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Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) 1 year, 2 months ago

Poll: No *Evil* women? Do you prescribe to this theory? (287 votes)

Yes 5%
No 64%
It's complicated 31%

There's an eerie lack of *evil* women in The Last of Us. There's badass women. Complicated women. But all the downright *twisted* and *evil* antagonists, all the actual human foes, are burly dudes. Conspicuous.

Do you believe women are less capable of evil than men? Videogames sure seem to prescribe to that paradigm. What say you?

#1 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

I believe women aren't any less capable of great evil than men, and I find it odd that that's usually not reflected in videogames specifically, and all media in general.

#2 Posted by alternate (2696 posts) -

dumbest question ever

#3 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

dumbest question ever

That's like saying it's the best question ever. Thanks for the compliment.

#4 Posted by SecularBaron (181 posts) -

The obvious answer is no, of course anyone can be evil. In a post-apocalyptic setting sometimes the lines of good and evil can get blurry (as if they aren't already?). But yeah, plenty of story telling in media is ripe with gender stereotypes and just blatantly evil characters. "Meh, You need an enemy? Guess i'm just an all around baaad dude." - Every Bandit. Not sure I would go so far as to call this "bad" story telling or anything. But something that breaks away from stereotypes can be refreshing.

#5 Posted by jimmyfenix (3852 posts) -
#6 Posted by mellotronrules (1184 posts) -
#7 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5415 posts) -

I could be wrong, but my here's my take on it.

I don't believe it has anything to do with females being just as capable of evil as men, It's more of being sensitive toward others. You have a point, but due to the more gruesome aspects of the combat I could easily see people getting upset over explicit depictions of violence against women. Imagine stealthing through a level and sneaking up behind an enemy, who happened to be a lady, and violently sticking a knife down her neck to kill. It's the same reason there are no kids present with the enemies. Depicting imagery of severe violence towards women and children is something we as a society are uncomfortable with. Sure, it sometimes happens in movies, but in a video game we have agency over the situation. Also, movies are a more developed medium, while games are still relatively in their infancy.

If you notice, there are a plethora of female zombies. That's because they obviously have an inhuman aspect to them. They're effectively only monsters, something so devoid of humanity that we feel comfortable seeing them as a threat and using complete lethal force. I agree it doesn't make logical sense, but video games quite often present situations or details that create a dissonance in our perception of that games reality and our own.

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#8 Edited by Hunkulese (2697 posts) -

Tess was pretty evil.

#9 Posted by posh (474 posts) -

?????? what ??????

I guess uncharted 3 has that if you're looking for examples, but seriously this is a dumb question

#10 Edited by Dark (378 posts) -

Ehhhhhh I noticed the lack of evil women as well, considering they where willing to actually quite traumatically kill a child in the intro it was surprising to find the lack of said women.

Maybe it was a decision to avoid bad press but honestly I don't think that will matter, people will complain about them being sexist that there is no female bad guys just as easily as them complaining about the murdering of said bad women.

::EDIT:: WOOO there, the spoiler tag decided it didn't want to be a part of the sent message.

#11 Posted by Yummylee (21501 posts) -

Tess was pretty evil.

While I wouldn't say she was 'evil', she was definitely just as brutal as a lot of the men in the game. Though I can see what the OP is getting at, even if you're obviously not going to be facing any female Hunters considering they're only used as food or to rape by the gang.

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#12 Posted by CABBAGES (523 posts) -

Women are usually more evil than men. Those evil men were probably made do the things they do by an evil woman.

#13 Posted by SunBroZak (1081 posts) -

You have a point, but due to the more gruesome aspects of the combat I could easily see people getting upset over explicit depictions of violence against women. Imagine stealthing through a level and sneaking up behind an enemy, who happened to be a lady, and violently sticking a knife down her neck to kill. It's the same reason there are no kids present with the enemies. Depicting imagery of severe violence towards women and children is something we as a society are uncomfortable with. Sure, it sometimes happens in movies, but in a video game we have agency over the situation. Also, movies are a more developed medium, while games are still relatively in their infancy.

This. While in the context of the world The Last of Us has created it would make sense for there to be female enemies, I don't think video-games are "mature" enough to have you brutally killing women without it raising controversy. It would be an easy target for those who'd ask, "Why is this game allowing people to violently murder women?".

As for the question of if women are capable of being as evil as men, yeah, silly question.

