William Gibson's ‘Neuromancer’
Henry Dorsett Case is an ex-console cowboy (a computer hacker) after having his central nervous system surgically damaged as a result of being caught syphoning money from his employers. No longer able to connect to the virtual reality database known as the ‘matrix’, he becomes unemployable, suicidal, and wanted dead by a drug lord. So when an ex-military officer offers to cure him in return for his services as a hacker, Case dives headfirst into a virtual and twisted world of lies and technology.
Bruce Bethke's short story, ‘Cyberpunk'.
Initially written as a series of short stories in 1980, but the culminated novel was purchased by a publisher via an exclusive contract which forbade Bethke to sell the novel to any other publisher, which caused a legal battle that lasted years. The protagonist is a ‘good kid who’s fallen in with a bad crowd’ of teenagers that joy-ride through ‘the Net’ on their ‘hopped-up portable computers’. His parents attempt to forbid him from socialising with his friends, so he rebels by using his technological skills and becoming a ‘cyberpunk’.
Ridley Scott's ‘Blade Runner’
The film is an adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep’ and depicts a dystopian Los Angeles where genetically engineered ‘replicants’ are banned from Earth but if discovered, are hunted down and ‘retired’ by special police operatives known as ‘Blade Runners’. It displays distinct film noir conventions, featuring the femme fatale, protagonist-narration (varies between versions), dark and shadowy cinematography, and the questionable moral outlook of the hero.