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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

at popapostle-dot-com
Terminator: Amahiri "Amahiri"
Terminator #4
NOW Comics
Written by Jack Herman
Illustrated by Thomas Tenney
Inked by Jim Brozman
Cover by Ken Call
December 1988


Skynet has a plan to cut down the oxygen supply on Earth by eradicating the Amazon rainforest.


Story Summary


Skynet develops a plan to cut down the oxygen supply on Earth by eradicating the Amazon rainforest. As part of this plan, it sends an HK piloted by a Terminator to the rainforest. The HK is spotted by Shaki, Kao, and Dawa, three young members of the primitive Yanomami people of the region, who follow it, to witness the Terminator pilot making a clearing in the jungle with a machete. When the Terminator sets the machete down to perform other tasks, Shaki tries to steal it, but is spotted by the Terminator, who tries to shoot all three men. They all just manage to escape through the thick jungle.


The three are not believed when they tell their tale back at their village. The village commences its feast that night in honor of the guests from a rival tribe with whom they hope to make peace. But the Terminator arrives in the village and kills many of the inhabitants and guests, burning its huts to the ground. Shaki and Kao escape again, but are pursued. Before long, they are cut off by the relentless machine.




Didja Know?


The title of this issue is borrowed from the name of the Ama̧hiri-teri village of the mythology of the Yanomami people of the Amazon rainforest.


Characters appearing or mentioned in this issue


Teke (Yanomami shaman)








Didja Notice?


The Yanomami are described fairly accurately in this issue. They are known as the Fierce People and the mythological references made by the shaman here match their actual mythology handed down for generations-upon-generations.


On page 2, the shaman says that it is not known what the topmost layer of the cosmos, duku ka misi, exists for. But in established Yanomami culture, duku ka misi is said to be where everything in the cosmos originated, now lying fallow.


Page 2 introduces Halo KH-1300, formerly a spy satellite of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, codenamed Hi-Tom, now controlled by Skynet. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), is one of the major intelligence agencies of the United States government.


On page 3, the Hi-Tom satellite sends data to a tracking station in Peru. This is probably the Lima, Peru station of NASA's Spaceflight Tracking and Data Network.


Page 3 states that the South American rainforests around the Amazon River basin create the majority of Earth's oxygen and for this reason, Skynet has targeted the Amazon rainforest for destruction to deprive humanity of much of its needed oxygen. While it's true that the Amazon rainforest is the largest single source of oxygen, the rest of the plant life on Earth (including plankton in the oceans) together produces much more oxygen, so destroying the rainforest would have a relatively small effect on breathing conditions.


In Kao's flashback image in panel 3 of page 6, what appear to be the Holy Bible and a National Geographic magazine are seen. They seem to be illustrative of Kao's statement that their grandfathers were visited by strange people with strange tools, some of whom "wanted to live like us" (from National Geographic) and others who "wanted to make us live like them" (Christian missionaries).


Kao and Shaki's father is disbelieving of the boys' tale (of an HK and Terminator) and asks if they have been sniffing ebene powder. Ebene is an extract from the beans of Anadenanthera peregrina, a tree native to South America and the Caribbean, usually used for healing rituals by native tribes. It is known to be hallucinogenic.


Kao and Shaki's father says it is vital that their village of Serigama-teri have peace with the village of Tukini-teri. As far as I can tell, these are both fictitious villages of the Yanomami.


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