Originally, I thought the Church was the organization behind the Fractale system, running it to remain the influential and dominate force in this ultramodern dystopia. After all, it is the Church which stressed compliance with the system with their timely ‘prayers’ and divine ‘festivals’. But it seems the Church is powerless to prevent the eventual collapse of the Fractale system. So what is the relationship between the Church and the Fractale system?
It has become quite evident that the Church sits below the Fractale system in the hierarchy of power in this world. The Church has no scheme in which to stop the falling and malfunctioning ‘stars’ which represent an external body of the Fractale system. It seems these stars are absolutely essential to the Church’s survival. Every Church function, from the prearranged data collection, dubbed prayers, and the unnecessary brain-washing/systems, called festivals, require fully functional stars. Without these stars operating, the Church has no influence over any aspect of society. If the Church were controlling the Fractale system or at least performing maintenance in some way, they’d do anything and everything to keep those stars from falling. The fact the Church can do nothing to stop this irreversible process shows that the Fractale system is above the Church. And those stars are merely one facet of the system. It’s clear the Fractale system sits above all in this story.
Then why does the Church promote compliance to the Fractale system if it is above them? It seems the Church promotes two things from the Fractale system: data collection and brain-washing. Okay, so the next question is why? I’m going to assume that the Church is able to collect this data from the Fractale system, just because it seems logical considering what they’re doing with the prayers and festivals. What they do with this data, I haven’t the slightest idea. Episode 4 of Fractale provided us the first real look inside the structure of the Church. That being said, we have no real clue what their ultimate goal is. However, judging from the examples brought up in the first three episodes, we can get a general idea of what the Church is trying to do.
As of this point, the Church exists to promote obedience to the data collecting aspects of the Fractale system, presumably for the Church to use for its own purposes. It is clear the Church does not control any aspect of the Fractale system. The Church only abuses part of the system for their own benefit.
I think it’s important to make the distinction that the Church only cares about the data side of the Fractale system and not other aspects. What’s important is the complete absence of doppels within the Church. With doppels doing all the manual labor in the world, from farming, to mining, to forestry, to fishing, we only see humans in the Church, especially in their security division. Instead of having doppels as the leaders of star festivals, it is left to the job of elderly women. You’d think the Church would use doppels instead of humans for all their labor needs but everyone you see from the Church is human. Even the weapons deployed by the ship in this episode were drones, not doppels. There’s something about the Church that just is seriously anti-doppel. Perhaps the Church knows something about doppels that we don’t know yet. Maybe its part of their master plan to take over the world once the Fractale system is kaput. My guess is that because doppels can be turned off. If you were going to fight a war between humans and doppels, all it would take is one of those things that Security had in the first episode to complete an instant massacre. (Hmmm… where does Security fit in to the whole hierarchy under the Fractale system…)
But what about the Nessa doppel that Phryne gave to Clain? Well, I’ll venture that the Nessa doppel is not from this time period and therefore not associated with the Church. You’d have to recall back to the first episode but Phryne talks about “people who live in this era”. When Clain tries to confirm it from her, she realizes she said something she wasn’t supposed to and becomes silent, even though she was in the middle of another sentence. It makes it seem like Phryne is from another era, as well as the Nessa doppel data. Alas, we won’t know these answers to these until the end of the story, but I predict the Nessa doppel is completely unrelated to the anti-doppel Church.
And with that, I think it’s clear to see where the Church fits into society and under the Fractale system. It sits under the umbrella of the Fractale system, providing a little assistance in the data information side only to get something in return.