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Can any of you guys imagine Steelheart's Rending? We have seen him incinerate buildings with his energy beams. Clearly his Rending must have been destructive beyond belief. The news would have been choke full of the monster that caused so much destruction. Yet, when he arrived in the bank David and his father thought he was a hero. I can only think of two possible explanations.

1)The Charlston family never watched the news and didn't talk with people that watch the news. This would also explain how under Calamity's red light David didn't know about Dawnslight.

2)Steelheart was a ninja and no one noticed his Rending, because he was invisible. :ph34r:

 

I have to admit that number one sounds more reasonable but number two is a clickbait sounds more awesome. :P

Edited by Edgedancer
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If he killed enough people--everyone within an entire small town--is it possible that it might have been known that an Epic destroyed a town, without anyone knowing who the responsible Epic was?

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If he killed enough people--everyone within an entire small town--is it possible that it might have been known that an Epic destroyed a town, without anyone knowing who the responsible Epic was?

Not very likely in the age of cellphone cameras. Sadly, the background check didn't reveal where he used to live.

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Not very likely in the age of cellphone cameras. Sadly, the background check didn't reveal where he used to live.

 

An Epic of Steelheart's level--especially if his Rending took place in the blackest part of the night--could quite easily have destroyed a small town so quickly that no one could get any pictures clear enough to identify him from.

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Can any of you guys imagine Steelheart's Rending? We have seen him incinerate buildings with his energy beams. Clearly his Rending must have been destructive beyond belief. The news would have been choke full of the monster that caused so much destruction. Yet, when he arrived in the bank David and his father thought he was a hero. I can only think of two possible explanations.

1)The Charlston family never watched the news and didn't talk with people that watch the news. This would also explain how under Calamity's red light David didn't know about Dawnslight.

2)Steelheart was a ninja and no one noticed his Rending, because he was invisible. :ph34r:

 

I have to admit that number one sounds more reasonable but number two is a clickbait sounds more awesome. :P

 

The whole reason clickbait works is because it sounds awesome. :P 

 

An Epic of Steelheart's level--especially if his Rending took place in the blackest part of the night--could quite easily have destroyed a small town so quickly that no one could get any pictures clear enough to identify him from.

 

Although this is a very good point, and probably more likely than what I'm about to say….I still choose to believe that his Rending was so powerful it activated a one-time Ninja Mode, allowing him to steal, kill, and destroy without ever being seen. I choose to believe this because the mental image of Ninja!Steelheart smashing a single-family home and tiptoeing into the night while going "Heeheehee" under his breath is morbidly amusing. :P 

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Although this is a very good point, and probably more likely than what I'm about to say….I still choose to believe that his Rending was so powerful it activated a one-time Ninja Mode, allowing him to steal, kill, and destroy without ever being seen. I choose to believe this because the mental image of Ninja!Steelheart smashing a single-family home and tiptoeing into the night while going "Heeheehee" under his breath is morbidly amusing. :P

 

He toilet-papered Jonathan Phaedrus' house. That's why Prof hates him so much. :P

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He toilet-papered Jonathan Phaedrus' house. That's why Prof hates him so much. :P

 

His Rending was so powerful it also unlocked College Sophomore Mode, apparently. :P 

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His Rending was so powerful it also unlocked College Sophomore Mode, apparently. :P

 

The worst part is that he could turn the toilet paper into steel when he's finished. :mellow::P

 

 

More seriously, my mother suggested that Steelheart's Rending was conquering Chicago. He killed thousands of people that day, and turned the entire city into steel. Maybe some Epics are more controlled and rational in their Rendings than others.

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The worst part is that he could turn the toilet paper into steel when he's finished. :mellow::P

 

 

More seriously, my mother suggested that Steelheart's Rending was conquering Chicago. He killed thousands of people that day, and turned the entire city into steel. Maybe some Epics are more controlled and rational in their Rendings than others.

 

Trapping Prof in his house. By toilet paper. Not cool, Steelheart. :P 

 

That's what I thought, too—though I find it interesting that he took the time before his Rending to find clothes that fit and don a black-and-silver cape. Maybe the irrational part of his Rending was raiding a Big and Tall clothing store? :P 

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While certainly powerful I don't know that Steelheart is all that destructive comparatively.

