Utopia (UK)[edit | edit source]

"I think a child needs love."

Pietre Carvel, also known as Arby is a main character in series 1 and 2 of Utopia. The firstborn son of Philip Carvel and Brosca, Arby was neglected by his father from a young age and raised for most of his life by The Network with no idea of his family background. During series 2, Arby's leitmotif is Brainwave Playground.

Background[edit | edit source]

His name is derived from the initials "R.B.," which stand for "Raisin Boy," which is according Conran Letts, is "what they called you when they forgot who you were." It's only when Arby finds the Utopia Manuscript and reads it that he realizes he is Carvel's son and that he was experimented on as a child, leaving him emotionally stunted and allowing him to be a ruthless and efficient killer.

Series 1[edit | edit source]

Arby is first seen with Lee entering Doomsday Comics in search of the Utopia manuscript. While Lee kills the men in the store one by one, Arby obtains Bejan Chervo's address at the counter. When Lee leaves for a cigarette after disconnecting the gas, Arby finds a child hiding in the shop, telling him "don't put the gas away yet." before leaving.

When they arrive at Bejan's apartment, Arby holds him at gunpoint and asks him "Where is Jessica Hyde?" while Lee obtains the manuscript. When Arby concludes that Bejan doesn't know who Jessica Hyde is, he pushes him off the balcony to his death. Grant, who snuck in earlier and stole the manuscript from Arby's bag, makes a sound when witnessing this and manages to escape from Lee, although he scrapes his arm on the door and they are able to find out who he is. Grant escapes from the duo at his school too and must go on the run from The Network. After submitting a report about Wilson Wilson, Joshua Reynolds is stabbed in the throat by Arby and left to bleed out.

Arby and Lee arrive at Wilson's house and handcuff him to a chair. He is then subjected to Lee's torture while Arby watches and questions him on the whereabouts of Jessica Hyde. After Lee removes Wilson's eye, Arby leaves and tells him to kill Wilson, although he is unaware that Wilson would escape and shoot Lee.

After Ian and Jessica leave an MI5 agent posing as Jack Tate's wife tied up, Arby finds her and questions her. When she asks if he will release her he shoots her in the head and leaves. When Arby finds the family that Becky tied up in their garage, he removes his portable gas canister from his bag and asks them about Jessica Hyde, presumably killing them afterward.

Arby is waiting inside a toilet stall in Grant's school when he receives a call from Letts to begin his mission. He asks the head teacher how many people are in the school before killing him. He then walks around the school killing every teacher and pupil. When he arrives at the gym and draws his gun on the boy inside, he hesitates when he sees the boy dropped a box of chocolate raisins. He wipes a tear from his eye and shoots him. Arby is later seen in his room, contemplating his decision and gazing at his box of chocolate raisins, presumably thinking of the boy he shot.

Letts later gives Arby information on Alice and tells him to find her and the manuscript. Before leaving, he reflects on his childhood, visiting slaughterhouses, killing animals and remembering Letts being there. He asks who his parents were, only told that he was "a consignment from Bulgaria." and that while Carvel was a brilliant scientist, he was not kind and had experimented on Arby. He asks Letts why Lee's supposed death doesn't hurt him and is told it's because he's special. He answers with "I don't feel special." before leaving.

Posing as a policeman, Arby meets Alice and once at her house, demands the manuscript from her. When Alice can't find it because Grant and Jessica have already taken it, he shoots her teacher and tells her that her mother is next. Grant yells from the bathroom that he has it, but Arby still kills Alice's mother and holds her hostage. He then trades Alice for the manuscript, allowing her and Grant to escape. He briefly speaks with Jessica, asking what her father was like, only to be told that she doesn't know. He then leaves.

In a roadside cafe, his "local", Arby reads the manuscript and realises that he is Carvel's son. The assistant and Letts speak about him being in possession of the manuscript and theorise that he let Jessica go. Letts enters his office and finds Arby waiting who tells him that he lied to him. He learns his name, Pietre before leaving. When Jessica forces Ian to call Milner and say that he's with Jessica Hyde, Arby is sent to their location, although he waits until they leave. Jessica then holds Arby at gunpoint and demands he bring her to the manuscript, to which he complies, stating "Of course. That's why I'm here."

When Jessica has a nightmare of Christos' murder, Arby watches her while cuffed to a fireplace. When Arby tells Jessica they must go to the roadside cafe to speak with someone important, it's really a ploy so that he can have something to eat, telling Jessica that they need to keep up their strength. He states that it's nice to actually talk to her and that he's something of a fan. He asks her if Christos loved her and says "I think a child needs love." He then tells her his name and offers a handshake but is rebuffed and told they're leaving. He aks if she has nightmares a lot and then tells her he needs to go to the toilet before he leaves.

He then brings Jessica to the tree that Christos was tied to before his murder. He reveals that he killed Christos and after describing the torture he put him through only to gain no information from him, states that he was only fifteen. He tells her he's telling her this because he wanted her to know she was loved by him and that she could kill him now for revenge or he could take her to the manuscript, but he won't do it with her threatening him. Parked outside the area he hid the manuscript in, he crashes his car into two Network agents outside and kills them, revealing he obtained a gun from a toilet cistern at the cafe. Once inside he lights a fire he prepared to keep The Network back and takes her to his childhood room. He then shows her the oldest rock in the world, of which they both have part. He tells her that he is also Philip Carvel's child and warns her not to take the manuscript, although she demands it from him. After she obtains the manuscript, Arby sits down in his cell and Jessica leaves him.

Series 2[edit | edit source]

After the fire at the warehouse storing the russian flu vaccine, Arby assumed The Network had disbanded and found a new life with a woman named Tess and her daughter Amanda which he maintained for four months prior to series 2.

When arriving home one day, Arby greets Amanda with a stuffed toy and sits watching cartoons with her, arguing lightheartedly over his name. When arriving home the next day however, he finds Lee -thought to be dead- waiting for him. After explaining his survival Arby invites him inside for quinoa. Arby tells Lee that he thinks they can finally move on from The Network but Lee debunks his wish by telling him that they're starting again and that the fire barely set them back. He also informs him that they want him back for the job of killing Christian Donaldson. He declines and after assuming Lee was out, discovers he still works for The Network only mere moments before Tess and Amanda return home. When Lee introduces himself, he subtly threatens them in a way that only Arby understands. This ensures his compliance and he is brought to Milner.

Their arrival interrupts Milner having a heart to heart with Wilson regarding their goal. Milner gives Arby his mission of killing Donaldson and after he leaves, Lee approaches her and explains that he's become "uncharacteristically soft". Milner then instructs Lee to send a SWAT team to make sure Donaldson is killed. When Grant is exploring a disused building with Ian and they split to search more, he spots Arby and runs. He has to stop however when he sees a member of the SWAT team and is caught by Arby, although he lets him go on the condition he remain quiet. He then waits for the soldier to come through the door and holds his gun against his head, learning how many soldiers are in the building before killing him and warning Grant to "Come with me or they'll kill you." He then finds two soldiers about to shoot Ian and Becky and kills them too. He then tells them to wait with Grant while he finds the last one. When the last soldier is about to kill Donaldson, Arby shoots him in the back and rescues Donaldson. The group then escapes to a nearby field where Arby explains that Donaldson is the man The Network are after before going on the run with them.

Arby wakes the group and gives them breakfast before questioning Donaldson on why he's been targeted. They discover that it's because his old professor, Dobri Gorski, told him "Jimmy Deesh L is fat man," although none of the group can make sense of this. Arby takes the group to Ben, a member of an elite hacking collective and an ally. He helps them discover that Russian flu, originally though to be fiction used to scare people into taking the vaccine, will actually be released. Arby then tells the group he has things he needs to see to and that he will meet them later, returning to Ben's house to request three new identities.

