Wednesday, May 28, 2008

EPISODE EIGHT: "Mississippi Pwning"

Wherein I go against my better judgement and wade into the continuing firestorm over "Resident Evil 5" as a first-step toward getting to a topic we'll probably need to revisit a few more times: Race and ethnic-portrayals in video games.



Had to go back to the sped-up sound a few times this time around, as I've discovered that YouTube doesn't even let DIRECTOR accounts do over ten minutes anymore. Dammit. Also recording sound in a new way, which I don't have exactly where I want it but it DOES allow me to get the material done and uploaded at a MUCH quicker pace. Those issues aside, I think this one came out decently. It's a tough topic, especially since it's not as easy to find appropriate visual aids as it is for, say, "the Boobs episode."

N'Gai Croal, the Newsweek blogger who took a lot of heat - most of it undeserved - from gamers over his negative critique of the trailer, is for the record one of the best game journalists in the mainstream media. I'm thinking of sending him a link to this, which seems courteous since he gets mentioned so often in it, though part of me is a little nervous as to what a professional thinks of my incoherent run-on sentences. Guess we'll see...

33 comments:

Alexander H. Langus said...

If I may have some constructive criticism, in my opinion you should avoid all-text slides. For all of us not super-fluent with the English language, it's hard to simultaneously read the slide and listen to the text.

Paul said...

Oops. I didn't know the Director accounts were . . . uh, ruined. Sorry.

And wow, didn't expect to see any non-English speakers around here. Oh, and Alexander, most of the time what's written isn't what he is saying, so I just pause the video.

Bob, I agree with you 100% here. And then some. I though N'Gai's comments were somewhat baseless, but the backlash was inexcusable. However, I'm not surprised. In the least. Barak Obama has shown me just how much racism still exists . . . on message boards. It blows my mind, but I suppose people feel safe blaming others for their problems. So much for that responsibility thing that politicians like to tout. Wait? You mean we have to fix these things?

Anyway, another good video. I do enjoy seeing some thought out stuff about video games. So much is so low brow it hurts.

Mark said...

this is really sharp stuff. I appreciate that you talk about these things pretty objectively. definitely some of the most intelligent video game related media i've seen, no kidding.

frankly, it upsets me that this sort of dialogue isn't the norm. My impression is that the gamer community, at least those over 18, is proportionally better educated than the "average" demographic, (bachelors degrees in computer science, etc.), but i've found that on social and political issues, like the ones you've been bringing up, many of them are painfully ignorant or downright moronic.

keep up the good work

R.T.Inoue said...

Some more constructive criticism. Please, stop with the fast forward sound. It sounds horrible. Better sacrifice something from your speech than to use this annoying device.

And about the all-text slides. Unlike paul, I don't pause. And I don't return to read it either.

Dave said...

Hey there! Just thought I'd add my two cents in here. These videos are excellent. Great commentaries on games, gamers, and the industry as a whole. As an indie game developer myself, I really appreciate what you are doing. So thanks.

-Dave

scentofkether said...

I'd be perfectly willing to consecutively watch a video divided into a 9-minute Part One and a 3-minute Part Two to avoid the sped-up speech.

LuckyLeo said...

Bob,

This last video was outstanding!

As a older Black gamer, I thought this was very refreshing.

Now I do want to comment on two things:

1. I am not a Resident Evil fan in the slightest (nor of Survival Horror games) but when I saw this trailer. The only thing that I said was, "Damn, that looks impressive!" But in no way, did I get my panties in a bunch about some perceived racism! I thought it was a creepy-looking, realistic looking game. So I really wish that people would STFU about racism when it is not necessary present. Which leads me into:

2.Where in the Hoary Hells were these a-holes during GTA: San Andreas! Seriously, the negative sterotyping of Black gangstas is FAR more offensive to me than anything seen in the RE 5 trailer. Oh, my bad. San Andreas wasn't about "poor Blacks as victims". It was about "Blacks taking charge of their lives the only way they can -- considering the circumstances and enivronment that they were raised. They were sticking it to the MAN!"

Whatever.

