I’m not Sully. Really. I’m not even sure I would want to be Sully. I see parts of myself in Sully and we have some similar life experiences.
But I’m not Sully.
Before Sully ever descended the escalator at the Capital City Spaceport with gun in hand and blew away the perp holding a knife to the throat of the daughter of a wealthy crook named Spencer Devereaux I had a vision of who Sully was.
I knew what Sully looked like, what he liked, how he acted, and most important, how he thinks about life 500 years from now.
Sully is a mixture of some of my favorite tough guy characters from books and film. He’s tall like Clint Eastwood but bulkier. His attitude and penchant for violence as a solution to “certain problems” is not unlike one of Eastwood’s most famous characters, Inspector Harry Callahan, AKA “Dirty Harry.”
There’s a bit of Humphrey Bogart’s Sam Spade in Sully as well. It would seem Sully just can’t help himself at times. Like Spade, Sully feels the need to poke at corrupt authorities and has a weakness for a woman in distress. Even when logic tells Sully to avoid female entanglements.
A man of few words, Sully is not as shallow as his emotional restraint would have one believe. Those the Inspector would call friends are few in number. But to those lucky few, Sully feels a deep sense of responsibility to protect and see to it they flourish as best as possible.
He’s a man with a conscience, who feels guilt over his failings as a man as well as his failures as a cop. Sully is not one who agrees with Tennyson’s quip “Tis better to have loved and lost than to have not loved at all.” The Inspector feels loss with a depth and intensity that can scar a man’s soul.
A long suffering witness to the capacity for evil of both humanity and the individual, it is easy to understand Sully’s ambivalence towards such matters as faith and charity towards his fellow man. For this simple reason, God, who is not done with Sully yet, sends another flawed individual, Father Nathan, to be the thorn in Sully’s side when it comes to matters of faith and ethics.
Father Nathan, a man’s man like Sully, has suffered his share of tragedy and pain in life. In his efforts to make amends for his past, the priest makes Sully into a personal project of sorts. If nothing else, Father Nathan acts as Sully’s conscience at times.
Not much scares Sully.
Those few who know Sully well will tell you with certainty they know what does scare the Inspector. It’s more of a who than a what, though some would argue a clone is precisely that, a what.
Sully’s nightmare has long legs, long brown hair, big brown eyes, a slender but eye-catching figure, and while she stands a full foot shorter than Sully’s intimidating 6’6″ frame, Sarah can be every bit as frightening. A military grade clone with the maturity of a six year old child, Sarah has the looks of a mature woman. Even worse, she’s fully aware of the effects of her charms on men, even if Sarah doesn’t fully understand relationships.
The cybernetic eye and robot hand come from my fascination with the Terminator stories. It allows me a device to show Sully has suffered during his life, that life has harmed him, making him feel less than fully human.
Is there a future for the pair, for Sully and Sarah?
Who knows? Sully frightens Sarah as much as she worries and frightens him. The only difference is Sarah is willing to acknowledge the fact to herself.