The Gender Replacer

The Gender Replacer

Sometimes the games industry doesn’t do itself any favours. In a world where we’re supposed to be progressing past the attitude that ‘girls don’t play games’, Activision release a vaguely misogynistic commercial for the new Call of Duty DLC pack, Revolution. The most worrying part of it, though, is how entertaining I find it.

It’s clear that Activision have labelled their target audience as responsibility-averse cavemen, but I’m cool with that. You see, as a guy who takes constant care that the amount of time he spends playing games does not infringe on his day-to-day responsibilities, I would love a “replacer”. I find the very idea of one frankly hilarious – especially if that replacer is none other than Bad Boys 2’s Peter Storemare. But I am also aware that I am not the only type of person who plays on Call of Duty; my friends list comprises of all kinds of people – many of whom would find this commercial at best uninteresting, and at worst offensive. I personally have no issue with it, although I do think that sexism in games will continue to walk in circles as long as commercials like this exist, and booth babes will keep degrading themselves and everyone around them at conventions.

The one problem I do have with this video is that it is unnecessary. I am the target audience, and you can be damn sure that I’d have bought this DLC whether the commercial existed or not. The same is true of the vast majority of the Call of Duty audience. It’s as if Activision are going out of their way to seek out the remaining pockets of vaguely intelligent life to coerce them to buy more content. Only when I think of the commercial in this light do I start to see it’s content as slightly inappropriate, maybe even insulting.

I can only imagine what it would be like to see this advert as a non alpha-male (because obviously I am alpha as they come); I imagine I would feel excluded, finding the scanty sections of gameplay footage to be as intriguing as the long sections of male-oriented humour are frustrating.

In the end, there’s no point to this rant. Things will never change until we change them. As long as there are ubiquitously stupid booth babes, childish and shallow males, and girls with a prejudiced and condescending attitude towards being girl gamers, the world will keep spinning and Activision will keep shitting out over-the-top commercials aimed at that audience. The only real point here is that we shouldn’t let this detract from the DLC itself. Call of Duty is still as much fun as being tickled by a Tellytubby made of jelly-beans, and this DLC will only add to that fun. So whatever your opinion of Call of Duty, sexism, or other people, don’t let this put off of video games.

Anthony Richardson

I'm Anthony, but you can call me Anthony. I once fit 20 grapes in my mouth, and 40 pencils in my hair. I haven't written a book, but if I did I would give it a confusing title, and I'd make every effort to ensure you hadn't a clue what relevance it had to gaming. Oh, and also I write about games.

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  1. The Muffin Man Laced In Crack
    January 29, 2013, 3:19 am

    Oh shock yet another piece on this site which bitches about booth babes and not the companies that hire them. You go guys! fight the power! how dare those people make a living in a field they wanted to work in.

    Or you could just kinda develop a back bone and talk about the employers rather than the employees, unless of course your PR teams are afraid of anything like that rubbing publishers up the wrong way.

    • Jennifer Taylor
      January 29, 2013, 3:36 pm

      Hey Muffin Man,

      I’m confused as to why you read our site if you’re constantly disappointed with the content. I can suggest other reading material that could be more to your liking if you wish?

      Please refrain from being quite so antagonising. Your comments are welcome if they are based around constructive criticism, but unfortunately so far they are not.

      Keep up the good work.


  2. Joey Dale
    January 30, 2013, 11:11 am

    Good Day Muffin Man.

    We actually chat about that subject on the DBR Podcast Episode 61 so might be worth having a listen.

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