Demolished Man Essay, Research Paper
The Man With No Face
At a time when crime is virtually impossible, one man sets out to do what has not occurred in 79 years and get away with it. In the classic science fiction novel The Demolished Man by Alfred Bester, one man is about to change everything. Ben Reich is that man. He is haunted by nightmares of the man with no face, and after murdering his business rival, the nightmares become even more real to him.
Ben Reich is constantly pursued by the man with no face. When he takes the problem to his therapist, he interprets the man with no face as D Courtney, Reich s business rival. Reich of Monarch Corporation and D Courtney of D Courtney Cartel own the two biggest businesses. When Monarch begins to lose some of its financial stability, Ben Reich sends a decoded message asking to merge the two companies. After confusing the meaning of the coded reply to merge, Reich decides that the only plausible thing to do is murder D Courtney. This is very difficult due to the fact of espers or telepaths that can peep the mind. The telepaths are very common in this time, and work in every occupational field from Reich s therapist to the police chief, Lincoln Powell.
Lincoln Powell knows that Reich has committed the murder by peeping him but cannot explain the motive which he needs to convict due to the fact that Reich used a song as a mental block. As Reich struggles to survive and keep from being caught, the man with no face haunts him more and more. Reich is not sure who the man is but guesses it either is himself or D Courtney. Reich s only real enemy is not the police who are trying to catch him, but the man with no face who he will never be able to escape from. As Lincoln Powell says, He s your ancient enemy, Reich A man you ll never escape. You ll never be able to run from him hide from him and I pray to God you ll never be able to save yourself from him.
Finally, the police find out that D Courtney is Reich s father and Reich did not consciously know it. Once they find out this crucial piece of evidence, they are able to figure out that the man with no face is indeed D Courtney. The reason he had no face was that Reich was never able to accept the fact that D Courtney was his father and he had to kill him not for monetary gain but for personal reasons, to try and kill the nightmare. Once he is caught, Reich ended up facing Demolition, and during this time he had a vision with the man with no face. This time there was a face, actually two faces. One was his, the other D Courtney s. At this time, Reich realizes that they are of one blood and figures out why his nightmarish pursuer never had a face.