Update: Late last night Gamer Limit took the post down. However a cached version of the page still exists and can be read here. Should the cache version blip away into the ether, a reader has very kindly screengrabbed the entire article [link updated] (sans comments from readers giving writer Kyle MacGregor some well-deserved shit over the article).
Post fixed: For some reason I started calling Kyle “Jeff”.
Kyle MacGregor of Gamer Limit today posted a list of “Top Five Female Role Models”, and by “role models” he presumably means “fuckable” or, at least, “subservient”. Let’s take a look, shell we?
At number five, we have Princess Peach of Super Mario Bros.:
Princesses stand for poise, grace, beauty, everything that a woman should be.
This is not a good start. But don’t worry, it gets much worse! Let’s see what Kyle has to say about Aya from OneChanbara:
As someone who grew up on a farm, I can definitely respect someone who can make that “cowgirl look” attractive […] Aya has done her breast [sic] to protect her younger sister, Saki, from the legion of undead destroying their homeland. […] She certainly gets out blood flowing and that’s why she’s our number four.
Kyle tells us exactly how he feels about Aya - she’s a piece of meat, and he gets an erection. Boy, what a role model!
Who’s at number three? Oh look, it’s Lara Croft. I’m sure Kyle has something respectful to say about her:
…she is world renowned for her massive…intelligence.
Subtle, no? But the next one is my favourite - it’s Samus Aran. Firstly, let’s look at the picture Kyle opted to use:
That’s not a piece of official artwork. That’s a piece by noted misogynist Reinaldo “Reiq” Quintero. Why did Kyle go for this piece of fanart rather than an official render of the Metroid star? I’m going to hazard a guess and say it’s probably because Nintendo’s official depiction of Samus doesn’t have a large enough bust. I’m just guessing.
But I digress; what does Kyle actually have to say about Samus?
Metroid is one of the most successful videogame series of all time. Since the days of the NES, Samus has been wowing audiences with her fantastic exploration games and proving that girls can do it just as good, if not better, than the boys. Her transformation from the Super Nintendo to Gamecube was near flawless, proving that women can be perceived as three dimensional objects and have some depth to them. She may have been a real contender for the top spot if her most recent outing, Metroid: Other M, didn’t prove the old proverb “silence is a woman’s best garment” to be true.
Wow. That first sentence aside, there is not a single part of that paragraph that doesn’t come across as misogynistic, demeaning, degrading, objectifying and offensive. Way to be, Kyle. Really, are you actively setting out to prove my claim that feminism is relevant to the industry and to game journalism? Because honestly, I don’t know whether to thank you or to stick a grenade up your sphincter and pull the pin.
Audible sigh. Still, only one more to go. Oh look, it’s Ivy from Soul Calibur. Surely he can’t possibly have anything to s—
You know, for some reason or another, I’ve always really admired something about Ivy. I just wish I could put my finger on them.
Someone hand me a grenade. No, make it two - one for Kyle’s anus, and one to put in my own mouth when I’m done.
Update: It’s just occurred to me that none of the female characters in their header image - a file simply named “girls.jpg”, which is rather telling - are actually featured in the article. Well-rounded, fleshed out characters such as Alyx Vance from Half-Life 2, the Tetra incarnation of Princess Zelda as seen in The Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass, Jade from Beyond Good & Evil and Sarah Kerrigan as seen in StarCraft: Brood War are seemingly to be featured in this article, but aren’t mentioned anywhere at all. Not only is this misleading, but the omission of Alyx from a list that is supposedly about female role models is appalling.
That said, perhaps we should be thankful that these characters didn’t suffer the same indignities that the other characters did.