Square Enix Responds to "Racist" Deus Ex Character

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Parnage:
Black people in a game? Must be racist!

Southern accent?! Of course it must be racist!

God I wish I was so simple minded as to think in that manner. It'd make me reading this awhole lot less enraging. It's not racist. People are just easily offended. Simple as that.

Errrr

That's not a southern accent... at all.

It bears some resemblence to a southern accent but it's actually mostly regulated to urban centers.

Lancer873:

SillyBear:

Lancer873:
*sigh* Let's get one thing clear, folks.

If there is anything I would love to get clear, it would be the fact that your definition of racism is not law, and means next to nothing. You can't come in here and act like you wrote the text book on racism. It's an incredibly complex thing and everyone's definition is different. Just because someone has a different definition to you doesn't give you the right to bring in the old *siiiigh*s.

Lancer873:
Saying that women tend to like dresses, that's not sexist.

So it's not racist if I say black people tend to be illiterate and borderline retarded?

I think it is.

Well for starters, black people do not tend to be illiterate and borderline retarded, and secondly, that actually constitutes something offensive, and, as I mentioned later in that post, would make it clear that you hold blacks to be an "inferior" race. The fact that a significant amount of females tend to get an enjoyment out of fashion-based subjects that most men do not understand is not offensive, and is actually true. What I'm saying is that, statistically speaking, many stereotypes exist because they hold some semblance of truth. It's not wrong to acknowledge that there are differences between the majority of one group, and the majority of another group. It's wrong to hold this as proof that the other group is "inferior" in some way to the other, or to believe that there are no exceptions to the statistic. Let's put it this way: If I say "women have nipples that are larger than men's," am I being sexist? No, because this is true. The extra X chromosome that women have tends to do that. If I say that "Men, on average, are stronger, in terms of upper-body strength, than women," am I being sexist? Most people would think I am, but statistically and scientifically speaking, this is true. Testosterone increases muscle buildup, especially in the upper-body. It would be sexist to believe that it is impossible for a woman to be stronger than me (most women are probably actually stronger than me in terms of upper-body strength. I'm not very strong), or to claim this somehow makes a man who is weaker than a woman "inferior" to other men.

Now, there may be some stereotypes that are being enforced in a sort of way in today's society. I, too, realize that it's sick for women to be idolizing people with eating disorders and for men to idolize steroid abusers, these stereotypes are wrong, but that is because we are viewing these stereotypes as "better". We cannot ignore the fact that there are differences between races, sexes, and religions. I do not think that racial sensitivity means we should try to pretend that everybody is on even grounds, because that's just not the way the world works.

You're incorrect.

Actually, there are a variety of reasons that stereotypes pop up, only one of which is that it's more common in that group then others. For example:

1. It could be a media portrayal thing (ex. serial killers are commonly stereotyped as being smart and well-educated because they're most commonly portrayed that way in the media, the majority aren't).

2. It could be a trate that was observed in at least one, and is considered undesirable, so people push it for self-affirmation and confirmation bias (mexicians are lazy is probably a good example, especially since every ethnic minority except Asians have this, and it clashes with the "model minority" ideal).

3. It doesn't occur in a group, but misunderstanding of their practices makes people believe it anyway. Again, usually negative and pushed to make people feel better about themselves. (ex. catholics worship saints).

I'm sure there are many other reasons, though these are the first that come to mind. With so many other possibilities then it actually being more common among that group, statistical analysis is needed to figure out whether a given group actually more commonly falls under that steriotype.

xXxJessicaxXx:

Lancer873:
snip

No offense but what I think the guys is trying to say is that this Stereotype ISN'T accurate. It's actually pretty bizzarre in fact to have a street lady with an ancient deep southern accent wandering around 2077 Detroit?

btw I don't like dresses or fashion! /rasp! ;p

Except that's not ancient deep south, that's modern Ebonics.

