The Big Picture: Tropes vs. MovieBob

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Soooooo...you ARE gonna do that Jabber Jaw Episode at some point, right?

I tend to like most of your episodes that are just quick lecture style focused ones on old TV, movies or comics.

Some of my favorite Big Picture episodes of all time are the Mystery Science Theater 3000, Captain Marvel and Schlocktober ones.

I've only got one thing to say to this: since when was this a family show?

PercyBoleyn:

Why do you have to do things like that, man? Picking everyone's posts apart sentence by sentence as if to prove that nothing they say is correct. That's not proper conflict resolution; that's something obsessives do. I mean, how did you even ever form your own opinions with such a nihilistic debating approach?

yeti585:

DrVornoff:

yeti585:
Yes, women have it worse, but for F***s sake can we please at least acknowledge the other side?

It's not really an other side. It's a separate issue. The two are not in conflict with one another and people need to stop pretending that they are.

A bad choice of words on my part. I didn't mean that the issues were in conflict. It is not really a separate issue either. It's still sexism but its sexism against males. So it's a different area of a problem. That's what I was trying to get across. We try to tackle a problem but don't look at the whole problem. It's like wanting to outlaw drugs except you do nothing about tobacco and alcohol.

It doesn't matter if tobacco and alcohol is left out. The protest against drugs can still be perfectly valid. To use another analogy, its like if an academic did a brilliant Phd. paper on Educational Standards for Juvenile African Americans in Urban Environments; imagine if this other-wise excellent paper was dismissed by the Chancellor, on the basis that the academic didn't "write another paper about non-African Americans too". That isn't how thoughful discussion works. You can't dismiss someone's study, just because they didn't include other tangental/parallel issues.

Sadly, ever since the Tropes vs Females kickstarter, I've seen the introduction of a half dozen "negative portrayals of men in games" projects appearing. I say sadly, because though I think there is room for such a project - we really need male portrayals to be examined - I get the impression they only started these projects to either discredit Feminist Frequency, or get a piece of that kickstarter pie. Rather than approach the topic sincerely, these projects are knee-jerk, sub standard, knock-offs attempting to capitalise on the hubbub. As a guy, I deserve better than the shit that is inevitably going to get churned out in response to this whole debacle.

Schadrach:
...except that there have certainly been feminist driven "kill it with fire"-style campaigns in the past. So it's not "feminists don't want to actively destroy media that offends their ideological sensibilities" it's "feminists don't want to actively destroy quite all media that offends their ideological sensibilities." Because there have certainly been examples where "feminists attempt to actively destroy media that offends their ideological sensibilities", such as that non-explicit tentacle hentai themed card matching game or "online feminism vs Penny Arcade."

Aside from the fact that Gabe and Tycho dug their own fucking graves by acting like arrogant man-children instead of just saying, "We didn't mean to offend anyone. Sorry about that. We cool?", you know, aside from that...

Check it out, there are these Christians that vandalized abortion clinics. One of them even shot a doctor in public in front of his family. Clearly, we cannot allow this Christian plague to continue. This messiah of theirs was obviously a deranged, gun-toting psychopath.

See? I can do it, too. Here's the truth: women are not out to get you. Shocking I know, but it needed to be said. In other news, the world is round, the moon is made of rock instead of cheese, and babies come out of a lady's hoo-hoo and are not in fact delivered by a stork.

Now that my quota of sarcasm has been fulfilled, please do not address me with strawman arguments again. And I can say all this because I've read feminist literature and talked to feminists. As it turns out, feminists are normal people and not scary, sharp-toothed monsters hissing at you and menacing you with their fanged vaginas. I know, I'm as surprised as you are.

Eri:
I think the worst part of the whole Tropes thing is the fact she's gotten over 150,000$ and for what? To make what is basically youtube videos? That's absurd.

Take a look at this show, extra credits, yahtzee, etc... They make on average a 5 minute video a week and constantly put them out, she is making what amounts to 3 hours tops of videos and making way more than I'm sure anyone else gets paid, and for much less work too.

I think most of that money is for buying the rights to show actual footage from the games, liscensing fees or whatever. Yahtzaa doesn't show foottage from the games, though they'd probably give it to him for free, but actually I don't know how it works so take what I say with a grain of sand.

Edit.

She wanted the response she got, because without it, her video would be completely unremarkable. She said as much in the subscript.

When she didn't get the desired reaction IMMEDIATELY, she spammed /b/ so that she could drum up the trolls.

Labeling her a victim, or asking, "Why is everyone so mean?" is like asking why someone who knocked down a hornets' nest with a baseball bat got stung.

