Seems like there are some MAJOR fires burning their way through the Tomb Raider tag concerning the ‘rape’ scene released in the new trailer and in the leaked gameplay.
I want to make two points on the subject.
Firstly, the scene is completely, 100% justified to be in the game. These are men who have been shipwrecked on this island for decades. If they come across young, attractive women.. they’re going to be raped. That’s just how it works, I’m afraid to say.
This is not a “female empowered through rape” scene. She doesn’t get raped. She doesn’t get even close to being raped, as she kills him before he has a chance to do anything to her. This is a way of justifying her first kill. This is a way of saying, “Look, there was no way around that situation. Lara had to take a life. The man was going to do unspeakable things to her, and it was her or him.” Her emotional breakdown is of course partly due to the man attempting to violate her, but it was 98% due to her just shooting a man in the face at point blank range (could you imagine witnessing a man’s face completely rip to shreds two feet from your own as his blood and chunks of brain cascade upon your face?)
However, my second point is that this scene should never have been put in the trailer or used in a demo. As I said, it’s completely justified to be in the game itself, but to be used as marketing? To be used as a way to sell the game to a predominantly male demographic? To say, “Hey guys! Our game has this really edgy almost-rape scene in it! Buy our game!” That is extremely immoral, and certainly unacceptable. The scene makes sense in the story in terms of narrative, but to just throw it into the trailer for shits and giggles isn’t on.
Besides, now it’s just a source of controversy and when people get to play the game, they’ll all think, “I guess this is that rape scene everybody was talking about.” It will have lost all emotional connection by then. If none of us knew about that scene, and then saw it for the first time whilst playing the game, I can guarantee you that it would be considered a milestone in gaming culture. Handling sexual assault in a harrowing, horrific way that doesn’t make it the centre of attention, but causes us enough horror as to think, “Jesus fucking Christ, I can’t believe he would try to do that to this poor girl.” But no, Crystal decided to use it in the trailer for controversy, and now ALL power linked to the scene will be gone.
So, yes. That’s my two cents on this whole debacle.
Ohohoh, and another thought. Whilst, yes, the name Torture Porn seems to imply some sort of sexualisation, that is NOT what Torture Porn is. Torture Porn is a piece of media that glorifies extreme violence (mainly, obviously scenes of graphic torture). The name derives from porn movies using glorifying shots of sexual intercourse and is notorious for such, so that’s where Torture Porn gets its name from. For example, in a film classed as ‘Torture Porn’, there would be close-up shots of bleeding flesh and wet red oozing from the wound caused by a jutting knife. You get the idea. This scene doesn’t do that. At all. The game is not Torture Porn. It’s an exploration/action-adventure game.
These scenes of violence in Tomb Raider aren’t like Hostel. They aren’t meant for the gamer to say, “Awh, Lara’s got her foot stuck in a bear trap! Wicked cool!” They’re meant to be horrifying, and for us to care for the poor girl. So, it’s actually the complete opposite of Torture Porn.
tagged as: Tomb Raider. Lara Croft.
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