Part 19: Part Nineteen: Fifteen Minutes of FamePart Nineteen: Fifteen Minutes of Fame
Welcome, one and all, to Timber's famous back alley. Beautiful, ain't it?
Hoo boy, and look at this - we get to talk to a real live drunk guy. Wow.
Wasted Guy: ...ose...boxes in the corner... ...They were...alweady...there... I ain't the dwunk that bwought thos here... The other'ns are mine...but not those... Weally... Believe me... Bgwahh...
This guy's not talking about anything interesting or relevant, he's just had one too many.
While we're in the alleyway, we can also see this exchange between the kids upstairs.
Presented: children's understanding of our earlier actions.
Big Sis: Do you really know what kidnapping is all about...?
Big Brother: It's like playin' tag...
Little Brother: Mommy said u catch'em and then u give him a spankin'!
Big Sis: Well... I guess it's kinda like that.
I don't think anything we had planned involved giving the president a spanking.
Mother: Cookies are ready!
Goddammit, and we're stuck in this alleyway.
At this point, all we have to do is go up those stairs to get to the TV station.
Now, let me talk about going up stairs for three updates.
One important thing about going up stairs is that there's an 85% chance you'll find a TV screen full of red text.
: This is creepy... What is it?
It's not easy to read in the screens, but the TV is scrolling lines of text, which is what Rinoa is referring to here. The text says "IAMALIVEHERE," "IWILLNEVERLETYOUFORGETABOUTME," and "BRINGMEBACKTHERE," not just random letters and numbers. It seems like it's not just random garbage, but something projected with intention.
: This noise is broadcast over most of the frequencies.
This is why most people in Final Fantasy VIII aren't fans of radio dramas.
: Something has to be done about this before they can broadcast it over the air.
: Right on!
Oh, hey, Watts.
Watts: Too many guards now, so we won't be able to storm the place, sir!
: So we can't just rush in...
That's what he said.
: We've gotta come up with a new plan now!
Well, only if you're still set on the whole "taking over the TV station" thing. I think the bar is still open.
: If the president leaves, maybe the guards will be gone, too? That's when we do OUR broadcast. It might not be as influential but it's better than nothing, right?
I don't think we can just walk into the place and declare independence.
: We don't stand a chance if we take 'em head on, right?
I dunno, the G-Soldiers haven't exactly been a threat so far.
: Don't worry about us. We'll fight your enemies based on your decision. That's our duty.
Squall is being kind of an idiot here, since planning and tactics are also going to be their duty. He's not a very good leader, to be honest, because he only ever does what he's told.
: Heeey, I'm a SeeD, too. Just want you to know, I'm ready for anything.
Selphie's also here.
: How sad... Act on my decision? That's your duty? Oh, what an easy life it must be, just to follow orders...
Rinoa, being a member of a resistance group, isn't a huge fan of militaries and their attitudes. She also thinks Squall is being a smug asshole here, so she's calling him out. A lot of people think that Rinoa is acting spoilt here, but remember that she hired SeeD to help the Owls with their inexperience, and Squall is being a jerk about having to fill that. There are other reasons for her to feel this way, but right here and right now, Squall isn't doing the whole job he was hired for.
Squall's not impressed by her.
: All we want is for you to achieve your goal using our help.
Note: this is a lie. Squall, and even Selphie and Zell, don't care about the Owls. SeeDs don't care about their client, because their job isn't to give a fuck.
: I find it hard to believe that you can do it, though...
Squall, being a mature professional, gets shitty after Rinoa calls him out on his attitude.
As the player, you get the choice here to be aggressive or passive-aggressive. It doesn't make a big difference which you choose.
That said, it's more like Squall to be passive-aggressive about it.
: You started it. The least you can do is finish it. Come on, what's on your mind?
: ...Just forget it.
: ...Tell me. This is an order. An order from your client!
Squall doesn't take the Owls seriously at all, and he's acting superior here, which Rinoa doesn't like. Rinoa is very clear and honest about what she's doing, but Squall always talks around his feelings and hides things.
(Oh, by the way, this is where the two dialogue options meet up.)
: How serious are you...? Really...? The 3 of you plop down on the floor to discuss strategy? On top of that, you can't make a decision without our input, right? How do you think we feel, working for such an organization?
Squall's not exactly wrong about the Owls here, because they are pretty rough and unprofessional, but he's not quite getting the intention of hiring SeeD, and he's not being a pro, either. Squall's not a very good leader.
This is another choice that doesn't really matter.
Again, though, one choice is a little more "Squall" than the other.
If you choose to leave it, Squall doesn't say another word.
If you choose to follow up, he apologises.
Rinoa's not quite done, though.
: Maybe this was all a big mistake. I thought everything would work out fine once SeeD came to help us. But, I guess it's not that easy. You were all hired. It's not like you're one of us.
Now she just wants him to fuck off.
