No *Evil* women? Do you prescribe to this theory?

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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?

#51 Posted by White (1341 posts) -

Define...

#52 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@white said:

Define...

It's a relationship thing really. If somebody wants to murder and butcher and cook you up, regardless of the larger picture, that somebody would be evil to me. I doubt you'd not recognize evil in somebody, if that somebody has put you in their murder dungeon.

How about a dose of Ramsay Snow (Potential Season 3 Game of Thrones Spoilers)?

#53 Posted by rebgav (1429 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.

You may proscribe a theory. You may also proscribere a theory if you're a classical era latin-speaking theorist. You definitely don't want to mix-up the two though.

#54 Posted by JasonR86 (9657 posts) -

It's safer and less complicated to just have evil characters be men. No one will flinch at that. If those characters are women you invite unwanted attention. That said, I haven't played the Last of Us yet so I can't speak to it specifically.

Online
#55 Posted by Veektarius (4772 posts) -

I don't believe in evil. I believe that there are those out there who have motivations that are counter to my own. When phrased as such, people of either gender are equally likely to adopt such motivations. Men are much more likely to act on those motivations in a violent way. How much more likely, I don't know. Males commit 90% of violent crimes in the United States, so a very rudimentary approach would be to say that a 9:1 ratio would be appropriate for video games.

#56 Posted by marc (501 posts) -

If Joel was going around beating up and killing women along with men in this game, people would kick up a stink about it. It's the way society is. Naughty Dog pretty much had no choice to make all the bandits dudes. If it were real life, yes, there would be female bandits. But in a video game featuring a lot of killing, you'll only see women in the form of infected. Thank you, feminists. lol

#57 Posted by McGhee (6094 posts) -

#58 Posted by deathstriker666 (1337 posts) -

I think we both know the reason why. Don't play coy with me boy

#59 Posted by Brodehouse (9871 posts) -

@rebgav: indeed sir indeed gwarfarfar *monocle adjustment*

#60 Edited by White (1341 posts) -

@seppli said:

@white said:

Define...

It's a relationship thing really. If somebody wants to murder and butcher and cook you up, regardless of the larger picture, that somebody would be evil to me. I doubt you'd not recognize evil in somebody, if that somebody has put you in their murder dungeon.

How about a dose of Ramsay Snow (Potential Season 3 Game of Thrones Spoilers)?

That is not evil. That's just bloodlust. A murderous intent. Crazies; if you wanna simplify it some more.

#61 Edited by Seppli (10251 posts) -

@white said:

@seppli said:

@white said:

Define...

It's a relationship thing really. If somebody wants to murder and butcher and cook you up, regardless of the larger picture, that somebody would be evil to me. I doubt you'd not recognize evil in somebody, if that somebody has put you in their murder dungeon.

How about a dose of Ramsay Snow (Potential Season 3 Game of Thrones Spoilers)?

That is not evil. That's just bloodlust. A murderous intent. Crazies; if you wanna simplify it some more.

What about *evil is in the eye of the beholder* don't you understand?

#62 Posted by Whitestripes09 (401 posts) -

I guess it depends on what "evil" really is. Tess could be defined as "evil', I suppose. She was morally wrong in a lot of her actions, even more so then Joel sometimes. She was pretty bad ass though...

#63 Edited by Anund (882 posts) -

You know, it's impossible to win in the eyes of feminists. There is always some angle to take which discriminates against women. In this thread the complaint is none of the enemies are female which is a generalization because women can be evil too.

If some of the human enemies were female there would be two ways to go about them. Either you handle them just like the men, that is you would beat them up with your shived out bat, strangle them or shoot them in the head with your shotgun. That would of course NOT fly with feminists. Look at how they treated Tomb Raider, a game with a (very) competent female lead who beats the crap out of the men she encounters. But no, they sometimes hit her back, so that was violence porn. The other solution, I guess, would be to handle the women in a non-violent way. Say you could only tie them up. Talk to them sternly when they try to kill you. Even if that was any kind of option, that would obviously fall into the chauvinistic view that women are frail creatures which need to be treated with care.

Seriously, there is no way to appease the feminist crowd. Which is why I can't take any of it seriously any more and I think soon the rest of the reasonable world will follow. If you go out of your way to find fault with whatever is going on, why should I listen to you at all?

#64 Posted by depecheload (496 posts) -

@seppli said:

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.

All the characters in the game are complicated and three-dimensional, men included. Maybe grow up a bit.

#65 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4716 posts) -

@anund said:

You know, it's impossible to win in the eyes of feminists. There is always some angle to take which discriminates against women. In this thread the complaint is none of the enemies are female which is a generalization because women can be evil too.

