Controversial Tropes vs. Women in Video Games Series Comes to an End

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Controversial Tropes vs. Women in Video Games Series Comes to an End

Anita Sarkeesian has brought her controversial Tropes vs. Women in Video Games video series to an end with a final episode.

One of the bigger controversies in the modern video gaming world was Anita Sarkeesian's Tropes vs. Women in Video Games video series. It was both heavily criticized and heavily defended by proponents on either side, which led to a lot of overall nastiness including some very serious claims of internet harassment from Sarkeesian. She has now decided to wrap up the series with one final episode: "The Lady Sidekick", which you can watch to the right.

The project was first announced some five years ago, when Sarkeesian ran a Kickstarter asking for $6,000 to explore feminist issues within video games. She instead received a whopping $160,000 to pursue her project, and has done so over the last years.

In a blog post discussing the conclusion of the project, she describes the whole saga as "simultaneously awful and wonderful, and the journey is one which I will most certainly never forget."

"Doing meticulous, comprehensive research spanning the entire history of video games as preparation for those episodes was tremendously difficult and time-consuming," she writes, "but looking back, I believe the results speak for themselves."

While Sarkeesian may be done with the project, the production team Feminist Frequency has a new series planned that will use its "signature feminist media analysis" to "examine the connection between representations in pop culture and the racism, sexism, and transphobia of our current political climate."

Source: Feminist Frequency.

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Oh, good, it's finally over.

Now, the question is: When will series debunking her bullshit claims become mainstream, instead of her crap?

score thanks for that i didnt know the latest one was up yet

i find the series interesting even if i dont agree with everything

And nothing of value was lost.

I'm waiting for her next kickstarter in which she asks for a couple million dollars, takes thirty years to finish, and kicks off a shitstorm so large it causes world war 3 after the 33rd SJW battalion of the UN army sets off a dirty bomb to cull the foul neo-gamergaters from Pennsylvania. An event which is blamed on Russians.

.....You mean it wasn't over already?

Kind of tells you a lot about this series that, when you get past all the bluster and controversy, it really wasn't worth getting that worked up over. I honestly don't get how people got mad at this, because it would require them to feel an emotion when watching it other than OVERWHELMING BOREDOM!

Was this series really that controversial?

I mean yes the first couple generated a lot of forum rage, but I don't remember seeing any for quite a long time now, years in fact. The last few haven't even had that many viewers, just another Youtube social commentary show. Talking head makes lots of blanket statements, people on the internet get angry could describe a third of Youtube these days.

Ah well, best of luck to Anita and chums in future endeavours, wonder who's going to rile up the keyboard warriors next.

If it wasn't for the fucking rage against her in the first place, she'd be another nobody on Youtube trying to hack it. That's my opinion, I never actually watched the damn thing because if I wanted to see something I care get treated like shit I'd...

well I wouldn't. Why would I want to do that to myself?

I don't have much invested in the woman's opinion is my point. The fact that she can play Breath of the Wild and still claim Zelda is the damsel in distress, when she's the fucking heroine of that story and a mighty good one at that. She saves HIM.

Anyway, it served its purpose. It catapulted her into the lime light and she'll have no trouble getting checks to speak authoritatively on feminism for the rest of her days.

How many episodes does this make, total?
And how many did she promise during the Kickstarter?
Because last I checked, there was a pretty staggering degree of not delivering what she said she would.

Oh good, the scam artist is finally shutting up.

I have to confess I haven't bothered watching anything from Sarkeesian in some time. I did try, for a while. Occasionally she would even make an interesting point.

I just got so tired of her. She exemplifies the kind of attitude that not only makes it more difficult for people to find common cause and common ground, but weakens feminism as a whole, presenting it as an unchallengable monolith that has all the answers and is the only enlightened way to look at anything. Even when she got her facts wrong... Even when her presentation was narrow-minded, one-sided, and paranoid... Even when she chose to rain scorn on long-running, popular series for failing to fall in line with her standards, or series like Dishonored for adding a female character but failing to eliminate the male one.

She's the kind of feminist who makes perfectly well-intentioned men and women want to say, "I don't want to be associated with that word."

And if she's saying she wants to "examine the connection between representations in pop culture and the racism, sexism, and transphobia of our current political climate", all I can think is, "Oh... You want to forward more of your unexamined and unsupported assumptions about the impact of popular culture, accusing anyone who disputes your claims of being racist, misogynistic, and transphobic, all the while pretending that you're "progressive" and "tolerant" while you work to suppress free expression that doesn't meet your precious standards? Does that about sum it up?"

