The Abyss Analysis

Theory and Hunch appeared stunningly clear. I suspect the objective story motivation for the characters is Hunch because they rely on circumstantial evidence and jump to conclusions about either Russians or aliens. Coffee had a hunch about the problem being due to the Russians. Lindsey surmises the strange creature and phenomenon is some non-human intelligence. Hippie waxes conjecture about UFOs and aliens, to the point it even annoys Lindsey. Jammer, at one point, refers to the light he saw as an angel. There’s even ongoing talk about the theory of humans breathing water in a special method devised, a special fluid. Some words are spent explaining the theory. Our bodies can remember having breathed liquid as a fetus.

These are major turning points in the story. The initial submarine gets hit and plummets. Our crew goes down to investigate. At climax, they find the sub. The turning point into Act Two seems to be when Jammer sees a strange light. Lindsey sees the same. Act Two begins with Lindsey and her ex-husband discussing what the light could have been. That’s when Coffee expresses that it might have been the Russians. Coffee, on a hunch or theory about Russians being responsible, steals flatbed in order to go arm the nuclear warheads, which inhibits everyone from dealing with the hurricane. Coffee brings aboard a nuclear weapon. Lindsey sends out a probe to Learn about the phenomenon with hope that it’ll convince Coffee not to use the weapon. Meanwhile, the aliens send a water probe into the sub. As the story seems to be approaching Act Four, Coffee confides to his companion that “we have no way of warning the surface … it’s up to us”. I read “warning” as delivering information, which would be linked with Learning. There’s no way of enabling the surface people to learn what’s going on. What Coffee then proceeds to do is try to deliver the weapon to the aliens in order to destroy them. The story climax involves Virgil going to the deposited weapon and disarming it. At the beginning of Act Two, Coffee initiates what’s called Phase 2: recover one warhead, arm it and await further instructions. Phase 3 seems to begin the broad Act Three (signpost four) in which Coffee will go without the further instructions and confirmation to deliver the warhead.

Coffee and the other men talk about Phases one, two and three. I’m guessing this relates to options in the story limit.

Broadly, I am guessing the domain for the objective story is Physics because of the recovery effort, the hurricane, and survival under the water.

This puts the consequence in Being. Although I’m inclined to call death “Becoming”, I could imagine it as “Being”. Perhaps “Being” refers to “being at war” as the Americans and Russians act on inaccurate hunches about what’s going on.

Meanwhile, Lindsey and Virgil are a married couple expecting their marriage to end. Divorce is approaching. This matches the dynamic pair of ending and unending in the chart being coupled to theory and hunch. In Act Four, Lindsey finally expresses her feelings to Virgil which, to me, makes his impact on her seem to be Worth. In Act One, Virgil tells Lindsey his suspicion that she joined the crew because she was worried about him, something she denies. She even says she prioritized the sub design project over her marriage to him. This jibes with Worth being his impact on her. She finally expresses what he’s worth to her. She seems the main character because we learn about the creature through her eyes before she tells Virgil. Primarily, I suspect she’s the main character because she’s talking to Virgil in Act Four as though she’s finally realized his worth to her. This also makes her a Changed character because at the beginning she eagerly awaited the ending of her marriage. As the story entered Acts Three and Four, the Ending of the marriage seemed more of a problem than something desired. I don’t see a physics concern in their relationship, so I’m suspecting physics applies to the objective story throughline. Him being of worth to her would put her in Universe and paint her as a Doer. This means he would have a static mindset.

One good method of determining which is the main character, as I understand it, is to see if the Objective story signposts three and four go as Current then Power or if they flip.

Lindsey (a Changed character) being in Universe and the Objective story being in Physics would mean that Lindsey must Stop some behavior in order to resolve her problem. During her opening up speech to Virgil in Act Four, she admits that she’s been a bitch.

The story argument would perhaps be Theory versus Hunch. It depends on whether the main character is Steadfast or Changed.

I think the first Act is Understanding, expressed as a conflict between what they understand to be real and what can’t be. It might be Learning, a conflict due to not being able to gather enough information. That would paint Coffee’s dialogue at the end of Signpost three as “Understand” when he says “warn the surface”. Emotional focus is Fear. Meanwhile, the relationship arc’s emotional focus seems to be regret.

I think the second Act is Doing. It’s a conflict between what they can and can’t do during the effects of the hurricane. They want to use flatbed to unhook the umbilical, but the what the hurricane is doing and what Coffee is doing (taking flatbed) is conflicting with it. At the end of the Act, Lindsey explains to Virgil in so many words what can’t be done in order to resolve the situation. Emotional focus is Frustration. The relationship arc emotional focus is something about warming towards each other.

Venturing beyond Subtxt and Dramatica, I want to recognize the emotions of the story. Hunches are expressed primarily in fear. Fearful reaction on the part of Jammer upon seeing a dead body. Even Lindsey, throughout Act Four, expresses a feeling of Virgil’s worth through fear of losing him.There are moments of frustration.