If some of the human enemies were female there would be two ways to go about them. Either you handle them just like the men, that is you would beat them up with your shived out bat, strangle them or shoot them in the head with your shotgun. That would of course NOT fly with feminists. Look at how they treated Tomb Raider, a game with a (very) competent female lead who beats the crap out of the men she encounters. But no, they sometimes hit her back, so that was violence porn. The other solution, I guess, would be to handle the women in a non-violent way. Say you could only tie them up. Talk to them sternly when they try to kill you. Even if that was any kind of option, that would obviously fall into the chauvinistic view that women are frail creatures which need to be treated with care.

Seriously, there is no way to appease the feminist crowd. Which is why I can't take any of it seriously any more and I think soon the rest of the reasonable world will follow. If you go out of your way to find fault with whatever is going on, why should I listen to you at all?

Valid points, but I think you should make one important distinction. There are two real schools of thought in feminism these days. One is a much more classic view of "women deserve equality" which is what we call equity feminists. All they want is for women to have the same opportunities as men in all things. That's pretty reasonable, I think you'd agree. An equity feminist, for instance, wouldn't mind that a woman received the same treatment as an enemy in The Last of Us that a man does. It's equitable and doesn't demean women by preying on the long-held belief that women are frail and in need of protection.

Then you have the other group that constantly advocates victimhood. These people are referred to as gender feminists. Gender feminists are the ones who bring up that bullshit statistic about one and three women being raped in their lifetimes. They're people like Anita Sarkeesian, who in her masters thesis ascribed no positive traits to femininity and only thought masculine traits were good. Gender feminists excel at moving the goal posts in any discussion. They excel at incredible feats of mental gymnastics to make sure that they are ultimately viewed as oppressed victims.

It's important to make that distinction, though. I want to believe most feminists lie in the equity camp, and it's really just the liberal hot beds like San Francisco that produce gender feminists.

#66 Posted by Anund (882 posts) -

@anund said:

You know, it's impossible to win in the eyes of feminists. There is always some angle to take which discriminates against women. In this thread the complaint is none of the enemies are female which is a generalization because women can be evil too.

If some of the human enemies were female there would be two ways to go about them. Either you handle them just like the men, that is you would beat them up with your shived out bat, strangle them or shoot them in the head with your shotgun. That would of course NOT fly with feminists. Look at how they treated Tomb Raider, a game with a (very) competent female lead who beats the crap out of the men she encounters. But no, they sometimes hit her back, so that was violence porn. The other solution, I guess, would be to handle the women in a non-violent way. Say you could only tie them up. Talk to them sternly when they try to kill you. Even if that was any kind of option, that would obviously fall into the chauvinistic view that women are frail creatures which need to be treated with care.

Seriously, there is no way to appease the feminist crowd. Which is why I can't take any of it seriously any more and I think soon the rest of the reasonable world will follow. If you go out of your way to find fault with whatever is going on, why should I listen to you at all?

Valid points, but I think you should make one important distinction. There are two real schools of thought in feminism these days. One is a much more classic view of "women deserve equality" which is what we call equity feminists. All they want is for women to have the same opportunities as men in all things. That's pretty reasonable, I think you'd agree. An equity feminist, for instance, wouldn't mind that a woman received the same treatment as an enemy in The Last of Us that a man does. It's equitable and doesn't demean women by preying on the long-held belief that women are frail and in need of protection.

Then you have the other group that constantly advocates victimhood. These people are referred to as gender feminists. Gender feminists are the ones who bring up that bullshit statistic about one and three women being raped in their lifetimes. They're people like Anita Sarkeesian, who in her masters thesis ascribed no positive traits to femininity and only thought masculine traits were good. Gender feminists excel at moving the goal posts in any discussion. They excel at incredible feats of mental gymnastics to make sure that they are ultimately viewed as oppressed victims.

It's important to make that distinction, though. I want to believe most feminists lie in the equity camp, and it's really just the liberal hot beds like San Francisco that produce gender feminists.

I agree with that, and I find it hard to believe many people would disagree with the basic notions of equality: equal rights, equal pay for equal work and so on. However, the second group of feminists are the most vocal. They are the ones who will bring a veritable shitstorm on any game they deem sexist according to whatever their definition of it happens to be that day. And this group is the reason there is no point what-so-ever in trying to appease the feminist crowd in general, because whatever you do, you will fail.

#67 Posted by Scampbell (496 posts) -

I don't like the word evil, as I don't think there are evil people just evil actions. Instead of trying to understand what motivates someone to do something horrendous, and thus prevent it, we label it as "evil".

That said, I do think it is a kind of sexism to make all the human enemies male, and I did think it made the game worse not to have a more realistic mix between men and women. Besides when playing as Ellie you'll have several opportunities to get hurt and killed, and let's not forget shooting Marlene in the face.

The brutal killing of either sex should equally disturbing, otherwise it is a kind of discrimination.

#68 Posted by Jams (2960 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.

