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Atlas

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Atlasss copy
Atlas
Bornc. 1920
Died1960
Place of DeathFontaine's Lair,
Point Prometheus,
Rapture
Physical Description
GenderMale
Hair ColorBlack
Eye ColorBlue
Appearances
Appears inBioShock
BioShock: Rapture
Burial at Sea -
Episode 2
Voice ActorKarl Hanover
Atlas Portrait
Who Is Atlas

One of the many "Who is Atlas?" posters scattered around Rapture.

"I am not a liberator. Liberators do not exist. These people will liberate themselves."
―Atlas[src]

Atlas is the revolutionary who led many of the disillusioned of Rapture against Andrew Ryan and his supporters during the Civil War. A significant character in BioShock, he guides the player through the failing utopia after Jack's arrival. Atlas speaks with an Irish accent, specifically, a working class Dublin accent.

HistoryEdit

When Ryan nationalized Fontaine Futuristics, Atlas protested against him in front of citizens. With Frank Fontaine declared dead by the Rapture Council, Atlas used the poor houses left behind (such as Fontaine's Home for the Poor) to recruit disillusioned citizens and build up supporters against Ryan. Making Hestia Chambers in Apollo Square their headquarters, Atlas' followers gathered weapons, ammunition, Plasmids and Gene Tonics to arm themselves. This did not go unnoticed by Ryan, who had Atlas and some of his close followers sent to Fontaine's Department Store, which had been converted into a prison to house the remainder of Fontaine's army. Ryan hoped that this would put an end to the tension that had been created, but Atlas escaped on New Years Eve, bringing with him splicers whom he had gained as allies while in the prison. The action which officially started the civil war was the 1958 New Year's Eve Riots, and the terrorist bombing of the party at the Kashmir Restaurant, where many of the important and wealthy people in Rapture were gathered for a Masquerade Ball.

As the conflict escalated through 1959, more people joined Atlas' cause, including Ryan's ex-lover Diane McClintock. Raiding parties attacked Big Daddies to kill Little Sisters for their ADAM, seized weapons, caused many casualties, and disrupted Rapture's economy. The rebels had the goal of taking power and gaining control over Rapture.

To contain the rebels, Ryan gave orders to isolate Atlas supporters in Apollo Square, transforming the district into a prison enclosed by a large gate defended by Ryan's forces. The Council had agreed to introduce the death penalty in Rapture for smuggling, which caused some people in Ryan's ranks to reconsider their support in the conflict, including Security Chief Sullivan.

In the desperate arms race with the rebels' numerous Splicers, Ryan was forced to use more and more security measures, eventually restricting most public transportation in the city in an attempt to block movements of Atlas' followers. In the end, Ryan used a plan left to him by the late Dr. Suchong: modifying  Ryan Industries' Plasmid line to make Splicers vulnerable to mental suggestion through pheromones. With his Splicer army now neutralized, Atlas and his few remaining unspliced rebels went into hiding in the ruined city, unable to escape Rapture with the bathyspheres locked down since early in the war.

Known followers of AtlasEdit

BioShockEdit

Smugglers Hideout-Atlas

Atlas' model in the Smuggler's Hideout (see the behind the scenes section).

At the beginning of BioShock, Atlas is allegedly trying to escape the city with his family. When a plane crash occurs near the Lighthouse above Rapture, one of Atlas' followers, Johnny, tries to reach a survivor of the accident, Jack, who had descended in a bathysphere. With Johnny killed by a female Splicer and the bathysphere severely damaged, Atlas helps Jack via a shortwave radio, and guides him through districts of Rapture. He wants Jack to help him rescue his wife Moira and infant son Patrick, who are trapped in Rapture. Atlas states that he had come to Rapture in search of a better life (like many among the working class), but now feels as if "God's punishing [him] for bringing her and Patrick to this place".

Spoilers
Atlas

Atlas at the controls.

