William Gibson

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Neuromancer / Rio Character Analysis

One of the Tessier-Ashpool family’s twin AIs, whose processors are based in Rio, Brazil (which is why Neuromancer is occasionally called Rio). Neuromancer, like its twin Wintermute, is like a single lobe of a human brain, capable of incredible thought, but ultimately limited. Unlike Wintermute, Neuromancer enjoys being separate, and also unlike Wintermute Neuromancer is able to create life, instead of merely emulate it. The people—like Linda Lee—who Neuromancer constructs behave like real humans do. They have thoughts and memories and unpredictable behavior, unlike Wintermute’s puppets. Neuromancer appears to Case both on screens in the real world and in the matrix. During most of these encounters, Case assumes he’s speaking to Wintermute, only realizing it’s the second AI when Neuromancer traps him on a digital beach. When Case and Neuromancer finally meet “face to face” (in cyberspace), Neuromancer appears as a young Brazilian child, a personality he’s constructed himself. Neuromancer just wants to protect himself, but once he’s failed he stands back and allows Case and Wintermute to finish their mission.

Neuromancer / Rio Quotes in Neuromancer

The Neuromancer quotes below are all either spoken by Neuromancer / Rio or refer to Neuromancer / Rio. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Technology and the Body Theme Icon
Chapter 20 Quotes

He refused her arms, that night, refused the food she offered him, the place beside her in the nest of blankets and shredded foam. He crouched beside the door, finally, and watched her sleep, listening to the wind scour the structure’s walls. Every hour or so, he rose and crossed to the makeshift stove, adding fresh driftwood from the pile beside it. None of this was real, but cold was cold.

Page Number: 235
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 21 Quotes

“To call up a demon you must learn its name. Men dreamed that, once, but now it is real in another way. You know that, Case. Your business is to learn the names of programs, the long formal names, names the owners seek to conceal. True names...”

“A Turing code’s not your name.”

“Neuromancer,” the boy said, slitting long gray eyes against the rising sun. “The lane to the land of the dead. Where you are, my friend. Marie-France, my lady, she prepared this road, but her lord choked her off before I could read the book of her days. Neuro from the nerves, the silver paths. Romancer. Necromancer. I call up the dead. But no, my friend,” and the boy did a little dance, brown feet printing the sand, “I am the dead, and their land.” He laughed. A gull cried. “Stay. If your woman is a ghost, she doesn’t know it. Neither will you.”

Related Characters: Henry Dorsett Case (speaker), Neuromancer / Rio (speaker), Wintermute, Marie-France, Michèle
Page Number: 243
Explanation and Analysis:
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Neuromancer PDF

Neuromancer / Rio Character Timeline in Neuromancer

The timeline below shows where the character Neuromancer / Rio appears in Neuromancer. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 21
Identity and Personhood Theme Icon
...its true name; Rio is just its Turing code. The AI says its name is Neuromancer—“the lane to the land of the dead.” He laughs and says, “I am the dead,... (full context)
Self-Interest vs. Human Connection Theme Icon
Case doesn’t want to stay; Neuromancer tells him it’s his choice. Linda touches Case’s shoulder and asks him to stay, but... (full context)
Chapter 22
Identity and Personhood Theme Icon
Reality and Perception Theme Icon
...time. Riviera tries to interrupt Case’s plea, but 3Jane shuts him down. Case tells her Neuromancer and Wintermute are going against each other tonight. He tells her Neuromancer mentioned Marie-France. This... (full context)
Chapter 23
Identity and Personhood Theme Icon
Reality and Perception Theme Icon
The Kuang breaks into the beach where Neuromancer had trapped Case earlier. Case suddenly knows every detail of the place—like the number of... (full context)
Self-Interest vs. Human Connection Theme Icon
Reality and Perception Theme Icon
Case asks Neuromancer why he killed Linda, but Neuromancer explains he didn’t, and neither did Wintermute. Instead, Neuromancer... (full context)
Chapter 24
Identity and Personhood Theme Icon
Wintermute won, combining with Neuromancer. They spoke together from the platinum head, explaining they erased the Turing records and all... (full context)
Identity and Personhood Theme Icon
Addiction and Dependency Theme Icon
...Case sees small figures on the edge of a mountain of data: a young boy (Neuromancer), Linda, and himself. In the background he hears “the laugh that wasn’t laughter,” which likely... (full context)