Outrage Machine: Nazi Heroes, Feminist TV and Japanese Games are Week’s Best Faux Controversies

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By Ian Miles Cheong | 12:10 pm, April 24, 2017

Another week, another half-dozen controversies in the realms of movies, comic books, TV, and video games. The entertainment industry is constantly afire with outrage surrounding cultural appropriation, social justice, and other political hot topics.

Persona 5’s Localization Non-Controversy

Persona 5

The week began with manufactured outrage surrounding the newly released Japanese video game, Persona 5. Game journalists from Kotaku, Polygon and everywhere in-between joined forces to complain about its “failed” localization into English—no doubt because the game is popular right now. Game journalists complained about its poor quality, and the entire issue was blown out of proportion on social media by social justice warriors who were offended by the game’s mature topics.

A Japanese native and prominent GamerGate supporter Mombot made her best attempt to set the record straight with a Medium post addressing the main complaints leveled against the game. YouTuber The Mystery Zone published a video highlighting the manufactured controversy and the relationships between those leading the complaints.

A Brigade to a Backlash from the Alt-Right

Elsewhere in the game industry, an indie studio called MidBoss called on its fans to brigade in support of its newly released title 2064: ROM with positive reviews. They needed the help after publishing a statement condemning President Trump and telling those who support his “fascist regime” to “fuck off” and not buy their product. Much like Amy Schumer, MidBoss played the victim card, and claimed it was being slammed with negative reviews by the alt-right, which didn’t even happen until after they called on fans.

Nazi Comics

Secret Empire’s Captain America

Following the controversy with an anti-Semitic artist who inserted bigoted messages into his comic, Marvel Comics has come under fire for its new Secret Empire comic, in which Captain America becomes a member of Hydra—Nazis in the Marvel’s comic book universe. The summer event comic has become the subject of a boycott from outraged readers, who attacked its creator, Nick Spencer, on social media. Many accused his “what if the heroes were villains?” storyline of betraying Captain America’s late Jewish creators, Jack Kirby and Joe Simon.

Go Back to Sleep, Katy Perry

Musician and songstress Katy Perry has also come under fire for an Instagram post depicting the Hindu goddess Kali, which offended everyone who took issue with her lack of cultural sensitivity. Is she even as woke as she seems? We can only imagine what it’ll take for her to get back in the good graces of social justice warriors.

The Handmaid’s Tale Isn’t Feminist

Elizabeth Moss in The Handmaid’s Tale

On TV, the female-oriented dystopian series The Handmaid’s Tale has become a lightning rod of conversation after its cast refused to call the show “feminist.” Speaking to Vanity Fair, the series’ star and erstwhile Mad Men actress Elizabeth Moss declared that for her, “The Handmaid’s Tale is not a feminist story.”

“It’s a human story because women’s rights are human rights,” said the actress. “I never intended to play Offred as a feminist. They’re women, and they’re humans. Offred’s a wife, a mother, a best friend. You know, she has a job. And she is a person who’s not supposed to be a hero, and she falls into it. And she kind of does what she has to do to survive, to find her daughter. It’s about love, honestly, so much of this story.”

“So for me, you know, I never approach anything with any sort of, like, political agenda,” she added. “I approach it from a very human place, I hope.”

It’s a brand-new day and no doubt the week ahead will offer even more fuel for the fires of the culture war.

Ian Miles Cheong is a journalist and outspoken media critic. You can reach him through social media at @stillgray on Twitter and on Facebook.

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