Got Me To Care
This is just a review of the Jimquisition, by the way. I agree that aspects of Jim Sterling the man and Jim Sterling the character are mixed up in one another, but I generally have no trouble telling when he's acting and when he's not. And, as one major point of criticism, Jim will not let a bad running gag die until he's beaten the dead horse's bones into pulverized dust. The first season of the show, as he himself has admitted on multiple occasions, was laughably bad. The topics were badly-handled, the visual design and structure was borked, and in general I would just avoid them. But, as time went by, he found his footing. He turned into a voice for consumer advocacy and, ironically, sanity. Before I started watching Jim Sterling's videos, I didn't pay too much attention to dire critics on the internet predicting the downfall of the game industry. His ex-colleagues on the Escapist, for instance, were (and are) largely a bunch of nostalgia-addled grognards who regularly hate on and victim-blame fans of modern games in disgusting and disingenuous fashion. But Jim got me to care. He helped me to understand what was wrong with the game industry and why. He helped me to see what I, personally, could do to make it better. And he did it without ever insulting the gamers, the customers, the ordinary people who just like games and don't see why all these people won't shut up about an imaginary golden age that never actually existed. And he does it in short, to-the-point videos that keep on task without wandering off-track, as some other personalities I like sometimes do. He is, in short, the best pundit of his kind that I'm aware of. He's angry, but I've never felt he was angry at me. Jim once said that the problem with gaming's angry, toxic community wasn't that there was too much anger, but that gamers channel it in the wrong places, focusing it at women and minorities and imaginary boogeymen coming to take away their porn, rather than the dumb corporate assholes running the medium into the ground because they're the sorts of people who can't hold a puppy for five seconds without killing it in a mixture of stupidity and malice. And it was a great point. If you're in the know about the state of the industry, it's still a great rage fix, and if you're not, it's very educational.
As a gaming "journalist", he's about as good as the title allows. I find him to be a good barometer for what the consensus is in game publishing, and—at his best—an amusing guy to listen to. As a reviewer...alright, if we're being brutally honest: he is average at best. A prop comedian, late to the TGWTG party from five years ago. I avoided his reviews for four years, and the Jimqusition is the reason why. Critics and reporters do not need props. The gimmick of a bratty, foulmouthed journalist who talks in hyperbole (how is that different from Piers Morgan?) is groanworthy and at cross-purposes with Jim's goal of representing casual gamers. It's trolling for ad revenue, it's a dead horse, it marginalizes him, and he doesn't do it very well. As a let's player, he is again average, but I find his LPs oddly addictive. He's not as whiny as others on YouTube (which is nice), and it's fun to contrast his pallbearer tone of voice with Markiplier, who showers praise on these hopeless indie devs. All in all, contrary to what he says, the "character" definitely bleeds into Jim's personality and affects his responses to outside critique. He's a good critic but could have been great.