Ancient deep south's dialect didn't use cursing (that's the first hint) and the linguistic construction of said curses is unique to Ebonics.

kuth:

You can't point a trash rat black girl that sounds pretty much spot on(Source: people from the south and my own damn family) and say it's racist. It's not. It would be racist if she was the only black chick in the entire game, but she is far from that.

Your logic makes no sense. It doesn't matter how many black people are in the game, there could be a thousand. None of that changes the fact that this character is ridiculous. You also admit the fact that if she was the only black character then it would be racist. Well, that means it's racist. That means you acknowledge the fact that this character is awful and is laughably racist. Racism surely must be judged on the qualities of the character and the way they are executed by the development team. It isn't judged by the number of people normal black people vs the number of ridiculous black people.

A mix of words on my part but I don't see this as much of being racist. In my intial paragraph I said it would be a good argument if she was the only black woman in the game. Several down I changed the tone with out the intent to from my orginal statment. So to make it clear, If she was alone in the game, the argument would be valid, yet only on the argument.

Even if it was donw to that, I highly doubt I would see it as racist.

And you aren't the one who gets to define what is "racist". No one is. Obviously it isn't racist to you, because you're white.

So you are assuming I am making this some sort of universal foundation of what racisim is instead of it being my opinion? What is up with you? It's my opinion, and you seem to be straight off on that opinion to begin with. Also white?

Calling me white really just destroys much of whatever you are trying to pass on me, yet I will give credit. You did get 50% right. Now if you can properly get the other 50% of my ancestry in the next try, you may have a chance of redemption of not being a bigot. You called me a white person, now I expect you to finish your guessing game, since you seem to have some interest in what a persons skin tone is to have any form of legit argument.

I know some black people who think that this isn't racist. I do think it is racist. Perception of racism is entirely subjective.

Racism: 1.
a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human races determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one's own race is superior and has the right to rule others. In order to call it racist, you need to claim that a bunch of Canadians have a thing against black people. Not only that, you need to show that it belittled. Proceed.

Bottom line, the character is ridiculous and is poorly acted.

Mediocore acting, but not much argument in that department.

And yes, in my opinion, the rationale and execution of the character is slightly racist. I'm not offended, I'm amused that they somehow thought it was a good idea to leave such a poorly acted character in the game.

I doubt amused is quite the emotion you are broadcasting. It seems you are taking this character a bit strongly despite you are 'amused' by it.

DanielBrown:
I'm more bothered with the protagonists voice. What's happened to his throat?

Adam Jensen makes a special point to gargle ball bearings every night before he goes to bed. It really stimulates the vocal chords.

I live in Kentucky and work at a wal-mart. To say this is an average speech pattern to hear would be an understatement -_- their is no racism ignore the troll and move along.

Greg Tito:
...to object so vehemently to her portrayal would mean you'd have to object to...the Asian stereotypes in Cooking with Mama.

First, point of accuracy; it's called Cooking Mama; no "with".

Second, that's a rather strange thing to say, even for the purposes of exaggeration in an analogy. It's a Japanese game and that's a real Japanese woman speaking actual terrible English. It's not any kind of attempt by the Japanese devs to portray their own culture in any way at all. It's just gratuitous English like in so many Japanese games, as badly done as usual.

xXxJessicaxXx:

Lancer873:
snip

No offense but what I think the guys is trying to say is that this Stereotype ISN'T accurate. It's actually pretty bizzarre in fact to have a street lady with an ancient deep southern accent wandering around 2077 Detroit?

Wasn't it 2027? And mkay, I can respect that, but it's not like there couldn't be one in 2027 Detroit. It's not really any more of a stretch than... say... the idea that some religious people would go to violent lengths to stop a company from performing controversial human augmentation. =3

btw I don't like dresses or fashion! /rasp! ;p

Mkay, and nice! Like I said, sexism would be someone saying that it's wrong for you to be like that.

AdumbroDeus:
megasnip

Alrighty, I get your point. Still, the point I'm trying to make is that there are some differences between races, sexes, and religions, and that they should be respected, but shouldn't be socially enforced. I apologize for attempting to be a bit blunt in my previous posts, but my ultimate message is one of acceptance, not of division.

not racist. bad voice acting. also it kills the immersion when a homeless is so helpful. how come she looks and talks so normal and is very good looking?

