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Dimension 20: Mentopolis Episode 1 Recap and Review
Let's talk about the first episode of Dimension 20: Mentopolis. Brennan takes us to a film noir setting where we have to solve a murder mystery.
Author's Note: This article will contain spoilers for Dimension 20: Mentopolis episode 1.
Welcome to the first Recap and Review of Mentopolis - Dimension 20's nineteenth season! It's a brand-new season with brand-new characters. Lots to talk about.
Dimension 20: Mentopolis Episode 1
Without further ado, let's dive in!
Let's Get to Know The Setting
The world of Mentopolis is the mind of Elias Hodge. Mentopolis is a metropolitan city that represents the different sections of his brain.
So far, we have visited several places: Cerebell Pacific, The Red District, The Daily Observer, and Hunch Curio's office in the blue district area.
The vibe is film noir, but like every season of Dimension 20, this one is rich and colorful.
A murder happens in the Cerebell Pacific tower in the middle of the night, and our heroes will probably need to figure it out. As of Episode 1, the only character with any invested interest in solving the murder is Anastasia Tension (A. Tension) - Danielle's character. We'll talk more about her later.
Other than that, the city feels like the vibes from old movies. I have yet to watch Metropolis - the movie this season is based on - but I'm happy to watch this season as-is for now and enjoy the show!
Let's get to know our characters.
Introducing Hunch Curio and Imelda Pulse
Hunch Curio is portrayed by Mike Trapp. He's the embodiment of Curiosity, and before the plot picks up, we see him with his assistant marveling at their previous work like "What's the song with la la la..."
I realized this was "Inside Out meets Metropolis" only halfway through the episode, but once I realized that, I couldn't unsee it. I immediately google any new character we meet to recognize if their name is a pun on medical terms related to the brain.
Discovering Hans's pun was an unexpected and exciting result.
So, Hunch is in his office when Siobhan Thompson's character, Imelda Pulse, arrives to hire him.
In Siobhan's words, Imelda "reeks from old money," as the Pulse family embodies Impulse. One of humanity's most common traits.
Imelda hires Hunch Curio to discover who is seeking her out now that she used her incredible privilege to influence the big guy to do something she saw in the newspaper - the issue given to her by a child (by the name Conrad which we meet later) after she left Sugah's.
We discover it much later in the episode, but people like Imelda have a golden key that allows them to speak directly to the big guy.
One other such person is Anastasia Tension.
Move Over Lois Lane - Anastasia Tension Arrived
Anastasia Tension is the embodiment of attention. She works as a reporter for The Daily Observer, and her job is to report everything out of the ordinary.
Bumped your toe? That's A.Tension's work to cover the shooting pain.
Today we see her at the scene of a murder at Cerebell Pacific. She can't get an in on the body as the scene is still warm, but she does talk to the deceased's sister and learns some valuable information about him.
The dice did not agree with her when taking away some valuable evidence, and they did not agree with her when she talked to her boss - Mr. Focus - to pursue the case further.
A. Tension does get a permit to follow the story, but it must be front-page worthy, or else she's fired. The stakes are high.
So far, Anastasia is the only character who pursues the murder mystery at all.
We All Know How It's Pronounced
Daniel Fucks is the owner of a bar in the red district. We're introduced to him as the police are coming to raid him for selling Oxytocin.
If you don't know, Oxytocin is the closeness hormone. It's released in the body as we touch and hug other people. Since Elias - the big guy - did not have any close relationships and was very lonely, the powers that govern his body banned any form of Oxytocin from being sold in the city.
We discover an entertaining character in Freddie's Daniel. Very loud and controlling. One of his helpers, Hans, embodies pleasure when someone else suffers which makes him the perfect bouncer for a bar in the red district.
The red district is where we find things like addictions. It's not a productive part of Elias's brain. While People like A. Tension and Hunch Curio help the body in various ways, people in the red district just want to make it feel good.