She is not a victim. She got EXACTLY what she wanted, and I'm sure she's very satisfied with herself. Which was the point of her "series" in the first place, her own self-satisfaction.

Her video series was never going to be exceptional. Nothing she's ever made has been much more than regurgitations of other people's ideas silly ideas, with no effort made to address the arguments against them, and with a few eye rolls interspersed, all with absolutely no contribution of any original thought.

But she got people's attention by playing the victim, which is ironic, because it fits nicely into the stereotypes she hates so much WHICH ARE TOTALLY NOT TRUE EVER AND THERE IS NO EXAMPLE OF THEM IN REALITY AND IF YOU SUGGEST THERE IS ONE SOMEWHERE IT'S BECAUSE YOU'RE A MISOGYNIST SEXIST RAPE CULTURE SUPPORTER.

PhiMed:
When she didn't get the desired reaction IMMEDIATELY, she spammed /b/ so that she could drum up the trolls.

Do you have proof of that?

Good to see Moviebob on my side for once :D

PunkRex:

Imp Emissary:

PunkRex:
Once again I find myself kind of torn, both sides seem to be JUST as loud and obnoxious as each other. Its like the way both sides of the Mass Effect ending just completely ignored or looked down on the other side while the few actually making a good bloody argument were overshadowed.

Some people are dicks, im not surprised some reacted like they did, their dicks, but why so many have a problem with a women who does this sort of media study just looking at tropes in games, WHICH ARE THERE, seems so pathetic. However, why she needs SOOOOOOOOOOOOO much bloody money dispite the resources she already has seems greedy, people do this sort of thing every day for free afterall...

PunkRex, meet Blade 125. He has what I believe is a good conversation on if (I don't remember her name, but none of us are using our real names.....I hope. So lets call her...) Mrs.Tropes should or shouldn't get the donated money. So it's not just you guys talking, I'll say that I think that we should wait and see what she does with what's left after the videos are done. Then we can judge her by her actions. Ex. Well she A.Use all the money for the videos making them way to high quality to just be a Youtube video(no offence Youtube) B. Donate the money to a worthy&related issue. Or C. Buy a new CAR!
I am guessing B, but we will see.

Funny enough, shortly after posting I said to myself "Why am I bothered what OTHERS do with their money?". If shes honest it could be a very interesting look on gaming and if not... well im sure SOMEONE on the internet will give her what she deserves... somebody... im not gonna say who. At the end of the day, it really doesn't matter if folks give her money but what she does with it, personally I would coincider paying her for her work IF I got a sort of demo/sneak peek. I love a good discussion/debate between people proberly alot smarter then me but as I have no experience with her past work im unsure if it would be worth my time.

As you said, lets wait and see if she sucks.

Well if you want a good sample of her work I recommend the Tropes V.S. Women#1-6, unless you want something that you can actually disagree with.
For that I say look up her sexist/creepy christmas song video. As for the first 4 she chose I saw what she was saying but I didn't really think they were very bad. However, the last one definitely was damn bad. I won't spoil the surprise, but people don't call it the Christmas date rape song for nothing.

Hmm.

... meh.

Women in videogames, why are they hot? I've always figured it was so that they could be set dressing for guys who disregard story and dialog, and I still figure that's it. But there's probably more to it, as well... and yet, for me, it all comes back to one question.

Who are asking for ugly women in games? Why do we worry about their appearance? Why do we care? I'm all for having deeper, more realistic women as characters in games, but I do not see that value is added by making them overweight, buck-teethed or what have you. Bob brings up Mario. Mario may not be Mister Universe, but he's got incredible stamina, speed and strength, he has a big nose and a full moustache... he's loyal and devoted to a fault, he's got a respectable job... what I mean is, if Mario was a real guy, he would not be single. In fact, Peach/Toadstool/whatever her name is only has a shot with this guy because she happens to be the only woman in-continuity. Mario might not be the guy you WANT to look like, but you could do much, much worse than that. Any reasonable translation of Mario into a real-life guy would be a pretty handsome guy.

In the end I don't think it makes sense to discuss this in the context of games specifically, nor in the context of women specifically; it feels like suggesting we clean 10% of the ocean because hey, the ocean's full of filth. Women are almost exclusively cute/pretty/hot/beautiful in EVERY type and genre of fictional representations, and guess what, so are the guys. I'm not talking about the glistening muscle mountains either; Max Payne is starting to get a beer/pill gut, he's balding... but if he's still single, it's because he's a miserable git, not because he's ugly (not played last game). I can't think of a reasonable sample of male characters in gaming history whose looks alone would land them squarely in the realm of unfuckable... so long as they're recognizably human. Is it so wrong that the same is true for women?