And, yes, I recognize that that interpretation may itself come across as paranoid and excessively persecuted. It's a pity there isn't someone filling the job who doesn't provoke that kind of response. There's a whole world past the choir and the narrative waiting and needing to be engaged, and barring a massive broadening of her perspective, someone like Ms. Sarkeesian will just never be up to the task.

Wait, this thing was an ongoing thing? I thought it was just one video or something.

Good. I don't know what was worse, her deliberately misleading and disingenuous videos or the redpill brigade keeping her in the spotlight with their massive hate boner for her. If they really wanted to hurt her career they should have just ignored her. She would have faded into obscurity soon enough.

fix-the-spade:
Was this series really that controversial?

I mean yes the first couple generated a lot of forum rage, but I don't remember seeing any for quite a long time now, years in fact. The last few haven't even had that many viewers, just another Youtube social commentary show. Talking head makes lots of blanket statements, people on the internet get angry could describe a third of Youtube these days.

Ah well, best of luck to Anita and chums in future endeavours, wonder who's going to rile up the keyboard warriors next.

Best of luck to the talking head who makes lots of blanket statements but the people who called her out earned your insult, or did you mean 'keyboard warriors' as a compliment?

Anita went looking for trouble, found it by attacking gamers and it's the gamers who are the assholes?

Ellie is a female sidekick in The Last of Us in the same way the meat patty is a condiment on a hamburger. I sure hope her image on that video is to provide an example of a female that is not just a sidekick.

In any case, the only reason Sarkeesian ever got money and fame was because of childish neckbeards breathing heavily every time she uttered a sentence, and articles like this acknowledging her existence. She is and has always been mundane, shallow, and a poor representation of femenism.

I've experienced a Pyrrhic victory. so long, so much suffering. We've lost trust, celebs, friends. Was it ever about the sexism or just about the economic shift to a million cults of patreon personality and people monetized their internet cliques and status into diasporic lifestyle.

*sigh* Only time can heal these wounds

And I can only hope though she may never FALL as deeply as her haters wished that she fades, even with all her success and accomplishments to buoy her.

Callate:
snip

You know, my mom told me she was a lot like this when she was in college. She was one of those bra burning all men are scum feminists in the 70's. She sees herself in college in people like Anita. You want to know what she told me when I asked why she doesn't act like that anymore? "I grew up" was her response. We just have to wait for people like Anita and her friends to do just that. Same goes for the other side. Otherwise they'll get left behind while actual progressive people live without unessesary stress.

RaikuFA:

Callate:
snip

You know, my mom told me she was a lot like this when she was in college. She was one of those bra burning all men are scum feminists in the 70's. She sees herself in college in people like Anita. You want to know what she told me when I asked why she doesn't act like that anymore? "I grew up" was her response. We just have to wait for people like Anita and her friends to do just that. Same goes for the other side. Otherwise they'll get left behind while actual progressive people live without unessesary stress.

So many gamers were so willing to throw every other male gamer under the bus that the voices of opposition were treated as the troublemakers when they weren't the ones who picked the damn fight in the first place and were indeed, on the defense.

Even in this thread, some posters feel the need to qualify their dislike of Anita by hating on other gamers. Keyboard warriors and childish neckbeards (gender specific) come to mind. Who knew gamers were so chivalrous, well I am sure Anita knew.

I thought she was supposed to be doing something regarding women in history. Probably got scared off by the discovery that in history, you're actually supposed to do this thing research...

Pretty hilarious seeing all the celebratory comments regarding this series coming to an end.

One would be forgiven for thinking that these people were celebrating the end of some yearning pestilence or Lovecraftian-esque all-consuming shadow that has loomed large over their lives and completely dominated their thoughts and actions for the last 5 years, ...when in reality it was nothing more than a fairly vapid and mediocre youtube series that very few people really cared about and which has had no real impact or effect on anything.

I watched one of her videos, found that she did about the most shallow analysis possible, and then didn't bother watching any more. They weren't good videos. She would have stopped a lot earlier if people didn't give her so much attention. The people who hated her the most probably gave her the most power since they ended up inevitably drawing out a lot of people to come see what the fuss was about and then defend her.

I'm glad this is finally over. I'm tired of this new trend where every game protagonist is a woman and it's all about women. Now that this series is done, things will go back to normal. I miss manly games where I do manly things. I miss the straight white guy protagonists.

Kinitawowi:
And nothing of value was lost.

This.

Oh, I still remember that one where she tried to link some game scenarios to domestic violence.

Good times.

