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Sofia Lamb.png
Utopia is not a place... but a people. It will exist the moment we are fit to occupy it.
― Sofia Lamb[src]

Dr. Sofia Lamb M.D, Ph.D, is a clinical psychiatrist and the main antagonist of BioShock 2. She has filled the power vacuum in Rapture left by Andrew Ryan's death, and implemented a completely different ideological view.


History[]

Sander CohenHQ.jpg
"I test you... but for a reason. I test all my disciples. Some shine like galaxies, and some... some burn like a moth at the flame!"Sander Cohen

This article, Sofia Lamb, contains disputed content or may not have any sources and may be fan fiction or a hoax. Please add where this subject is mentioned in the BioShock series and add references using the format detailed at Help:Cite. Check the talk page for more information about what might need references in this article.

Life on the Surface[]

From an early age, Sofia Lamb was raised by her father. He was a physician, and was a firm believer in the utilitarian ideal of the greater good, which he referred to as "the triage imperative."[3] Sofia Lamb adopted his philosophy and later followed in his footsteps, specializing in psychiatry at the University of Oxford.[4] While living in Hiroshima, Japan during World War II, she worked as a missionary providing medical relief for the survivors of the Hiroshima bombing. Lamb survived the bombings, but learned that the long, dear friends she made in Hiroshima were killed.[4] Lamb was appalled when she discovered the United States were using her own altruistic ideal of "the greater good" to justify the bombing,[4] and this convinced her that the world was doomed to destroy itself.[5] When Andrew Ryan invited her down to his utopia to provide counseling for the isolated populace, she welcomed the opportunity.[6][7]

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Work in Rapture[]

Unity and Metamorphosis

Once Dr. Lamb arrived in Rapture, she began spreading her altruistic ideals, hoping to enlighten the citizens through "the common good" and create a true utopia. Her unconventional techniques involved free therapy sessions for the poor citizens in Pauper's Drop, poker games in which she intentionally lost to spread wealth to those who needed it,[8] and the creation of an artistic commune at her personal property in Dionysus Park. After the birth of her daughter, Eleanor Lamb, she made certain that Eleanor would be the perfect vessel to continue furthering her goals. She attempted to keep her daughter isolated from other children and privately tutored her, hoping to raise a genius-level intellect.

Andrew Ryan noticed Lamb's growing influence with the citizens of Rapture and began to regret bringing her in. Her ideology of altruism largely clashed with his own, and Ryan saw her as a corrupting influence in his paradise. He agreed to a series of public debates, hoping to defuse Sofia's support by showing the flaws in her reasoning. The topics of these debates ranged from religious rights to the very nature of reality. These debates did not have the effect Ryan hoped. Later, her followers even shaped a religion around her ideals, referring to themselves as "The Rapture Family" and treating her philosophical book Unity and Metamorphosis as a sacred text.

Eventually Lamb became so much of a threat to Ryan that he resorted to less ethical means to have her brought down. Augustus Sinclair's firm, Sinclair Solutions, was given the task of planting a spy in Sofia Lamb's inner circle to find any crime for which she could be jailed. The spy, Rapture Tribune reporter Stanley Poole, eventually gathered enough evidence for Ryan to make his move. He had Lamb arrested and placed in Persephone Penal Colony, along with many of her followers. Before she was taken away Sofia entrusted her daughter Eleanor to the care of loyal patient and Pauper's Drop resident Grace Holloway, not expecting Eleanor's abduction which subsequently occurred. Most of the upper class citizens of Rapture soon forgot about Dr. Lamb, but in Pauper's Drop her following remained strong.

After Imprisonment[]

Sofia Lamb, with Eleanor on her left on New Year's Eve, 1958.

In Persephone, Sinclair put Lamb to work as a therapist for the other inmates, hoping to make them more docile. Lamb used this freedom to gain support among the other prisoners, and even from the prison staff, such as Warden Nigel Weir. However, Sinclair soon began selling volunteer inmates to Fontaine Futuristics as Plasmid test subjects and Big Daddy candidates. This situation brutally tested Lamb's ideals as she maintained her position by selecting people from among her own supporters for ADAM experiments.[9] Lamb eventually led an uprising within the prison, taking control from Sinclair and gaining her freedom.

