So, last week, I talked about how much I dislike the new WWE Heavyweight Champion Roman Reigns. Honestly, I don’t think I said anything new from what others have said before. Writing it, however, got me thinking about the other things that make me rather angry. So I decided to fuel my fury by going to Anita Sarkeesian’s Feminist Frequency YouTube page to check out what new slanderous things she had to say about how video games were misogynistic in her Tropes vs. Women in Video Games series.
Yes, I know it’s kind of strange for someone to intentionally go watch something produced by someone she hates just to get mad. But I think I have a weird fascination with Anita Sarkeesian’s point of view because it’s totally different from mine. I also used to think that she believes what she’s doing with her Tropes vs Women in Video Games series is the one of righteousness.
Until I watched her latest video, Body Language and the Male Gaze, that is.
Okay, before, I actually thought Anita Sarkeesian was, at least, trying to do some good, however misguided and slanted her position was on the topic. But after watching Body Language and the Male Gaze, I come to the realization that Anita Sarkeesian isn’t a champion for feminist rights in any way. No, she’s just a troll. A well funded Internet troll.
Right off the bat, in the video, Anita attacks the online shooter Destiny… even though she does say the female characters are treated practically equal with the male ones. However, it does differ with one aspect: the way they sit. In Destiny, the males sit spread eagle, supposedly using a posture that “suggest confidence”, while the females sit “like a delicate flower.” Well, I don’t think I guy could sit down like the girl in Destiny did because males have something in between their legs… and I’m assuming it would be rather uncomfortable if they, I don’t know, accidentally squeezed them?
Also, I also shudder to think what Anita Sarkeesian would say if Destiny had the female avatars sit on the floor, manspread like the male avatars. I mean, picture Destiny’s female characters sitting manspread on the field just like the male avatars. It’s going to look pretty sexual, right? So, damned if you do, damned if you don’t?
But the bulk of the video is where I have the most problem. And it’s the way most women walk in video games. Anita Sarkeesian points out to the viewer that, in practically all video games, females have the tendency to walk while swaying their hip. She says that animating women with this noticeable hip sway is sexist because it allows the gamer to focus on the female’s butt all the time.
Well, I guess I’m part of the problem because I myself walk with a noticeable hip sway! And, seeing I’m not being animated by some sexist/misogynistic computer programmer, I’m guessing that my butt wiggling walk is actually natural. I actually took a look at myself walking in the mirror and, yes, I do swing my hips when I walk. I walk with a rather noticeable hip sway and I’m not conscious about it. It’s just the way I naturally walk.
Anita doesn’t seem to realize that most real life women do walk with a rather noticeable hip swap. Not because of sexism or even social convention. No, most women walk with at least some hip sway because of biology! Women have larger hip bones because of the getting pregnant thing and this does result in women having to wiggle their behinds a bit when the walk. And she does mention that it is a way for women to maintain balance. So, I can’t figure out why she’s griping about it! And most of the characters she mentioned, including Jill Valentine, who “wiggles her entire body” doesn’t look exaggerated. It actually looks rather normal since she is running at full blast!
Her entire argument apparently revolves around the Male Gaze theory, in which women are just supposed to be seen and it’s mostly the male that are looking at them. From what I understand, women are just objects to be looked at, which is why you get a lot of shots focusing on a women’s body in movies, television and, yes, video games. But she then goes to mention one of my favorite and funniest things in video games, the DLC outfit for Street Fighter V’s Ryu.
Now, this alternate outfit, showing a really bearded Ryu without his traditional shirt on, is also known as Hot Ryu. He became somewhat of a sensation as people (female, I hope) jokingly pictured themselves going on dates with this shirtless and bearded Hot Ryu. A lot of it is apparently because there was something… cute about him. Yet, Anita also called Hot Ryu as not sexualized… yet he’s called Hot Ryu because he’s Ryu and he’s hot!
After watching the entire Body Language and the Male Gaze video, I have come to the conclusion that Anita Sarkeesian is just trolling us. She is intentionally creating videos to instigate and infuriate gamers as most of the statements she made above have been instantly debunked by better people than me. You can go watch the videos of MrRepzion, Ceara McCord and Thunderf00t as they’re much more better at articulating what’s wrong with Body Language and the Male Gaze.
If Anita Sarkeesian is not a troll, however, that would mean I would have to think even less of her as, if that’s the case, she automatically looks at women as sex objects. If she’s not a troll and she honest to goodness believes in what she’s saying, all Anita sees when a women expresses herself in a sexual manner confidently is a women who is being abused and oppressed by the Male Gaze.
She sees all gamers as males who only buy games with females in them because they are objects of sexual fantasy. She looks at the entire gaming industry as something that is all set up and built to simply oppress the female gender by making them look sexy. Never mind that there are a lot of strong female women in video games, like Lara Croft, Samus Aran, Sara Kerrigan, Ada Wong, Jill Valentine, Bayonetta, Elena Fisher, Chun-Li, Fem-Shep and many more; women that are admired by both men and women gamers alike. Characters that prove that girls and women can be confident, powerful and fantastic characters while also being sexy.
But she is apparently unable to see any women in video games as empowered because they’re sexy. So, Anita, it’s either you’re a troll who wants a lot of heat and make money out of it or you can’t see strong women at all if they’re sexy because you, yourself Anita, are sexist yourself. It’s either the two. Those are the only two ways I can see you. Like what you did with Destiny, damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
Speaking of damned if you do, damned if you don’t, I think comic book fans and movie goers are going to feel the same way next week as they’re going to have to pick a side when Captain America: Civil War is released to the world! I’ll try to pick a side myself and I’ll go through my process of choosing next time!
What’s your take on Feminist Frequency’s new video? Let me know in the comments section below!