Yeh but fuck if i care or anyone else should anyway. A lot of games are doing this and at the same time games that are tackling this are getting scrutinized so I honestly think it's a load of bullshit that we just can't touch because there are too many different cases that wouldn't help anyone justify any point in finding a way of drawing the line between what is and what isn't racism in games.

Having said that I am surprised the devs weren't noticing that they were totally shooting themselves in the foot with this one. I mean it's not just that character... Most bums on the street in the game are black and I can't think of any major or influential characters that are not only intelligent but also not white.

That just spells racism! -_^

Imma gonna hide behind this chest high wall made of magic now.

Even the first game had these sort of stereotypical accents. I get why people get angry about it but I personally don't have much of a problem with it.

Btw I really like Adam Jensen's voice acting, it is gravelly but I don't mind it, I think the voice actor did a good job.

I lived in Detroit. Totally not racist. These people exist, and claiming that portreying them at all is a sign of racism is racist in itself.

Heh, opposing black zombies in Africa basically is a pass to ignore everything you say. So if this person is basically angry to get reactions, IE trolling, why are we paying attention?

I didn't like the zombies in RE5, they did offend me just a tad, but this I'm okay with. I think it's mostly laughably bad voice acting more then anything else, but hey, I'm from Canada and so far removed from that kind of accent I kind of find it hard to believe it actually exists. I remember the first time I heard a brooklyn accent. That was cool. The first thing I thought was "Just like in the movies".

Sober Thal:
Where is the racism? Have any of these people ever been to a large city? Is it racist to talk that way? So to all the people who speak differently than you do, THEY are racist??

EDIT: Does this mean Bill Cosby is racist for making Fat Albert?

Nope. It means that idiots will always try and look for racism where it doesn't exist.

So ya know what I say?

"FUCK IT!" I'm done with this racism issue, because no matter how much logic or rationality you speak to them, they'll always find some reason to claim a particular personification of a character is racist.

THANK YOU F*CKING AMERICA!!!

The only thing annoying me is the southern accent. I really, really dislike southern american accent. That character could've been of any race or gender and I'd still cringe at the accent. Don't know why but I borderline hate it.

I guess I don't take any offence seeing as I'm a european or I just happen to be insensitive... although I do react to overplayed stereotypes. And that sentence more or less contradicts me but I haven't actually encountered many (or any) black people with deep southern accent.

Change her voice to something less (in my opinion) mind-grinding and all will be fine, for me at least.

The point here is that only one of the black people in the game has this accent. It is totally possible for one person to have an outrageous, hilarious accent. It is not indicative of their entire race, and Deus Ex doesn't suggest it is.

Ragsnstitches:
If that's racist, then I should to argue every portrayal of Irish people in American Media is racist.

But I, frankly, am too drunk to.

Funny, I was so enraged by being misrepresented I was going to go and do the same, but I'm too busy getting into fights outside a pub.

I don't think it's racist, it's just a character and people are looking too deep into it. Sad thing is I live near Detroit and MANY people do talk like that whether they be white, black, or anything else.
Hell, put this Lady/Man/I don't know into a game and see the public respond, it's not a stereotype, it's just how the person is it would be racist if EVERY character of African decent was like that in the game but just one makes a character.


Yes, this is taken off the local news in MY town. Living near Detroit is weird.

Hyperactiveman:
Yeh but fuck if i care or anyone else should anyway. A lot of games are doing this and at the same time games that are tackling this are getting scrutinized so I honestly think it's a load of bullshit that we just can't touch because there are too many different cases that wouldn't help anyone justify any point in finding a way of drawing the line between what is and what isn't racism in games.

Having said that I am surprised the devs weren't noticing that they were totally shooting themselves in the foot with this one. I mean it's not just that character... Most bums on the street in the game are black and I can't think of any major or influential characters that are not only intelligent but also not white.