#14 Edited by ll_Exile_ll (1584 posts) -

@sunbrozak said:
@themanwithnoplan said:

You have a point, but due to the more gruesome aspects of the combat I could easily see people getting upset over explicit depictions of violence against women. Imagine stealthing through a level and sneaking up behind an enemy, who happened to be a lady, and violently sticking a knife down her neck to kill. It's the same reason there are no kids present with the enemies. Depicting imagery of severe violence towards women and children is something we as a society are uncomfortable with. Sure, it sometimes happens in movies, but in a video game we have agency over the situation. Also, movies are a more developed medium, while games are still relatively in their infancy.

This. While in the context of the world The Last of Us has created it would make sense for there to be female enemies, I don't think video-games are "mature" enough to have you brutally killing women without it raising controversy. It would be an easy target for those who'd ask, "Why is this game allowing people to violently murder women?".

As for the question of if women are capable of being as evil as men, yeah, silly question.

Have you played any recent Bethesda games? Fallout 3 has some of the most gruesome kills you'll find in any game, and the enemies consist of just as many women as men.

#15 Edited by Yummylee (21501 posts) -

@sunbrozak said:
@themanwithnoplan said:

You have a point, but due to the more gruesome aspects of the combat I could easily see people getting upset over explicit depictions of violence against women. Imagine stealthing through a level and sneaking up behind an enemy, who happened to be a lady, and violently sticking a knife down her neck to kill. It's the same reason there are no kids present with the enemies. Depicting imagery of severe violence towards women and children is something we as a society are uncomfortable with. Sure, it sometimes happens in movies, but in a video game we have agency over the situation. Also, movies are a more developed medium, while games are still relatively in their infancy.

This. While in the context of the world The Last of Us has created it would make sense for there to be female enemies, I don't think video-games are "mature" enough to have you brutally killing women without it raising controversy. It would be an easy target for those who'd ask, "Why is this game allowing people to violently murder women?".

If any game would have been able to suitably fit in evil female enemies, and their gruesome demise, it's The Last of Us. But yeah, I guess even Naughty Dog got to be a little gunshy on that front. It's a shame that nobody bats an eye at something like Tomb Raider, where you've got a female character killing a horde of men -- quite brutally in some regards. And yet the opposite could have potentially been considered too controversial to depict.

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#16 Posted by ElectricBoogaloo (353 posts) -

Do we really think women would survive in these groups? A bunch of bloodthirsty men seems like a bad environment for a woman to be in, no matter how evil she might be.

#17 Posted by PenguinDust (12492 posts) -

@cabbages said:

Women are usually more evil than men. Those evil men were probably made do the things they do by an evil woman.

Behind ever evil man is an evil woman, eh? Brings whole new meaning to the characterization "pussy whipped".

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#18 Edited by Lazyaza (2176 posts) -

Their are plenty of wonderfully evil women in media, games are just made (and typically written) by mostly doods so its only natural we don't get many where someone truly understands how to make a female antagonist really work. Imo the industry needs to solve the issue of a lack of female protagonists above everything else. It isn't just that we have so few that are decently well realized but the complete lack of them in general is disgusting, Jim Sterling did a fantastic video on the subject not long ago for The Escapist.

#19 Edited by ripelivejam (3796 posts) -

yes i write people little notes that they can get medicine with to this theory

(think you mean "subscribe")

#20 Posted by RedRoach (1191 posts) -

The only true evil person in the game is David. Everyone else is just out to survive, yeah the hunters are bad, but they're no different from Joel. They're just doing what they have to do to survive, and by the end of the game, Joel has done more brutal and terrible things then the hunters ever did.

#21 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@ripelivejam said:

yes i write people little notes that they can get medicine with to this theory

(think you mean "subscribe")

A mistake was made, a lesson is learned. Polls cannot be edited for obvious reasons. Guess I'll have to live with this monument to my failure.

#22 Posted by GnaTSoL (793 posts) -

Holy retarded....

#23 Edited by Zella (730 posts) -

Men and women are completely equal in ability to be evil douches, they are both protrayed in most forms of media as well. For every James Bond there is a Femme Fatale, and every brave knight a wicked witch.

As @redroach said David is the only truly evil person in the game (Well by the end of the game Joel too cause he possibly dooms humanity because of a selfish decision), and in my opinion he is a dude because his motivations would be far less believable as a woman. All the other villains are pretty much just out to survive, yeah the Hunters took it pretty far but even then they weren't being dicks just to be dicks. The reason there are no woman standard enemies, in both TLoU and most games, is because the go to way of defeating a villain is beating the shit out of them and our society greatly frowns upon violence against women and even if these women are clearly evil there will still, wrongly, be a negative stigma attached to it. It's also much easy to have the audience accept an evil male villain because throughout history many of the great evil people have been dudes; this is not saying history says women aren't as evil though, they just have rarely had as much opportunity to take power as men have.

