My Dad always likes to call me whenever he sees some story on the news about video games. I usually try and watch it because I like to see how the main stream media twists our hobby into a perverted pastime for violent whack jobs. He called me tonight and told me I should switch to CBS because 60 minutes was doing a segment about games. When he called I was a few missions into Medal of Honor on the PS2 (I have been watching the Band of Brothers DVD's). I thought for a moment about watching old men talk about video games or continuing to struggle with the terrible controls of MOHF. I ended up flipping over to CBS just in time to hear them announce that they were at Acclaim Entertainment. I then watched the ancient correspondent from 60 minutes questioning Ben Fischbach from Acclaim about BMX XXX. It was like the whole thing was happening in slow motion. "So, (in BMX XXX) you look at Strippers?" the white haired news man asks. "Well you're looking at a woman dance on screen for a very short period of time." says the middle-aged hipster who thinks his company is still relevant. "You look at strippers." asserts the decrepit reporter from a bygone era. "Ya, you look at strippers." concedes the despicable huckster from Acclaim. I imagined all the old people sitting on their plastic covered couches at home, watching this exchange and shaking their heads in disgust as their antiquated views on videogames were reinforced. I watched on as Mr. Fishbach opened his mouth again and this little nugget fell out:
"We wanted to create an entertainment experience on par with things like "Sopranos" or even "Sex and the City."
Let's all just take a minute to reflect on that one.
He didn't even laugh after he said it. The man was one hundred percent serious. It boggles the mind doesn't it? I don't know how he can actually stand up on national television and compare BMX XXX to something like the Sopranos. Especially when there are games like Vice City that actually do deliver stories that are on par with the shows he mentioned. Why couldn't 60 minutes have talked to Rockstar for Gods sake? Instead we get an interview with a man who thinks showing boobies in a game should snare him an Emmy. It's just fucking sad.
So then they switch gears and start talking to Will Wright and a few other people from EA about the Sims online. Will is a smart mother fucker and he knows how to handle an interview. The segment was actually really good and just when I thought games and gamers were gonna come out looking pretty normal, some fifty year old EA big wig announces to the viewing audience that when he plays the Sims he likes to pretend he's a nineteen year old waitress.
You can't see me right now but I am rubbing my temples.