IceForce:
Pretty hilarious seeing all the celebratory comments regarding this series coming to an end.

One would be forgiven for thinking that these people were celebrating the end of some yearning pestilence or Lovecraftian-esque all-consuming shadow that has loomed large over their lives and completely dominated their thoughts and actions for the last 5 years, ...when in reality it was nothing more than a fairly vapid and mediocre youtube series that very few people really cared about and which has had no real impact or effect on anything.

I mean, yeah. I'm glad to see it end. And your last statement is the exact reason why. It was a vapid and medicore series that got bursts of unwarranted support and money all for her to do...nothing. Certainly minimal amounts of what she claimed she would do. I'm happy to see it end because then she can stop popping up on gaming sites and bolstering her popularity temporarily.

You could argue she might have stirred a trend in people taking interest in the topic, but not likely her "perspective" on it.

IceForce:
Pretty hilarious seeing all the celebratory comments regarding this series coming to an end.

One would be forgiven for thinking that these people were celebrating the end of some yearning pestilence or Lovecraftian-esque all-consuming shadow that has loomed large over their lives and completely dominated their thoughts and actions for the last 5 years, ...when in reality it was nothing more than a fairly vapid and mediocre youtube series that very few people really cared about and which has had no real impact or effect on anything.

Yep no fire lighted that burned the upper management of the site.
UN talks, rise of minor cottage industry/fad, and certainly no charges or federal cases opened.
We're just over sensitive douchebags with no perspective who deserve to have only toe scorn of women for viewing them as prizes. For that isn't what people do as a whole
objectify people or use social relationships or romantic ones as marks of development, pride or accomplishments.
So immature. ITs uniquely us.

And she certainly didn't become a minor reoccuring established force by way of her fame management.

Does this mean we can finally stop talking about her?

Pretty much this. In fact, I thought that it had already ended after Poe put this comic up. (Comic from Does Not Play Well with Others)

Ah, Anita. I remember her talking about Batman's cape managing to cover his butt from the player with it's butt covering powers, as designed by Rocksteady. (A butt that I've managed to see plenty after playing Arkham Knight 3 times. And I'm sure I'll see more during my fourth.) About how male asses are intentionally covered or hidden in some way, because it isn't appealing to the male gamers. She apparently didn't try very hard, or never even managed to play as Nightwing, who has a better ass than Batman anyway. (See my Avatar) And then there's this gem.

The point is, it doesn't seem like Anita ever really tried. She has a valid point, but her examples are piss poor. I do agree with her though. More capable female characters (And more capable A.I. companions period) would be great. And I'd personally love to see more vulnerable male characters. This actually reminds me of the time in Skyrim when Farkas, a werewolf who helped me kill a dragon, refused to proceed through a dungeon because of his fear of spiders. Definitely one of my favorite moments in the game.


Never played Bioshock Infinite or The Last of Us, so I can't comment on the inclusion of Elizabeth or Ellie in the video, but it seems the users on The Mary Sue are a are a bit peeved by the inclusion of the two characters. Hell, the way The Last of Us is described by one of the comments sounds exactly like what Anita wants by the end of the video.

All I hear is double standard. This whole "this thing is only bad when men do it because it mirrors society" is illogical. Either this thing is bad or it isn't, who does it to whom isn't relevant.

Also, how the hell is having a huge feather beast dog mauling anyone who'd harm you not a power fantasy? Has she never walked a large dog? You feel pretty damn powerful when you are in control of animals, even if they don't listen to every word you say.

WeepingAngels:

So many gamers were so willing to throw every other male gamer under the bus that the voices of opposition were treated as the troublemakers when they weren't the ones who picked the damn fight in the first place and were indeed, on the defense.

Even in this thread, some posters feel the need to qualify their dislike of Anita by hating on other gamers. Keyboard warriors and childish neckbeards (gender specific) come to mind. Who knew gamers were so chivalrous, well I am sure Anita knew.

I found that hated her tried to prove her wrong so much that they were actually proving her right (I think I only saw the first one so this may be an exaggeration.) Both sides were too busy insulting each other rather than actually discussing anything. But then that epitomises the GG/anti-GG movements.

I wouldn't say they're qualifying their dislike of Anita, they just realise that keyboard warriors are just as bad as she is.

PS. if you think the first sentence is some sort of defence of Anita, its not. Its more a comment about her haters. Generally apathy is the best she can get from me. I don't care enough about her to hate her - you can only hate something if you actually care about it.

