, give her a blood transfusion and then leave matter-of-factly: all in a day’s work in the twenty-fourth century.
Where Montag is Bradbury’s ‘everyman’, struggling to come to terms with a growing awareness of his totalitarian world, Mildred reflects the horror of those descended completely into society’s shallow consumerist nightmare. She wants little more than a fourth wall for her TV, so she can achieve complete immersion in her favourite television programs, particularly the highly popular ‘The Family’, in which she plays a scripted part.