That just spells racism! -_^

Imma gonna hide behind this chest high wall made of magic now.

Really? I honestly... Hang on.
*smashes chest high wall*
I honestly never noticed any more bums being black than white, and as for influential characters... I'm not too far in, but Van Bruggen seemed fairly important to the plot. It sure couldn't have continued if he wasn't

I don't know why that's any more offensive than the portrayal of Zeke Sanders or the Chinese traders in that game. Narcisse seems to me like the kind of guy who'd object so someone over-emphasising an accent or using ethnic coloquialisms. I'll remember not to say "bro" or "chur" around him.

Bribase:

Carlston:

When is the last time a GERMAN was in a name and NOT a nazi? Hmmmm?

Hmmn... 2000?

image

What about this one?
image
On topic, i don't really think there's much offensive about this, i see the chinese characters as more racist even.

Why would you get upset over a game.

Drakmeire:


Yes, this is taken off the local news in MY town. Living near Detroit is weird.

I laughed...I laughed a lot at that. Good god...

Look, at this point people just pick and choose where they want their racism to be. Everything is racist to somebody, especially in this god forsaken land we call America. I say fuck it all and we start making games just like the Boondocks (the animated cartoon/former comic strip) and just load a game to the brim with racism. If they want to nitpick everything and call it racist, we'll give them more racism then they can handle.

People are acting like the complaint is that the character speaks like a black person but that's really not why anyone is complaining. The problem is that the character speaks a dialect that is essentially shorthand for "stupid negro." Zeke speaks in understandable ethnic colloquialisms while the Chinese characters speak like normal Chinese people; the character in question, however, speaks in a certain way that most Americans associate not with regional/cultural African American dialect but with the traditional stupid black person stock character. If there had been only one homeless character with substantial dialogue and it had been a clearly gay man who spoke with a ridiculous lisp, or a Chinese woman who spoke like Charlie Chan, then people would complain about that too. When you have a piece of media with very few minorities, and one of those characters happens to sound like a poorly-voiced minstrel show dropout for no particular reason, you can't be surprised when people complain. Is this vicious KKK racism on Square Enix's part? Of course not! But it certainly is a continuation of the utilization of the "stupid poor black woman" character that has no place in any work of fiction, video game or not.

How would you feel if you played a video game where almost every character was a woman, and the one man you encounter was a mouth-breathing rapist? Or if everyone was straight, and the one gay character was an effeminate queer? The fact is, the character people are upset about was not even remotely believable and instead relied on a clearly racist stock persona - no one in arguing that everyone at Square Enix hates black people, they're just saying that we've moved past a time where "dumb *insert race*" is an acceptable way to define a character.

And people wonder why most video games just tint the caucasian character models brown and call it a day. Sheesh.

Right off the bat, the video starts, and the first thing you see is a black woman digging through a trash can. Taken out of context, I can see how that would seem offensive. Most non-gamers aren't going to realize that there are other black characters in the game, or that the game features rich white people digging through the garbage too, because it's kind of a major plot point that everyone's suddenly poor because of the drug company conspiracy.

(Not a spoiler, it was in the trailers.)

In general, I don't think giving a black character a southern accent, in and of itself, is any worse than giving an aggressive character a New Jersey accent, a mob kingpin an Italian accent, or a blonde character a Californian accent. Which is to say, it's stereotypical. Handled well, it could be used to create a character that averts or subverts the audience's expectations, creating a three-dimensional and believable character that audiences can identify with and respect. Maybe even aspire to be like them some day.

This particular character does none of the above in the scene shown in the youtube video. She's just a typical NPC, there to advance the plot and add flavor to the world. I don't think the developers intended for the game or even this scene to be racist, but watching the video by itself, I can't help but feel a little squeamish. Once when it opens and she's just digging through the trash, and then again later when she starts laying on the Jar-Jar talk a little thick, and then again when I realized the player wasn't going to pay her for any of the information, despite several prompts to do so, her overly agreeable attitude no matter what her situation is or what bad news she's discussing, even the way she was holding her hands towards the end... I just... ugh. Yeah, I can see how this could make people uncomfortable.

