I Just Can’t Stand That Guy! [SS Connections #1]

Okay, we all know there’s always that guy or girl that when you see them you just think “Jeez, I hate that person!” (Admit it, we all know a few people that make us feel that way.) And characters in games are no exception.  I mean, when I was reading the Great Gatsby, I just could not stand Tom’s character (I would say that a spoiler alert is coming, but the book has been out since the 20s, so boo-hoo).  His anger towards Gatsby feels completely unjustified because while Gatsby and Daisy are hooking up, Tom has been hooking up with Myrtle the entire time, who is also married to another man.  And he never gets what’s coming to him! I feel like there are also some video game characters that just never get what they deserve, and I hate them even more for it.

The first character of this sort is Professor Oak. Now, hear me out, I can back this up.  Think about it. If an old man gave you some tamed animals and told you to bring him back one of every kind in the region, and to fight other people with these animals, and beat up innocent wild animals, and put your own animals intentionally in harm’s way, it already sounds bad enough.  But the worst part is the fact that he asks a 10 year old to do it.  Seriously, what is wrong with this old coot!?

And now, I turn your attention to and even sicker character, Mario Mario. Again, you’re probably thinking, “SS, do you have brain damage, dude?,” to which I would reply “Perhaps, but look at the facts.” Mario  is going around, murdering the denizens of the Mushroom Kingdom, both good and bad.  I mean, in the instruction booklet for the original Super Mario Bros., it’s revealed that every brick block is a Toad. And how many brick blocks have you broken as Mario, completely unaware of this very important detail? Probably hundreds, thousands, maybe even millions. Your accidental genocide of Toads is probably one of the worst things you’ve ever done in a video game, and the worst part is, YOU DIDN’T EVEN KNOW IT. But Mario knew. That sick sonova…

So in the end, the good guys are the bad guys in these games, right? Well, wrong.  I mean, sure, Mario is killing a bunch of Mushroom Men to save his beloved Princess, but is that justification? Well, the game sure thinks so, or it wouldn’t have us believe Mario is the hero. And Oak justifies himself by…actually, Oak never justifies himself, he’s just a vile human being. But that’s video games for ya: distorting our perspective on characters that are much worse than the game lets on to be.  But sometimes it’s for the better, I mean, if Pokemon Red and Blue started by saying “Come into my lab, kids!” instead of “Welcome to the world of Pokemon!”, I’m assuming not many people would have bought it.  So I guess we mask these characters’ sick ways to make sales. How human.



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