Thursday, 25 February 2016

Fantastic Voyage - The Immune System, and Why I've Chosen It.

The subject, of which I have started to work on for my project, is The Immune System, or more specifically "The Adaptive Immune System", here is a brief explanation of the process.

"The antigen first must be processed and recognized. Once an antigen has been recognized, the adaptive immune system creates an army of immune cells specifically designed to attack that antigen. Adaptive immunity also includes a "memory" that makes future responses against a specific antigen more efficient."

Here is the process explained in a diagram I made, that includes figure numbers to refer to underneath for explanation of the process.

1. Antigen "A" enters bodies blood.

2. Eventually it is consumed by a  Macrophage (Greek for Big Eaters).

3. Said Macrophage turns into a Helper T-Cell, and produces Interleukin's, containing information about "A".

4. These Interleukin's are consumed by B-Cells, this process kills the Macrophage, essentially sacrificing itself for the cause (note, this comes up later).

5. These B-Cells then use this information to turn into Plasma Cells.

6. These Cells will then release millions of Antibodies into the blood stream, but these are no ordinary antibodies, these are "A" Specific Antibodies.

7. The next time an "A" Antigen appears, the "A" Antibodies will swarm it and kill it with ease.

8. Antigen "A" is now removed from the body, which is now Immune to the cell.

What I found interesting about this process is the clear objective, and the means of how it achieves this. I feel like the sacrifice that the Macrophage makes, to let itself be killed to teach other cells how to effectively kill the alien cell, is rather heroic and I think this would make a good focal plot point of the film, a bitter sweet victory if you will.

And in terms of theme and stylistic choice, I thought it would be interesting visually to convey this process in a style similar to the Newsreels from the 1997 film "Starship Troopers". They effectively convey the plot, but also they go out of there way to fill the viewer in on subsidiary information, that include scientific information on the alien threat, and the progress of the war.

I feel like they do there job very well, not only keeping the viewer informed, but entertained, with its clear throwback to WW2 propaganda, and general cheesiness (and social commentary on modern america, but that's not important right now).

I have included these Newsreels below.

I feel the a way I may want to convey the visuals is through drawing parallels with other beings or objects. For example maybe this could be a story similar to the theme in Osmosis Jones (2001) which is based on a society inside a body. In this film they replace certain cells and other bodily functions with more relate-able objects, like some cells being humanoid, while others cars and boats.

For example, like Starship Troopers, the antigen could be an Alien Spaceship, while the Macrophages and Antibodies are the Space Marines, a modern classic film trope. Set in a space battle like environment.

(Example of what I mean by a space battle, Source :

Here are just some rough ideas before I begin work on visual development, hope this all makes sense, trying my best to get my thoughts down. Looking forward to feedback!


  1. Excellent start Brad!
    Keep up the momentum :)

  2. Starship Troopers News Reels... yep, I can see that structure working effectively.

    Meanwhile... just a gentle prod from me re. completing the Internal Student Survey. Go here for the original post and a bit more info about the survey and why it's important to participate.

    They should have emailed your login details to your ucreative accounts, but if no email has arrived contact and request your login details from the powers-that-be. When you've completed the survey leave a 'done it' comment on the original post - this means I'll stop prodding you - gently or otherwise! ;) Many thanks!