One of the people clearing out as the police came was Hank Green's character.
Hank Green's Debut on Dimension 20
The Fix is Hank Green's character, and he's intense.
The name does not give away his embodiment like Imelda Pulse, Anastasia Tension, or even Hunch Curio.
The fix is the embodiment of Hyper Focus. Interestingly he's not known to be related to Mr. Focus from The Daily Observer. Instead, his job is to eliminate distractions. When you're trying to study, and you have the urge to waste some time on your phone - that's what The Fix will attempt to eliminate.
Objectively, given our ever-shortening attention spans, he's not doing a great job.
Another side of his is to find stray interests and bring them to their "kindergarten," where they're being taken care of until Elias resolves to invest some focus into them.
One such stray interest is the social justice kid named Conrad, who was successful in running away from the kindergarten prison.
Conrad The Justice Warrior Kid
Alex Song-Xia(they/them) is another newcomer to the dome. They have played with Brennan before in a one-shot but never in a Dimension 20 season.
Alex plays Conrad(He/Him) - a kid newsie who has a habit of messing up the newspaper to put the most important thing as the front page instead of what the newspaper's first page really is.
He also tends to come to Sugah's and place a "please reconsider" sign on the front door.
By his habit, Conrad had given Imelda Pulse a newspaper where she saw that the big guy was procrastinating with submitting a file and, through her privileged access, ensured that file got submitted.
Some higher-ups are looking for Conrad because of the distraction he now poses, and the guy who portrays Ambition orders The Fix to track him down.
I like that this kid is now a distraction. And it feels like an auto-immune disease where the body would attack itself without merit. Reminds me of this Australian spider that causes you to become allergic to chicken by releasing into your bloodstream a protein that should never be there that we regularly digest when eating chicken.
Imagine not being able to ever eat Schnitzel again. The horror!
Anyway, now that the introductions are out of the way, Brennan brought the party for a meet-up at Sugah's.
Meeting Up at Sugah's
As the episode draws to a close, All characters arrive at Sugah's, where Daniel Fucks meets them all.
Imelda and Hunch looked for the kid who gave her the newspaper.
The kid - Conrad - is coming to put the 'Please reconsider' sign on Faniel Fuck's door at Sugah's as he does every day, and Daniel catches him in the act.
Anastasia also arrives at Sugah's to start her investigation of the murder. This scene is where we learn Anastasia also has a golden key. She just leaves it in the fridge.
That realization makes me think that Hunch Curio also has a key, but it's not revealed yet.
The fix also sounds like someone who needs to have a key, but on second thought, he needs only to eliminate distractions. He doesn't need to influence the big guy; he just enables the big guy to hyperfocus on the things that matter.
The episode ends with Conrad trying to make a run for it and encounters two assassins outside who almost take him out after he fails his dice rolls.
Instead, Brennan uses the power of worldbuilding to show us that something terrible is happening to Mentopolis, and the entire highway collapses on these two assassins and instantly kills them right in front of Conrad's face.
We still don't know what will happen to Conrad. But that's why I make predictions! Let's talk about them next.
Predictions For the Next Episode
I believe Conrad would also take some hit points from that event. Standing right next to a crashing highway is bound to hit you somehow. Whether it's rubble or even just the shockwave from the impact.
The fix would not take the job against Conrad. Something would change his mind. The next episode would probably focus on what's happening to Mentopolis. I believe that as Elias "makes up his mind," there will be changes to the city. In brain science, it's called Neuroplasticity, which means we can change the makeup of our brain even as we age. Neuroplasticity allows you to learn to play an instrument and become so good it's second nature.
Even though this season is six episodes, I predict that the murder won't get a lot of attention next episode. There's just a lot going on, and the team does not even trust each other yet, or can be called a team, for that matter.
What do you think will happen next episode? Let me know in the comments below!
P.S. Dimension 20 published the first episode of Mentopolis on YouTube: