"Take off your shirt."
―Switch's first line to Neo

Switch was a crewmember on the Zion hovercraft Nebuchadnezzar who, along with Apoc, fell victim to Cypher. They were portrayed by Belinda McClory.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Switch served as a guard or protector in their duties and was generally partnered with Apoc. With Apoc and Trinity, Switch collected Neo for his introduction to Morpheus. Referring to Neo as "coppertop", an early allusion to Neo's enslavement in the machines' energy farm, Switch held him at gunpoint in case his avatar was possessed by an Agent while Trinity removed a bug implanted in Neo's body.

Switch was executed while in the Matrix when Cypher pulled her data probe from her headjack aboard the Nebuchadnezzar as part of his attempt to return his body to the Matrix power plant. Switch's last words, spoken while kneeling over the body of Apoc, were "Not like this... not like this." This, combined with their distress when he was killed, could hint that they had romantic feelings for Apoc.

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Gender[edit | edit source]

In the original script of The Matrix film, Switch changed genders upon entering the Matrix, which coined their name, Switch. In the real world, Switch would be male, and in the Matrix, Switch would be female - a very clever and critical point of the 'residual self-image' idea. When actress Belinda McClory auditioned for the role, she was going for only half the role - Switch's Matrix form.

Warner Brothers made the decision to cut this and give Switch one form for both environments.

Switch's presentation is deliberately androgynous to pay homage to her original concept. [1]

Lilly Wachowski would later say that The Matrix is a "trans metaphor", with Switch highlighting "where [their] headspaces were" regarding this issue.[2]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Switch is one of the only two redpills seen in the Matrix film trilogy dressed in white, the other one being Ghost during the highway chase scene.
  • They are also an allusion to the white angel and the female warrior.
  • The early concept for Switch's presentation may be a reflection of Lilly and Lana Wachowski's struggles with their gender identity, which were unknown to the public at the time.

Memorable Quotations[edit | edit source]

  • "Not like this... not like this."
  • "Take off your shirt."

Reference List[edit | edit source]

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