Now in all fairness, I am no fan of the thug drama genre that GTA and its clones represent. So I never played any GTA game. But my point is that I did not hear ANY noise about RACISM from GTA: San Andreas. Hell, more noise was made about Hot Coffee. Now why is that? Discuss.

Jordan said...

Alex, I think I might have an answer for you:
People who write news stories are tasked with one thing: Writing stories that sell, and one of the easiest ways to sell a story is to get people mad about it.

In RE 5, you have a white guy killing black people, in GTA you have a black guy killing EVERYBODY. You would have heard a lot of shit about GTA if pop culture wasn't already full of the "I'm better then you" mentality. But the fact is, that mentality usually come from black stereotypes, the easiest to mention would be rappers. I swear, every other song these guys come up with have something to do with killing people they don't like, whether it be white, Latinos, or other blacks.

The point is, GTA was something people were already seeing and hearing for years. However, a white guy killing ONLY black people hasn't really been brought up in a market as wide spread and profitable as the video game industry.

Jordan said...

Sorry, I meant luckyleo. My bad.

EFA682 said...

I truly enjoy listening to your stuff, Bob. The stuff is so insightful, it's amazing. Why can't people see things this way? My favorite videos so far are #1, #4, #3, and #7. I have some suggestions for future rants if you don't mind:

-Video game violence (you did racism and sexism. Now, the big one)

-Your definition of an "overrated" or an "underrated" game and why people are throwing it around like a buzzword these days.

-Sega and SNK's downfalls and rises, and what to consider when you have a major game company

-The rights and wrongs in the world of video-game reviewing.

-Why some development issues in video games might never change, like balance in a fighting game.

You don't have to take these, but I always thought these would make good things to talk about.

Take care.

Benfea said...

Spot-on observations about race, America, and the video game industry. I might have preferred that you spent a little more time on how utterly clueless the Japanese are about other people's stereotypes or the fact that they still carry a lot of ugly stereotypes about Koreans and Chinese, but overall you really nailed it.

It sounds like you've read at least some Clarence Page, or spend a lot of time talking to someone who does.

Jen said...

I agree that when I first saw the RE:5 trailer, I only saw the protagonist blowing away zombies that were out to harm him. Until I saw your video, it never occurred to me that it could be viewed another way.

As a side note, most of the Japanese perceptions of African-Americans come from American culture, mainly from the present. There's a lot of influence from Hip Hop and R&B. They're essentially getting a lot of their images of black culture from, well. . . black people. And the Japanese video game designers are getting their images of black culture from the Japanese image of black culture. So yeah, it's going to come off as a little bizarre in video games. So those seemingly racist video game characters initially came from American black culture. (One of my favorite examples: Jynx [Pokemon]. Of course, there are exceptions, as there are with anything.) Unless, of course, the designers do research into the matter, like the Resident Evil developers obviously did.

The point of the above diatribe is that, while the Japanese are some of the most racist people I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with (live there for five years, you'll see what I mean), they are not intentionally racist. They're not aware that these images could be taken as offensive. Because they don't have the melting pot, as you mentioned. It doesn't offend anybody (any citizens, anyway) in Japan. And that is, after all, where video games come from.

Johnny said...

Hi, first of all, I really enjoy your show.
Now, I’m sorry but I think you missed a lot in this episode by not looking in this perspective I’m about to dive in. Ok, it's just the same guy battling zombies in yet another place, this time is Africa, last time it was Spain, so the zombies are black (or african-africans ) now. (period)
Really, you really think that the way the people are portrait and the whole vibe from the trailer and gameplay footage is just that?? Casual like that??? C`mon this game is brilliant just because it had the guts to play with peoples instincts and non-political and yet non-intentional reactions. I mean are u really telling me that an average-white-person, or hell, just about everyone, doesn`t naturally feel more threaten in a mob of poor angry Africans than in a mob of poor angry (white, Germans, Italians,… )?, you would be in denial if you don’t think that the game plays on it’s rendering of the average-middle-class-Americans-or-even-Europeans worst nightmare, it’s not a zombie or alien invasion, it’s to be overrun by a mob of poor black people. I’m not saying that is OK to feel like that. It’s wrong, terrible, prejudicial, but it’s the last remnant of racism that still lives on people, and although it will probably never surface because people are aware of just how wrong it is to feel like that, it exists.
And I really don’t think it’s wrong that some company cash in on that fear. It’s great that it’s out there so people can play with it, comment, and maybe drive those obscure thoughts away.

