Blade Runner / Who Is / Replicant
What is a Replicant?
Replicants are manufactured organisms designed to carry out work too boring,
dangerous, or distasteful for humans. The NEXUS 6 replicants are nearly
indistinguishable from humans. (In one draft of the script Bryant tells
Deckard they did an autopsy on the replicant that was fried trying to break
into the Tyrell Corporation and didn't even know it was a replicant until two hours
into the procedure.)
Replicants presumably differ from humans in one important factor: they are
lacking in empathy. In Blade Runner, the replicants' eyes glow (even those of
an artificial owl), however Ridley Scott has stressed that this is merely a
cinematic technique, and the glow can't be seen by the characters in the
story, only by the audience.
The manufacturers noticed that replicants had eccentricities because they
were emotionally immature. Rachael was a prototype replicant with
experimental memory implants, designed to provide a cushion for her emotions.
Consequently, she was unaware that she was a replicant.
NEXUS 6 replicants have an in-built fail-safe mechanism, namely a four year
1982 Presskit Defintion of a Replicant
A genetically engineered creature composed entirely of organic
substance. Animal replicants (animoids) were developed first for use as pets
and beasts of burden after most real animals became extinct. Later, humanoid
replicants were created for military purposes and for the exploration and
colonization of space. The Tyrell Corp. recently introduced the Nexus 6, the
supreme replicant -- much stronger and faster than, and virtually
indistinguishable from, real human beings. Earth law forbids replicants on
the planet, except in the huge industrial complex where they are created.
The law does not consider replicants human and therefore accords them no
rights nor protection.
Webster's Dictionary (2012) Definition of a Replicant
The following definition appears in the Blade Runner script and the Marvel
Comics adaptation of the film, and the Denver/Dallas sneak preview:
_android_ (an'droid) n, Gk. humanoid automation. more at
robot./ 1. early version utilized for work too
boring, dangerous or unpleasant for humans.
2. second generation bio-engineered. Electronic
relay units and positronic brains. Used in space
to explore inhospitable environments. 3. third
generation synthogenetic. REPLICANT, constructed
of skin/flesh culture. Selected enogenic transfer
conversion. Capable of self perpetuating thought.
Paraphysical abilities. Developed for emigration
New International (2012)