Warning: Spoilers for Cyberpunk: Edgerunners to follow.
Fans of Netflix’s new anime Cyberpunk Edgerunners have no doubt wondered what the ultimate fate is of its protagonist, David Martinez.
Part of what makes David a compelling character is his arc that goes from an ordinary everyman hesitant to enhance his body with cybernetic upgrades to being pushed into the cyberpunk lifestyle of Night City by getting body modification and being an outlaw even as he became increasingly convinced he had a dark fate awaiting him.
As Netflix Life pointed out, it was ultimately David’s struggle with cyberpsychosis that ultimately proved to be a losing battle. With his transformation from a caring and gentle soul with no enhancements to a ruthless mercenary who left countless bodies in his wake came an unhealthy obsession with cybertech-infused bodily upgrades and “pushing himself to the limit.”
They say pride comes before the fall, such was the case with David, who became dangerously cocksure after tech expert Jimmy Kurosaki told David he was special. The final piece of the recipe that proved deadly in this concoction of David’s personality traits was his overwhelming grief over the death of his mother and role model, Maine. Rather than being motivated by simply being the best, David’s increasing amount of body modifications became a way to anesthetize the pain of losing his mother, thus cementing his full-blown descent into madness.
Not even David’s love, Lucy, could reign in her love’s bloodlust. In the end, Adam Smasher has to take David down while Lucy escapes to the moon, as Fiction Horizon pointed out. In his last moments, David is still living out a happy existence with Lucy in his own mind while Lucy finds herself alone on the lunar landscape she always imagined she’d be sharing with David.