Great Job, Internet!: Say happy Incept Day to Leon, the rogue replicant in Blade Runner

READ ON: The A.V. Club

The dystopian noir classic Blade Runner took place in 2019, a fair 37 years after it first hit theaters. At the time, this seemed an appropriately distant but still-relatable jump in time to discuss the disjunct between humans and extremely humanoid robots, who look, think, and feel human but must grapple with the fact that they aren’t. The first taste viewers get of this cognitive dissonance is a chap named Leon, who, in the film’s opening scene, betrays the sort of subtle inconsistencies of thought that indicate a rogue replicant in need of execution—or, in the film’s parlance, “retirement.” He doesn’t ace the test, but he ends up finding a way out of it just the same.

Anyway, even though he looks like a full-grown man, and also like comedian Doug Stanhope, Leon here is only 2 years old in the film’s fiction, meaning ...