I should point out that I haven't played the game, either. So if she gets a Crowning Moment of Awesome later in the story if you pick the right path, or even if it turns out she's some kinda badass operative or something and this is just her cover, well... then it might be a different story. Either of these would put the character into the realm of subverting the sterotype, rather than playing it straight, as in this video.

I'd like to know, who wrote this dialogue? Were they black or white? Are they from a southern city where everyone talks like this? What prompted the voice actress to choose that particular accent? Was she just improving? Did they do several takes and they kept prompting her to make it more like that? (Is it possible she was doing the part even more stereotypically, until they asked her to reign it in?) Was it written up that way even all the way back in the Design Document?

These questions explore the *intent* of the game developers. Everyone involved in this scene from the voice actress to the writers to the modellers and texture artists were all involved in creating this character and bringing her to life. Presumably they were aware that the work they were creating would touch upon themes of race. Statistically speaking, many if not most of them were probably white males. I find it difficult to believe that the developers weren't going for this character archetype. The trouble is, they nailed it a little too well, and the fact that she's digging through the trash when you first see her dumps a shitload of fuel on the fire.

I could imagine a scenario where everything in this video was designed by committee. Some guy drafted a sheet full of possible NPCs to fill this slot in the game, and the Art Lead decided he liked the look of the really dark-skinned one. (You don't see a lot of people with that skin tone in mainstream media, the only black celebrity I can think of with skin that dark is Michelle Obama, and surely she's as far away from a harmful portrayal of blacks as you can get, right?) The voice acting would probably be done next. Maybe the dialogue was written neutrally and the voice actress jazzed it up for one of the takes. Maybe the white guys in the studio were even standing around uncomfortably and asking "Is this all right?" And the actress was like "Don't worry about it, this is how my neighbors talk." (Obviously this is all just speculation on my part. I don't even know the name of the actress, let alone where she's from. Presumably she's in the credits, and this will all come out and be archived in a wiki somewhere in a few weeks.)

Naturally the sound lead would pick the take that made her stand apart from the rest of the NPCs, if there was more than one take to choose from. I don't know for sure but the sweater she's wearing looks like it was just some stock NPC clothing option... maybe the level designer chose the combination of parts that would make up this NPC. The animation, I'm not sure about. It's extremely jittery, which might be part of the effect they were going for, or it might indicate random jitter in the game engine to mask a very heavily compressed animation. Was mocap used for this?

If this entire thing was captured as some sort of digital performance, like in L.A. Noir, that adds a whole new bunch of questions. Was the actress trying to do something specific with the role? Just following orders? Trying to make a political statement? Deliberately trying to manufacture the controversy we're currently discussing? Attempting to produce Oscar Bait? She certainly sounds like she's done this accent before. How do we know that everything seemingly racist about the whole performance wasn't the actress's input into the role? I'm not arguing that it's likely, I'm just wondering if it's possible. Actually knowing for sure would require learning the nuts and bolts of how this scene was put together.

What I'm saying is, it's possible this was just the Perfect Storm. That nobody intended this character to come across as racist as she looks in the youtube video with the context of the game is stripped away. Obviously I don't know the whole story. I wasn't there. My point is, we don't know.

But that said, the developer's intentions don't matter, and 100% of what I just said is moot, if the average black person finds it offensive. The real tragedy here isn't a bunch of racist people making a racist game at a racist games company. It's that nobody called them on it during quality control. This scene was seen and heard by artists, developers, and playtesters. Even accounting for tunnel vision, you'd think someone would have noticed it. Hell, I'm the most insensitive prick I know, and even *I* was uncomfortable when she started really laying on the Jar Jar Binksisms towards the end. So it's not like white guys are incapable of noticing this shit.

I would love to hear more about the development process and the actress involved in this scene, but sadly those details are pretty obscure and probably not very likely to come out, even among the wiki-nerds. I'm pretty sure the actress is black, though, and so I would be very interested in hearing her take on this scene and what it was like recording it. Escapist, maybe you could make that happen? Make some phone calls.