#24 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7077 posts) -

Lizzie Borden says hey.

#25 Posted by Bocam (3718 posts) -

I killed a bunch of female character models in the multiplayer. So naughty dog doesn't really have any hang ups about violence towards women.

#26 Posted by Sticky_Pennies (2019 posts) -

@bocam said:

I killed a bunch of female character models in the multiplayer.

When I read that, I just kinda visualized someone firing a machinegun into the computer monitors of people who are rendering and rigging 3D female character models.

#27 Edited by Yummylee (21501 posts) -
@bocam said:

I killed a bunch of female character models in the multiplayer. So naughty dog doesn't really have any hang ups about violence towards women.

I was just about to bring that up, too. Kinda weird then why there's never even female Hunters, nor even fireflies in the hospital. I do remember there being a female military soldier nearing the early goings just after you're paired with Ellie as well, too. But not much else from what I can recall.

Online
#28 Posted by bananaz (256 posts) -

It's complicated if you don't think "evil" is really a thing.

#29 Posted by JoeyRavn (4966 posts) -

@cabbages said:

Women are usually more evil than men. Those evil men were probably made do the things they do by an evil woman.

If this is serious, I won't even try. No, sorry: I won't. even. try. I'm out.

#30 Posted by zoozilla (978 posts) -

I would say "no" just because I don't think anyone is truly "evil." To say so would diminish the entire human race and compromises our ability to understand people with different viewpoints.

I would agree that men and women can do horrible things - but who would ever argue with that? When talking about characters in video games, I think the lack of women antagonists is more a side effect of the lack of women in general. It would be nice if more well-rounded, developed female characters were in games generally.

#31 Posted by BeachThunder (11834 posts) -

Definitely; girls are made of sugar and spice and everything nice.

#32 Edited by Strife777 (1520 posts) -

I assume they just didn't want the bad press. It's unfortunate, but understandable. People have no issue with men getting beaten to death, as long as they're bad. If they had you (Joel, a man) hit women, whoever threatening to your life they might have been, with a baseball bat or whatever, backlash would've been imminent.

I just noticed someone bringing up female character models in multiplayer, but I think it's somehow different. Multiplayer is this sort of abstract competitive thing to me. Even if you try to attach a story to it, there is still people in control, so you can't really know what will happen. While on the other hand, single player is a written story through which you are guided. So what happens is mostly determined by the developer. That's why the ESRB says that online experiences may vary I guess. I'm not sure if I'm making sense.

I also don't see the antagonists as evil. I haven't played the game yet, but it just seems to me like another scenario of the apocalypse bringing the more basic survival instincts in us. With that said, one could argue that the lack of civil law or the individuals to enforce it would make the people with more sinister intentions "come out of the closet", so to speak.

It would be an interesting interview dumptruck for Patrick to do.

#33 Posted by SomeDeliCook (2291 posts) -

I think some of those death animations would've been a bit too much if done to a woman in my honest opinion.

I know women can be savages just as much as men, but it's satisfying to kill a big burly bearded dude in trashy jackets, not so much women.

#34 Posted by Kevin_Cogneto (1038 posts) -

yes i write people little notes that they can get medicine with to this theory

(think you mean "subscribe")

To be fair, I get these mixed up too. Like that one time when a little card fell out of the Sports Illustrated I was reading in the Walgreens, and so I took it back to the pharmacy and asked for my football phone... Boy, we all had a good laugh that day.

#35 Edited by M_Shini (551 posts) -

Its in a mans genes that they be more 'evil', or rather brutal and less emotional than feminine counterparts, men in the stoneage went out, hunted for food, killed animals and all that nasty stuff while the woman stayed at home and gave birth and raised children and cared for them, so i don't find it weird that there arn't really any 'evilz' woman since really that makes sense with how woman actually are. Not that there is no such thing as a asshole evil woman, just less likely. Besides at least as far as i am there arn't really any main bad guy characters other than Bandit Guy and Infected Dudes/Dudettes. But i havent finished yet so maybe there is.

#36 Edited by Animasta (14673 posts) -

Wasn't the head villain of their last game a woman?

#37 Posted by Colourful_Hippie (4338 posts) -

sigh

#38 Posted by TruthTellah (8781 posts) -

I think women are villains in media a lot more than you're acknowledging. Women are villains in many books, movies, and some videogames. Heck, this exact developer's last game had an evil woman as the villain.

There is even the specific trope of the evil queen or the manipulative woman pulling the strings. There are plenty of female villains.

