Zero Suit Master Chief: Turnabout is fair play, except for your spine


One of the things that bugs me the most about Zero Suit Samus is that Samus is, ordinarily, a tank, and a female in armor is a rarity in fantasy and science fiction whereas every man is allowed to wear sensible protection. Video game heroes who wear armor get to keep that trademark armor through their service, and are very rarely ever shown in skintight spandex, unless they happen to also be girls. There are now pretty much no unsexualized female video game characters.

So it’s a fair bit of turnabout for Mister Bolk to take a similar character, Master Chief, and show what he must look like without his armor.

In a boobs-and-butt pose, no less.

And no, Master Chief is not a girl. Bungie took a stab at making a female Spartan, and it apparently worked like this nonsense. At least she gets to wear armor.

Comments

  1. julian says

    A pic that shows Master Chief breaking his spine. This pleases me.

    Also,

    I have similar issues with Zero Suit Samus. She’s supposed to come at you like a freight train, not Catwoman.

  2. Sas says

    Wow, I gotta hand it to the artist, that’s actually more ridiculous than a boobs-and-butt pose since we get to see pecs, butt, AND package!

  3. timberwoof says

    Sas, you beat me to it. Oh, yes, package too. What good is spandex without the package? Though, to be fair, he might be wearing a cup.

  4. sithrazer says

    I can understand a bodysuit underneath a full-body suit of armor like Samus’ (and Master Chief’s). Kinda like wearing socks with shoes. And it is more practical (at least, more modest/covering) than the bikini you can see Samus wearing if you beat Metroid 2 in under a certain time.

    That being said, I agree wholeheartedly with you. I don’t care at all for the Zero Suit, for the reasons you state amongst others.

    In a boobs-and-butt pose, no less.

    Boobs, butt AND package pose, no less. /ogle

    …I’m tempted to make things even more awkward, but I’m not sure if I’d be crossing a line, so I won’t.

  5. timberwoof says

    I thought about this more over coffee before I put on my own crash pads and investigate some bugs. On the one hand, I get how women superheroes and heroine sidechicks are too often shown in awkward sexy poses and wearing the skimpiest and most impractical armor possible. That’s really dumb for a lot of “practical” reasons (practical within the boundaries of suspension of disbelief for the genre) and because it reduces the female characters to mere sex objects.

    (I quite enjoyed reading C. J. Cherryh’s Chanur series and her Union-Alliance books; they have some good strong female characters including a starship captain I would not want to cross!)

    On the other hand, I quite enjoy the recent art depicting male superheroes in such revealing costumes and poses. They’re much better than the standard fare designed not to upset the straight boys. I guess I’m speaking from a position of male privilege now: I don’t mind seeing men sexualized that way; I rather like the idea of being sexualized … and I just realized why and what needs to be done about it (aside from putting me in spandex).

    If you’re an artist and make such very cool images, I think it would be appropriate if you dialed it up to eleven. Make an ensemble image that shows the women as The Strong Characters—good looking but not overtly sexualized—and the men as the subservient sex objects in diaphanous chaps and brass jock straps.

    Oh, ah. I have work to get to now.

  6. says

    While I might have toned down the sexuality I don’t personally mind the idea of Samus wearing a jumpsuit kind of thing under the armour. To me it makes sense from kind of a real worldish perspective.

    Also it does possibly allow for different tone from a game building perspective. Less protection feeling more vulnerable if done well it could actually be a nice contrast to how Samus normally operates.

    All that being said from what I’ve seen it does mostly seem to be for the sex appeal. It is kind of sad that 90+% of all women in games are so sexualized. Especially with characters like Samus that just don’t really need to be.

  7. Mikey says

    Master Chief, I feel, was the wrong choice for this. The books, game and animes have all emphasized how desexualizing the Spartan suits are. How the Spartans themselves care nothing for gender, they only care if you are a part of the team and willing to do what you need to keep each other safe and to complete the mission. About how war, even for a good cause, dehumanizes all of us. Hell, in online games for Halo, you can choose your Spartan’s armor and gender, and the gender has no effect on the armor’s look.

    I agree Zero Suit Samus was and is a bad call. While I find it visually appealing, I understand how sexist, hurtful, and completely unnecessary the change is.

    Although as a funny side note, a butt and boobs picture of Samus in her regular armor could be explained as she literally turns into a ball so who knows what her spine is capable of. Still bad and physically disturbing but not internally inconsistent.

  8. says

    In some sense, I guess a body suit is some kind of step up from a bikini — which is what she was wearing under the power suit in the first three games (Metroid, Return of Samus, and Super Metroid). You didn’t know that, of course, unless the beat the games in less than a certain time frame.

    Either way, the decreasing interest in the power suit is disappointing and a loss for the series. It was always one of the strongest sci-fi motifs, even if some of its abilities are wholly inexplicable. (How does the maru mari work? Seems like magic.)

    As to characterization, it seems as though Samus has been transformed into more of a private investigator or James Bond-esque secret agent type in later games. She was originally a bounty hunter, suggesting a very individualist and independent mind set. There has been perhaps some softening of the character in the expansion of the writing.

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