Thursday, November 19, 2009
The Queer King of Liberty City
I should preface this by saying I know little about video games and even less about the Grand Theft Auto franchise, but still this commercial (which has been in heavy network and cable circulation this fall) struck me as a little odd.
The latest installment of the successful series follows the rise (and fall) of a prominent nightclub owner Anthony Prince better known as "Gay Tony." Despite his overt homosexuality, Tony is widely considered the king of Liberty City, both feared and envied by his competitors and enemies.
From what I have encountered, videogames are rarely progressive and characteristically limited, so this new installment caught me as quite a surprise. Especially GTA, which has been characterized since its inception for its poor representations (beating up hookers, ect.) Given the games controversial history and questionable ethics, I'm not sure what to make of a central character like Gay Tony (for whom the latest game is named.)