Lamb did not immediately return to Rapture. On New Year's Eve, 1958, she journeyed to the Adonis Luxury Resort and orchestrated the abduction of her daughter, Eleanor, from Subject Delta, who had been Pair-Bonded with her. During this event, a Splicer Hypnotized Delta, allowing Sofia to command Delta to kill himself through the use of a pistol to his head (achieved through the removal of his helmet, also by Sofia's command). After this, Lamb retreated back to Persephone, biding her time and avoiding the worst of the Civil War that raged throughout the city.[10] Sightings of her throughout the city were rumored, but Ryan ignored them, focusing on his conflict with Atlas. However, Stanley Poole did not discount the rumors. Fearing that Lamb would seek revenge for his betrayal, he orchestrated the flooding of Dionysus Park, killing the remainder of Lamb's artistic followers there.

From 1959 to 1960, Lamb remained in Persephone, tinkering with Plasmids and Gene Tonics on her willing test subjects, and making tactical excursions to bring down more supporters from above. Her supporters saw Persephone as a bastion of hope from which they could eventually emerge to rebuild the city after the fighting was done. Sofia also made numerous visits to the nearly-abandoned Fontaine Futuristics building, where she met Gilbert Alexander and converted him to her altruistic beliefs, eventually persuading him to become her prime test subject in her quest to create the "first true utopian".[10] With Gil Alexander's help she also succeeded in removing the Little Sister mental conditioning from Eleanor.

Return to Power[]

Screen Lamb 1.jpg

After the deaths of both Andrew Ryan and Frank Fontaine during the events of BioShock in 1960, Sofia could truly move throughout Rapture without fear. She learned about Fontaine's program of genetic tampering that had created Jack's conditioning, and was inspired by it. She saw Jack's actions under the influence of WYK as examples of perfect altruism, acting to uphold the common good without any introspection or free will.[11] Thus, Lamb began her attempts to create an intellect that would be completely selfless and unerringly good.[12]

This plan involved giving the subject massive doses of ADAM, in the hopes to place all the genius of Rapture's citizens through the transfer of memories stored in ADAM into them. Gilbert Alexander volunteered as the first subject.[13] However, the experiment began to go wrong as the ADAM distorted Gilbert's genetic structure, eventually driving him mad and severely mutating him.[14][15] Lamb realized that the only person who could contain all the ADAM of Rapture was one who had previously been a Little Sister, Eleanor Lamb, due to her physical adaptation to the substance.[16] To further her plans, Sofia needed a large supply of ADAM. She had control over most of Rapture's populace through the influence of the Rapture Family, but the Little Sisters who could supply ADAM were becoming too old. Thus, in 1967, Big Sisters were sent up to the surface to abduct young girls to be converted into new Little Sisters.

BioShock 2[]

Lamb is in control.

Main article: BioShock 2

Subject Delta comes into conflict with Sofia when he finds himself revived by a Vita-Chamber, beginning his search for his original Little Sister: Eleanor Lamb. Eleanor, being the "First Utopian", is of great importance to the Rapture Family, prompting Sofia's actions to stop Delta from reaching the girl.

Throughout most of the game, Lamb stays in frequent contact with Delta over his radio, often attempting to taunt or intimidate him from continuing further while also spouting her beliefs and philosophy; rather similarly to Andrew Ryan's messages for Jack during the first game. Through various audio logs, it becomes clear that Lamb has an iron grip over Rapture and murders all who attempt to flee. In addition, the audio diaries also show that Lamb is obsessed with using ADAM and Rapture's splicing technology to transform Eleanor into a "Utopian" or "the People's Daughter" based on Fontaine's creation and indoctrination of Jack.

At the same time, Mark Meltzer is also making his way through the city, searching for his kidnapped daughter, Cindy. His journey brings him into conflict with Lamb as well, since she will not allow any of the Little Sisters to be tampered with.

