Dr. Francis “Frank” Poole was an American astronaut and part of the commanding crew of Discovery One , the first manned mission to Jupiter. He and Commander David Bowman were the only two on board not in suspended animation.

In Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, Poole was portrayed by Gary Lockwood.

2001: A Space OdysseyEdit

Dr. Poole was assigned as one of the crew of Discovery. He was second-in-command, only behind Dave Bowman, the mission commander; he was also one of the only two astronauts not in suspended animation.

Only about a month into their voyage, there were problems on board. The HAL 9000, the on-board artificially intelligent computer, reported a malfunction in the AE-35 unit, the device responsible for maintaining a communication link with Earth. Bowman went EVA and replaced the unit, but after the manual diagnostics, neither Poole or Bowman could find anything wrong with it. Hal said it was due to "human error", but the astronauts were suspicious.

Poole and Bowman met secretly in one of the EVA pods, thinking that HAL couldn't hear them. However, he could still read their lips through the window. He "overheard" that they were planning to disconnect him.


HAL suggested that Poole go out and put back the malfunctioning unit and allow it to fail. Poole left the ship to replace the unit, but during his task, he was violently interrupted. HAL seized control of the pod and rammed it into Poole. Both astronaut and pod went careening off into space. The impact had severed Poole's air hose, allowing the precious oxygen to leak out and slowly suffocating him to death.

After watching Poole floating away from the ship on an external camera, Bowman took one of the remaining pods and attempted a rescue. Unfortunately, Poole was dead by the time Bowman recovered his body.

However, Bowman was denied reentry by Hal, and had to force his way in through the emergency airlock, abandoning the corpse in the process. Avenging his dead friend and colleague, and to save his own life, Dave entered HAL's logic and memory center and disconnected all the higher brain functions, so that the computer could no longer conceive of any more malice.

3001: The Final OdysseyEdit

In the last book in the Space Odyssey series, one thousand years after the original Discovery mission, Poole's body was found drifting in space. Due to the cold and vacuum of space, Poole's body was almost perfectly preserved, and the advanced medical technology of the time was able to revive him. However, his rebirth on Star City meant he was unable to live on the actual planet of Earth since he had to adapt to lower gravity. He would be subject to many new experiences, such as CNN's third millennium broadcast, brain cap technology, virtual reality, domesticated reptiles, and much more.

He would later meet David and HAL, now a single entity. The entity reveals that the monolith network is not pleased with mankind's progress, planning to eclipse both the Sun and Lucifer entirely. However, Poole, Halman, and everyone else create a worm that ends up destroying the monolith network, keeping humanity alive, but at the cost of Halman's functionality due to the worm.


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