Much improved from earlier videos.
I have previously been somewhat critical of Anita Sarkeesian's videos. While I agree that sexism (mostly unconscious, but deeply ingrained) is still a problem in media, Sarkeeasian's previous videos have frequently been biased(In the Bayonetta video, she makes no mention of the fact that, despite her admittedly hyper-sexualisation, Bayonetta is also the most competent character in the game) or focused on trivialities (Such as going on a diatribe on the misrepresentation of the Black-Widow Spider- interesting, but irrelevant to sexism in media). Moreover, she frequently comes of as smug (telling filmmakers that "they should feel really ashamed" for including sexist elements) undermining her points, even when they are otherwise well made.
These issues are far less prevalent with her latest videos. She has adopted a far more academic style of presenting accurate evidence in support of her hypothesis. Importantly, she has accepted that Tropes Are Not Bad
. Instead of decrying individual examples of Unfortunate Implications
, she instead identifies overall patterns of sexism within the industry. Not only are these harder to refute, but more indicative of the real problem- ingrained sexism in our culture shaping games to reinforce that sexism.
She is also more positive, less smug and actually discusses ways that the traditional gender roles may be subverted and toyed with. Indeed, a later video will showcase such successful subversions. Essentially, she has gone from simply complaining about the issues, to suggesting ways that they may be remedied.
I still have some criticisms of these later videos. She could have distinguished between damsel-as-lover and damsel-as-daughter- both evoke different emotions from male players (However, both still define female characters in relation to males). I also think that, while she has a point with the Unfortunate Implications
of "male protagonist forced to fight/kill his brainwashed/disfigured damsel, often while they beg for it", she ignores that these situations tend to derive drama from the male protagonist's reluctance/trauma in doing so. Again though, the female is defined solely by the male's response- the critique retains validity.
However, such criticism's are likely a product of the discourse that Sarkeesian aims to incite. As such, I must gives these newer episodes a tentative endorsement.