Sofia sees all.

Throughout the game, Lamb sends her Splicers to attack Delta. When Delta finally reaches Brigid Tenenbaum and her rescued Little Sisters at the ticket booth of the Atlantic Express, Lamb directs her forces toward them, endangering their lives. However, Tenenbaum and her girls safely escape and part ways with Delta, who partners up with Augustus Sinclair. Lamb is outraged by Delta using the Little Sisters within the city for his own purposes, and whenever Delta gathers ADAM with a Little Sister, Lamb sends Splicers to kill him and take back the Sister. If these attempts fail and when Delta 'deals' with the Little Sister, Lamb sends a Big Sister to hunt him down.

When Delta reaches Pauper's Drop, Sofia Lamb puts all of Rapture in city-wide lockdown, trapping Delta in the level. Lamb hands over the duty of killing Delta to her lieutenant, Grace Holloway. As Delta nears Grace's position to take the key to override the lockdown, Lamb believes that he will kill Grace and states that she does not deserve to be murdered by him. After Delta either kills or spares Grace, Lamb states her opinion on the matter.

Delta overrides the lockdown and leaves the Drop, but he is forced to stop at Siren Alley after Simon Wales (one of Lamb's most faithful followers) crashes his train car with a torpedo and leaves Sinclair trapped and running out of oxygen in the flooded Dionysus Park. Once Delta kills Simon and drains Dionysus, Lamb floods Siren Alley, drowning everyone in the district but Delta, who moves on to the Park.

Delta enters Dionysus Park to save Sinclair. Dionysus Park was Sofia's home and center of operations, and she does not take kindly to Delta infiltrating it. When Delta learns about the actions of Stanley Poole and has the option of murdering him, he is informed by Lamb that she learned a long time ago of what Stanley did and has forgiven him. Regardless, she does not seem to care what Delta does with him.

At the same time that Delta is exploring Dionysus, Mark Meltzer arrives in the park and finally finds his daughter. Lamb sends a Big Sister to capture him, and both he and Cindy are taken to Fontaine Futuristics. Delta then enters Fontaine Futuristics and encounters the past recordings of Gilbert Alexander, who urges Delta to kill what remains of himself after Lamb's experiments on him. Lamb herself seems to think Gilbert's death is a good thing, in service of the common good.

Meanwhile, Lamb gives the captured Mark Meltzer a choice: die at the hands of the Rapture Family or become a Big Daddy and be bonded to his daughter. Meltzer cannot bring himself to abandon Cindy, especially after his long journey to find her, and gives himself up to Lamb to be converted. Delta eventually encounters Meltzer, transformed into a Rumbler along with Cindy, and can choose how to deal with the pair.

Sofia's office in Outer Persephone from the outside

As Delta draws closer to Persephone, Sofia Lamb becomes aware of her daughter's psychological connection to him. She becomes more desperate as she sees Eleanor draw away from her, becoming more resistant to her treatments as her bonded Big Daddy approaches. Sofia knows that her plans for her daughter will be ruined if Delta survives, so she forms a last-ditch plan to sever the bond between them. When he finally arrives in Persephone, Lamb lays a trap for him, luring him to the decontamination chamber where her daughter sleeps, and non-fatally smothers Eleanor before his eyes, stopping her heart long enough to fatally disrupt their bond. Lamb knows that the slow degradation of the broken bond will eventually kill Delta, but she orders her minions to simply restrain him and not harm him, since a violent, traumatic death would only resurrect him at a Vita-Chamber.

While Delta is imprisoned, Lamb finds and captures Sinclair, who is converted into an Alpha Series Big Daddy under her control, and Delta is forced to battle and kill him. Eleanor manages to free Delta, and Sofia realizes that her hopes for her daughter have been ruined. Attempting to force Delta to surrender, she directs her followers to set explosive charges throughout Persephone, detonating them as Eleanor and Delta try to find a way into Sinclair's emergency escape craft.

