The Future Los Angeles Series Analysis
by K. W. Jeter

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The Future Los Angeles Series Analysis

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

These three books are not a standard trilogy. They do not share characters, a continued plot line, or a common setting. They do, however, share certain types of characters, types of plot, and themes. K. W. Jeter comments on this in an essay at the end of Death Arms.

The protagonists in the books are similar in character. They are young men who are dissatisfied with their lives; they each could be considered a model antihero. This type of character is common in many cyberpunk works. In Jeters books, each has something in his past he needs to discover or come to terms with. For Limmit and Legger, it the legacy of the father. For Schuyler, it is his son and the circumstances leading to his sons birth. Each man is being manipulated by forces in society that seem to be beyond his control. Limmit, Schuyler, and Legger all eventually face their pasts, with varying degrees of success.

The supporting casts in each novel also are similar. Each novel features an informant who gives the protagonist the information he needs to outwit the antagonist. Droit, Wyre, and Dortz take on this role. Each novel also has a female assistant who possesses some type of strength or power that she can use to help the male lead.

Also in each book, Jeter gives the reader a dark vision of society. Each of his three visions of future Los Angeles has a powerful, corporate entity of some type pulling the strings and trying to control society. In each book, this corporate entity manipulates the main character in order to achieve a certain goal, usually the domination of society. Such conflicts of the individual versus society are common in many utopian, dystopian, cyberpunk, and other genre novels.

Jeter provides a dark view of religion in Dr. Adder and The Glass Hammer. Neither John Mox and his Moral Forcers nor the Cathedra Novum is portrayed in a good light. Both are capable of subterfuge and manipulation.

As many similarities as...

(The entire section is 499 words.)