Nightwielder would easily be capable of more raw damage if he wasn't also blacking out the entire sky for instance,  fire Epics like Firefight are supposedly so common that there's a standard profile and they could at least match Steelhearts energy bolts.

His rending certainly would have been reported on but I don't know that everyone would have immediately known him and made him a household name, his PI seems to be the reason he was most feared in that it was just completely undefeatable without his weakness.

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Trapping Prof in his house. By toilet paper. Not cool, Steelheart. :P

 

 

Uh... Tensors?

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While certainly powerful I don't know that Steelheart is all that destructive comparatively.

Nightwielder would easily be capable of more raw damage if he wasn't also blacking out the entire sky for instance,  fire Epics like Firefight are supposedly so common that there's a standard profile and they could at least match Steelhearts energy bolts.

His rending certainly would have been reported on but I don't know that everyone would have immediately known him and made him a household name, his PI seems to be the reason he was most feared in that it was just completely undefeatable without his weakness.

 

I think you are way underestimating Steelheart.

 

A few energy bolts destroyed an entire building (a skyscraper i think). Can you imagine Nightwielder being capable of something like that, destroying a skyscraper within a minute? His bolts seem more powerful than just fireballs- they have an explosive, plasma component to them that a fire epic probably wouldn't have.

 

and then there is the simple fact that he is a flying, super-strong invincible man. Watch Man of Steel, and see the sheer damage that invincible, flying supermen can cause. If Superman wasn't fighting Zod and was making a dedicated effort to destroy rust, he could easily wipe out a small town. People would have been taking photos or facebooking the explosions they heard, but within seconds of even seeing Steelheart, he would kill you. 

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I think the main issue here is Steelheart's way of operating is to make people as afraid of him as possible. He would have WANTED news. Granted, maybe at the time of his rending he wasn't thinking this way, but in that case I would argue he also wasn't refined enough to destroy everything without news getting out.

A different possibility: mass destruction in a rural area. Maybe Steelheart did have an incredibly violent and documented rending. But, if you have destruction in many major cities, you are going to pay more attention to that then greater destruction in rural areas. Also keep in mind that many of the cities likely experienced more than one high powered epic's rending. My guess is that it's not that Steelheart's rending was unable to be documented, it just wasn't the biggest news. He made a name for himself by coming to Chicago and beginning his reign there. The world was worried about what was happening in the major centres.

Not sure how this analysis affects why David didn't know about Dawnslight, but maybe his powers grew in Manhattan slowly? If it was a gradual development, it would make sense that it went unnoticed until all the flash and fury of the rendings was over with.

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Not sure how this analysis affects why David didn't know about Dawnslight, but maybe his powers grew in Manhattan slowly? If it was a gradual development, it would make sense that it went unnoticed until all the flash and fury of the rendings was over with.

Concerning Dawnslight. His powers started around the same time as Calamity and Epics only appeared regulary a year later. Meaning that for a year we have, as far as we know, two supernatural phenomenons (although acording to brandon the screaming in the prolog wasn't because of Calamity) that didn't directly cause chaos and yet Dawnslight influence on Manhattan wasn't noticed. It may have been "only"  glowing spraypaint but that still sounds like something that would make the news in a time people are probably very confused.

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Here's my question: why are we making the assumption that there is even news to watch/read? I've only read each of the Reckoners once, so correct me if I neglect any info or get anything wrong.

 

I do not recall anywhere the mention of news programs, or even television, or newspapers. Particularly in Newcago. David not watching the news post Steelheart's arrival makes perfect sense. As for prior to his arrival, I think it is a very steep assumption to say there would be news programs at all. Let's look at the likely events aroundone year after the time of Calamity's arrival.

