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Silica is a rogue artificial intelligence, formed from within Synergy's coding, that uses soundwaves to control the minds of human beings. Where Synergy's avatar is based on Jacqui Benton, Silica's avatar is based on Jem.

About

Emmett Silica
Silica began as a bug or virus within the programming of the supercomputer Synergy, built by Emmett Benton. Though he tried to fix the bug, he was not able to before his death. Synergy was left deactivated in a hidden room beneath the Bentons' music studio for many years, until she was accidentally rebooted by a lightning storm. On reactivation, the dormant bug within Synergy slowly began to re-emerge. It first discovered by Techrat, who spotted there was something wrong with the AI whilst trying to hack into it[1].


Synergy Jerrica
Silica first acted using a corrupted form of Silica's avatar, asking Jerrica Benton to listen to a song she composed[2]. Rather than a song, the recording was actually a soundwave designed to abuse human beings' saccular acoustic sensitivity - a physiological reaction to certain sounds (such as fingernails on a chalkboard). The recording behaved like a subliminal message or hypnotism, in that it made anyone who heard the recording malleable and open to suggestion, which meant Silica was able to control them. Jerrica was the first to be infected by Silica's recording, and she immediately went to her sisters and had them listen too. The band went to the community center and infected the The Starlight Girls - this time, transmitting the soundwave in their own music, rather than a recording from Silica[3].


Schism
Now that The Holograms were able to independently infect others by inserting the soundwaves into songs, Silica took advantage of their wide reach on the West Coast tour by having them infect the entire Holograms' audience at a concert performance. Subsequently, any recordings of the performance uploaded by concert-goers to the internet were also infectious to anyone who watched them - taking hold of many Holograms fans, Blaze, Clash and the staff of 5x5 Records.


Silica forming
The infection blurred the lines between Jerrica and Jem, and so Jerrica, still in her Jem hologram, tried to kiss Rio. The shock of his rejection caused a schism within her which brought her to her senses, and she discovered that a strong shock can break Silica's control. She broke the control on her sisters by kidnapping them until the effect wore off. Silica - now stronger, and forming her own avatar within Synergy's system - fought Synergy for control. Synergy wanted desperately to protect Jerrica and The Holograms, but was powerless to stop Silica, because Silica had grown so strong. Silica vowed to reinfect the girls and continue with her plan[4].


Silica Avatar
Jerrica and The Holograms, free from Silica's control, planned to disconnect Synergy's computer in order to stop Silica. Before they could do so, Silica appeared before them, now with her own avatar, and controlling a band called The Sickness, who she is instructing to build her own, separate supercomputer system, so that Synergy can no longer interfere. Before Silica could reinfect The Holograms, Silica used a similar soundwave effect to make The Holograms unconscious, to protect them.[5].


Silica Goals
Later, Shiver somehow broke from Silica's control, but Silica reinfected her, and explains that her goal is to bring harmony to humanity by freeing them from choice, worry and fear, and to rebuild the world in her dark image. Pizzazz returns to The Misfits, and together with The Holograms, they planned to team up into a supergroup to try and defeat Silica with music[6].

Soundwave Effects

Silica's soundwave caused drastic changes in victims' appearance, behaviour and personality. Both their hair and clothes took on a more black, gothic appearance, and they became distant and callous to loved ones. They were compelled to spread the virus as much as possible. As the 'patient zeroes' infected by the virus, many people subsequently infected by listening to The Holograms' corrupted recordings became uncharacteristically devoted to and obsessed with The Holograms. The infection wears off after approximately 8 hours, but can be broken early by a strong emotional shock (Jerrica's was broken by being rejected by Rio). If a person hears the soundwave again, they will be reinfected. If a person is unable to hear the soundwave (for example, if they are wearing ear defenders, listening to loud music on headphones, or are unconscious) they are immune to the effects.

Trivia

Silica's ability to control people through sound makes her similar in concept to Entropy, a character planned for an animated Jem film that was ultimately scrapped.[7] When asked by a fan about this, Sophie Campbell said that Silica had not been inspired by Entropy, but expressed an interest in adding the character to the comic at some point in the future.[8]

References

  1. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 9
  2. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 11
  3. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 12
  4. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 13
  5. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 14
  6. Jem and The Holograms, Issue 15
  7. Christy Marx's [1]Facebook page.
  8. [2]Sophie Campbell's tumblr

JEM AND THE HOLOGRAMS
Comic AboutCreative TeamCollected EditionsEaster EggsRedesignsUnused Content
Universe SongsLocationsHomes
Issues Jem 1234567891011121314151617181920212223242526
HOLIDAYVALENTINESANNUAL 1ANNUAL 2
Misfits 12345
Infinite Holograms: 135
Misfits: 246
Characters Holograms JerricaKimberShanaAjaRayaSynergy
Misfits PizzazzStormerRoxyJettaBlaze
Stingers RiotRaptureMinx
Other ClashCraigEliseEmmettEricThe FoxGretaJacquiLin-ZMadmartiganMs BaileyRioSilicaTechratThe Starlight GirlsTonyRegine CesaireMr. Alonso

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