Fri. Mar 24th, 2023

If anyone wasn’t aware of GamerGate at the time, Stephen Colbert gave a one-night crash course through an editorial section (below) and an interview with critic Anita Sarkeesian (above).

“You and the other feminazis in the gamer world come for our balls, cut them off, put them in a felt bag and take them with us so we have to play your non-violent games, right?”

‘Not quite. Something’s up,” Sarkeesian replied. “What it is is that women are being harassed, threatened and terrorized…”

“After you first attacked male gamers because they liked watching big-breasted women with little armor barely covering their nipples?” Colbert chimed in. “What’s wrong with that? I’m a man, honey. Newsflash: I like that.”

In typical Colbert fashion, the host boiled down a hot media controversy to its core and found spots of apparent madness. Sarkeesian told the story of her Utah State University lecture being canceled after an anonymous email threatened the largest school shooting to date. She dismissed the “threat” of female gamers, saying it may be a result of the games industry’s resistance to becoming more inclusive. Colbert’s reaction to all that? “Why not just a separate game? Do you have separate but similar games?”

And when Sarkeesian said GamerGate is about a handful of gamers clinging to a culture they believe should be male dominant, Colbert challenged her. Instead, he asked, isn’t this whole ordeal about ethics in gaming journalism? “Do you see how huge that is? What if there were no ethics in Hollywood journalism? If we can’t trust Entertainment tonight or TMZ, where would we be? Do you want that for game journalism?”

Colbert’s most poignant perspectives came in the editorial leading up to the Sarkeesian interview. He pointed out a number of hypersexualized game characters and included Ms. Pac-Man (“She can always swallow my mind”). He identified as a gamer – “I’m not ashamed of my hobby. That’s why I do it in my basement” – but then shared a quick newsreel from major broadcasters reporting on escalating gamer threats against women. “As the TV men said, GamerGate involves some male gamers harassing women who speak out about the depiction of women in video games… presumably after the initial shock that women spoke to them at all.”

And as the fair and balanced journalist he claims to be, Colbert briefly presented the pro-GamerGate side: “GamerGate types have also been harassed, especially when the media saw what they said to these women. Gamers have complained about anti-gamer , anti-nerd bullying for following their traditional gamer lifestyle. Yes there is a traditional gamer lifestyle. God decreed it is one man, one joystick. Read your Bible folks, it’s right there… in Sega Genesis.’

Unsurprisingly, GamerGate supporters aren’t thrilled about the segment this morning. WeHuntedTheMammoth combed through 8chan to collect what it sees as the 22 most ridiculous, instant reactions: “So damn disappointed [sic] in you, Stephen, for giving this charlatan the time of day. it seems my worst fear has finally come true. Now I can’t even smile late at night in my miserable life. I’ll never find you funny again if you slander us.”

By akfire1

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