After watching Severance Season 1
Aug 12, 2022
Film & Television
With growing leisue time, I have binge-watched the Serverance which I had wanted for a long time. I was really impressed scriptwriter's imagination after i watched. The Serverance also caused me to reflect the relationship between work and life. I want to share my rethink here with you. It's my first time write english post, hope you guys can correct my poor writing in english.
Does work-life need to be separated completely?
The bigest selling point about Lumen ( the company in the series ) is work-lif seperated totally. That means employees' memories of going to and from work are different except the management. The employees and their colleagues talk and laugh at work, but they don't know each other after work. It seems to suit everyones asking in work life balance perfectly, but it ignores the "buffer" or overemphasizes the boundary. It will make employees creativeless and indiiferent in company. Everyone have their own "inertia". It's hard to switch mod when taked the elevator or clocked in attendance. In Serverance, Mark felt confused and puzzled when his ex-leader intrude into his own life and the book given by his relatives which apear in his work place by accident. When he contact with the "interlacing" of the work and life, he also have "inertia symptom" .
work-life seperated brings annother problem: Who leads body? Innie or outie? When you felt burn out at work or you job didn't make you happy, you wanted to resign but outie rejected innie's request. In this case, innie is a vassal? Or a slave trapped in the box of "work"? Or just like the congressman's wife at childbirth in Serverance ,a beast trapped by nagative emotions and pain? When innie's time exceeds outie's time, which got the dominant power of body?
Order and religious corporate culture
Lumen set up the various regulations and inspection procedures to prohibit the intersection between innie and outie. The working places also were separated th various departments and created fabricates perjury to make bostile relations between departments intentionally by Lumen. The content of Mark's work is to classify the number on the screen according to their different feelings, but Mark and his colleagues do not know what the purpose or goal of the work. With the order of various rules, it is difficult to make employees willingly work for such a company, some of them accept the environment, some of them show a strong willing of resistance just like the new employee Helly. I thought that i am working in a small company with a lot of rules and low level technical content. When i first joined this company, several colleagues left because of strict rules, but i stayed with a small reason which is the need of an income. When i thought my work everyday, there would be tears appear in my eye sockets. In addition to the absolute order and subdivision of work to make each employee like "screw". Lumen also used the greatness of the founders to create a religious company culture that made employees willing to be "screws".
Mark's boos(she didn't get surgery) was decisive and vigorous in decision-making, but she was a devout believer of Lumen. She built a altar to worship. There is an environment of loyal, every departments had employee handbook like the Bible. After Helly's unsuccessful resination, Irving proposed that Mark should take everyone to Eternalwing. The Eternal Wing likes a museum, showing the glorious deeds of Lumen's CEOs. Irving, a veteran employee, would be hesitant to repeat the founder's quotes, even have different interpretations of different version employee handbook.
The order restricts employee where they go in physically, the company culture imprisons employees' mind. Employees' bodies and minds when they go to work are totally controlled by the company. They reduced to machines completely on assembly line without soul.
In China, some companies use 9-9-6 (go to work at 9 am and go from work 9 pm ,working 6 days a week) or 0-0-7 working hour system to exploit their employees, but i saw enhancive way of that in Lumen. If you want to resign in Lumen, the resignation should be submit by outie. It seems to illustrate indirectly the question of "who is in charge of the body?". When Helly threat to talk to outie by cutting her fingers, innie didn't expect that the outie refuse the request with no hesitate and said "I am a person, you are not, the choice can only be done by me." I think the sentence is the most thoughtful and terrifying one in the whole series. The outie seems to regard innie as a tool to complete some goals, but the carrier of the tool is self. if you can't stand 9-9-6 or 0-0-7, you can submit your resignation in real life. Lumen told you that you can make work life balance, but you can't make your own decision becaues of "yourself".
There are my thoughts and reflections after watching "Serverance Season 1" above. The words are slightly arbitray. If there is any mistake, I hope you can tell me. You can also leave comments or messages below. I’m Jim Luo. See you next time, peace!