When Lee arrives at Ben's house he finds him and his parents are already dead. Arby then appears, offering him Donaldson and the others in exchange for Tess and Amanda's safety. Arby then tells him that "When this is over, I'm coming for you." Lee agrees to the conditions of the exchange and makes another push to recruit Arby to The Network, but finds he is already gone.

Arby tells the group he and Donaldson will go to get supplies but in fact brings Donaldson to Lee. After Arby sees that Tess and Amanda are alive and well, he calls them and gives them instructions as well as two new identities before telling them that he won't be able to see them again. He then allows Lee to kill Donaldson and sits in silence. Lee then asks that Arby bring him the others too as they now need them -perhaps because of Milner's discovery that Anton is Philip Carvel- but is instead ignored and asked "Where is Jessica Hyde?"

Arby then returns to the building that the group are hiding in and finds Grant leaving with his gun. He takes it from him and sits with him while discussing his ease at killing. Grant then tells him that Anton is Carvel. Arby then goes upstairs and kills Marius, the interpreter Becky and Ian hired to talk to Anton/Carvel. Becky manages to get away but Ian is left in his crosshairs. As he takes aim, Grant begs him not to do it. Arby then leaves with Anton/Carvel and takes Grant with him.

He brings them to an old training camp in the hills that he wants to show Carvel, although he actually believes Grant to be Arby. When he hears an unusual sound, he investigates and sees Milner in the distance, a distraction so that Jessica can point her gun at him, asking "Where's dad?" He is trusted to ensure Milner doesn't try to get away and after she goes to speak with Carvel, he sits and talks to Jessica, providing her with the third new identity. Carvel returns and still unaware that Arby is his son, shoots him in the chest before telling Jessica to run. She escapes with Arby and attempts to keep him alive.

Wilson (presumably) manages to get Arby to a Network-run hospital with the group and it's predicted that he won't survive. Lee disguises himself and finds Arby's hospital room and prepares to kill him but is stopped by Jessica, to whom he admits that Arby is the only thing that scares him. Jessica later shaves his beard off and is reluctant to leave him alone for even a minute when Ian needs her help in killing Terrance. When unknown men capture Jessica, Carvel, Ian, and Becky, Arby miraculously wakes up.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Utopia (US)[edit | edit source]

Arby is a lunatic, stone-cold killer and torturer, one of two along with Rod working for a shady organization, the Harvest, that knows the truth regarding the comic Utopia.[1] He works directly under Kevin Christie. His name is something of a "joke" by Kevin Christie - he always loved raisins, so he began thinking of him as "Raisin Boy, or "R.B." for short, hence Arby. He has asthma and a number of personality quirks. He was raised at Home, deprived of love in order to be molded into the perfect tool for assassination. As he is affected by events throughout the series, he slowly begins to change and question his purpose, eventually taking on the name John after he decides he no longer wishes to be called "Arby."

Fringecon[edit | edit source]

Arby and Rod are both sent to Fringecon after it goes out on the Internet that the manuscript of a comic called Utopia will be sold at the event. They arrive there, only to discover that the owners of the comic, Ethan Lander and Olivia, have already sold it. They proceed to inject everyone in the room with a deadly poison, but claim that it is only a robbery and that they are only knocking them out. They then proceed to the penthouse suite of the comic's buyer, Phillip Carson and kill him as well as a girl there. Once again, however, they are too late, as a boy named Grant Bishop steals the comic from the room and escapes before they can track him down. They then travel throughout the hotel and kill everyone else who has seen the comic, with the exception of Grant's online friends Becky Todd, Ian Ackerman, Samantha J. and Wilson Wilson, who have already left the hotel. They frame one of the people that they killed for the murder and also kill the hotel's security guard, erasing all of the security footage.

Where is Utopia? Where is Jessica Hyde?[edit | edit source]

Arby and Rod posing as gas company officials

Arby and Rod receive a ping on Becky's phone and track it to the home of Wilson Wilson, where the group is staying. They decide to pose as gas company representatives. They then go throughout the house, killing the members of Wilson's family with toxic gas. Upon finding Wilson's father, he tries to resist them, asking them if they've come because of his research. Arby agrees with this and he comments that he always knew that they'd come before they kill him. "His research?" asks Rod incredulously and Arby replies that there was no harm in giving him a happy death. They then track Wilson Wilson to his underground bunker.