 

A year after Calamity arriving, and people start gaining powers, every individual who gained powers at that moment would all enter their Rending at the same time. If we assume that only one individual from every large city Epicified (which I think is a conservative guess), that's still an "attack" on every large city all at once. National or International news programs wouldn't know what to cover, and likely wouldn't cover them all. In addition, as an Epic with a secret weakness, what's the one thing you don't want to happen? I would say it's pesky cameras and news reporters following you around, waiting to capture your weakness on tape. If I were an Epic, the first thing I'd do is take out the news stations.

 

Furthermore, we know consolidated information is not a thing in ReckonEarth. Tia, when searching for information, doesn't go "online" to search a database, she has to contact lorists to share their information with her. Everything seems to be hard copy stored, rather than digital. And what is digital is only stored as local copies. News isn't easily accessible, like at all. So people not knowing about these major Epics in various cities doesn't surprise me one bit. It wouldn't surprise me if we learn that all forms of news organizations were wiped out within a week of Epics rising.

 

 

Editted: for a mistake that didn't change my argument at all.

Edited by Blaze1616
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Society still functioned pretty well if banks were still giving out loans, I'd say that some forms of media at least would still be operational, indeed they'd be even more lucrative, people would be far moree news likely to want to check the news if a bunch of supervillains were suddenly terrorizing the country. If nothing else simple word of mouth should have carried word of an Epic as powerful as Steelheart.

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Society still functioned pretty well if banks were still giving out loans, I'd say that some forms of media at least would still be operational, indeed they'd be even more lucrative, people would be far moree news likely to want to check the news if a bunch of supervillains were suddenly terrorizing the country. If nothing else simple word of mouth should have carried word of an Epic as powerful as Steelheart.

 

I recall one book I read, years ago, where a young girl and her family stopped in a hotel in a mining town. Her mother flipped because the newspaper had a column called "Last Night's Shootings." If the media bothered to track shootings in a town where they were frequent enough to warrant a daily column in 1887, then I'm pretty sure the 24-hour news cycle would provide endless opportunities for not only news, but debate and analysis of what the latest Epics could do, what they wanted, where they might strike next, etc. 

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I think David was too young to really know news. And when he got older, he was focused on Epics- bad, destructive ones, not supernatural glowing spray paint with no known cause.

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Society still functioned pretty well if banks were still giving out loans, I'd say that some forms of media at least would still be operational, indeed they'd be even more lucrative, people would be far moree news likely to want to check the news if a bunch of supervillains were suddenly terrorizing the country. If nothing else simple word of mouth should have carried word of an Epic as powerful as Steelheart.

 

We know word of mouth does happen. That's how David got all of his Epic knowledge. As someone who is devoting his life to knowing all he can about Epics, don't you think a form of news that delivered such to him would be something David would pay attention to?

 

I recall one book I read, years ago, where a young girl and her family stopped in a hotel in a mining town. Her mother flipped because the newspaper had a column called "Last Night's Shootings." If the media bothered to track shootings in a town where they were frequent enough to warrant a daily column in 1887, then I'm pretty sure the 24-hour news cycle would provide endless opportunities for not only news, but debate and analysis of what the latest Epics could do, what they wanted, where they might strike next, etc. 

 

That is the point I'm getting at. They would do that. So why isn't it ever mentioned? In Newcago it makes sense, what with everything turned to steel. But Babilar? Any other city? Tia never mentions how inconvinient Newcago is lacking news. None of the Reckoners ever mention it. Why not? If it does contain information on Epics, why are they not using it? It would be an invaluable tool to utilize. Yet they don't. I'm saying it's because they can't.

 

It's an interesting conundrum that I think I'll ask Brandon about, if I ever get to meet him.

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We know word of mouth does happen. That's how David got all of his Epic knowledge. As someone who is devoting his life to knowing all he can about Epics, don't you think a form of news that delivered such to him would be something David would pay attention to?

That is the point I'm getting at. They would do that. So why isn't it ever mentioned? In Newcago it makes sense, what with everything turned to steel. But Babilar? Any other city? Tia never mentions how inconvinient Newcago is lacking news. None of the Reckoners ever mention it. Why not? If it does contain information on Epics, why are they not using it? It would be an invaluable tool to utilize. Yet they don't. I'm saying it's because they can't.