Question for those of us who have read the Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones etc), and those with an imagination. Brienne of Tarth is described flat-out as UGLY. Now try to forget the actress in the series, and picture this too-large, too-muscled, androgynous woman who moves without any feminine grace. Remember how you pictured her as you read the book. Now describe that image. Is your description truly ugly? A horrible troll, some kind of eyesore, a disgusting hag? I think very few people could honestly say they would be horrified to have to behold what the envision her to look like... though her demeanour means you'd hardly seek out her company.

No, if we want more "reasonable"-looking people in games, then we must also get them in movies, magazines, TV, yada yada yada, and then you run into the fact that with a little make-up, almost any man or woman can be made to look well above the average you encounter on the street, meaning that even homely people will look somewhat attractive on TV.

So no, the looks thing is pointless. I want better written characters, though, and it'd be nice if male and female alike would be dressed consistent with what they are DOING. No matter how ridiculously musclebound the barbarian hero is, unless he's a moron he'll wear some armor over that muscled chest and six-pack abs. No matter how gorgeous the sword-wielding playboy bunny that follows him, if she decides to leave her midriff bare in combat, she should be stabbed to death and left bleeding, and the next female character might take the hint and wear protective clothing. On the other hand, if the male wears a loincloth and oil, then I'd find it very odd if the woman wears a steel bomb-disposal suit.

So, how do we make awesome female characters, then? To me, it seems clear that it HAS to be about what the character DOES, not how she looks, primarily. But I've tried my hand at writing, and the truth is, you can write an OK character, but a GOOD one gets real tricky real quick, because people seem to insist on you dodging ALL the tropes, but I swear to you here and now, there is no space left between them! What is her mood like, for instance? Does she try to stay positive? Fifties wife stereotype. Is she, excuse the phrasing, a bitch to everyone? Good ol' bitch stereotype. What if she has issues that justifies it but you need to gain her trust to overcome that? Damaged goods stereotype. Justifying issues you can't overcome? Hysterical woman stereotype. Distant? Ice queen stereotype. The list goes on. The bar is too high, damnit! No woman, past or present, real or imaginary, avoids tropes, even the awesome real/imaginary women out there are trope bait. So, technically, are the guys... but nobody gets in your face about that.

And I'll go you one further. The female fighters in the chain-mail bikinis and bare midriffs are just stupid, right? We all agree that it's absolute crap? That either her skin is adamantium mesh or she's a moron who deserves to bleed out? I live in Norway. I have a friend who's a teacher in high school equivalent. Midwinters here can be quite cold. Last winter we had a damp, biting and horrific minus 17 degrees Celsius, that's roughly 1 degree Fahrenheit. Snow and ice on the ground, chill that bites you to the bone... my friend was talking to me, complaining that the girls in his class, just turned eighteen, were wearing bare midriffs and short skirts. Were they "allowed" to wear this in school? Certainly not, though he was not allowed to enforce any kind of dress code, so he could do nothing about it. Going dressed like that is an excellent way to get severe hypothermia, frostbite... quite frankly, going dressed like that, no matter the societal pressures that "made" them do it, is a GORRAM STUPID thing to do. Impractical, and actually hazardous to their health... and there they were.

Should we be satisfied with the way women are portrayed in video games? Certainly not. But don't try to tell me that "real women aren't like that". The problem is that while ALL the stupid stereotypes will rarely be wrapped into one flesh-and-blood man or woman, neither do the stereotypes pass through a membrane from another dimension. They come from US. WE are that stupid... some of us. Some of the time. Don't try to say we're not. So come up with solutions, because the problem is sufficiently illuminated for another few centuries by now.

Blind Sight:

ReiverCorrupter:
The biggest thing these feminist arguments gloss over is that we live in a free-market society.

We don't really live in a 'free market' society though. A market society, yes, but not really a 'free market'. I'm not holding the free market up as utopia, but there is a distinction.

That being said, there's plenty of other criticisms that can be thrown at Sarkeesian's work, particularly her poor research and contextualization skills.

Speaking linguistically, I can see both terms being correct depending on your own view. In one sense, no, this isn't a free-market society, considering that there is a government to regulate the market, but in another sense, this is as close as it gets. And in the West we're still literal centuries ahead of dictatorships in Third World countries. So, for all intents and purposes, this is a free-market society, especially when trying to distinguish between the West and the Third World. (And on top of that the U.S. has an even freer market than its Western European, Australian and Japanese counterparts.)
I'd have something to say about the other issue you mentionted, but in this case I refuse to contribute to the discussion which has unleashed a disproporionate amount of rage on a single content creator, from all over the internet (including this thread).

