There’s new footage of Death Stranding roaming the wasteland, and it introduces the character of Heartman. He’s one of the Man Gang, who are all played by famous movie people. This one’s being brought to life by Nicolas Winding Refn, the director behind Drive and Bronson. He’s also being brought to life, continuously throughout the day, by a battery strapped to his chest.
According to the blurb, Heartman is a member of BRIDGES, and “is commited to researching the truth of the Death Stranding”, whatever any of that means. What we do know is that he has a condition. Every twenty one minutes, he dies. Drops dead, on the spot. His heart stops, and he is transported to the land of the dead for three minutes. What he does there is anyone’s guess. After the three minutes are up, a battery strapped to his chest jolts him back to life. He logs his experience, turns the hourglass and goes about his daily business.
As he explains to the patient postman Norman Reedus, most of the biological functions can fit easily into the 21 minute window of opportunity. The exceptions are sleep, sex and talk. He laments not having many chances for the latter two. You know, on account of all the stranding going on. He has built up a collection of music, books and movies which can all fit into the 21 minutes, which is kinda dumb when you think about it – he doesn’t seem to lose recollection of what happened before his every death, so why wouldn’t he watch a feature-length film split into several parts? But you can’t really expect a man who voluntarily wears fingerless gloves to make much sense. In fact, you should be happy he’s making any sense at all.