Despite the visual witticisms of his resemblance to a purple heart, what we have in Mr Rush of course is the One-Dimensional Man of Marcuse. If any stimulant drives his actions, it is the ideological apparatus of advanced industrial society. Lacking a critical dimension with which to question and transcend such circumstances, he speeds around in blind conformity to the ethos of his age.
The inherent irrationality at the heart of all this is displayed in the fact that despite having internalised the core technological values of productivity and efficiency, the perpetual haste with which he is driven as a result makes him thoroughly unproductive and extremely inefficient. The perfect worker for the one-dimensional society is therefore unable to hold down any job.
We notice too that the leisure goals of his activity come retrospectively, heightening further our sense of the absurd. He must search for his soul in catalogues and brochures, finding it in products and services – in this case, a holiday abroad. This is aspiration as repressive tool, as he is further bound into the social order by his own conditioned needs.
And indeed, when Mr Rush finally gets to go on his break, we discover that he cannot relax. So deeply introjected are the conditions of his labour that he is subject to them even in his leisure, which he races about as if a work task. Production and consumption come to mirror one another, and in consequence are equally frenetic. Of course, Mr Rush does not stop to reflect, and hurtles at pace towards Thanatos.