|Equilibrium Fan Article by Cleric Wolf
The role of the Grammaton Cleric in Libria
Kurt Wimmer’s vision of the future is a starkly dark
portrayal of what could happen if society survives a third world war, a
war that tears down the core roots of our own society and buries it
firmly in the rubble. It would be a horrific undertaking for any kind
of government to re-establish itself in the post-war trauma that
followed but for some reason Father’s regime survived and prospered,
thanks mostly to the drug Prozium and the enforcement of the Grammaton
Clerics, the lethal right-hand of Father’s new justice.
The foundations of a new world
Rome was not built in a day and the many roads that supposedly lead to
it also took a lifetime to perfect, much of Libria’s technology would
have been at first, the remains of the old world. Those little bits of
our 20th century that survived the holocaust, weapons of course would
have been a lucrative commodity for many back-street and black-market
traders – you can guarantee that if something like society crumbles
there will always be those people that seem to have a nearly-mythical
supply of what ever you might need at the time.
Nothing would have been truly lost and Father’s first work would have
been to re-create his structure, government and all. In the fiction, House of Cards, I delved
into one of the darker aspects of the human soul, the government’s
endless need to experiment on other beings for its own ends, be it
social or scientific – in this case the forerunner of Prozium. In House
we learn that the Prozium is far from finished and it has catastrophic
results for the poor ill-fated Sweeper that is chosen to receive the
first dose – he becomes psychotic and highly dangerous.
But it is from those early scrapings and the first few bricks and
mortar of the new society that the current government and military
force grew. The most famous and most dangerous of all of course are the
Grammaton Clerics, these fictional monastic warriors of the future are
trained in a superlative martial art, the Gun Katas (1). This has been the subject of much
debate and hard-headedness from simple fans to martial arts experts
attempting to rationalize the proper Gun Katas as they stand, which I
believe is highly unlikely – as Gun Kata goes it’s a good, but flawed
Yet it forms the backbone of the Grammaton Cleric’s arsenal and their
fighting techniques. It is not however the be-all and end-all of their
training, the saying: man cannot live by bread alone, comes to mind as
I write this.
I could write reams upon the government and the very Tetra Grammaton
itself and my own views might differ from other people out there, but
that’s ok, this is what fan-fiction and fan-articles are all about. I
don’t mind if people disagree with me, or they think something is
different, we each make of Libria what /we/ make of it. That’s Kurt’s
gift to us – Libria is ours to shape as we see fit, he’s given us the
floorplan and just a taste of what’s possible – leaving his baby in our
hands to nurture and hopefully grow.
what are the Grammaton Clerics?
Super human soldiers of a new regime? Master Martial Artists that
combine the very best of the attack/defense forms with the use of
firearms or gun orientated monks that rely upon an almost
computer-quick light-speed instinct to defeat their opponents?
There is very little known about the Grammaton Clerics apart
from what you can glean in the movie: Equilibrium, this isn’t very much
if you add it all up so it leaves many holes and places to extrapolate.
We know that they are trained with Gun Katas and the use of their
specific firearm, but what we don’t know is how long that art took to
perfect and how much iteration the Kata must have gone through.
In the first embers of Father’s dream there was probably the first
glimmers of dissent from those who saw the regime as a way to control
people, Father’s dream might have begun as a perfectly normal desire to
curb the emotions of an overly violent society and instigate a form of
control – with no thought to the possible uses of the drug to fully
keep society in line.
But there are those people who do not want to become mindless drones,
told what to watch, to listen to and what to do by giant figures in
power – much like our own societies today as we edge further and
further towards total control. The MPAA and the RIAA, or the many
groups that try to influence what we watch and what we do, censors and
moral majorities – all have their say and individual power-plays – all
screaming for us to follow their chaste example and ban violent video
games or music with evocative lyrics.
It wouldn’t take much of a push for the governments of the world to
instigate Grammaton like policies, we see it all too often on TV or
listen to it, read about it in the news. It’s quite a frightening
thought when you put all that in perspective. So we can extrapolate
from this what we know about our world and add to that of Equilibrium’s
mythos with a few core ideas in mind about this new regime.
What ever good it tried to do, it failed, it’s an oppressive and highly
dangerous society ruled by the cream of the social elite. Father is
dead and DuPont keeps up the charade perfectly, using the Grammaton
Clerics to enforce his iron will on a society that for the most part
can’t be scared of putting a foot wrong, because they don’t have the
emotional capacity to feel ‘scared’.
Anyone that doesn’t take their ‘dose’ learns quickly that the society
is full of murderous power-mongering despots and it’s not the Utopia
that they claim it is. I think after a while many Sense Offenders
welcome death – since it’s a much better alternative than being hunted
down and shot like dogs.
And to do it, DuPont has his fanatical and loyal enforcers, the
brief look at the Grammaton Cleric
A Grammaton Cleric is the archetypical image of death, smooth, slick
and dangerous looking. They are dressed to kill and killing is a
business they know very well. The very image is designed to strike fear
into the hearts of the Sense Offenders.
But if most Librian’s have no emotion why bother with having a
fear-inspiring enforcer, the Cleric and the Sweeper are designed to
evoke emotions and can be used to weed out possible Sense Offenders
from regular citizens. Most citizens would ignore the presence of the
enforcers, they would of course comply with any orders and so forth
being programmed that way by years of societal control.