How can this boring subject have this many pages?

Sick of this discussion.

I hate most characters in videogames (and in most movies maybe), that's why I usually like blank characters, because at least there's nothing about them that makes me want to hate them.
Reason why I hate the characters? There are many, and some of them are mentioned in this video.
I just ask for the developers to make more interesting characters, look at Portal ones, they are really great, the comedy helps it, but it goes way beyond it.

Maybe I'm the problem.

WitherVoice:

--snip--

MovieBob kinda just answered your question. It's not that people want ugly women in video games, but they do want them to be normal. Why? Because, as MovieBob said, this stereotype of women creates an unrealistic expectation of women in the real world. The fact that you just mentioned "ugly" women, kind of already proves my point. The fact that your kneejerk reaction was: "oh, we're talking about women who are not skinny D-cupped oversexualized Bayonettas, so we must be talking about 'ugly' women" means that even if you haven't latched onto the stereotype, it has already seeped into your brain a little. Think on that for a while.

ThrobbingEgo:

ReiverCorrupter:
The biggest thing these feminist arguments gloss over is that we live in a free-market society.

Oh yeah. The Free Market never does anything wrong. Corporations always act in the best interests of their customers. What the public wants is always right.

(It's not like there has ever been public supported racism or genocide anywhere, ever.)

Ah, I needed a good laugh.

*Sigh* obviously you didn't bother reading past the first two sentences of my post. I'm not going to bother repeating myself, so I'll just quote myself:

ReiverCorrupter:

The biggest thing these feminist arguments gloss over is that we live in a free-market society. If there's someone willing to buy the product then someone will make it. You can't just blame the supply-side of the industry, the demand side is equally culpable, if not more so. It may be the case that many of the developers are chauvinist meat-heads and are biased in what they create. But it only takes one break-away game that appeals to the female audience in order for producers to see there's money in it and then hire less meat-headed developers to capitalize on this fact. People are kidding themselves if they think the people heading up EA give a crap about promoting a male chauvinist agenda. All they care about is $$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

There is no point in people protesting and writing in letters that they want more games (or what-have-you) geared towards them if there isn't enough of a market for those games. The fact of the matter is that the greasy sex-obsessed teenage boys make up a significant amount of the market, which is why the industry panders to them. And I hate to say it, but the free-market is pretty much amoral. Blaming the economic system for a social problem isn't going to get you anywhere. Overall a (properly regulated and trust-free) capitalist system is a tremendous source of good. The real problem with America isn't capitalism (which is only an economic system): it's consumerism (which is a destructive value system).

I wasn't saying your position was wrong, nor was I even assuming that you were personally committed to this mistake. I was merely offering a counterpoint. In fact, if you bothered to read my post more carefully you would have seen that I agree that video games are sexist and that something should be done about it. Most importantly, the second part of my post wasn't directed at you but at Bob, so I'm sorry if you feel I was attacking you.

ThrobbingEgo:

Also she can criticize limiting portrayals of women AND provide other outlets for change. Or not. It's her call. I liked her pitch and previous work enough to back her project. If you don't like it, well, that's another victory of the free market.

Lol, she can obviously do whatever she wants. I wasn't demanding anything, I was merely arguing that complaining wasn't going to accomplish much, and that the constant complaints coupled with a lack of any suggestions for how to resolve the situation is starting to grate on my nerves. You're right, she doesn't have to do anything because I find something annoying. Note that this is a forum: a place for people to opine. Bob expressed his opinion and I am merely doing so in response. (And it doesn't really have anything to do with capitalism.)

If she actually does an in-depth and intelligent analysis of the psychological and sociological background of sexist video-game tropes, that would be something I might find interesting. Though I'm still somewhat skeptical as to whether it will help change anything.

If my post offended you (as I'm kind of guessing it did considering your quick and rather curt response) then allow me to apologize. I just like to play devil's advocate when I see too many people agreeing with one another (as is often the case in threads like this one).

Blind Sight:

We don't really live in a 'free market' society though. A market society, yes, but not really a 'free market'. I'm not holding the free market up as utopia, but there is a distinction.

Yeah, I was being a bit loose with the term, but for the purposes of my argument it doesn't really make that much of a difference. The video game market isn't really subject to government subsidies or much regulation (the ESRB system is self-imposed) and it's pretty competitive, so it shouldn't be recalcitrant to consumer demand.

Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark. It's a great movie, and one that would not be improved by replacing the handsome, muscular, clever, heroic lead with a fat, ugly, cowardly idiot. Despite that though, there are men in the movie that are portrayed as fat, ugly, cowardly and idiotic. There are dozens of male characters, of differing ages, body types, personalities, ethnicities etc. Even though the protagonist is still an idealised manly man for male viewers to project themselves onto, the male sex is fully represented in the movie in a huge cast of diverse characters.

Now count how many female characters are in that movie. Even if women like Marion, the sexy, tough and resourceful love interest (she is a pretty cool character), she is the sole representative of the entire sex. We're shown a world almost devoid of women, let alone diverse female characters. That is the real problem with games, movies and mass media - not that they can't provide strong, sexy, cool women when they want, but that it will only provide one kind of female per movie, and only one woman for the audience to project onto. Need more examples? Watch Feminist Frequency's Bechdel test video.

medv4380:

mronoc:
The issues you bring up, while deserving of more acknowledgement than they receive, and certainly more worth taking political action over, are not more interesting conversations to have. These are morally unambiguous conversations that would end up boiling down to moral masturbation. A nuanced conversation is always a more interesting one, and is more likely to result in participants growing as people. This is one of those situations where the conversation is the solution. It's a matter of having an open conversation about what's behind these representations, so we as a society can be more aware of the underlying issue, and ultimately end up holding the creative work we produce to higher standards of understanding what it's saying. There's no clear solution to the problem other than to understand it, and when you decide to simply ignore the conversation, you're not helping. When you actively encourage others to do the same, you're contributing to the problem.

The problem is that this "discussion" of Women shouldn't be seen sexually leads to those other more important issue. When Society is "Aware of the Underlying Issue" it starts to implement nonsense measures like Burkas, and head scarfs. Those measures weren't implemented by Society because men needed more control. They were implemented because of some notion that the temptation should be removed, and society Women Included imposed those things on itself willingly. It's the exact same argument you present the end game as "ultimately end up holding the creative work we produce to higher standards of understanding what it's saying". Self Censorship is still Censorship and will result in the exact same outcome.

Because the end game is Unacceptable the only valid option to to discard this part of the debate entirely.

Saying something is good is not the same as saying it should be mandated. Saying something is potentially harmful is not the same as saying it should be banned. If that were the case the KKK and Westboro Baptist Church would have been stripped of their First Amendment Rights a long time ago.

As far as the self-censorship statement, I'm not saying anyone should stop themselves from saying anything that they really believe, just that an artist needs to understand that every choice they make in a creative work can affect the message that work conveys, and that if they lose control of their message, an undesired message can find its way into their work.

Also, for the record, I'm certainly not of the opinion that no female character should ever be sexualized ever, no one's saying that. I really don't even have an issue with the ubiquity of sexualized female characters, so much as I do with the fact that it's very rarely done for any purpose other than pandering.

Someone needs to make a game called "Big Boob Panty Ninja" now.

Captcha - be my friend?

Chatney:
Given how I think that MovieBob has mishandled some more serious issues in the past, such as the absurd "double standard is OK because I say so"-episode, I was expecting to have disagreements with him in this video, and yeah, that's how it turned out.

My main disagreement however isn't with the points he makes, which are largely true, but rather that he focuses his entire attention on one argument, the debunking of which is pointless. Two wrongs do not make a right. The fact that men are idealised in video games doesn't make it any more or less valid that women are, too.

In other words, this video doesn't cover any of the important issues in this debate. Moreover, MovieBob goes from talking about video game characters with big boobs to talking about sexism in the workplace, as if the two are somehow related. They're results of the same problem but no one is sitting in an office chair thinking "well, if only she looked liked Ivy from that fighting game, I'd hire her."

This is a widespread cultural issue and the video game industry is not the cause of it. Claiming otherwise is just as absurd as that rather embarrassingly large group of people who think that Resident Evil 5 is racist. Equating a hate-based ideology that has caused and is still causing deaths and suffering to something as utterly trivial as a video game must be insulting to those who live to tell the tale.

Pointing out examples of "sexist" characters in media is easy and pointless. Rather than focusing our energy on trying to make our media somehow more fair and honest (which is in and of itself a laugh, just look at films and TV series) we should focus our attention on how women are actually treated, you know, the stuff that actually matters.

This is an awful argument, it's basically "it's just a videogame, guys" and you're diverting attention from the subject.

