I’m bored on a Friday night and tired of doing nothing with me life. So here I am, on my website, drinking pina colada and doing nothing with my life. As I drank this wonderful concoction, a thought came to me – Anita Sarkeesian’s argument about Hitman is stupid. Like, really stupid. Her Damsels in Distress video has a scene from Hitman: Absolution where you can go into the room with the strippers and kill them and drag them around the floor. Her argument was that the player sees the bodies as something to just use and throw away and how that’s a reflection on men in general. Let’s not even get into the how the game penalizes you for attacking civilians. Anita says that argument doesn’t work because the game should have a fail state if you do that. Well, that is dumb. After all, if the game failed you because you killed a target who isn’t the one you are after then it would never work. There are plenty of times you’re going to have to whack the bad guys. Besides, these arguments have been taken on by everyone. I had a new thought.
Let’s ignore Hitman: Absolution. That game was terrible. It totally betrayed everything that made the series good. Let’s instead look at the new game. You know, the one that was such a financial disappointment to Square Enix that they are selling the company who made it. Yeah, the second season is never happening. In the new game, who is Agent 47? He’s no one. He’s a weapon, in every sense of the word. He will not act unless he gets explicit permission. From whom? Well, that would be his handler – Diana. At no point will he act unless she gives him permission to do so. Everything he does is directly at her request. In essence, in their dynamic she has all the power. All of it. 47 has no agency is his own story. When she tells him that there is a potential threat, he even says that it is her issue to deal with, he’s just waiting for a target.
For a game all about the “male power fantasy,” it sure is interesting that a woman has every single ounce of the power in the relationship, isn’t it? I kind of like that. It’s what made Absolution so frustrating. 47 isn’t meant to have any power over his own fate. His entire life he was trained to be a weapon to be used by others. It’s all he knows. If feminists knew the first thing about nuance, they might think about things like that.
Honestly don’t have anywhere else I was going with that. I just find it interesting that the character Anita believes is guilty of treating women like objects doesn’t acknowledge that aside from terrible games, he is just a tool to be used by an agency and a woman who has the deadliest assassin in the world at her tool for getting things done.
Until next time, a quote,
“Someone’s playing a game, 47. The question is – against whom?” – Diana, Hitman