At the conclusion of the game, the last charge detonates and all of Persephone crumbles into the deep ocean trench, but Sofia joins Eleanor and Delta in Sinclair's escape pod. Her ultimate fate depends upon the actions and choices of the player: if Delta has been benevolent towards the Little Sisters and spared the NPCs, then Eleanor will be influenced to forgive her mother and save her from drowning; however if Delta chose to harvest/kill some or all of the NPCs and Little Sisters, then Sofia will drown as Eleanor either ignores her and leaves her to die or drags her by the leg.

Minerva's Den[]

The Elite of Rapture (left to right) Brigid Tenenbaum, Sander Cohen, Gilbert Alexander, Andrew Ryan, Sofia Lamb, and Yi Suchong.

Main article: Minerva's Den

Some time before her imprisonment, Lamb sent a request for Charles Milton Porter to join the Rapture Family, with her book and a butterfly. He denied her request, knowing she only wanted him for control of Rapture Central Computing. He then came to a conclusion: if she keeps out from Minerva's Den, he will keep Rapture "from grinding to a complete and sudden halt".[17] Lamb is also seen on the "Rapture Best and Brightest - 1952" poster, next to the rest of Rapture's elite.

Personality and Beliefs[]

Mother's philosophy is just as corrupt as Ryan's. By her standards, it would be better to have the entire world equally miserable than to allow us to strive on our own behalf.
― Eleanor Lamb, Audio Diary: Goodbye, Dr. Alexander

Cold, superficially educated, and fanatical to the point of insanity, Sofia focuses on the needs of the community at the expense of the individual, being more than happy to mutate Gilbert Alexander beyond recognition or destroy her own daughter's mind if it means guaranteeing the creation of her world-saving "utopian". Despite her broadcast claims that her goal is to ensure happiness for the greatest number of people, Eleanor notes that Sofia would gladly see the entire world turn miserable rather than allow one person to find their own way to live in satisfaction. Regarding the world entirely through the lens of her collectivist beliefs, she refuses to believe that Subject Delta could ever be a creature with a will of his own, and claims that humanity can only be saved from an impending apocalypse if it is deprived of self-conscience. Towards the end of the game, the idea of ​​Eleanor regaining her individuality and awakening the Little Sisters from their conditioning is enough to enrage her, as seen by her accusing Delta of spreading self-awareness "like the plague''.

Despite her firm belief in the common good above all else, Sofia also seems to suffer from some kind of messianic complex, believing herself to be the only person with the ability and will to save the world, even allowing her followers to worship her as a figure similar to the Virgin Mary. Furthermore, despite her claims to love all sentient beings in equal measure, this ultimately amounts to loving no one. Just in case, despite her claims to have made Subject Omega (Sinclair) a better person by removing his free will, she had no trouble leaving his conscious mind and voice intact, allowing him to spend his final moments begging Delta to put him out of his misery by killing him.

As Sofia herself freely admits, she is highly competitive and demonstrates a strong desire to win. In the past, she was able to exploit this by consistently winning big on her weekly poker nights in Pauper's Drop, then using her stake to benefit the neediest players; in the process she would gain the loyalty of her fellow players and satisfy her desire for victory. However, this also manifests as a marked aversion towards failure that verges on petulance, enough to overcome her normally unshakable stoicism and even her desire for the common good. In order to prevent Delta from succeeding, she smothers Eleanor, sinks Persephone to the bottom of the ocean, and even attempts to abandon Rapture altogether so long as she will be able to ensure her victory above all others.

Audio Diaries[]

For radio messages, see Radio Messages.

BioShock 2[]

Minerva's Den[]

Video[]

I know you. That symbol on your hand marks you a dead man.

Ten years - Subject Delta - since I watched you put a gun to your head and pull the trigger.

But take heart: Out of your pain, paradise was born.
I don't know how you survived, but your suffering is over now.
These men will ease your burden.