LuckyLeo said...

johnny,

You may be fishing but you caught one, me.

First of all, I think that you are projecting WAY too much here on the race issue.

YOU maybe frightened by being overrun by angry, armed poor Black people. But, I think I would be frightened by being overun by ANGRY, ARMED people in general. And I am sure a lot of people would.

What race have to do with it is ridiculous! I would feel frightened if I had a gang of angry, armed people coming at me no matter what race they were.
Race and social background would have absolutely nothing to do with it in the slightest!

Angry and armed people want to open a can of whupass on me, if not homicide!

Hell, their reasons wouldn't even matter much. They may be racist rednecks who hate Blacks or Middle-Eastern terrorist types who hate Americans or Hip-Hop Gangsta types who don't like the colors I wear or Zombie-types who want to eat my brains. Does it really matter? Little ole me is out numbered 50 to 1.

So maybe being overrun by poor old Black maybe your worst fear. But I don't think many would agree with you on the race issue at all.

To all else: Am I mistaken?

Mark said...

Johnny,
I've got to disagree with you here as well, but not in the same way that luckyleo has.
I do agree that for a great many americans, a group of africans *is* intrinsically scary. Let's face it, these sorts of things happen in many cultures - a white friend of mine was living in Japan for awhile, and speaks of how little old ladies would hide from him when he walked up to ATMs, etc.
Where I disagree is that I think that konami (and culture in general) shouldn't be reinforcing these crazy notions. Sure, it's human nature, but is it really a good thing for a video game to be trying to make it *worse*?
But, then again, as Bob points out in his video(s): "VIDEO GAMES COME FROM JAPAN".... they're not a part of this culture, and responsible for it, like if, say, Blizzard were to be "racist" in Diablo III.
So, essentially, I don't have a big problem with the trailer or the in-Africa concept, and I don't think it's racist per-se, but I can't help but acknowledge that it may unfortunately further some stereotypes and reinforce some negative aspects in society.

LuckyLeo said...

Mark,

Unfortunately, "furthering some stereotypes and reinforcing some negative aspects" can't really be helped.

Hell, the youths of my community, as Bob so elegantly put it in his latest "Non-GTA review", tend to "wallow in it". And you can't watch the evening news with seeing SOME aspect of it.

But must, must, MUST it be projected in a video game! When it is not necessarily EVEN THERE!!!

Really, I so agree with Bob with everything he stated in this video. N'Gai Croal was really reaching here about racism in the RE5 trailer. And while racial epithets sure in Hell did not need to thrown in his direction, he was dead wrong about this.

But one thing here: I am going to let known some dirty laundry to all.

You said this, Mark:

I do agree that for a great many americans, a group of africans *is* intrinsically scary

Guess what? You aren't going to get a lot of Blacks to admit this, but I am going to let you on a little secret.

For a lot of African-Americans, a group of whites *is* intrinsically scary. Thus, the "faux-machismo" (to quote Bob again -- he uses such an excellent turn of phrase) of the Gangsta Rap culture. It is an affectation for the most part, to scare "whitey" to leave us the Hell alone. To "back the fuck off", so to speak, because a lot of us are scared to death of "whitey" with the Ku Klax Klan (wow, didn't that group fall in obsolescence), cross-burnings, lynchings, police racial profiling, etc., ad nauseam.

This is real reason why N'Gai Croal assertions burns me. We are afraid of you; you are afraid of us. And guess what, the fear is made worse, if not manufactured outright, by media knuckleheads like him stirring the pot (or again creating by it in the first place).

Seriously, I am around all different ethnic groups every day and I do not see some MASS fear for the most part. Yeah, maybe some here or there with SOME people. But not the fear of each other some would like you to see in the nightly news.

That said, RE5 is looks scary enough. It doesn't need someone, anyone, bringing up a nonexistent racial issue about it.