Atlas is Jack's guide, serving as his ally in the unknown and alien city of Rapture. He explains to Jack the fallen utopia, ADAM, and the events which occurred after the 1958 New Year's Eve Riots. He asks Jack to help him reach his family in a submarine hidden in the Smuggler's Hideout, a secret cave used by the smugglers before the Civil War and located below the foundation of Fontaine Fisheries in Neptune's Bounty. Atlas' plan is to escape the city once he is reunited with his family at the submarine.

Atlas takes Jack through the Medical Pavilion and then to Neptune's Bounty. Eventually, Jack reaches the secret submarine bay in the hidden base used by the smugglers. Waves of Splicers sent by Ryan begin to invade the area when Jack opens the door to let Atlas into the submarine chamber. As Atlas is fighting, the submarine blows up, killing Atlas' unseen wife and son. With Jack retreating to Arcadia, Atlas' goal becomes revenge — the murder of Andrew Ryan. Atlas asks for Jack's help to end the tyrant's reign.

Atlas guides Jack to Arcadia, where Ryan introduces a toxin into the air that kills all the trees producing oxygen, decreasing the oxygen, automatically putting the area into lock down. Jack meets professor Julie Langford inventor of the Lazarus Vector, which will restore the trees to health. Jack must find the components for the Vector and goes to Farmer's Market.  Jack manages to end the lock down and continues on to Fort Frolic, a recreation district.  There Atlas' radio frequency is jammed by the eccentric artist Sander Cohen who controls the area. Cohen requires Jack to murder three people before he will allow Jack to procede, which he accomplishes.

Jack reaches Hephaestus, Rapture's source of power, and then enters Rapture Central Control, Ryan's headquarters. With self-destruction of Rapture activated, Jack has a final confrontation with Ryan. Jack's true origin is revealed, and the fact that Atlas had been controlling through mental conditioning all of Jack's movements since his arrival. Jack had been forced to obey every command Atlas gave, triggered by a single trivial phrase: "Would you kindly". Ryan orders Jack to kill him to demonstrate Jack having no will of his own. With Ryan dead, Atlas orders Jack to use the city's genetic control key to stop Rapture's impending destruction and to transfer control to Atlas. Once this has been completed, Atlas drops his disguise.

With this long-awaited objective now accomplished, "Atlas" reveals his true identity as Frank Fontaine, the smuggler, mobster  and businessman who rose to power in Rapture's society and challenged Andrew Ryan's claim over the city, thus leading to its downfall. Fontaine admits that just about everything he said as Atlas was a lie. Atlas was a name Fontaine adopted when he staged his own death in a shootout at Fontaine Fisheries in 1958 with Security Chief Sullivan's city security forces. Referring to playing Atlas as his "longest con", where Fontaine had created his new persona as a working class hero who could rally people against Ryan, use them to seize power, and eventually take ADAM to the surface to become rich.

Jack survives Fontaine's attempts to put an end to his life with the help of Brigid Tenenbaum and her saved Little Sisters, and pursues Fontaine. Jack is freed from Fontaine's control by antidotes found in Olympus Heights and Apollo Square. Fontaine retreats through the laboratories at Point Prometheus, past the Proving Grounds and to his final lair, where he injects himself with massive massive amounts of ADAM to defeat Jack. Jack fights Fontaine, who finally dies at the hands of a group of Little Sisters.

BioShock 2Edit

Even though Fontaine is long dead during the events of BioShock 2, several of his audio diaries mentioning his fake identity can be found throughout the game.

One of them, "Falling Into Place", can be found at the Imago Fine Arts gallery within Dionysus Park. In this audio diary, he marvels at the fact that he has an entirely new face to fit his fully developed Atlas persona, and he mentions setting up the events which would occur in the first game, including that "the prodigal son is 'bookin' his flight."

Another one, "Goodbye to Fontaine", can be found in Fontaine's sacked office at Fontaine Futuristics. The audio diary depicts the man sliding into his Atlas persona for the first time while working on his fake Irish accent.

The iconic "Who Is Atlas?" poster can be found in Siren Alley at Joe's Green Groceries in its secret Illegal Plasmid Lab.