: Um, let's see... We'll cancel the plan, and we'll disperse for now. We don't stand a chance if we take 'em head on, right?
Before she leaves, though, Rinoa has some parting words for Squall.
: ...Well, it's not! We're serious. So serious...it hurts.
This is something we've seen before, and Rinoa's just not very eloquent about it - the Owls are willing to go as far as they need to for Timber's independence, including spending a lot of money (for them) on SeeD.
Oh, there's Zell.
Hey Zell, don't worry. The client's just running away because Squall insulted her.
At this point, the words on the screen are replaced with static.
Looks like it's working.
Announcer: Ohhhh! P-People of the world! Can you see me!? Can you hear me!?
This game doesn't have voice acting, buddy.
It does have music, though, and you can listen to the Galbadian national anthem:
Announcer: Yes, it's been 17 years since a live broadcast has been possible!
I wonder what people in Final Fantasy VIII's world do for fun, since there's no anime on.
Announcer: We would like to present to you today a message from the lifelong President of Galbadia, Vinzer Deling.
Great, 17 years of broadcast silence and then it's the fuckin' state of the union address.
So has everyone just had TVs on for 17 years? Is that the assumption here?
President Deling: We the people of this world have the power to end all wars.
: See, see! It's a peace proposal to the world. I knew it!
I think this is more a "submit to Galbadia" proposal than a peace proposal.
Everyone who's ever negotiated with a dictator has definitely got a fair deal. That's just history 101.
: Man! All this just to introduce an ambassador.
Yeah, I'm sure that's gonna be a popular decision, after the Sorceress Wars.
: ...The Sorceress?
Yeah, that's what he said. Let's let him explain, though.
So much for explanation.
Trying to contain Seifer doesn't really go well for the Galbadians.
Oh, look, he's got the president. I guess we can all go home now.
: Squall, what are we gonna do!?
Well, whatever it is, we better do it quick.
: ...Nothing. Our job is to assist the Owls. It's none of our business.
Ah, the classic tactic of "sit on our asses cuz it's not our turn to give a fuck."
I think it was just established that that's all we're doing, Ms. Trepe.
: Get over here right now!
You're not the boss of us anymore, Quistis.
: You HAVE permission! I need your help!
Should have thought of that before you got fired, eh? Squall has a client to belittle.
Zell and Selphie aren't 100% on board for the "let Seifer execute Deling on live TV" plan.
They cut the broadcast at that point, so it's back to creepy red text while we run to the station.
Ah, yes, the propaganda tower. I wonder what they do there.
Instead of the regular fade to black, the scene transition when entering the TV station is a fade to static.
Nah, I think Seifer's got him.
: What do you think you're doing?
Baking a cake. Seifer's a real mess in the kitchen.
: It's obvious, ain't it!? What are you planning to do with this guy?
You'd have to ask Rinoa, since Squall can't actually make tactical decisions.
: ...Planning to do?
: I get it! You're Rinoa's...
Nobody ever says what Seifer was to Rinoa, but it's pretty well implied that they were dating.
: He broke out of the disciplinary room, injuring many in the process.
Seifer? He always seemed so restrained. Wow.
: YOU STUPID IDIOT!
Squall knows that Zell's a risk in a high-tension situation like this.
: Be quiet.
He might be an immature asshole with zero emotional intelligence, but Squall's ability to keep a level head in a crisis is a major asset.
: Instructor, I know!
It is not one Zell possesses.
Squall takes just a little longer than normal to interrupt here, since Zell catches him on his back foot.
President Deling: I see... So you're all from Garden. Should anything happen to me, the entire Galbadian military will undoubtedly crush Garden.
Well, it could have gone worse.
President Deling: You can let go of me now.
: Nice going, Chicken-wuss!
You can see Zell covering his mouth here. He knows he fucked up.
Alright, sure, see ya.
Quistis runs off after Seifer, leaving the B Team to stand awkwardly around.
We might as well follow them, right?
Weird lighting back here.
Oh, hey, strange woman who came out of a wall. What's goin' on?
When she enters, this starts playing:
: Stay away from me!
Strange Woman: Such a confused little boy. Are you going to step forward? Retreat? You have to decide.
: Stay back!
Quistis runs in, and the strange woman pulls out a strange light.
It stops Quistis dead in her tracks. Is this woman a wizard? Is there any sort of word for a female wizard?
Witchy Woman: You can't make up your mind. You don't know the right answer. You want help, don't you? You want to be saved from this predicament.
: Shut up!
Witchy Woman: Don't be ashamed to ask for help. Besides, you're only a little boy.
: I'm not... Stop calling me a boy.
Witchy Woman: You don't want to be a boy anymore?
: I am not a BOY!
Listening to this woman speak, Seifer lets the president go.
Oh, ya goin' somewhere, Seifer?
Jesus, if you don't want Squall to come, just say so. There's no need for the magical wall.
Hm. Well. That went poorly.