Oh crap. As a male I'm suddenly worried that it's okay to kill males but not females or children. That can't bode well for the future. I now for going the German route and changing all enemies into robots that bleed green or just sparks.

NO MORE MAN MURDER!

#69 Posted by psylah (2170 posts) -

All women are evil, so you just don't notice it as much.

#70 Edited by Daneian (1228 posts) -

@depecheload said:

@seppli said:

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.

All the characters in the game are complicated and three-dimensional, men included. Maybe grow up a bit.

Seppli, where you went wrong here is in not talking about your feelings on medias offensive portrayal of men, because feelings are sacred and thus sidestep criticism. Since you didn't, it allowed Depecheload to come in, disregard your observation and bully you for your perspective in the same way they have done to others in several of these threads (but to be fair, not in a while), here accusing you of being an unenlightened child with obviously underdeveloped intellectual capacity rather than an adult who can be (deserves too be?) spoken to rationally.

#71 Posted by uniform (1835 posts) -

Lizzie Borden says hey.

She's bush league. Now Elizabeth Bathory, titled "Blood Countess" with several hundred victims, torture, bathing in blood. She's extreme evil.

#72 Edited by TheManWithNoPlan (5423 posts) -

@jams said:

@themanwithnoplan said:

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.

Oh crap. As a male I'm suddenly worried that it's okay to kill males but not females or children. That can't bode well for the future. I now for going the German route and changing all enemies into robots that bleed green or just sparks.

NO MORE MAN MURDER!

#73 Posted by Elwoodan (817 posts) -

yea, because Tess is a fuckin' saint.

seriously though, I can't remember if I fought any female fireflies/hunters, but I know there were a few female soldiers and in the multiplayer there are both male and female characters.

Other than maybe Tommy's group I think every character in the last of us is bad/evil.

#74 Posted by VilgeDuin (22 posts) -

For what it's worth, just to add to the discussion in regards to harming female enemies, the FROG soldiers in MGS 4 were all female. As well as every member of the Beauty and Beast Corps. Kojima generally tosses a variety into his games regarding women. Of course there's also the female raiders/bandits in Bethesda's games.

Aside from that I'm actually drawing a blank when it comes to killing women in games (as standard enemies at least). I've thought about it before and always considered it odd depending on the setting. Fantasy or sci-fi you can easily include female enemies. Obviously a modern military shooter may be odd in turn.

Even regarding Marlowe from Uncharted 3, despite being the main villain

Nate actually tries to rescue her at the end.

#75 Edited by HerbieBug (4212 posts) -

No. Because it simply is not true. I know from personal experience that women are just as capable of despicable atrocity as men. Work one month, no, one week in law enforcement and you will see.

#76 Edited by ArtelinaRose (1850 posts) -

Some of the worst people I've ever known have been women, so no, I don't believe that all women are great upstanding citizens.

The lack of women as bad guys in popular media is probably due to the generations long dogma(or even really tens of hundreds of years old if you start looking at popular fiction throughout fiction) that women just can't really be a threat because they are not the ones getting things done. Human culture as a whole has always placed men in positions of power, particularly in fiction, because women have always been expected to be in important but less front and center roles; raising children, managing the household, preparing food, etc, while the men are the ones out getting shit done. I think that society is just now beginning to move away from these mindsets but it will be quite a while before we begin seeing people taking women as seriously as men(remember, it has not even been a century since women were given the right to vote in America)

Thought that occurred to me while washing my face in between posts: How come we never see female aliens in games like Halo or Destiny?

#77 Posted by Zeik (2364 posts) -

I'm pretty sure there were women enemies in the game, but for the most part it made sense to me that there weren't a lot of women thugs around. The most prominent straight up "bad guys" in the game are the Hunters, and given the type of people they are, even strong women probably wouldn't last long in that environment. They would have to be in some position of power to not be just be raped, abused, or murdered by those psychopaths.

I think the only time where the lack of women opponents was perhaps peculiar was when facing Daniel's group, as he seemed to be trying to create some kind of legitimate society, albeit a totally fucked up one. On the other hand, Daniel seems like the totalitarian type who would force any women in the group into a submissive secondary role, and leave the fighting to the men.

So on-topic, women are certainly capable of evil, but in the kind of post-apocalyptic world that The Last of Us is describing it doesn't surprise me that it's mostly men out in the world doing the kind of evil that they do.

#78 Posted by Clonedzero (4200 posts) -

Some of the worst people I've ever known have been women, so no, I don't believe that all women are great upstanding citizens.