Dreiko:
All I hear is double standard. This whole "this thing is only bad when men do it because it mirrors society" is illogical. Either this thing is bad or it isn't, who does it to whom isn't relevant.

Also, how the hell is having a huge feather beast dog mauling anyone who'd harm you not a power fantasy? Has she never walked a large dog? You feel pretty damn powerful when you are in control of animals, even if they don't listen to every word you say.

Or the fact that some of the issue only negatively affected women, and didn't affect men, because it is more prevalent amongst women. If its bad for one group, its bad for all. Eg, kust because domestic violence happens to more women, doesn't mean we shouldn't try to abolish all domestic violence.

I've never got the hatred for Sarkeesian. If she says things that you disagree with, presenting arguments that you find disingenuous...well, that's fine. But how does that equate to the vitriol and harassment she's experienced? With all the claims of "social justice warriors" "ruining gaming," it seems that the actual snowflakes are the ones who fight against the 'evils' of 'social justice.' Yep. Can't have a feminist commenting on gaming, otherwise it'll be ruined.

I mean, looking at this video, I do disagree with her arguments and conclusions, but so what? I disagree with someone - I disagree with someone every time I come to the Escapist. Doesn't mean I'm about to go on a tirade against them.

But on a related note, I haven't played Infinite, but if Elizabeth can open tears through worlds, why doesn't she just dimension hop to Paris and stay there or something?

Dreiko:
Also, how the hell is having a huge feather beast dog mauling anyone who'd harm you not a power fantasy? Has she never walked a large dog? You feel pretty damn powerful when you are in control of animals, even if they don't listen to every word you say.

Yeah, I was thinking that too. If I had a pet giant anything crushing my foes in my defense or at my command, I'd feel pretty damn powerful. Oh, Scalebound, how I wish you saw the light of day.

Hawki:
I've never got the hatred for Sarkeesian. If she says things that you disagree with, presenting arguments that you find disingenuous...well, that's fine. But how does that equate to the vitriol and harassment she's experienced? With all the claims of "social justice warriors" "ruining gaming," it seems that the actual snowflakes are the ones who fight against the 'evils' of 'social justice.' Yep. Can't have a feminist commenting on gaming, otherwise it'll be ruined.

I mean, looking at this video, I do disagree with her arguments and conclusions, but so what? I disagree with someone - I disagree with someone every time I come to the Escapist. Doesn't mean I'm about to go on a tirade against them.

She's threatening to get rid of the T&A and that must be defended at all costs. At. All. Costs. Honestly, there seem to be a lot of people who simply can't handle an opposing opinion of any kind. Mom and Dad either disagreed too much or didn't disagree enough. Either way, they wind up with the emotional maturity of a five year old. But this is the same community that sends death threats to reviewers for not liking a thing, nothing short of a hive-mind will make these sociopaths happy.

But on a related note, I haven't played Infinite, but if Elizabeth can open tears through worlds, why doesn't she just dimension hop to Paris and stay there or something?

Reading through the comments on the Mary Sue suggests that Elizabeth has her reasons.

Don't know how accurate they are, though.

trunkage:

WeepingAngels:

So many gamers were so willing to throw every other male gamer under the bus that the voices of opposition were treated as the troublemakers when they weren't the ones who picked the damn fight in the first place and were indeed, on the defense.

Even in this thread, some posters feel the need to qualify their dislike of Anita by hating on other gamers. Keyboard warriors and childish neckbeards (gender specific) come to mind. Who knew gamers were so chivalrous, well I am sure Anita knew.

I found that hated her tried to prove her wrong so much that they were actually proving her right (I think I only saw the first one so this may be an exaggeration.) Both sides were too busy insulting each other rather than actually discussing anything. But then that epitomises the GG/anti-GG movements.

I wouldn't say they're qualifying their dislike of Anita, they just realise that keyboard warriors are just as bad as she is.

PS. if you think the first sentence is some sort of defence of Anita, its not. Its more a comment about her haters. Generally apathy is the best she can get from me. I don't care enough about her to hate her - you can only hate something if you actually care about it.

Her shit has been debunked over and over again, most if it is completely calm and rational too. Just go to YouTube and type in 'tropes vs women debunked' and pick a video or 5 to watch. Proved her right?? Holy shit that's funny. BTW, you too tend to judge actual gamers who stood up to her (you call them haters) harsher than you do her.

WeepingAngels:

Anita went looking for trouble, found it by attacking gamers and it's the gamers who are the assholes?

Considering she got treated worse than this guy...

..yea, I didn't buy into this line that she was somehow the anti-christ of gaming. She's just another hack to me.

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