Idealised men is a valid thing but the frequency is negligible, which is an important point to make. Plus, it's not equal because those idealised men are male power fantasy design, not female sexual fantasy like most female characters are male sexual fantasies.

Yes, there are higher-ups that DO have sexist bias in giving women jobs. Video games are the biggest entertainment industry right now, and have a big influence on culture. As such, the industry is responsible for its image. We should focus our energy on making our media more fair because there are all kinds of people that engage in this activity, not just white heterosexual males.

And once again the loads of insecure, spineless idiots-who-wish-to-be-macho-lunkheads remind me that gaming has no right to demand to be taken seriously when it handles itself this badly. What is it that makes men think talking about sexism equates to evil boogeywomen wanting to turn them into eunuchs?

Where can I preorder a copy of Big Boob, Panty Ninja XII?

Farther than stars:

Blind Sight:

ReiverCorrupter:
The biggest thing these feminist arguments gloss over is that we live in a free-market society.

We don't really live in a 'free market' society though. A market society, yes, but not really a 'free market'. I'm not holding the free market up as utopia, but there is a distinction.

That being said, there's plenty of other criticisms that can be thrown at Sarkeesian's work, particularly her poor research and contextualization skills.

Speaking linguistically, I can see both terms being correct depending on your own view. In one sense, no, this isn't a free-market society, considering that there is a government to regulate the market, but in another sense, this is as close as it gets. And in the West we're still literal centuries ahead of dictatorships in Third World countries. So, for all intents and purposes, this is a free-market society, especially when trying to distinguish between the West and the Third World. (And on top of that the U.S. has an even freer market than its Western European, Australian and Japanese counterparts.)
I'd have something to say about the other issue you mentionted, but in this case I refuse to contribute to the discussion which has unleashed a disproporionate amount of rage on a single content creator, from all over the internet (including this thread).

Fair enough, just read Laissez-Faire and Communism by Keynes a week ago so I'm probably just a bit jaded on technicalities.

I would say that your critique is also fair, I also like to avoid the more...aggressive discourse going on right now in regards to the project. However I do feel that a better focus would be on an intellectual criticism of Sarkeesian's work, as her methodology is pretty terrible.

Tenmar:

ThrobbingEgo:

Again, that's not my argument. I'm not arguing that people are powerless in the face of media. I'd argue that media can reinforce existing behavior by acting as part of a larger hegemony. To deny that would be to claim that all human beings are totally rational actors who only respond to the laws of the land and aren't in the least bit swayed by what other people (are represented to) think, say, or encourage.

It'd be just as absurd as the position you're trying to shoehorn me into.

Except that is the problem with your argument. You are saying that media reinforces existing behavior. So by that logic violence in video games will cause people to be violent who were already violent...oh wait see the problem?

Yes, there is a clear distinction between a cause (i.e. a necessary or sufficient precondition) and a catalyst (which merely accelerates/magnifies a causal interaction but is neither sufficient or necessary to cause something to happen on its own).

I completely understand women being upset that so many games are geared towards sex-crazed teenage boys and wanting more games to be geared towards them. This is what Bob and others seem to be arguing. However, anyone who argues that this stuff has to be banned or boycotted because it directly and substantially harms women has clearly disconnected from reality.

If people can't be held responsible for their own minds then what hope is there for democracy? Even in extreme cases like cult brainwashing we can't intervene unless the cult poses an immediate threat. Scantily clad video game Amazons hardly pose that kind of threat.

The fact of the matter is that personal liberty is just more important than promoting utilitarian goods. You can do your best to try to convince people not to buy these games by challenging their values and notions of beauty. More power to you. But you just can't stop people from buying these games if they want to, and you can't force the industry to change when it's only responding to the demands of its consumers.

I understand that these tropes are harmful to impressionable young girls, but ultimately it's up to the parents to correct for this by F&$%ING sitting down and talking to their daughters and not letting them sit down for hours on end consuming vapid media.

The battle for values is cultural, not economic. It starts at home. No amount of protesting companies is going to change anything if the populace has given into consumerism and lost its ability to think critically.

The angry parents who want things taken off of the market are essentially arguing that they cannot control what their children are exposed to. Does that make them good parents? NO. They are right to complain if the schools aren't doing a good enough job (after all, it is a service that they pay for either through tuition or taxes), but outside of school they are responsible for their child's upbringing.

Of course the response to this is that many parents have to work and don't have the time. This is probably going to make me sound like a terrible person, but no one has the absolute right to have children. Children are not things, they're human beings. It is morally irresponsible to bring a child into the world if you cannot take care of them.