Moviebob says this better than I can, but there's been a lot of racism in the past, and it continues to this day, but in the past it was way worse. My distant ancestors did a lot of horrible, shitty stuff to Michelle Obama's distant ancestors. Rationally, I know that *I* didn't do any of that stuff, so it's not my fault. And if it's not my fault, then obviously it's not my job to make up for it, right? Collectively, though, white culture has done so much damage to black culture throughout history... destroyed or overwritten so much that can never be regained. And there are still people alive who lived through the tail end of some of the worst of it. So just seeing a performance like this one that hits enough of the right notes (regardless of whether intentionally or accidentally,) is enough to trigger all sorts of bad memories.

Hell, it made me feel uncomfortable, and I was born in the 80's.

That said, please forgive the hardcore gamers flooding this thread with straw-man arguments, flimsy excuses, and claims of double-standards. They're not saying what they're saying because they hate blacks or because they don't know their history. They're saying what they're saying because they are gamers, first and foremost, and they don't want someone else's politics to come along and ruin their game.

It's a panicky knee-jerk reaction to a perceived threat, which is a shame, because the other people in this thread are actually making an effort and discussing the issue of race. Which I think has probably got to be healthier than keeping quiet and trying not to think about it.

Sorry this post is so long. It's 2:30 in the morning so I'm not exactly 100% right now. I don't think the game as a whole is offensive, but I think this scene in particular was pretty insensitive. I think it was probably an honest fuckup, but I'd love to know more about how it happened and why, and what people were thinking. And also, what context from the game about this character might I be missing which could further inform this scene and maybe hint at what (if anything) they were trying to do with it.

I'm more offended by false champions for equality making sensationalized stories, trying to confuse readers to what is and is not racism. That's what offends me. That and I couldn't fully get past Adam looking like a bro-y douche who sounded like a wannabe Batman

i am offended that people like narcisse does not recieve psychiatric help. there is an obviuos mental problem, and your not helping.

The problem is that the character speaks a dialect that is essentially shorthand for "stupid negro."

so then majority of white people in, say, alabama is "stupid negros"?

this is really going into the movie racism ideology where if you have no black characters - its racism. if you have few black characters - its racism because "its only few" and if you have majority of black characters its also racism because nto all black people are portraiyed as angels.

Black people who portray a certain negative role in a game?

OMGZZHAXXORZ IT'S RACIST.

To quote Foreman: "Some people don't know the difference between racism and everybody get's screwed"

Seriously, I just want one of these guys to come out and say "Oh alright, it's offensive to you? We'll just get right onto patching it so he becomes a fat white dude."

I encounter people who speak like that on a daily basis.

I have never been to the American South nor even the United States at all, yet EVEN I know that such accents actually exist to varying extents for both European and African Americans. Has this guy ever spoken to anyone outside of New York?

She doesn't fit any racial stereotypes apart from being poor which is not really a fair stereotype in either DXHR or REAL LIFE where abject poverty and forced vagrancy can be a fact of life from people of all backgrounds.

I think this is a product of people in northern cities only ever hearing a black southern accent in the context of racism and assume that the accent itself is racist. The actual content shows her as thoughtful and rather enterprising yet Evan Narcisse seem to automatically assume it is for "humour" to the point of accusing outright racial intimidation with her mere depiction.

The thing is she is just another weird character who should NOT BE JUDGED SUPERFICIALLY!

That is what is being done here, he is being prejudiced.

I wonder would this man treat REAL black women having the same voice with the same derision? Or would he deny that they even exist?

I wonder would he consider this racist:

Hmm, they're talking in "broken english" therefore Steven Spielberg and Alice Walker are RACISTS!

I dont see the character as racist: I see the REACTION to the character as racist. All it does is telling us "black people are different from us others, you cant make stereotypes of them". Its just screaming that black people are different from all other "races".

