Thursday, 16 July 2015

Inside Herman

So, now let's compare Inside Out with Herman's Head. Only, they are completely different takes on the same old homunculus argument, which applies just as well here.

In both cases, we have a head quarters of representations. For IO, it's Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust. For HH, it's Genius, Angel, Wimp and Animal. And yet they have distinct takes on how to get from the inside to the outside. For IO, the emotions use a control panel, and it seems that Riley is a separate person with her own mind that is guided/programmed by the emotions? It's not clear, and some emotions seem to refer to Riley's Mom and Dad, and others to Our Mom and Dad. For HH, although they talk to each other, one of them is always in charge and being Herman at any given point, and they all consider themselves to be Herman.

Memories are more similar. In HH, they are reactments with the characters displayed like they are on a stage. In IO, they are memory balls, which start as short term then move to long term. In both cases, memories are seen in third person, and in both cases memory is shown as a fixed image that can be played over and over again (unlike the slippery altering beasts they are). Also, both movies address having annoying tunes in your head.

IO goes further with showing how mental imagery is handled with workers in her head? How does that work? We're beyond homunculus at that point, what do these guys represent? Do they have people inside their heads? And then there's the end credit sequence which doesn't help anything (although I like the cat).

While they are different, it's nice to see people are still remembering Herman's Head.


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