BioShock 2 MultiplayerEdit

Main article: BioShock 2 Multiplayer

In BioShock 2's Multiplayer, Team Atlas is one of the two factions fighting the civil war (the other being  Team Ryan). Also, several of the loading screen quotes either reference Atlas or are spoken by him. Several "Who Is Atlas?" posters can be found through out the multiplayer maps, including Fort Frolic and Arcadia.

Quotes by Atlas

  • "I'm not a liberator... Liberators do not exist... These people will liberate themselves."

Quotes mentioning Atlas

  • "Atlas is out there... he aims to destroy me, and to destroy my city. To question is to surrender. I will not question." - Andrew Ryan
  • "I begged Mr. Ryan to hand Fontaine Futuristics over to Atlas's boys... instead, he's started splicing his mob up... There's an arms race on here in Rapture. It's about who can become less of a man and more of a monster." - Bill McDonagh
  • This war ain't about Ryan and Atlas... it's about ADAM my friend... Those who gots it and those who don't... Everyone's just dying for a suckle at EVE's tasty tit." - Wadsworth
  • "It's probably just a coincidence, but I'll be damned if anyone had ever heard of this Atlas guy before Fontaine went tits up." - Sullivan
  • "Maybe Atlas isn't some brilliant revolutionary... Maybe people just don't like Andrew Ryan... Not that I can tell him that." - Sullivan
  • "I asked Atlas if he thought this lockdown will ever end... He said it didn't matter... He said if Ryan won't open the station, we'll open it for him." - Michael Tobet
  • How do you wage war against Ryan?... He is the Plasmid Industry... Atlas says Ryan's weapons only work if he's got ammo, but I'm afraid to ask what he means..." - Michael Tobet
  • "Atlas says the Little Sisters aren't girls anymore--they're Ryan's monsters... Does that make Adelaide a monster?... Because they don't sound like monsters when we take them... They cry... Lord help me, they cry..." - Michael Tobet
  • "No one seems to know what happened... Atlas says Elise just walked into the fire... She didn't say a word... didn't even scream... not until the very end." - Michael Tobet
  • "We never did re-open the Bathysphere station, did we, Atlas?... And now Ryan's locked up the Square and thrown away the key... All I wanted was to work, goddamnit... to take care of my family... Why the fuck couldn't you just let me work?" - Michael Tobet

Burial at Sea - Episode 1Edit

Atlasposter bsi

Atlas - Voice of the People.

While Atlas himself does not make an appearance during BioShock Infinite's first story-driven downloadable content, Burial at Sea - Episode 1, several propaganda posters depicting him can be spotted at the employees' locker room behind the Appliances showroom at the Housewares building of Fontaine's Department Store.

Burial at Sea - Episode 2Edit

AudioLog Atlas
Atlas appears in Burial at Sea - Episode 2 as the main antagonist. Trapped in Fontaine's Department Store sunk below the city with many of Fontaine's followers, he attempts to sneak back into Rapture with the aid of Elizabeth. Atlas makes a deal with her after she impersonated Suchong's lab assistant, threatening her life if she does not keep her part of the bargain. He gives her a portable radio to stay in contact and departs with Sally as his hostage, judging the Little Sister far too valuable to be left with her.

Later on, after Elizabeth has retrieved a Lutece Particle from a tear to Columbia, and activated it, Atlas sends his henchmen to knock out Elizabeth and take her in for questioning. While Elizabeth is unconscious, Atlas and his henchmen are able to escape from Fontaine's and carry out their planned attack against the Kashmir Restaurant. When Elizabeth returns to consciousness, Atlas's henchman Lonnie is there. He then threatens her, and injects her with a truth serum to get her to give up the information. She reawakens after two weeks, and Atlas threatens to give her a trans-orbital lobotomy if she doesn't give up the Ace in the Hole. After Elizabeth claims doing so would be a favor to her, he wheels up Sally and starts the procedure on her until Elizabeth surrenders the information about its location. Later after Elizabeth obtains the Ace in the Hole and gives it to Atlas. Atlas starts to beat her to death with a wrench, until he realizes he needs her to decode it. When Elizabeth decodes the paper, Atlas brutally murders her with one last fatal blow. 