The two of them handcuff Wilson to a chair and then Arby asks him where Utopia is, where the boy (Grant) is and where Jessica Hyde is. Wilson plays dumb, so Arby picks up a spoon, then brings over containers of salt and bleach. He warns Wilson that he has three tries and on the first try he'll use the salt, then the bleach, and finally the spoon. He begins by pouring the salt into Arby's eye, then repeats the process with the bleach, before finally scooping out the eye that he didn't use the salt and the bleach on, but still Wilson refuses to budge, struggling with his handcuffs and shouting that he's just a fanboy. Rod comments that he thinks that Wilson really is just a fanboy and Arby agrees, telling Rod to clean up while he calls Home. He then goes outside and discovers another member of Wilson's family, Monika, arriving at the house, and kills her as well before contacting Home.

When Arby returns to the bunker, he discovers that Wilson is gone and Rod is dead, killed by an axe to the head. "Where is Jessica Hyde?" he asks himself, not knowing that Jessica came and took Wilson, killing Rod in the process, but suspecting something of the truth. With no leads, Arby reports to the leader of the Harvest, Kevin Christie. The two sit together, Christie tossing him a pack of raisins and Christie comments that things haven't been going as well for him as they usually do. He apologizes for Rod's death and asks Arby where Utopia is. Arby shows him a security photo of Grant and Christie tells him that they really need Utopia, that it would be very bad for them if the wrong people saw it. He tells Arby that he has faith in him and that he knows it's hard on him. "No, it's not," replies Arby.

Not slow and not bad[edit | edit source]

Arby screams after killing Cara Frostfield's whole family

In order to flush out Grant, it is decided to use a doppelgänger of him named Adam to flush him out by framing him for a mass-shooting. Arby is sent to Home to collect the boy from his school class. His teacher asks if he'll be back and Arby replies "if he listens." Afterwards, Arby meets again with Kevin Christie, who tells him that this one is going to be harder than the others. Arby replies that he doesn't see why and Christie tells him that he hopes he never does. He tells Arby to do it humanely, asking if even really knows what that means. "Not slow and not bad" replies Arby and Christie tells him that it's as a good an answer as any.

With that, Arby and the boy Adam are sent to the home of Cara Frostfield, a member of the Harvest who questioned the plan to frame Grant for a mass-shooting. Arby sends Adam inside wearing special gloves with Grant's fingerprints, making sure that he is caught on the security cameras and touches both the rifle and one of the windows, before leaving the rifle for Arby to find exiting the house. Arby then enters the house and begins killing the members of Cara's family. She recognizes him, her baby in her arms, before he shoots her, then proceeds to kill everyone else. Before exiting the house, he discovers one last member of Cara's family, another child, whom he shoots before leaving. He then begins to panic, having an asthma attack and lets out a loud scream, clearly disturbed by his actions as Christie thought he might be.

Raisin Boy[edit | edit source]

Hearing an APB regarding Grant, Arby travels to the house of Alice, a young girl whom Grant befriended and left some of the pages of Utopia with. He kills the social workers and other officials who where there questioning Alice and her mother Kim, and kills Kim as well. He asks Alice where Utopia is and she runs upstairs and gets the pages that she has and gives them to him. She then starts crying and he points the gun at her, telling her to be quiet, but does not kill her. He instead goes to a table and makes sandwiches and studies the pages of Utopia. Then, when Jessica Hyde and Grant arrives, he fights Jessica for a bit before telling her that he's supposed to take both her and Utopia to the Harvest, but he doesn't want to anymore. He leaves, telling her that she can find him back Home if she ever needs him and warns her to eat the sandwiches before looking at Utopia, as she's going to need it.

