Last Time on Billionaire Island
As we left issue 5, things had taken a turn for the worse…if you were Rick Cantos and the members of Freedom Unlimited. For his part, Rick had received the wrong end of an office chair that separated him from breathing. Meanwhile, some of his “hamsters“ had managed to escape the hamster wheel and the Island. Considering one of the escapees was Shelly Bly, news reporter, that didn’t bode well for those left to try to salvage the possible damage. So let’s see how this all shook out in Issue 6 of Billionaire Island.
Hitting the Talk Shows
So let’s review, shall we? Your group has been held hostage in a large closet on an island ran by Billionaires. One had stayed for a time with a man with a mannequin wife. Another had his fate judged by the hunger pains of well dressed dog. But somehow, your group had survived and escaped. What’s your next move?
Appear on TV of course, explaining to the viewing audience what had happened and why it was OK that you had killed Rick Cantos. Nothing like a crime in international waters to absolve oneself of guilt. It also allowed Shelly Bly, reporter for the Miami Herald to reveal the plot of Canto and AggroCorp. How they had planned to disperse a sterility virus in their food products. Not the kind of thing that shareholders in AggroCorp want to hear. Especially If you’re still on Freedom Unlimited. Stock prices for AggroCorp were already suffering due to the death of majority shareholder Cantos. This new revelation put the company on an apparent death spiral.
The Rescue of AggroCorp
An emergency board meeting was called on the Island to try to address the AggroCorp Dilemma. Some of the board members didn’t see the need, AggroCorp’s problems are AggroCorp’s problems. But sleaze picture Producer Ron Fang tells them otherwise. The company itself is not that important. But they need the sterility virus in AggroCorp’s food to help eliminate population. If not, when the spit hits the fan, all those people would come to THEIR Island. In such numbers that they would not be able to stop them.
They needed to use their vast finances to buy AggroCorp Stock. Push the stock price back up. And to help that situation, he would weaponize a popular Social Media conspiracy theorist to push back against those who speak negatively about AggroCorp. Even though the man doesn’t really believe what he’s saying himself. Despite all the public now knows, it works. The stock price goes back up and AggroCorp is saved.
Karma is a “Bitch“
This is much to the chagrin of Trent, who went to such lengths to bring AggroCorp down. He lost his family and everything he did appeared to be for naught. Yet, as much as he hurts for his family, he feels even worse for those who will suffer because of AggroCorp’s revival. However, Karma as has been said, is a “bitch.” In this case, Karma came in the form of Freedom Unlimited’s own chairman. The dog who makes all of the stock sales and purchases powered by his food bowls and dumb luck. It was stock decision day. All of his decision bowls were laid out, ready to be filled. What would be the chairman’s grand decision this time? The first bowl was filled by his handler but, he ran out of food. Oops. He went to go get more but returned to find the chairman had made his decision. Of course he did, he had only one choice. “Sell Everything!” Oh well…decision made. The results were dramatic.
The Downfall of Billionaire Island
Stock Markets plunged like never before. Not since the Great Depression had fortunes been lost so rapidly. The results of this had serious repercussions both on and off the Island. People who were devastated by the crash felt the need to throw themselves off buildings. (This was a common occurrence during the Great Depression for those who lost everything). On the Island, members who just that morning were living the high life, suddenly found out they were no longer in the club. They no longer had net worths of a Billion dollars or more. This meant immediate removal from the Island. Drones were working overtime picking up the unqualified and dropping them off the Island. This included Ron Fang who protested that he was still rich. But he no longer met the criteria that he and his board established. Sorry, Buddy. Rules are rules.
Those on Freedom Unlimited were brought down by the very same thing that they tried so hard to implement. A person’s value defined by worth. In the end, once again society will need to be rebuilt. It is not the first time, nor would it be the last. What would history reveal about how humanity would deal with it this time?
Throughout this series, so many different aspects of today’s society has touched upon that it is easy to overlook some. That is why rereading each issue yields new insights. Such are the benefits of having to review each new chapter. Usually for no other reason than to confirm a fact touched upon in the new issue. It’s amazing though how many things writer Mark Russell fit in to the narrative. Even more impressive when it is considered that this was written in 2018, before the whole pandemic event pushed us off axis. Foresight? Educated guess?? Either way it is impressive.
For this Issue, I have skimmed over some of the other references made. Be sure to read it, maybe twice. Examples include dating services (gives a whole new meaning to “swipe left”), restaurant choices, social media’s ability to misdirect the public, and the refusal of some people to jump off an obviously sinking ship. It is nice how Russell was able to mix in humor to what might have just been considered sad. It also explains why this series has proven to be so popular. If you haven’t taken the chance to read it, by all means do so. Between great art, color work, and the biting satire, it tells a tale that is extremely relevant now. The question is will it be relevant five years from now. It’s in our own hands and time will tell. Be sure to let us know what you think here at Geek Vibes Nation.
Senior Writer at GeekVibesNation – I am a 50 something child of the 70’s who admits to being a Star Trek/Star Wars/Comic Book junkie who once dove head first over a cliff (Ok, it was a small hill) to try to rescue his Fantastic Four comic from a watery grave. I am married to a lovely woman who is as crazy as I am and the proud parent of a 17 year old boy with autism. My wife and son are my real heroes.