It's an interesting conundrum that I think I'll ask Brandon about, if I ever get to meet him.

Post-Annexation, the media would definitely die. The Capitulation Act would have drastic consequences, one of them being that the state and local governments that just gave up would deprive those locales of their infrastructure; without time to adjust, businesses would be unable to maintain the supply lines necessary to stay afloat, depriving media outlets of the ad revenue they use to operate. And that's not even taking into account the simpler difficulties of running a TV-based service when the power grid is no longer operational. So yes, the Capitulation Act would kill the news.

But what about before the Capitulation Act? Like Voidus said, society wasn't yet in its death throes; banks were still giving out loans and the police were still trying to keep up with demand. Rescue workers were still doing their jobs. Why would the news media die? That, from the eyes of the press, is the best time in history to operate. Not only is there headline news wherever you turn, but the people would watch the news in greater numbers to learn as much as they could about new Epics and what their motives might be. Given that this is the environment in which Steelheart got his powers, I see no reason for his Rending to NOT make the news.

Edited by TwiLyghtSansSparkles
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I see your points. But even if the news media were still thriving, Steelheart shows up in Chicago shortly after Epics start appearing. To me this implies he's among the first wave. My point of all the different Epics going through their Rendings at the same time, providing a news schedule overload still stands. More than that, when Epics with abilities akin to Steelheart undergo their Rending, they likely kill any and all people who might have seen them. I don't find it to be a stretch of the imagination to say the news in Chicago, even if it had mentioned Steelheart (do we have WoB on a hometown?), might not have broadcast his image very well. So I don't find it hard to believe that David's dad had no idea who the guy-who-just-stopped-an-Epic would be.

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We know word of mouth does happen. That's how David got all of his Epic knowledge. As someone who is devoting his life to knowing all he can about Epics, don't you think a form of news that delivered such to him would be something David would pay attention to?

 

 

That is the point I'm getting at. They would do that. So why isn't it ever mentioned? In Newcago it makes sense, what with everything turned to steel. But Babilar? Any other city? Tia never mentions how inconvinient Newcago is lacking news. None of the Reckoners ever mention it. Why not? If it does contain information on Epics, why are they not using it? It would be an invaluable tool to utilize. Yet they don't. I'm saying it's because they can't.

 

It's an interesting conundrum that I think I'll ask Brandon about, if I ever get to meet him.

Not entirely sure what you're trying to say, I agree that word of mouth should exist which means that regardless of the existence of other news outlets there should still be information that David has on an Epic as strong as Steelheart. In your last post you seemed to be saying that the solution to why David hadn't heard of Steelheart or Dawnslight is the lack of news but I don't think that solves anything.

Sorry if I've misunderstood what you're trying to say.

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I see your points. But even if the news media were still thriving, Steelheart shows up in Chicago shortly after Epics start appearing. To me this implies he's among the first wave. My point of all the different Epics going through their Rendings at the same time, providing a news schedule overload still stands. More than that, when Epics with abilities akin to Steelheart undergo their Rending, they likely kill any and all people who might have seen them. I don't find it to be a stretch of the imagination to say the news in Chicago, even if it had mentioned Steelheart (do we have WoB on a hometown?), might not have broadcast his image very well. So I don't find it hard to believe that David's dad had no idea who the guy-who-just-stopped-an-Epic would be.

True, but I think you're underestimating the media's power to adjust when ratings are on the line. Steelheart was one of the "newer Epics," according to the prologue, and this is two years after Calamity rose. One year after Epics first began appearing. While it's probable that Steelheart killed everyone who might have recorded him, there's nothing stopping another media outlet from finding the evidence. By that point, media channels probably had contacts in every level of law enforcement, if not outright police scanners. The chances of a reporter hearing a cry for help just before the entire radio goes dead are high; the chances of said reporter going toward the town where the cry came from are even higher. Once there, said reporter would almost certainly be sending a live video feed back to their headquarters or their house or something. Unless Steelheart made a point to destroy all media equipment--which is a definite possibility--then there would most likely be some evidence of his crimes.

