The Brunnen-G

I assume, since they have such historical importance, we will discover more about the Brunnen-G in the series - but I've always loved a challenge, and I can't resist trying a little deductive reasoning based on what we already know! (And if I'm proven wrong, what the hell! I've enjoyed the exercise!)

I have already said, in my analysis of Super Nova, that the Brunnen-G are fascinating, and I shall quote myself here... On the one hand, we have a civilisation sufficiently technologically advanced to build stabilisers to prevent their sun from going supernova, and find a way (probably in vessels of some kind, though we don't know that for a fact) from the Dark Zone into the Light Universe. On the other hand, it appears that if there is a perverse (or should that be perverted?) way to do anything, the Brunnen-G will employ it!
       It shows in everything about them, from their insanely complicated clothing to their unbelievably bizarre way of attaining "immortality". Let's face it, even if being embraced in your personal "burst of life" prevents you from feeling pain, being sawn slowly in three is not exactly a sophisticated way to die. Fair enough, as a method of having your life flash before your eyes it may prove extremely efficient - but surely there are other, less messy and masochistic methods!

But far be it from me to condemn another species' traditions. Instead, let's consider appearance for a moment (and start at the top and work downwards).
       Brunnen-G hair. It's wonderful - long, thick and (presumably) heavy. And I know from experience that long, thick, heavy hair can actually put a bit of a strain on the neck by pulling the head backwards (as well as being a real nuisance in a high wind!) so I can fully appreciate why it would be caught up out of the way. But why keep it so long in the first place?
       I can only speculate. On earth, long hair has at various times been seen as a sign of virility (the Samson syndrome), religious persuasion (Sikh or Rastafarian), rebellion (the 60's), or effeminacy (shame upon you all!!). In the Brunnen-G it seems to have considerable significance (the icons on the machine in the room into which Poet Man lured Stan showed both male and female Brunnen-G with similar hair to Kai, and we already know that the Brunnen-G left Brunnis some hundreds of years before Kai was killed. That's a long time to keep a particular hairstyle going....). Well, I know what I'd like it to indicate. But it may simply be the creators' whim, and it may not really matter anyway. We may never know.
       That mark on the face that symbolises the Brunnen-G journey into the Light Universe. Do they all have it? Just the males? Just the leaders? Just the warriors? Is it genetic (are they born with it)? Is it imprinted after birth? Is it burned on by laser at some kind of coming of age ritual? I'd love to know!
       Those amazing costumes... There's something very appealing about a race that goes into battle dressed in chatoyant rainbows, a kind of throwing flamboyance in the face of disaster... And it would appear that it is, again, a characteristic of the race. The hologram of the female Brunnen-G on Brunnis was perfectly in keeping with the convention. The Brunnen-G admiral in the memory catacombs was, also. (Poet Man, of course, was not. It may have been that he was the original rebel amongst the Brunnen-G - after all, dressing drably and refusing to wear long hair would be a very obvious symbol of rebellion amongst a such a colourful race. Alternatively, he may just have been pissed off with being 'misunderstood'...) Of course, it could simply be a question of caste - but in that case, if the warriors' apparel resembled birds of paradise, what on Brunnis did everyone else look like!? Regardless of the reason behind it, what the clothing does exemplify, quite beautifully, is that advanced technology does not necessarily mean the bleak, spartan functionality so beloved of the bulk of sci-fi.

Me, I'm just glad I don't have to do their laundry!

Moving on, Brunnen-G buildings and machinery seem to be unnecessarily complex and highly ornamental (Hmmm. Shades of Dune (the movie)...?) while at the same time the actual decoration is almost childishly simplistic. I'm not quite sure what to make of that. The triumph of structure and form over pattern and style? A preoccupation with shape and design at the expense of detail? (But that doesn't gel with the intricate detailing of the clothing...) And what's the significance of the preponderance of the colours peach, purple and yellow, in both the clothes and the decorations? Anybody want to help me out here?
       We don't hear enough of the language for me to attempt even the most basic linguistic analysis, but it seems euphonic and minimalistic, which would probably explain why the two names we do know (Kai and Krato - if that's how it's spelt) are surprisingly terse for such a decoratively-orientated race.

I have the distinct impression that the Brunnen-G were very passionate people, and possibly averse to the taking of life except where necessary. A race as colourful, complex and heroic - after all, it was the Brunnen-G who "led humanity to victory in the Insect Wars" - is very unlikely to be comprised of banal and prosaic individuals! Even Poet Man has enough of a lust for life to make arrangements for the continuance of his line. And actually saving the memories of those who have chosen the "burst of life" so that they can be experienced at first hand are not the actions of a dull people, regardless of what Poet Man says. (Regarding my second point, in spite of knowing how the Divine Predecessors have behaved, and no doubt would continue to behave, throughout history, Kai still tells Stan that there is "no need" to destroy any more of the brains once His Shadow's essence has left the Lexx. However, I'm not wholly convinced of the validity of this argument. The comment could simply be a hangover from his original instructions to protect them. And we already know that the Brunnen-G are extremely able warriors, their failure to protect their homeworld notwithstanding.)

What else can we deduce? Probably not a lot. The Brunnen-G homeworld in the Light Universe looks peaceful and beautiful, large expanses of green and blue and clean white cloud, which suggests it has been looked after - but of course that's only a flimsy hypothesis. It's not really the sort of thing you can really tell from space. When speaking to the Time Prophet (is she Brunnen-G? I think probably not.....), Kai states that the Brunnen-G "no longer" have the weapons to combat the Divine Order, although we know that they once did. So what happened? Did they renounce war? Allow them to fall into disuse? Or were most of them destroyed in the Insect Wars? It'll be interesting to see if we ever find out.

His Shadow calls the Brunnen-G "a culture of romantic dreamers", and even if this is meant as an insult (from what we discover about the Divine Order, romantic dreamers would be anathema to him) there's obviously a lot of truth in it. After all, on the face of it, if you've just seen your planet and your people destroyed, and are facing death yourself, to tell His Shadow that your race will destroy him shows either mind-boggling bravado, hopeless optimism, blind faith or a complete inability to face reality!
       Or, as is most likely, a poignant trust in the Time Prophet's oracular abilities: "The Divine Order will be destroyed at the hands of the Brunnen-G." But she was unable to see past the emergence of the GigaShadow, and now that Kai has been infected by His Shadow's essence, what, exactly, do her words mean...?

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