Glad you touched on it, Bob, but this deserves a much longer, involved treatment. Perhaps someone who's not bound to a weekly five-minute series will provide, but this is a nice primer.

I ended up not funding her kickstarter anyway just because I don't like the way she does videos. She's too serious. (It's a serious matter, but can be handled with humour - see the Nostalgia Chick - and doing so assures more people watch the video.) I was gonna after the troll attack, but I forgot.

Dastardly:

Seriously, it'd be like going to a buffet restaurant and insisting that everything on the buffet be made of chicken, because I like chicken. It has nothing to do with hating vegetables or anything... but it's clear I don't view vegetable-liking folks as equal to myself, as I'm too focused on what I like.

This is a perfect metaphor, I'm not even joking.

DVS BSTrD:
Now I really want to play Big Boob Panty Ninja 12.

Then you'd best yell at an EVIL FEMINIST because otherwise, you won't get to.

...Bob should have ended his video with "No Homo." Just for lulz.

I have a big problem with several facets of this argument.

MovieBob:
Tropes vs. MovieBob

"Yes, it's true that unrealistic body images of men are about as pervasive in the media as they are for women, its just not a problem in the same way"

Because 99% of women aren't aroused by visual stimuli the way that 99% of men are. If video game developers began spewing out large numbers of titles in which a conservatively dressed, average looking working woman comes home from a hard day at the office to find the housework done and her overly handsome husband slowly washing the dishes by hand or alphabetizing her DVD collection. That would be, on an arousal level, comparable to what developers want to get out of male audiences now.

I just can't call this a "problem". It's not my fault my gender gets its attention grabbed faster by visual stimuli rather than mental.

MovieBob:

"The issue of the media promoting grotesquely unrealistic body standards for women is a problem because those standards are still actively used against women all the time."

I have to point out that if you ask many actual women, you'll find that they do this to each other and hold each other to these stereotypes as much as if not moreso than any media. Before you argue, I guaran-damn-tee you any high school 16 year old girl out there with self image problems is having those self image problems and holding herself to an unrealistic standard of beauty because of some "hot girls" clique tho teases her for being too fat, thin, short, tall, ginger, breasts too small, too big, etc. and none of them give a shit about video games and "manly" television programming.

More of the root of these issues come from advertising that is aimed at women by companies selling things for women. Not from programming designed for adolescent men. Check out a fashion show, makeup commercial, skin care commercial, underwear ad, etc. aimed at women.

I can't believe a single woman in the world has been damaged because I might like Cammy's ass.

I, like many men, know for a fact that real women don't look like that and the few that do usually have such worthless empty personalities, they aren't worth the time it takes to ignore them.

Video games have in no way altered my perception of women and a woman somewhere claiming she missed a promotion because the one that got the job looked like Kittana is just as often a case of sour grapes from the loser as it is potential favoritism.

I would also like to mention that the fact that "everyone looking like she does" and the "there aren't as many varieties of body types of women as there are of men" is sort of out of place here. In fact, it's entirely out of place.

The entire existance of the kickstarter and the videos it is attempting to create, aren't because these individuals are after EQUALITY, which is what the entireity of the last minute of the video was about. They aren't out there saying "Chun Li's thighs would be less offensive if you added a couple fat chicks to street fighter" and I don't think if you did add more "average" women that this issue would be diminished in the least.

Bob made very clear and reasonable observations I just thought it be worth tossing out that while there may be more male body types in games that girls also tend to be attracted to a broader range of body types as well.

Also while women do tend to be heavily sexualized in gaming it has been proven time and time again that a game will sell well or worse regardless of these sorts of things.

ALSO yes guys can lose jobs to better looking guys in just the same way just women as a whole tend to push less to go higher in the work force even still to this day. In fact if you watch a few shows this happens on tv all the time.

I guess my point is all these things go both ways just men happen to have had more opportunity and with that said I agree with bob that that in of itself it a reason to tone back at the very least.

ReiverCorrupter:

Yes, there is a clear distinction between a cause (i.e. a necessary or sufficient precondition) and a catalyst (which merely accelerates/magnifies a causal interaction but is neither sufficient or necessary to cause something to happen on its own).

I completely understand women being upset that so many games are geared towards sex-crazed teenage boys and wanting more games to be geared towards them. This is what Bob and others seem to be arguing. However, anyone who argues that this stuff has to be banned or boycotted because it directly and substantially harms women has clearly disconnected from reality.

If people can't be held responsible for their own minds then what hope is there for democracy? Even in extreme cases like cult brainwashing we can't intervene unless the cult poses an immediate threat. Scantily clad video game Amazons hardly pose that kind of threat.