Ok, I know steretypes and generalisation can be a bad thing. Making all the asians in a game with silly accents and knowing kong-fu and all the black people though and "street-wise" is ofc questionable. But stereotypes exists for a reason: there are SOME that actually act that way. So if a story includes a few characters following a stereotype, its not racist.

I just grow tired of alienating black people from the rest of the world. Were one race; humans. Fuck, if all were white, some idiots would probably divide humans into "hairy" and "non hairy" and call that different races. To qoute Morgan Freeman:

reporter:"how would you stop racism?"
MF:"Stop talking about it."

I don,t really see a problem with it.
it might sound racist but I,m sure some afro-Americans talk like that way (some not all) like some Caucasians talk like rednecks.

I love how noone gives a shit about the lame accents and broken ass English on the chinese chicks... I'm just glad that in real life, most black people are pretty level headed and chilled about this kind of shit and take it for what it is...

Man, if I knew I could cry racism at the slightest suggestion that not everyone is educated and clean-living I'd have QQ'd up a storm about Packie from GTA IV.

Gralian:
Why is it a mistake? Are you seriously telling me that absolutely every individual living in an inner city area doesn't speak with such heavy affectation and slang? Because even here in the UK, people from the inner city areas, particularly around London, do have a significant "street speak" about their dialect. It's not just black people, either. White people who are brought up in the inner city who associate with what was generally seen as 'black culture' also adopt that way of speech and how they carry themselves. While Letitia does have something of the fifties about her, i think it's a bit myopic to not see inner city culture having its roots in what was once hyperbolised by the privileged majority. I would've considered it to be more jarring if she spoke with perfect diction. She already looks a little bit too neat to be a hobo as it is. (Then again, all hobos in Detroit seem to have that problem)

I'm not saying - and never did say - that every character should have perfect diction. What I'm saying, and what the original complaint is, is that the dialogue written for Letitia draws on old negative stereotypes for African-Americans. It's worth pointing out as well, that no other character in the game, not the other hobos, punks, or whatever, speak like she does.

Gralian:
Africa is still a third world country by most standards. I appreciate the mud hut villages and savage portrayal of native Africans throwing spears and such is upsetting, but what else would you expect to find? Sprawling cities and paved streets? If Capcom didn't want to draw on that imagery, they shouldn't have chosen Africa as the stage. What bothers me is how people claim to have no problem with the game being set in Africa yet fail to recognise such imagery would be inevitable given the location. It's not even as if the entirety of the game was that one painful trudge through the mud hut villages; before that you had a reasonable shanty town and later on an escapade through a vast military complex.

That's the thing, such imagery isn't inevitable in an African setting. I suppose it's a bit much to expect nuance and subtly in a Resident Evil game, but what Capcom presented was, at best, a caricature of Africa, and not an especially kind or accurate one either.

Fronzel:

Greg Tito:
...to object so vehemently to her portrayal would mean you'd have to object to...the Asian stereotypes in Cooking with Mama.

First, point of accuracy; it's called Cooking Mama; no "with".

Second, that's a rather strange thing to say, even for the purposes of exaggeration in an analogy. It's a Japanese game and that's a real Japanese woman speaking actual terrible English. It's not any kind of attempt by the Japanese devs to portray their own culture in any way at all. It's just gratuitous English like in so many Japanese games, as badly done as usual.

Hmm Japanese housewife in the kitchen, cooking and NOTHING ELSE? While curiously joyful at the menial task of chopping carrots?

There, anyone can play the Racism-game and make things out as "offensive stereotypes" here the double whammy of "woman in the kitchen" and "deferential Asian housewife".

It doesn't matter if there really are women like that, or that Japanese men (or even housewives) may have made it, it's still a stereotype and you can crucify people for that just with innuendo of racism.

I don't think cooking mama is offensive, just that it can be made to appear offensive.

this guy is just another poor asshole trying to make a little cash by screaming "RACISM" at the to of his lungs every time an ethnic person is involved. problem is, the louder and more frequently he yells it, the more credibility he loses

Quick, we should sue gangsta rap!

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