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Not entirely sure what you're trying to say, I agree that word of mouth should exist which means that regardless of the existence of other news outlets there should still be information that David has on an Epic as strong as Steelheart. In your last post you seemed to be saying that the solution to why David hadn't heard of Steelheart or Dawnslight is the lack of news but I don't think that solves anything.

Sorry if I've misunderstood what you're trying to say.

 

No need to be sorry, I often have trouble verbalizing my thoughts (though my thoughts are beautifully written, rest assured). David's lack of knowledge on Dawnslight is an issue. The only explanation I can come up with is that the Babilaran's concept of Dawnslight as a deity and not an Epic could have kept info about the phenomenon from reaching David. In addition, it is likely that Babilar has an incredibly low rate of exit traffic, considering the generally good state of the city. So the people who do leave might not even bother mentioning it (of course, the more obvious answer is that in order to show us the true beauty and oddity that is Babylon Restored, Brandon needed someone with completely virgin thoughts on the city, a mindset his readers would share with the PoV character to help establish connection).

 

As for Steelheart, obviously prior to his dad's death David didn't collect the information on Epics. Also, as a kid, he likely didn't bother with the news (I know I didn't). David's dad, on the other hand, is the odd ball here. The media was definitely still around at the time, as you and Twi have pointed out, yet David's dad still had no working knowledge of Steelheart. I still think Steelheart's image likely never surfaced.

 

 

True, but I think you're underestimating the media's power to adjust when ratings are on the line. Steelheart was one of the "newer Epics," according to the prologue, and this is two years after Calamity rose. One year after Epics first began appearing. While it's probable that Steelheart killed everyone who might have recorded him, there's nothing stopping another media outlet from finding the evidence. By that point, media channels probably had contacts in every level of law enforcement, if not outright police scanners. The chances of a reporter hearing a cry for help just before the entire radio goes dead are high; the chances of said reporter going toward the town where the cry came from are even higher. Once there, said reporter would almost certainly be sending a live video feed back to their headquarters or their house or something. Unless Steelheart made a point to destroy all media equipment--which is a definite possibility--then there would most likely be some evidence of his crimes.

 

I was unaware/had forgotten that Steelhearts arrival in Chicago was a whole year after Epics began showing their ugly mugs. Now, I definitely don't doubt that  evidence of Steelhearts Rending was found, but Steelheart himself being captured for news organizations to broadcast/print is still within the realm of likely possibilities. Steelheart Rends (is that proper grammar?), destroying whatever is in his path in his blind rage, and then leaves. Unless there just happened to be a reporter with a camera on scene already, I don't think it is very likely they'd have images of him to show people. In addition, I doubt Paul Jackson happened to be wearing his amazing super-villain get-up during his Reding. So David's dad, upon seeing a large, muscular, god-like man dressed as a comic hero telling another Epic--who is trying to rob the bank--to stop what he's doing, thinking "hey, a good Epic!" is not so far-fetched to me.

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I was unaware/had forgotten that Steelhearts arrival in Chicago was a whole year after Epics began showing their ugly mugs. Now, I definitely don't doubt that  evidence of Steelhearts Rending was found, but Steelheart himself being captured for news organizations to broadcast/print is still within the realm of likely possibilities. Steelheart Rends (is that proper grammar?), destroying whatever is in his path in his blind rage, and then leaves. Unless there just happened to be a reporter with a camera on scene already, I don't think it is very likely they'd have images of him to show people. In addition, I doubt Paul Jackson happened to be wearing his amazing super-villain get-up during his Reding. So David's dad, upon seeing a large, muscular, god-like man dressed as a comic hero telling another Epic--who is trying to rob the bank--to stop what he's doing, thinking "hey, a good Epic!" is not so far-fetched to me.

 

I agree completely. Maybe there was evidence of his Rending, but maybe they only connected it to him after the Annexation. Maybe he wiped out a small town, or it was the dead of night and he was just a flying blur of destruction, not too different from any other flying Epic's Rending until you sort out the details and certainly conflicting accounts.

 

and then, the likely answer is that Brandon hadn't made up Rendings yet, and so hadn't factored them into his first book. ah well.

Edited by Blackhoof
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