Please understand that like all I've done, this… is an act of love.
― Sofia Lamb[src]
Sofia_Lamb's_speech

Gallery[]

Behind the Scenes[]

  • For a time, her name was believed to be Sophia Lamb. But, as later confirmed by 2K Games' Community Manager, Elizabeth Tobey,[18] that version of the name was a misspelling made by the media. The correct spelling is Sofia Lamb.
  • In Episode Nine of the BioShock 2 Official Podcast,[19] Jordan Thomas says that his inspiration for Sofia's character was that of Fenella Woolgar's[20] role as Agatha Christie[21] in the TV series Doctor Who. Incidentally, Fenella Woolgar voices Dr. Lamb in BioShock 2.
  • Sofia Lamb's background is partially inspired by the life and philosophies of John Stuart Mill,[22] a utilitarian and liberal English philosopher in the 1800s.[23]
  • Lamb's phrase "Big Sister is always watching" is likely a reference George Orwell's novel Nineteen Eighty-Four,[24] whose iconic phrase is "Big Brother is watching".
  • Sofia Lamb's idea of eliminating the "Self" to create a Utopian society may be a reference to Ayn Rand's novel, Anthem, in which members of society are taught to not see themselves as individuals but as united groups where a person would refer to themselves as "Us" or "We" instead of "I". Philosophically speaking, Sofia's take on altruism and community represents the prime antagonist and absolute anathema of Ayn Rand's Objectivist ideologies due to its utter desire to destroy the self to serve a greater obscure community, violation of personal liberties, and disregard for personal identity and individual lives.
  • Oddly enough, Lamb's appearance doesn't change when she is seen through the eyes of a Little Sister. This is likely due to the fact that she is not mutated from ADAM and the girls have no reason to fear her.
  • The pistol Lamb gives to Delta in the intro is based upon the Artillery Model Luger P08 Pistol, a handgun commonly used by the German military since the early part of the 20th Century. If one looks closely, you can see this pistol has had its trigger guard removed.
  • In Outer Persephone, the nameplate of Sofia's office near the Little Sister vent normally reads "Office of Sofia Lamb", but if the player has the art captions setting turned on, it will say "Office of Sophia Lamb".

References[]

  1. BioShock: Rapture, Chapter 8
  2. Quote by Jeff Weir, Animation Supervisor, 2K Marin, in Deco Devolution artbook: "Lamb is sort of Nordic and very imposing. She's six foot tall and has more angular, almost masculine features. She's very dignified. Everything she does is very precise and in control. There's nothing coming undone.
    She's the antithesis of Ryan. Everything Ryan believes, she believes the opposite. Ryan's a capitalist and she's basically a communist. She's very clinical and very calm whereas Ryan's bombastic and charismatic. she's all about soothing and precision and altruism.
    "
  3. Excerpts from Unity and Metamorphosis.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 BioShock 2 Signature Series Guide, page 8.
  5. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: Rapture is Deliverance
  6. See the "People of Rapture" section of the BioShock 2 in-game Help.
  7. 2K Marin's Jordan Thomas Interview by Tom Bramwell at Eurogamer
  8. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: Learning Poker
  9. Augustus Sinclair's Audio Diary: Sacrifices
  10. 10.0 10.1 Post by Jordan Thomas in the "When was Sofia Lamb imprisoned? *SPOILERS*" thread on the 2K Forums
  11. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: Means of Control
  12. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: A New Cognitive Model
  13. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: Gil's Place in the Plan
  14. Eleanor Lamb's Audio Diary: Gil's Place in the Plan
  15. Gilbert Alexander's Audio Diary: Abort the Experiment
  16. Sofia Lamb's Audio Diary: The People's Daughter
  17. Charles Milton Porter's Audio Diary: The Wager
  18. "Official spelling" thread, post by 2KElizabeth, 2K Forums
  19. "BioShock 2 Podcast Episode Nine: Sofia Lamb" at the Cult of Rapture
  20. Fenella Woolgar on the Doctor Who Wiki
  21. Agatha Christie on the Doctor Who Wiki
  22. John Stuart Mill on Wikipedia
  23. "BioShock 2 Interview With Creative Director Jordan Thomas" article by Annette Gonzalez at GameInformer.com
  24. Nineteen Eighty-Four, novel, on Wikipedia
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