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The Highlander: A battery backup in a kilt

*The “AMENERGY Maniac Mondays- Immortal Energy and Solar Energy, review of the 1978 movie, The Highlander.

Highlander

Sturgeon’s Law states- “Yes, 90% of scifi is crap, but then again, 90% of anything is crap.” This has never been more true than with the 1978 scifi cult classic, The Highlander. With an enormous following, it is one one of the earliest scifi/fantasy movies to have a noticeable effect on pop culture. That being said, let’s take a look at how different this movie could have been if only they had had renewable, locally sourced, solar energy.

 

The Highlander, starring Christopher Lambert, is about an immortal Scot Highlander with an unrecognizable, but quite possibly Egyptian accent, who is mentored by Sean Connery, an immortal Egyptian with a pronounced Scot Highlander accent. Connery takes Lambert under his wing to teach him the ways of the immortals, most notably how to resource large amounts of electricity through the decapitation of other immortals using high quality Japanese katanas (swords). Their relationship blossoms until  an energy speculator, called the Kurgan, played by Victor Kruger, performs the strange swordplay that releases the electricity stored within Connery, leaving Lambert to muddle through life alone.

 

The movie never actually explains  how or why an immortal’s decapitation unleashes a giant Tesla Coil style electrical show. We can only assume that the writers and directors wanted the audience to speculate and theorize. With that and the cliche “better late than never” in mind, we came up with this:

Maybe the whole story is really about a battery backup that, due to its shaggy hair and undefinable accent, was mistakenly paired with a kilt and sword instead of solar panel?

Think of the Highlander as a 48 volt battery.  His quest is to  harvest  and store the energy, accumulated by other immortal through dastardly deeds and all around badness.  To get the watts he needs to recharge his battery, the Highlander removes the head of an immortal, thus removing the resistance from the voltage.   Amps of electricity, (probably 10 kiloamperes, since that’s lightning)  blasts from the immortal body into the Highlander.  Each time a sword swinging battery backup wins a fight, it adds the energy of the loser bunch to itself in a brilliant show of lightning bolts, coming from mysterious sources (volts), sending electric arcs (amps) in the exact amount (watts) that he needs to become fully powered. In the end, there can be only one and eventually our friend, Lambert, wins the day and is victorious. His reward? To live forever alone, with everything and nothing at the same time. Bummer.

Luckily, you have better options than most 16th Century Scots, when it comes to resourcing energy. Rather than learn swordplay or how to accessorize a kilt, you can finance solar panels (watts) to charge your own battery back up system (volts).  Your house appliances need a certain rate of flow (amps) to turn work.  It’s a good thing refrigerators don’t need the amounts of energy typical immortals seem to.

If the Highlander analogy was in any way confusing or unclear on the basic elements and vocabulary of household or commercial electrricity, we have this other way explaining it. We call it “Watering the Lawn”-

  • Volts (or potential) = water pressure
  • Amps (or amperes) = rate of flow
  • Resistance (or impedance) = restriction of the hose and valves
  • Watts = immediate quantity of water passing through the hose

If you have all that, then all you need is some sun.

If you want the grass greener, you should really look into Solar.

 

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