Mark said...

Luckyleo,

Your point is definitely well taken, and I agree that oftentimes the Media create issues that would previously go unnoticed.
However, it still seems to me to be an irresponisble choice on the part of Konami. If, as you suggest, they *know* people are afraid of Africans, exploiting this fear is sad, and a bit problematic, given the state of the world. Can you imagine if they were a bunch of radical-muslims......? then we'd really be fanning the fires......
Obviously N'Gai overreacted, but incorrect as he may be, his opinion is still valid and illuminates some dark-side to this business and the culture, I'd say.

LuckyLeo said...

Mark,

I am not so sure that Capcom (not Konami) did anything wrong.

By the way, I never said that people were afraid of Africans. What I did say, or tried to, is what I thought was frightening was a lone person being attacked by a mob of people -- no matter there ethnicity.

Again, to me, that is truly scary!

Now, I do take offense that some want to get ultra-significant and look for "deeper meanings" and an "undercurrent of racism". When there is no racism present!

This is a video game, not some literary treatise with chock full with hidden symbolic meanings.

I am African-American and I saw NO racism in the RE5 trailer. Was there something I did not see? Was Chris Redfield tossing off racial slurs at his attackers as he was fighting for life and limb?

The two things that bother me is this:

1. The fear of being attacked by a mob is thought to be automatically identical to the fear of the _______ race or ethnic group because, first, some jackass of _______ race or ethnic group is "seeing" something that was not, is not there.

Come on, no one was screaming about racism against Spainards in RE4! Was it less scary than trailer of RE5, because the attacking mob was made up of Spainards? If so, that says a lot about the person playing the watching the trailer, BUT ONLY ABOUT THE PERSON THE WATCHING THE TRAILER! This leads me to:

2. Okay, maybe a some people are afraid of Africans just as some Blacks are afraid of whites. But why does this have to project across as "Everybody are afraid of Africans" or "Most people are afraid of Africans" or some similar nonsense.

This is the real reason why I think racism is still alive, though barely kicking (the damn thing won't die fully). A few people, and I mean a few (and no, Capcom is not necessarily guilty of this), still have their irrational fears and hatreds; and somehow, they are loud enough to be heard, through the media usually, to make it seem as though racism is still VERY widespread, but VERY hidden. So it looks like "everybody" or "most people" of such-in-such ethnicity feel this way about other people of such-in-such ethnicity

And this is what I call "Bullshit" on. People getting their panties in a bunch over imaginary offenses which leads to false fears and perceptions about people in general, let alone the subject of race relations.

When Chris Redfield (as the good guy) is tossing off racial slurs, wearing a white-hooded mask, and lynching poor oppressed Africans or shipping them off as slaves, or using them as guinea pigs (like Umbrella Corporation), then one could be offended or cry racism. For now, it just seems some are just crying wolf.

Mark said...

luckyleo,

first of all, you shouldn't get the impression that i even really agree with the RE5 is racist dogma - i'm merely exploring the possible social-negatives that could in fact come from something like it.

second of all, yes, capcom. don't know what i was thinking.

as far as the "everybody is afraid of africans" idea, please understand that it was *not* I who brought that to the table! I was merely responding to the idea put forth by Johnny, before me. Definitely *not* what I was trying to say. I apologize for ascribing that opinion to you - i'd lost track of the posts and who said them (remember konami...?)

Obviously the Spaniards question is an interesting one. But the thing is, Spanish people may very well be offended by it. Not likely, but possible. Besides, it's less "offensive" for a white guy to kill a white guy, than somebody of a different race (like it's not as offensive for an african american to use the N-word to another African American, than, say, a white guy.

I think, for sure, we are pretty much in agreement.
But, I guess the fundamental difference here is that I think we have different ideas of how much racism still affects the world. For me, I see poll results that said 30% of Hillary Clinton's North Carolina supporters say "Race was a factor in their decision"..... tha scares me. Yeah, I know it's the south, but still, 30%! They voted for, at least in part, because of race. And that's the *democrats*! Imagine the Republicans....