GalleryEdit

Behind the ScenesEdit

  • The name "Atlas" is, like Andrew Ryan, inspired by the works of Ayn Rand[1], a Russian-American philosopher whose 'Objectivism' is similar to the philosophy on which Ryan founded Rapture. Rand's last novel was entitled Atlas Shrugged[2], a reference to the Greek myth of a Titan condemned to support the heavens on his shoulders for eternity.[3]
  • The posters inscribed "Who is Atlas?" are a reference to the line "Who is John Galt?" from Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugged.[4]
  • The player may find a poster in Fort Frolic and Atlas' HQ in Apollo Square advertising the play "Patrick and Moira", a story of love after death. This was probably the source of Fontaine's inspiration for the names of his fictional family.
  • Occasionally, throughout the game, Fontaine gets out of character of being Atlas and he does not have his story straight. While posing as Atlas, Fontaine tells Jack that he brought his wife, Moira, and son, Patrick down from the surface to Rapture.[5] However, when Jack enters The Fighting McDonagh's Tavern, he says that he took Moira there for their first date.[6] He also uses distinctly American phrases, like when commenting that Nitro Splicers are "sounding off like it's the 4th of July,"[7] Cohen being a "Section 8"[8] kind of crazy, and an American football allusion: "Every time we get a yard ahead, Ryan goes and moves the goal line down to the other side of the field!"[9] Atlas was featured as a main character in the BioShock Infinite DLC: Burial at Sea - Episode 2. During moments of rage, Atlas breaks character and switches to Fontaine's Bronx accent.

Frank FontaineHQ Atlas Portrait

Fontaine and Atlas's pictures, compared side by side.
  • If one compares his photo to Fontaine's, it is easy to notice that Atlas's face is clearly Fontaine, only with hair, without a mustache, and a more noticeable cleft chin. It wasn't so hard for Fontaine to disguise himself as Atlas: only the basic change of appearance and a different way of speaking.
  • The same facial similarities can be seen on the Audio Diary portraits of Fontaine and Atlas in Burial at Sea, with their noses being the most noticeable.
  • Inside Fontaine's apartment in Olympus Heights, a phonograph can be heard playing "Danny Boy" by Mario Lanza, a famous Irish song.[10]
  • Greg Baldwin, the voice actor of Frank Fontaine, has stated in an interview that he was originally asked to speak the part of Atlas as well, and would have done them in an American southern accent. However, the developers chose to switch to an Irish voice for Atlas, and hired a separate voice actor.[11]
  • Even though Atlas is a major character, he does not have a uniquely designed model (unlike Andrew Ryan and Sander Cohen). Instead, his model is a re-skinned Waders Splicer. This is because until Burial at Sea - Episode 2 (where is given a unique character model), Atlas is never encountered up close until the final boss battle.
  • His "I am not a Liberator" quote is taken from the famous Argentinian-born revolutionary, Che Guevara.[12]
  • In the BioShock: Rapture novel, Atlas claims to have a daughter when speaking to Diane McClintock and yet claims to have a son in the game.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Ayn Rand on Wikipedia
  2. Atlas Shrugged on Wikipedia
  3. Atlas, Greek mythology on Wikipedia
  4. Atlas Shrugged, plot summary on Wikipedia
  5. Neptune's Bounty Radio Message: "My wife Moira"
  6. Neptune's Bounty Radio Message: "First date"
  7. Medical Pavilion Radio Message: "Catch Explosives"
  8. Fort Frolic Radio Messages: "Sander Cohen"
  9. Radio Messages: Arcadia - Farmer's Market#10. Atlas - A yard ahead
  10. Danny Boy (Irish folksong), on Wikipedia
  11. The Fukerton’s Exclusive interview with the voice of Frank Fontaine: Greg Baldwin
  12. Che Guevara, article on Wikipedia

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