Happy Actual Halloween! Since we read it on Mondays and Tuesday, we don’t have a Goosebumps for you on the holiday we read it in honor for. So here’s the scariest gif I have.
You have no idea how long I’ve been holding onto that for, waiting for the perfect moment. Turns out it’s really hard to find the perfect moment for a gif of a running giant pink dildo thing. [Ariel says: It’s always the right moment for the gif. It’s positively mesmerising.]
Tris, Four, and co are in the factionless hobo camp, reunited with Edward [Ariel says: Beloved, cherished, apparently unrecognisable Edward] and filling him in on what’s up. Tris judges him, and then immediately tells him that judging people is bad.
“You ditched your family to become Dauntless?”
“You sound like the Candor,” I say irritably. “Mind keeping your judgments to yourself?”
We learn about the remaining factions’ initiation tests, and that Erudite’s is an intelligence test, and Abnegation doesn’t even have one. I can’t figure out which is more obvious. We also learn that most of the factionless are from Dauntless, for… reasons…
“You’ve got one of the worst initiations, and there’s that whole old-age thing.” […]
“Once the Dauntless reach a certain level of physical deterioration,” he says, “they are asked to leave. In one way or another.”
Details like this I actually really like, because I was wondering why there weren’t any old people around in Dauntless. I like finding out it’s because the book has an actual reason for it, rather than that Dauntless is just the Hot Topic of post-apocalyptic Chicago. I mean, it still is, but now it’s a little more believable about it! Although this does mean that there’s still no explanation for where baby Dauntless come from aside from…
[Ariel says: Amazing as that is, they don’t really specify how old. They could easily be in their 20s when they have a kid but asked to leave at like 40-50. I mean there were mentions of kids with parents after initiation, just not grandparents.]
The book then retcons Edward into having provoked Peter’s attack, because I guess the book really needed to have Edward deserve getting a butterknife in the eye. [Ariel says: I can’t remember if Peter ever alluded to this in any way, shape or form. Because this felt like it was just made up on the spot so we’d be forced to reconsider Peter For Some Reason.]
Like vast majority of the fifth of Insurgent that we’ve read so far, the chapter is basically an infodump, so we also learn that:
- Half of Dauntless fled to Candor headquarters, but half remained with the Erudite.
- What’s left of Abnegation is with the factionless, which raises a question of how exactly they were all that different in the first place…
And then in the middle of the night, Tris wakes up and overhears an infodump conversation with Tobias and his mother, so we also learn that:
- Caleb was sort of right about the factionless population counts, but they weren’t all the factionless – just factionless Divergent.
- Also, there are factionless Divergent
- The factionless want to use the Divergent for their own simulation-resistant army to overthrow Erudite, because, seriously, all that Divergence is really useful for in this book is resisting mind-control drugs [Ariel says: NOT ALL MIND CONTROL DRUGS.]
Don’t get me wrong, it’s important to learn these details, and it’s kind of hard to do it without just pouring it all out in conveniently expositional conversations. But it could be a little less obvious about it?
“I don’t understand. Why-”
“Why would the factionless have a high Divergent population? […] Obviously those who can’t confine themselves to a particular way of thinking would be most likely to leave a faction or fail its initiation, right?”
“That’s not what I was going to ask,” he says. “I want to know why you care how many Divergent there are.”
“Sorry to interrupt you with the wrong information the reader didn’t know. Let me explain the correct other information the reader didn’t know.”
“We want to usurp Erudite,” she says. “Once we get rid of them, there’s not much stopping us from controlling the government ourselves.”
“That’s what you expect me to help you with. Overthrowing one corrupt government and instating some kind of factionless tyranny.”
Wait for it.
“We want to establish a new society. One without factions.”
My mouth goes dry. No factions? A world in which no one knows who they are or where they fit? I can’t even fathom it.
Tris cannot fathom a world where no one knows who they are or where they fit, having apparently forgotten that the entire first book was about not knowing who she was or where she fit. [Ariel says: This also seems like a great time to realize that even the factionless formed a group and hung out together. You know, whispering things to each other and telling jokes. Factionless have friends too!”
Despite also having been previously established as 100% skeptical of the faction system, Four is skeptical of a world without a faction system too. Although he has better reasons, once his mom explains their plan and
it’s exactly like The Hunger Games it’s exactly like the bad guys’ plan.
“I imagine it will involve a high level of destruction.”
So what’s the non-entirely-convincing arbitrary reason that they need Four’s help?
“We will need Dauntless’s help. They have the weapons and the combat experience. You could bridge the gap between us and them.”
“Do you think I’m important to the Dauntless?”
I mean, he was one of three Dauntless authority figures in the first book. And he’s the hottest. So by the rules of Young Adult Fiction…
“What I am suggesting,” she says, “is that you become important.”
SPOOKY HALLOWEEN QUESTION FOR HALLOWEEN! What’s your favorite scary movie? Or, if you hate scary movies, what’s your favorite candy? Or, if you hate candy too, because you’re some sort of monster, what’s your most hated candy in the whole world? Look, please just answer one of my spooky Halloween questions.