So what does that mean, then? To me, it just means people need to be careful what they stir up, because racism is still very much a part of society.

Now, does Capcom have anything to do with this? No. They're Japanese. They're far more racist as a culture, and it's not even a taboo over there. so really, this is a moot issue, because we're trying to ascribe our social structures and insecurities on another.

LuckyLeo said...

Mark,

I know that Johnny was the one who originally said that a mob of poor angry Africans was a average middle-class white Americans's (or European's) nightmare. The offense I took was more directed Johnny's staement. I assumed that you just mixed us up but I wanted to set the record straight.

So yeah, we are pretty much in agreement about silliness surrounding the RE5 trailer.

Still you bring up an interesting fact in "30% of Hillary Clinton's North Carolina supporters say 'Race was a factor in their decision.'" This, I feel more or less proves my point.

This is maybe a "looking at the glass half-full" approach but consider this: 30% is every 30 out of 100 people and if you want to break it down even moreso it is every 3 out 10 people.

That more or less justifies my stating it is only a few people. A "few" in its most literal meaning as a "minority of people" If it was 7 out of 10 (70%) or even 5 out of 10 (50%) who felt that way about race, I would be more concerned.

And lo! How do these few people get their voice heard? How, does their, as one may call it, "ignorant" opinion become voiced in such a way to bring about negative social ramifications worry or upset people?

The media. I know, big shocker, right.

My only point is, as all gamers are aware, that the media loves controversy and where there is none, they will spin it. And where there is a little, they will exaggerate it, usually to make it worse than it is.

Okay, I guess. They have to make a living (if you want to call it that), I suppose.

But because of the media's standard operating procedure, I tend to believe that things are not as always bad as they would like us to believe. And from where I see it, I think racism is an "ism" that is fast going to way of the dinosaur. And the damned thing would have been fossilized by now, if it wasn't for a few hacks, jerks, race-baiters, and all-around unpleasant nutcases who just want to stir up the pot so they can make a living.
(Again, not including Capcom as being any of the above).

So you are right, I do look at racism a bit differently. But as I said, I think it is more or less a dying fashion and should be stomped out whereever and whenever it is found, when it is truly present.

Mark said...

well, for me 30% is still a staggering number, considering the millions that can represent.

I agree that it is dying, just not fast enough in my opinion.

And regarding the media - we have to remind ourselves that they are mega-corporations, with a strong vested interest in ratings, and not necessarily enlightening the public.

I guess we'll have to wait and see... I don't have a PS3 or an XBox360 (yet), so I guess I'll be participating in the not-racist zombie-genocide a bit later than most...

Onc again, props go to Bob for making the video which is causing such an interesting line of discussion.

LuckyLeo said...

Mark,

True dat! Major props to Bob! This was an amazing video and I hope it got other people to start thinking and discussing this rationally as well.

And yeah, 30% is a large number in terms of millions; but 70% is even a larger number in terms of millions. And look at it like this: maybe not even more than 30 years ago, those percentages could have been reversed (and probably would have). We have come a long way and 30% means we don't have far to go, as long we do not let the 30% shake us up and make us believe they are the majority, when they are just actually loud and obnoxious.

Mark said...

cheers... it blows my mind to think how bad this place was only forty yeas ago

Bob said...

Luckyleo,

Here's where I am on most of this:

When you actually think about it, the relationship between the white West and peoples of African descent is about as follows: From the very first encounter between Europeans and Africans ALL THE WAY up to the middle point of the 20th Century, the default agreed-upon "facts of life" for white people was that blacks were an inferior, nearly-animalistic race. That's an INCREDIBLY long time, so it's just unreasonable to expect that negative perceptions are going to be washed out of the collective-conscious in a mere few generations.

Part of what I think hits such a STRONG chord about the RE5 trailer - for more people than likely even realize it - is that the premise and setting are unwittingly reaching WAY back in terms of stereotypes. Ask yourself, what's the oldest "bad image" of Africa and Africans among white Europeans? Think back to Kipling etc: Africans as screaming savages who'll hack white intruders to bits with pre-firearm weaponry and EAT THEM. I think that's the real source of this: RE5 isn't just "black villians," but "negative black stereotype zero."

