I am going to try and be as decent and polite as I possibly can. But there are some things that I would like to ask the feminist critic, or anyone associated with her, and I would like legit answers. If you all could pass this on, as respectfully as possible, then I would be very grateful. But there are some things that I want to know. Let’s call this – 10 questions I want to legitimately ask Anita Sarkeesian, and would like a serious answer on. I graduated from college with my Bachelor’s in Journalism and Public Communication, and while I am not going to be focusing on the journalism part with my current career choice, I still remember that part of me that wanted to be a journalist when I started college. With that in mind, here are my questions, with little bits afterwards that will explain why I want to know.
10. If a video game character appeals to lesbian and bisexual women, then how is it derogatory to women?
Here’s something I’ve been wanting an answer for, for ages. Form really any feminist, but specifically you. Because you seem to conveniently forget that there are lesbian and bisexual women out there, who may find the representations of a female video game character sexually attractive. Which strikes me as kind of two-faced, considering that you have said that your reading of “queer women” literature enriched you as a feminist. All of your statements about representations of women in video games seem to focus exclusively on their appeal to men, while completely ignoring that women may find this sort of thing attractive. Or gay men who have a healthy respect for femininity . I know more than one such person. Went to class with one. He was the most flowery queen I’ve ever met, but an interesting guy all the same.
9. Why do you consistently ignore context when you point out things about characters or situations in games?
The ONLY time I have seen you address this issue is in your Damsels in Distress videos, where you talk about the mercy killing of a female character. That is the only time that you acknowledge that context does play a part. But you then subsequently brush it off, like it suddenly doesn’t matter. How do you reconcile that with your positions? If context plays a role, however minuscule, shouldn’t that mean something? Like when you have a clip from Watch Dogs where there are naked women, but the instance of that was at a sex slavery ring, which the game never tells you is a good thing. In fact, it goes out of its way to point out that it’s bad. Why do you simply ignore context at some points, and then address it with a simple brush-off at others. Does narrative context never matter? Guess that was a few questions rolled into one, but I thought I’d ask all the same.
8. Do you have a problem with sexual expression? If so, why? If not, what is the acceptable level of sexual expression that you believe should be in games?
You consistently deride sexual expression in games, yet then deride that female characters don’t have the correct kind of sexual expression. I am just curious where you view the line. What do you believe is the correct amount of sexual expression? At what point is it offensive? I don’t mod comments, so whoever wants to answer, feel free. If you want to just say that women in gaming are for chauvinist men, you can do that. I disagree, but I want to know where you stand, Anita.
7. What do you believe is the most offensive female representation in a video game?
I’m not speaking in general terms. I want you to be very specific. What female in a game is the worst, and why? There must be elaboration on this, because so many of the qualities that you describe as negative contradict one-another. An example – your recent review praised the new Lara Croft, yet she is sexually-appealing and also seems to fit into the Ms. Male character archetype, since she is very much the male equivalent of Indiana Jones. I want to know what you believe to be the absolute worst female character depiction in a video game, and give me concrete reasons as to why.
6. Which game do you believe worst represents female characters?
A larger extrapolation of the previous question, but worth asking. Because your examples seem to cherry-pick specific things from specific games, ignoring the larger picture. So, with that in mind, I want to know what game do you believe represents female characters the worst, and subsequently – why?
5. Which game and which character do you believe are the best representation in a video game?
The reverse of the previous two questions, but now I think that if we should look at the worst, let’s subsequently look at the best. Which female character do you believe is the best female representation, and which game do you believe has the best women. Again, why?
4. What do you believe is the correct type of male character in a game?
Since I am going to be posting this to some subreddits and other places where people I am sure will have a thousand and one hilarious examples, I want to know – what do you believe a male character in a game should be? For all the negative traits you associate men in games with having, what do you believe they should have. As an extrapolation, which male character do you believe most exemplifies the traits you list. Be specific.
3. In a Tweet, you derided difficulty in games, stating that it works against women. Do you not believe that that is a little condescending?
I believe that women have just as much skill as male players. There are plenty of women who can defeat me rather soundly at Bloodborne PvP. You’ve talked about how there needs to be less difficulty in games for female players. Do you not find that even the least bit insulting to the women who dedicate their time and energy to becoming skilled in their respective games? Not to mention, isn’t it insulting to the idea that women are equal with men, when you want there to be a way for things to be easier for them?
2. Isn’t it a touch bit hypocritical that you can deride the trash-talking women get in gaming, yet then totally ignore the fact that men online get it just as much?
This has been brought up by just about everyone, but it is a very good point. In both online gaming, and trolling, there are plenty of men who get it just as much as you, if not moreso. I guarantee you that PewDiePie gets plenty of abuse from people. So does any other online personality. So does anyone online, really. Don’t you think its hypocritical for you to go to the UN and complain about rudeness direct at yourself, while then ignoring all the men who get it? Are you saying that it is only hurtful towards women? If so, does that not how do you defend that position, in respect to the fact that it has been shown, quite clearly, that it does affect both genders equally?
1. Will you please clarify your views on violence in gaming for me?
In your Rise of the Tomb Raider review, the person you had stand in for you stated that the game was flawed due to the fact that there were no women in the antagonist’s mercenary outfit, yet then subsequently went on to deride the violence in the game as well. Which is it? Do you believe that violence in video games is wrong based on its own merits, or that violence should also be acceptable toward women? After all, Lara Croft kills the mercs in that game, in exceedingly more violent ways as the game goes on. Is that wrong all on its own, or are you complaining that she can’t kill women as well? She would, if women were added to the roster of mercenaries. Your views seem contradictory. So perhaps you could lay this bag of snakes out straight. In your E3 2015 coverage, you derided the new Doom trailer for the violence in it. Doesn’t that seem contradictory to what you have said? Just putting that out there.
Those are my questions. If you all could find a way to get these to the people at Feminist Frequency, I hope that they will answer them. I have been completely respectful in this post, so maybe that will help. I somehow doubt it, yet I hope for a discourse, because my inner journalist would like nothing better than for someone at that enterprise to engage with me, so I could learn more about where they stand. The chance for an interview with the lady herself would be a dream come true, since we could perhaps finally see behind the veneer she puts up, to who Anita Sarkeesian really is. It’s a dumb dream, but I can dream it, can’t I?
Actually, wait, I got another one that just came to me –
0: Why do you have a convicted pedophile running your stream?
I think that one speaks for itself. Right, Valis77?
Until next time, a quote,
“When you tear out a man’s tongue, you are not proving him a liar. You’re only telling the world that you fear what he has to say.” -Tyrion Lannister, Game of Thrones