#39 Edited by rebgav (1429 posts) -

All women (and cats) are pure, unrepentant evil incarnate. The media continues to ignore this essential truth.

#40 Posted by Fredchuckdave (5353 posts) -

Women are a tad more vulnerable and thus somewhat less likely to survive, unless they're tutored by a mass murderer of course. Plenty of evil women in the multiplayer.

#41 Edited by MiniPato (2732 posts) -

In the Last of Us specifically, the world has been reduced to the dark ages again. It makes sense that less structured and advanced groups would keep their women back at the homebase cause they are primarily acting as mothers while the men go out as hunter/gatherers. Men can impregnate as many women as they want, but women can't, that makes them more valuable and thus can't go out hunting with the men. It's not sexist or anything, it's just how shit works when human society is reduced to its primal roots and you need to survive and keep your family going.

#42 Edited by Anund (882 posts) -

@animasta said:

Wasn't the head villain of their last game a woman?

This.

I think the main problem with the game is how violently the main character gets killed, specially against those big fellas. Violence porn anyone? Right? It's Tomb Raider all over again. I'm surprised we're not drowning in posts about how horribly sexist it is.

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#43 Edited by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

No, women are never evil. They also never fart. True story.

Also, I hope that by now OP you realize that this thread won't end well.

#44 Edited by Darji (5294 posts) -

The reason for that is that it was just fantastic writing. There is most of the time no black or white and even the psychopath (forgot his name) had a reason to go after them, They are cold and brutal because of the world they are living in. This is also the reason why I believe that video games are not sexist but just have most of the time very terrible writing and The Last of Us proves that.

#45 Posted by Seppli (10251 posts) -

No, women are never evil. They also never fart. True story.

Also, I hope that by now OP you realize that this thread won't end well.

It's all in the service of discussion. I don't have a invested opinion on how there's no antagonist female hunters and such, other than finding it conspicuous and worthy of discussion.

#46 Posted by insane_shadowblade85 (1421 posts) -

I think you should ask Brian Banks if he thinks women can be evil.

#47 Edited by geirr (2529 posts) -

Definitely; girls are made of sugar and spice and everything nice.

and unicorn kisses.

#48 Edited by SomeJerk (3216 posts) -

Was there ever any outrage towards That Woman in Uncharted 3?

Because I'd like to find the people angry about a woman being like that in a piece of fiction and put them out to greener pastures. If they did it like this to avoid bad press then they've made the world a worse place by continuing discriminating, thanks to people who themselves are discriminating.

#49 Posted by Brodehouse (9863 posts) -

Because when Joel cracks a two-by-four over some white guy with a shaved head we go "VIDEO GAMES" and when he cracks it over a brunette lady with glasses we go "THIS NORMALIZES VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN". We're told that sympathetic female characters being kidnapped (sometimes through as little violence as throwing a net or a cage over them) normalizes violence against women, what happens when you actually introduce some unsympathetic, antagonistic female characters? I made a thread about the lack of common female grunt enemies in games a few years ago, and everyone thought it was 'weird' to notice it then.

So far there have been very few games that had women enemies who are not either major characters or boss characters. Someone brought up 'wasn't the main villain from Uncharted 3 a lady' but that's no different than how it's ever been. In fact, I'd say the depiction of a woman acting out her violence through male proxies is more 'damaging' to women than of them being equals with the nameless brutes you headshot and stealth kill.

I also hate the idea that 'if it was women, the violence would be too much'. Which means that I can have my head split open by a mugger and that's okay, I'm just a man, I should just man up and take it like a man. When I grabbed the first dude in the game and the only options were strangle or shiv, I was taken aback, sounds like a lot of people don't care as long as its a man. Not even if it's an evil man, it's seems shades of grey are fine, as long as those shades don't include women.

I will say I appreciate how the characters are attractive without being exploitatively so. And I really like the rebel lady's hair.

#50 Edited by Brodehouse (9863 posts) -

Also, you can't prescribe to a theory, you subscribe to theories. You can't prescribe theories, you can only present theories or prescribe rules or guidelines. And then people may subscribe to them or not.

Also what to add that I think MiniPato is hitting it on the head. You don't have to be a big follower of evolutionary psychology or meme theory to get that every civilization that has crawled from the annals of history to the modern day has adopted the social norm of prioritized female security. From an evolutionary standpoint, the fact that societies that put the safety of their women first have selected out those that did not serves as evidence that this set of behaviour is beneficial for that era of human technology. Remember that for every women forced in a kitchen there's a man forced into a coal mine or a battlefield. It's just that populations can survive the loss of 50% of the men... they cannot survive the loss of 50% of the women.