LuckyLeo said...

Bob,

I mostly agree with you on this.

But as you said in your superb video: Most gamers, it seems -- including myself, did not even begin to look at it in a racist light UNTIL N'Gai Croal brought it up! And yes, that is a very good thing. And that is the way it should be!

I am so tired of the pot being stirred up on this issue, especially when it is non-existent!!

I am so tired of my certain people of my race seeing things that are not there -- a "white sheet in every bush" as it were. Especially when it seems that the bulk of us accept, actively support and constantly reinforce one of the most degrading and negative sterotypes of the African-American culture: the "celebration" of the ghetto and gangbanger cultures via Gangsta Rap. Seriously, this is a horrible blight on the Black community -- as much, if not more so, than drugs like crack cocaine. But a lot of our youth tend to "wallow" in it. Not to mention both cultures keeping in use, one of the most ugly racial slurs created by the enemy (racist White supremacists) by actively using it as a title or as a form of friendly greeting to one another; and then have the GALL to be offended if anyone else of a different race dare to use it! (This double-standard is a HUGE sore spot for me!)

And I am also tired of some Whites being so tolerant of the gangsta rap culture's faux-machismo (Damn, I love that phrase!) and its double standard of the use of the n-word. This way sound funny: but I get very perturbed and saddened that some Whites are afraid to call "bullshit" on this because either they have a fear of either being improperly labeled as "racist" or on some misplaced guilt-trip, stemming from, what they believe, the shameful behavior of SOME of their forefathers as if ALL Whites actively supported slavery and racism. This, I really wish would stop.

And this is where I disagree with you Bob: I do not think that it has anything to do with negative sterotypes of the past. I believe that it is actively being stirred up in the present and that the news media and entertainment industry (specifically the music industry, i.e. the rap music industry) are major players in this, if not the outright source.

Yeah, one could say criticize Kipling and his concept of the "white man's burden" (which some say was meant ironically and satrically about the US and the Philippines and imperialism all together). But if you read a LOT of literature of that time period, all the way up to the early 20th century, you will find that almost all non-White races, not just Aficans, were given negative images and were viewed as savages -- sometimes "noble", sometimes not. Think Sax Rohmer and the "Yellow Peril" of the dialobical Fu Manchu. And let's not even start talking about the Japanese.

And I bring that up because those negative images of Asians have not endured. You even joked about it (and I laughed because I love the Asian culture myself -- especially those pictures).

And no, let's not use the horrors of slavery and racism in this country as justification either.
Both the Chinese and Japanese (see Opium Wars and A-Bombs respectively) have suffered at the hands of the Whites too and their former negative sterotypes do not still exist, at least not with the same prevalence as the White vs Black issue that still gets stirred up today.

So WHY must the negative sterotypes of Blacks endure and WHY some of us Blacks are so damned sensitive about it? I mean, look around. As an example: How many mixed-race couples do you see nowadays? Do we Blacks really have a right to play victim much? Hell, 30-50 years ago, I would not hold the job I have right now (computer programmer); and if I did, it would be with immense difficulty.

I mean, you right: one cannot think that the negative sterotypes of Blacks would be washed in a few generations. But the funny thing is that it really almost has. So why the hell can't it be done and over with, like with Asians? Why MUST it stay alive? Who is keeping it there?

Anyone else care to comment?

And Bob: Keep up with the kick-ass videos, okay? I hope you make it big someday. Your GameOverthinker videos are way to enlightening and entertaining to be kept secret for to much longer.

Mark said...

well i've written myself to death on this issue, so i'll keep it short.

I don't think it's true that negative stereotypes of asians have faded - i think, with a great deal of the country, they are still alive and well. We represent a specific demographic - gamers, who, through obvious means, have a certain "kinship" with asian culture. Secondly, and I speak for myself only, I live in a major metropolitan area, and have lived around asian people for my whole life. Other parts of the country do not have this luxury - i know more than a few people who grew up in towns (some even in california) where the only asian family was the one who owned the chinese restaurant (even if they were not chinese). In these places, the stereotypes still exist (especially since film and tv have not done much to dispel them - how many east-asian actors/actresses are household names?

and so, especially considering certain "unenlightened" parts of our nation, i'd be wary to dismiss the age-old stereotypes just yet. especially with generations older than mine (with people of my generation, the prevailing stereotype surely is the gangbanger, as you said).

interesting what happens when a forum conversation is dominated by those over the age of 18...