The fact of the matter is that personal liberty is just more important than promoting utilitarian goods. You can do your best to try to convince people not to buy these games by challenging their values and notions of beauty. More power to you. But you just can't stop people from buying these games if they want to, and you can't force the industry to change when it's only responding to the demands of its consumers.

I understand that these tropes are harmful to impressionable young girls, but ultimately it's up to the parents to correct for this by F&$%ING sitting down and talking to their daughters and not letting them sit down for hours on end consuming vapid media.

The battle for values is cultural, not economic. It starts at home. No amount of protesting companies is going to change anything if the populace has given into consumerism and lost its ability to think critically.

The angry parents who want things taken off of the market are essentially arguing that they cannot control what their children are exposed to. Does that make them good parents? NO. They are right to complain if the schools aren't doing a good enough job (after all, it is a service that they pay for either through tuition or taxes), but outside of school they are responsible for their child's upbringing.

Of course the response to this is that many parents have to work and don't have the time. This is probably going to make me sound like a terrible person, but no one has the absolute right to have children. Children are not things, they're human beings. It is morally irresponsible to bring a child into the world if you cannot take care of them.

I'm a bit lost here on your stance cause talking about personal liberty and letting developers create the content they want to create has pretty much been my stance on this whole issue as seen from the news post on this very forum about the whole kickstarter project.

Cause I think you are quoting the wrong person here in terms of getting their attention. If you are trying to get my attention then I don't know exactly where we exactly disagree upon.

If you want video games with more varied women then make one yourself. Making a video proclaiming what people already know will not have any effect on the medium.

Topic is 13 pages long, any commentary that isn't personal perspective is likely useless.
So that's what I'm sticking with.

When I sat back and thought about the most attractive video game female characters I can think of (well, as appealing as a work of fiction can be anyway) those who came out on top were not based on their appearance or their "badass factor", but their ability to act realistically and sensibly given the situation they were in.

The reason for each came out to being thus: "I found the character believable."

The glut of "Female Ninjas" (who ironically wear less than a topless Vegas show) sporting quadra-Ds and tiny waists to me, look like hilarious abominations...and shamefully pandering.
Not merely "Barbie" (who comes across as incredibly Uncanny Valley to me), but "Jessica Rabbit".

Never really cared

It's only an issue for me when all of these tropes become my fault because I was born male and for no other reason

*OP*

AMEN

Edit: I know you had to focus and keep the episode short, but mentioning only the issue of universal female attractiveness in games is a good way to dredge up a bunch of these willfully dense toilet paper role tunnel vision counterarguments.

Lilani:

Xanthious:
I noticed Bob conveniently ignored that men are indeed objectified in much the same way as women in things like trashy romance novels, daytime soap operas, TV shows like Desperate Housewives and Gray's Anatomy, or even movies like Twilight and I could go on. Last I checked there aren't hordes of men getting in line to buy soap boxes to stand on while they get all indignant on the internet about that though.

Last I checked, the people who make trashy romance novels aren't trying to market to both genders. And also last I checked, they aren't trying to avidly defend their portrayals of men as "fair."

It's not that things can't be geared toward one gender or another. It's that many games nowadays are trying to appeal to a gender-neutral audience, but they still greatly favor the male side of things, portraying women only as men want to see them. That is why there gets to be so much outrage about this stuff. The fact that they make something that clearly panders to a male audience, and then try to tell us women we should like it too. It's just insulting.

Here's the thing. If a certain game portrays women in a such a way that it offends their delicate senses they are free to vote with their money and simply not buy it while supporting games that DON'T objectify women.

Hell if there are women out there super pissed off by all this they can go make their own games with sensibly dressed slightly overweight angry man hating feminists as their main characters all while portraying the evil misogynist men as some kind of half man half donkey type of creatures. Even then I can promise the vast majority of men still won't give two shits how they are being unfairly portrayed.

The issue of some sort of sexist conspiracy in gaming is a tempest in teapot, and a really small teapot at that. It's only an issue because a certain sect of people wish to make it one. The simple truth of the matter is sex sells. That's marketing 101 right there. However, even in light of the fact that skin moves product there are still mountains of games that don't rely on scantily clad ladies to produce sales. People are free to choose whichever they like.

Bob if you're going to say that something is a demonstrable fact, you gotta prove it. You provided no sources, at all, not even "This journal did a study once". You're better than that.

Also some people can talk about sexism in games without there being a shitstorm. See Extra Credits. There's not a ton but it's still not a guarantee.

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