The lack of women as bad guys in popular media is probably due to the generations long dogma(or even really tens of hundreds of years old if you start looking at popular fiction throughout fiction) that women just can't really be a threat because they are not the ones getting things done. Human culture as a whole has always placed men in positions of power, particularly in fiction, because women have always been expected to be in important but less front and center roles; raising children, managing the household, preparing food, etc, while the men are the ones out getting shit done. I think that society is just now beginning to move away from these mindsets but it will be quite a while before we begin seeing people taking women as seriously as men(remember, it has not even been a century since women were given the right to vote in America)

Thought that occurred to me while washing my face in between posts: How come we never see female aliens in games like Halo or Destiny?

Its because they'd have to create female aliens and thats alot of unneeded art work. no one really cares about killing female aliens in Halo.

#79 Edited by Jay_Ray (1078 posts) -

Women can and do evil, just look at the Blood Countess.

In terms of the game and why there are no female enemies I would hypothesise that in a post apocalyptic setting traditional gender roles become a normal practise so it would be men who hunt and scavenge.

#80 Posted by Jaytow (693 posts) -

All I can say is that the entire management team where I work are women and they are EVIL AS FUCK!

Glad that I'm starting a new job in 3 weeks :D

#81 Posted by ArtelinaRose (1850 posts) -

@artemesia said:

Some of the worst people I've ever known have been women, so no, I don't believe that all women are great upstanding citizens.

The lack of women as bad guys in popular media is probably due to the generations long dogma(or even really tens of hundreds of years old if you start looking at popular fiction throughout fiction) that women just can't really be a threat because they are not the ones getting things done. Human culture as a whole has always placed men in positions of power, particularly in fiction, because women have always been expected to be in important but less front and center roles; raising children, managing the household, preparing food, etc, while the men are the ones out getting shit done. I think that society is just now beginning to move away from these mindsets but it will be quite a while before we begin seeing people taking women as seriously as men(remember, it has not even been a century since women were given the right to vote in America)

Thought that occurred to me while washing my face in between posts: How come we never see female aliens in games like Halo or Destiny?

Its because they'd have to create female aliens and thats alot of unneeded art work. no one really cares about killing female aliens in Halo.

I suppose I should have clarified and said why don't we see or hear of them anywhere in the fiction? As far as I am aware of, the only female Sangheili mentioned is in the Halo Legends anime and that stuff isn't canonical. It's not important, it was just a side comment not meant to detract from the main discussion.

#82 Posted by lusence (345 posts) -

um i think the final 'bad guy' in this game is the leader of the firefly's, marlene, and yes its a she. as far as bandits go makes sense that your not going to see any ladies. as far as lore goes ever heard of a witch? there is plenty of bad woman, hell look at grims tales and disney movies.

#83 Posted by Brenderous (1099 posts) -

At some point, not every story can have every kind of character possible under the sun. There's no Canadians in this game either, good or evil. So there's another problem.

#84 Posted by Brenderous (1099 posts) -

Oh wait you meant like, no evil women baddies to shoot? Yeah that is a bit weird.

#85 Posted by 49th (2730 posts) -

I'm pretty sure they mention at some point after the car crash that the hunters do not have women or children due to the "survival of the fittest". There was at least one women in the militia if I recall correctly - when you find out Ellie is infected one of the soldiers who catches you is a women - not that the militia were evil though but they kind of were.

#86 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7077 posts) -

@uniform said:

@mariachimacabre said:

Lizzie Borden says hey.

She's bush league. Now Elizabeth Bathory, titled "Blood Countess" with several hundred victims, torture, bathing in blood. She's extreme evil.

Unless you can prove to me that bathing in the blood of tortured virgins does not perpetuate my personal beauty (and supple skin), I'm just going to assume you've never even tried it and thus your opinion on the matter is moot.

#87 Edited by StarvingGamer (8149 posts) -

EDIT: Oh yeah, this poll is dumb

@artemesia said:

Thought that occurred to me while washing my face in between posts: How come we never see female aliens in games like Halo or Destiny?

Maybe we do. How would we know? Maybe Grunts are the males and Elites are the female!

Disclaimer: I know jack shit about Halo despite playing four games mostly to completion.

#88 Posted by Fredchuckdave (5353 posts) -

@starvinggamer: Random choir singing is the only thing anyone needs to know about Halo

#89 Edited by fraser (478 posts) -

It's interesting that people are saying "violence against women" in the game would be problematic if dealt out by the player. There's a lot of brutal death animations when you play as Ellie and the game doesn't shy away from that stuff with the whole David section. Add the 14 years old fact to that, it's pretty messed up.

And seeing as Naughty Dog seem to spend the whole game denying player agency through letting you play as various characters/making Joel a complete bastard by the end who you can't help but feel separate from. I don't think they see player conducted violence as anything different to cutscene violence/violence against the player. You think they'd be a bit more likely to include more female bandits or at least diversify the genders a bit, I don't really get the feeling they were worried about a backlash or anything.

(Probably went spoiler tag heavy there but I don't want to ruin any part of the game for anyone!)

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