A Sense Offender would react to the danger and someone trained in the
intuitive arts would spot it, before the Sense Offender could hide it.
Decisions made like this can only come from a regime and a ruler that
does not take Prozium. Taking a drug that renders emotions worthless
would hamper any kind of decision making process that involved the
well-being of a world. So we know that DuPont and his inner Cleric
elite circle are off the dose, for this reason. It makes them sloppy
however and they are easily defeated by a Cleric that does not use
Prozium to dull his emotions but walls them away inside his mind, akin
to a Shaolin Monk and their ability to (supposedly) channel Chi energy.
But enough conjectural rambling aside, now that I have ratified certain
elements I can continue with the exposition.
Despite the Cleric’s slick appearance and almost priest-like attire
they are an organization that works upon a strict code of combat. With
this code of combat comes the knowledge that there is a chain of
Vice Council (DuPont)
Elite Grammaton Clerics
Senior Clerics (First Class)
The Elite Clerics would be responsible for the day to day protection of
Father/DuPont and they are in essence looked upon as his bodyguards.
They are rarely seen but their presence would be felt if Father needed
to make a show of force.
First Class (Senior) Clerics are those like John Preston, they have the
best training and they are the prized golden children of Father’s
regime. These are given special investigation duties and tasked with
recovering Sense Offender artifacts from the Nethers. These Clerics
would also train the lower ranked Clerics in the Gun Kata and many
other combat forms.
Clerics are the run of the mill mainstay of the regime, these are the
front line troops that DuPont would consider the most expendable, since
they are not as prized as the First Class Clerics and many of them
would be given patrol and protection duties – some of the more
promising Clerics would make it to First Class.
Junior Clerics would be the student Cleric, like those we see in
DuPont’s ‘Gun Kata’ lecture, these could fill a variety of roles from
paper-pushing to filing jobs, cataloging various items and generally
doing nothing more exciting than chasing down a rogue bit of
information. Only when they have truly excelled at their training or if
they show any kind of promise, would they be considered for promotion
to a Cleric.
Given what we know about the Clerics it’s reasonably safe to assume
that they operate upon a monastic or even monk-like lifestyle. In the
movie we hear them talk about the Monastery and what we must remember
is many people trust priest-like figures, this is probably another
minor form of societal conditioning instigated by Father to help keep
people in line.
Clerics of all ranks would attend regular scheduled (clockwork timed)
studies in the halls of the Monastery. The lessons would be broken up
between cerebral learning studies, martial learning studies and Gun
Kata studies. With times set aside for breaks, taking Prozium and
imbibing food and drink.
Any talk by classmates would be purely technical and socializing would
be frowned upon.
Cerebral studies would be a number of subjects, akin to what we have in
our world: Mathematics and complex equations, history (pre WWIII and so
on) and many more lessons dealing with law and even computer operations.
Martial studies would be given over to the study of non-firearm based
combat techniques: Sword and other weapon use, hand to hand combat, CQB
and restraining techniques would all be covered as well as weak-points
and lethal moves.
Gun Kata studies could be considered the highlight of the
Cleric’s day (if they bothered about those kinds of things) and would
cover several Gun Kata related subjects:
The history and theory behind Gun Kata.
Gun Kata instructional videos and programs.
The correct use of firearms, cleaning of firearms, firearm safety
The Gun Katas themselves (primary weapon)
Gun Kata advanced techniques, Gun Push fighting and anti-Cleric
Secondary Gun Kata techniques, use of rifles, shotguns and other
A Clerics life would be one of constant information digestion and
training, sleep cycles would be carefully controlled and they would be
given gym time to perfect their physical fitness and body musculature.
It would be a hard and grueling regimen of many years before they could
even be trusted to join the ranks of full-fledged Cleric, just look at
the many Martial Arts in the world and understand how long it takes to
even learn a few moves – then extrapolating from that I reckon it would
take at least ten years (Intensive life inside the walls of the
Monastery) to learn the basics of Gun Kata enough to please the regime.
You would enter the Monastery at an early age, much like the Shaolin
monks and their temples – you would not leave until the masters were
satisfied with your progress, failure would not be tolerated and those
that couldn’t keep up with the Grammaton life, would be relegated to
Sweeper status or even worse.
By the time that the Cleric was out of the training period they would
most likely be molded into the perfect killing machine for DuPont.
Emotionless and ruthless with a strict ‘shoot first’ ‘shoot second’ and
‘third’ mentality rather than asking questions, just watch Preston’s
first entry into the Sense Offender’s room at the start of the movie –
no questions asked, no quarter given just one reaction from the ‘cold
god of death’ bullets and more bullets.
Even when John starts to feel he looses none of his killer instinct and
eventually turns it upon those he’s served as a faithful member of the
Tetra Grammaton for a long time. He must have gone into the Monastery
since he was able to utter the words: Not Without Incident.
This could have been a much bigger and deeper look at the Order but I
wanted it to cover only a small part of the much larger picture, as
anyone knows who knows /me/ will understand – I do not dot every I and
cross every T in my writing – what I do hope is that this will answer
some questions, raise even more and perhaps become a little bit of a
resource for those people that want to write Grammaton or EQ based fan-fictions. I am by no means the be-all and
end-all on the subject – I just happen to be an author with a passion
for world creation and most of all, a fan of the movie, so if you like
what I’ve written that’s good, if you don’t that’s good also – either
way I have entertained and hopefully broadened a few horizons.
Credo -- Wolf