Yes it is as weird as it looks…but what else is it?
Yep, it’s time once again for me to discuss something else that is stereotypically “un-feminist” to like that I am absolutely in love with. Let me begin by saying that Suda51 makes some of the weirdest and best video games I have ever played, with Killer 7 being perhaps my favorite game of all time. However, while my praise for Killer 7 is met with intrigued questions, appreciation of my love for unique and artsy games and talks of its progressive nature, my praise for Lollipop Chainsaw is met with looks of disgust and confused gasps of , “You like THAT game?!”.
I think the reason why many people are surprised I like Lollipop Chainsaw so much is because many are confused that it is purely a fetish game. Apparently, featuring a female in a skimpy outfit automatically makes a video game “man only” material reserved only for fappers and droolers. While Juliet Starling provides quite a bit of fanservice with her array of increasingly scandalous clothing, the person that is objectified the most in the game is actually seen hanging from her hip: her boyfriend, Nick. Over the course of the game, my favorite non-boss character is subjected to all kinds of humiliation, from having his head sawed off in the first place, to being plastered with makeup by Juliet’s little sister, to being insulted and gawked at by just about everyone. Now, I might be going out on a limb with this, but, what if the exploitation of the defenseless Nick is a commentary on the common exploitation of women in video games? Mull that over for a little bit.
I must also say that I am absolutely sick and tired of the idea that a woman has to be butch and fully covered in order to be a strong woman. Juliet Starling is certainly a strong female character, as not many 16 year old girls would have the guts or the training to do what she does. It is said that she killed her first zombie when she was a baby and has only been getting stronger from there on. In fact, every female member of the Starling family, (excluding the stereotypical mom) is a strong character. Cordelia is more typical of the strong female being a tough sniper, but even she is allowed to crack jokes from time to time. Rosalind is also a zombie hunter, and while the best way to describe her is “walking Animaniacs gag”, she still manages to be useful. What? The game is sexist because only one of the bosses is female? Well, Mariska is one of the most memorable bosses in any game I have ever played and she represents her time period and music very well. Also, her style of music featured a lot of very popular female artists including Grace Slick, Joan Baez, and of course, Janis Joplin, so it was a great choice.
What else do I like about the game? The bosses of course! Suda51 is known for his unique and memorable bosses, from the tragic Andrei Ulmeyda, to the incredibly fucked up Destroyman, to the innuendo-spewing six-eyed Lord Fleming. The bosses in Lollipop Chainsaw are few in number but each makes an impact on the viewer. Or at least they did on me. This is partially because each boss is based on a genre of music: punk rock, viking metal, psychedelic rock, funk, and rock n’roll, This game also features Zombie Elvis as the final boss, which is one of the funniest ideas I have ever seen realized. Let’s also say that some of the types of music in this game are very highly enjoyed by yours truly, from psychedelic rock that filled my ears for two summers straight working at the site of Woodstock, to classic rock n’roll which fuels my fashion sense. to viking metal which is some of the only metal that I enjoy. Each boss has their own unique personality and look ranging from highly accurate, to godawfully annoying, to unbelievably hilarious, to “Hot damn, that’s a zombie? Does that make me weird like those Twilight fangirls?”
I’ve talked about the bosses in this game a lot, haven’t I? Well, that’s because that is the subject of this blog’s latest countdown and drink recipe series at the same time! Each post will feature a boss, along with my commentary about them, starting out with my least favorite, and moving on to my most favorite in the game. Each boss will also have a time-period appropriate drink that I have created to compliment their behavior and appearance. I’ve been longing to exercise the little mixologist in my brain so let’s begin with my least favorite boss!
6: Zed- The Punk Rockin’ Misfit
WHAT?! Zed is my least favorite in the game?! But his song is so cool and his voice acting is so great, you say? I would have to agree, there is no bad boss in this game and they are all pretty awesome, but Zed, to put it simply, annoys the hell out of me. Why? Because he never shuts the hell up, that’s why. He literally never stops screaming, even when he dies. Although, weaponized swearing is a pretty boss attack. This goes well with his aesthetic as a Punk Rocker. Punk music is very loud, abrasive, and in your face, and Zed is all of these. I do like some forms of Punk music, particularly the earlier stuff from across the pond, but not as much as I like the other sorts of music represented in this game. Special mention goes to the fact that this boss is voiced by the composer of all the boss themes, Jimmy Urine of Mindless Self Indulgence, who did a fantastic job voicing the character and creating some seriously awesome music. However, on a scale of awesome to awesomest, I unfortunately have to rank this boss the lowest of the lot. Not bad, but not awe-inspiring.
Since Punk Rock emerged in the late 70s and early 80s, I have chosen to do a riff off of a popular 80s cocktail, the hilariously named, but rather tasty Screaming Orgasm. I have replaced a couple of the ingredients to create a drink I will refer to as the VANILLA SLUT, (in all caps, of course). When serving this drink, be sure to scream its name at the top of your lungs and be careful not to be hit by too many of them or you might pass out:
1 oz vodka (make sure it’s good stuff otherwise your cream liqueur might curdle, you STUPID COOZE!)
1 and 1/2 oz Vanille Royale
1/2 oz cherry liqueur
Shake all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into the most ridiculously over the top looking glass in your cupboard. Garnish with a cherry that you have soaked in the liqueur, and another cherry that has been soaked in the vodka. Drink up. London is calling.
Stay tuned for another boss and another drink. Cheers!