Whether you cringe at Anna Faris’ new sitcom or shake your head at the typical incompetent husband with a hot wife bumbling in and out of slapstick situations, you probably think TV is an absolutely horrible way to spend your time. I’m not saying that occasionally indulging in the world of the boob tube is a bad thing, but seeing as children and young boys spend a lot of time watching terrible examples of men on television, the misandric nature of mass media is a big problem. Add in the fact that many boys already lack masculine role models in their lives and TV becomes downright toxic.
Masculinity is under assault in the West by feminists and social justice warriors. Video games are the last form of mass media where men and boys are not judged, censored or shamed. Many of us got into gaming precisely because it’s an arena where hard work and talent is rewarded and men are depicted in a positive light. Here’s why video game characters are better role models for boys than TV characters.
1. Video games let you take control of your destiny
Immersive gameplay and blockbuster-level scripts in games such as The Last of Us and the Assassin’s Creed series have elevated games into a media form on par with movies. The average gamer is over 25 years old. The demand for higher-quality games has helped birth nonlinear and emergent gameplay systems, letting the player tackle the game’s challenges however they see fit.
This level of immersion and control lets the player form a connection with the game’s protagonist, something that linear entertainment forms such as movies or TV shows can’t emulate. You inhabit the character’s mind, accomplish your goals the way you want, and make decisions that affect how the story plays out. Additionally, video game protagonists are often confident and assertive men, masculine qualities that boys should seek to emulate.
2. Video games can help build character
Let’s face it: most of us have had fun bitchslapping noobs on Xbox Live or other online games. We made them cry by calling their mommas nasty names, teabagging their freshly slain corpses, and driving them off the server with their tails between their legs. But guess what? Those same noobs will come back to the game and keep playing until until they’re good enough to snipe every meanie who questioned their sexuality.
The internet is a beautiful thing. In a PC world where everyone is afraid of the Feelings Police, where you can lose your job if you offend the wrong person, online games are a free-for-all of free speech. When you’re online, you’re only as good as your score, and all the SJW fluff isn’t worth dick. If you suck, prepare for a world of hurt, but if you’re good, you’ll get the respect you deserve.
Online gaming shit talk helps boys learn how to take a joke and dish ’em back. If you’re Latino, prepare for spic jokes. If you’re a woman, get used to being told to get in the kitchen. Are you fat? Your lard ass better be ready for the fat jokes. But so long as you can play the game well, your fellow gamers will salute you for it.
In a world where grown-ups tattle on people who make mean comments on Twitter, this is an important lesson. Boys whine about their feelings and narc on others for “bad words”; men shut up and get that high score. Let’s see The Big Bang Theory squeeze out any life lessons like that, as opposed to drivel about physics that makes braindead hipsters chuckle.