LuckyLeo said...

Mark,

You said:

interesting what happens when a forum conversation is dominated by those over the age of 18...

Yeah, I cracked up there. How very true. This is one of the most enlightening and adult discussions I have ever had on the subject of race relations. It really is very refreshing. Not to mention, I can get some things of my chest that have been bugging me for a while. (Part of why, my comments are so damned long :) )

I do want to comment what I mean on "negative sterotypes" to at least explain further what I mean. As I believe Voltaire said: "If we are going to argue, let us define the terms." (or something to that effect)

By "negative stereotypes", I mean those stereotypes that are made about a race that are make them look like a hostile threat at worst or collective of foolish or clownish behavior ("buffoonery") at best. And I am leaning more toward the former, since those types of stereotypes are the ones that will be used to usually present an atmosphere of fear and hostility toward said race.

Now there will always be "negative stereotypes" of the latter as long people have a sense of humor. Hell, Jeff Foxworthy rose to fame almost solely of his on the "You might be a redneck..." shtick. This is not always so bad; sometimes those can be very funny, just like the opening of Bob's video on this very subject. People who take offense to that -- when truly meant good-naturedly, if not ironically -- really need to grow up and get a helmet, if they are that thin-skinned.

And yeah, they can be these forms of stereotypes can be hurtful when used as slurs too; but only when used by people who are truly racist assholes. And let's face it, those jerks are truly of a dying breed and are fairly obvious to spot. They are not very subtle, even when they are "joking".

The Asian negative stereotypes I meant specifically were of those of the former, like "Yellow Devils" or the "Yellow Peril" or any other racial slur that is used to create an atmosphere of unease or dread around Asians.

Now really, how often do you see that? Now let's compare that with the same category of "negative stereotypes" (purpose to create unease and dread) of African-Americans. How often are those encountered?

That was all I meant in comparsion in the sense that category of negative Asian stereotypes is pretty much non-existent, as best as I can tell anyway. And unfortunately, that category of negative stereotypes of those of African descent is still alive and kicking, in spite of racism being on its last legs as a whole.

Very curious, I think.

Mark said...

let's just say, I hope you're right...

Low Frost said...

test

YetUnnamed said...

so i just saw the newest trailer for resident evil 5 from the tokyo game show. bob was right on the money when he deduced what the plot would be in this video. umbrella is back, there's bio-terrorism involved, and the main bad guys are the rich white people.

Cam said...

so is it any surprise to anyone that Sheva was thrown into the game to get people to shut the fuck up about racism? Go on any forum these days and you will see that a) Sheva was used to shut people up
b) Chris' original partner (if he was going to have one) probably may have been Rebecca (only I and the 20 other Rebecca fans would hope) or Jill once again but the racism made them create Sheva.

On top of a lot of other things wrong with Resident Evil 5, I don't know it just feels like no matter how you look at this game it was managed poorly and it was in development for at least 3-4 years, how did they screw up so much on a video game? Even though Resident Evil 0 totally kills whatever continuity the series was trying to establish, it still somehow managed to be more entertaining and widely accepted among the fans than Resident Evil 5 was, not to mention 0 was all about Rebecca, a character hardly anyone liked in the original Resident Evil and Resident Evil 5 was about Chris, the only male protagonist getting the spotlight outside of Leon.

Yes I will say again I'm a Resident Evil fan but this series has to be one of the most polarizing ones out there in terms of divisions of fandoms.

The WebcomiCritic said...

oh,just wanted to mention his name is pronounced with a soft "g" so it has a "j" sound, so it sounds like "En-Jai". I believe it's Senegalese.

You know, for the next time he comes up in your vids

Andrew said...

"Africa is a beautiful country..."
"Continent" maybe.