"Anvil" asks the question, What if your afterlife was a nonstop social media feed?
Screencap by the author
If (and when) the science fictional concept of mind uploading becomes possible, what will death be like? This is the question at the heart of a new animated music video for Lorn’s moody, pulsating electronic track, “Anvil.”
Directed by the duo known as GERIKO, a.k.a., Hélène Jeudy and Antoine Caëcke, the noirish cyberpunk piece follows a character named Ana Cassini in her last moments on late 22nd century Earth. In this distant future, overpopulation has spiraled out of control. To combat it, a networked afterlife called Anvil is released.
“A fusion of both Japanese and Belgian comics inspirations and sensibilities, such as Ghost in the Shell, Akira, or Peeters & Schuiten's work,” say Jeudy and Caëcke. “'Anvil' invites us on a journey through the eyes of a young woman in her final moments on earth.”
The journey is deeply mesmerizing, full of melancholia and creeping technological dread. Jeudy and Caëcke's debt to anime is clear, but the cityscapes found in Peeters and Schuiten’s The Obscure Cities series, some of which are in black-and-white—La Tour and L'enfant penchée, in particular—seem give "Anvil" an all but unavoidable weight.
For some, a networked afterlife might be a true heaven. But for others, as Jeudy and Caëcke's music video suggests, it could be a dystopian nightmare.
"Anvil" appears on Lorn's 2015 album Vessel, available now on Bandcamp.
Click here to see more of Hélène Jeudy & Antoine Caëcke's work.