Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Playing Bully

Clive Thompson has a new review out on Bully - the highly, perhaps prematurely, controversial new game by Rockstar ("banned-a-year-before-its-release-by-US-school-boards" controversial) - on the Wired website. I find the political and social implications of the Bully controversy infinitely fascinating in terms of what it says about public perception of video games, kids, bullying and freedom of expression. Bully will be released on Oct.17 (2006) for the PS2. Oddly enough, Rule of Rose seems to have sailed under the moral panic radar since its August 30th release, despite the fact that it was originally deemed too "controversial" for a US release, for both its eroticization of little girls as well as its portrayal of bullying between and among young girls. Is there perhaps evidence of a gender bias here?

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