Arby reports to Kevin and Thomas Christie, telling him that he found Jessica Hyde and Utopia. Kevin asks where they are and Arby replies that Utopia is with Jessica Hyde. Hearing this, Thomas attacks Arby, but Kevin stops him, telling him to go to his room. Kevin then tells Arby that he told him not to look at Utopia and it surprises him that he would, given that he's "a boy of limited curiosity." Arby asks Kevin about the truth of his origins and Kevin admits that they made him into what he is, raising him without love, that it wasn't his purpose, so it was withheld from him. His tells him that his name, "Arby," is a nasty joke from the fact that he always liked raisins, so he called "R.B." for "Raisin Boy." He continues that he can't remember his real name and isn't sure he ever even had one. He tells Arby that he forgives him once because he's had a shock, but that he has to respect his purpose and he won't survive on his own.

Lily[edit | edit source]

Lily tells Arby that the world is big

Arby is with Kevin, watching a news broadcast. In it, Lily, the twin of a girl named Charlotte, who is posing as Charlotte, gives an interview. In it, she claims that her father, Dale Warwick, was abusive and that she's thinking of his suicide as a fresh start for her. Kevin becomes enraged, shouting that they're the ones who make up the stories. He tells Arby that it needs to be shut down and tells him that he trusts his judgment, asking if he can do it. Arby nods and Kevin sends him on his way, telling him that no matter what he thinks of the life they gave him, it's a million times better than anything else he would have had and he's earning his place in this crowded world every day.

Arby arrives at the house that the Harvest has set up for Lily. He asks her how much she told the police and she replies that she didn't tell them anything about Home. He tells her that she wasn't supposed to talk at all and asks her why it is that she keeps talking. She tells him that she had wanted to fulfill her purpose as a martyr, but the job was given to Charlotte instead. Afterwards, she went out into the world and saw people who didn't know what their purposes were and she wanted to address them using words that were own instead of ones that were given to her. She tells him she couldn't help it and he replies that she should have. She tells him that the world is big and he asks her if she likes it. "I love the world," she replies. She shares a Pepsi with him and continues that the next generation needs to step up and she's decided that it's her purpose to guide them. He tells her that she can't decide her own purpose and she replies that it's what she used to think. He asks her she thinks that Christie loves her and she replies that he trained her to fulfill her purpose. He asks if she can forgive him and she shrugs. He tells her that it's wrong that they made him into a monster, that every child needs love. He tells her that he doesn't want to be called Arby anymore, that he wants to now be called John. He tells her that he's going to bring her back Home. He does so and she asks if he's going to make her disappear, but he tells her to just do what they say, sending her inside to meet with Kevin Christie. The two work things out and give a news conference, in which it's stated that Lily has now become Kevin's adoptive child and Kevin asks the media to respect her privacy during this difficult time. Not long after this, John kidnaps Kevin and delivers his duct-taped body to the home of Michael Stearns, which Jessica Hyde and her compatriots have visited to try to discover the truth regarding the Stearns Flu epidemic and the plot known as "the Undoing."

Stay Alive, Jessica Hyde[edit | edit source]

Jessica Hyde and John standing outside Jessica's childhood home

While Jessica and the others try to get the truth out of Kevin Christie, John remains outside the Home and kills the various assassins sent by the Harvest to try breach the house and bring Kevin back. After most of the group leaves to go and try to stop the Undoing, Jessica meets with Arby, who tells her to not be afraid, that he was born to help her because he's her brother. She tells him that she wants to go Home and he agrees to it. On the road, they hear a news report indicating that Jessica's friends succeeded in their mission. As they arrive home, he tells her that he wishes he isn't the way he is and she tells him that it doesn't have to be like that. He then leads her to her old childhood home and she goes inside. Lily walks up and stands next to him and he tells her that Jessica is happy. As the lights in the house go out, he comments "Stay alive, Jessica Hyde," a recurring phrase from the Dystopia comic.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Crump, Andrew (September 17, 2020). ‘Utopia’: Gillian Flynn’s Take On Hero Worship Is Bloody Fun [Review]. The Playlist. Retrieved on September 21, 2020.
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