Plot spoilers for Uncharted: Lost Legacy
So played up to finding out that Chloe was working with Sam, shot a tank with RPGs, that sort of thing. Now I’m going into a cow/bell/temple with Nadine.
Man, I love me some Naughty Dog, but one thing I do NOT love about Naughty Dog is their insistence on QTE (or QTEish) one on one fights with bosses. This Asav bullshit was bullshit. It wasn’t even all that clear as to what I was supposed to be doing. Irksome.
But I did kinda love the conversation when Nadine finds out about Sam and steals the car because it was true to the characters in ways that some stories with strong women aren’t true to the characters. Usually, in stories, when women lie to/betray/bamboozle each other, the reaction of the aggrieved party is all emotional. Confusion, tears, an exasperated “WHAT?” This is true no matter how the character has been portrayed up to that point. What women generally do not do is slug the woman that has lied to them. I must admit, I was, at first, taken aback by the sight of a woman decking another woman on screen, but then I thought “Wait..why am I taken aback, here? These are two murder machines. They’ve punched, kicked, shot and exploded numerous people here.” And yet, at first, I was taken aback. Because it’s so damn unusual!
But accurate. So good job, game. That was a great scene.
Are we back on the “She’s doing it for a man” trope? Doing it for dad was bad enough…now is she chasing a dreamy dreamboat? I hope not cuz trope.
Sam? A dreamy dreamboat? Um…I guess…if you like grungy, non-angsty types with no heavy armor.
I did think they did a nice job with the character dynamics there. You can understand why Chloe chose to work with Sam (she knows him and has worked with him before), and even why she didn’t tell Nadine about it (beause she knows Nadine wouldn’t agree to come along if she knew), and you can also understand why Nadine hates Sam’s guts and is really peeved when she finds out about it (uh…all that stuff in UC4). And you really feel kind of bad about it, because Chloe and Nadine were having fun together and now the mood is broken, but yeah, both of those characters reacted as you’d expect them to, knowing them as we do, so it all makes sense.
I felt OK about adding Sam to the mix, I guess. I didn’t need him there, I was having fun with just Chloe and Nadine, but throwing another character in is good for drama and witty banter, and Sam is an OK character.
Well, more a “dude she may well have a crush on/be sleeping with.” Same trope.
I do feel bad about the argument. Especially as the last scene had them laughing and giving each other lame high fives and starting to care about each other. Oops. Though I figure mood will return. Maybe.
Though I don’t think she has worked with him before, at least that we’ve seen in the games. Chloe was only in 2 and 3, so she knows Nate and Sully. She was brought into 2 by the late Flynn, who blew up. Sam was, we think, still rotting away in a South American prison, presumed dead even by Nathan. Chloe was out of Nathan’s life before Nathan even knew Sam was alive, so where’s the connection?
This will be established later, I guess. Right?
Sam is OK, though part of this feels a little “Well, it’s uncharted, and the masses will expect at least one Drake, cuz Uncharted, and we wrapped up Nathan pretty well, so…..”
Wasn’t there a tiny hint near the end of 4 that even though Nathan was retired from the thievin’ business, Sam was still active, and had some work connection with Chloe as a result? Like, Chloe was looking for a partner and Nathan was all, “No, take Sam instead”?
Hm. Now that I think about it, I may have retconned that in my own brain. I think it was Sully who we saw looking for a partner but going with Sam instead. BUT!–since Chloe knows Sully, maybe HE introduced them, and she and Sam either worked together between 4 and this game, or else she just trusted Sully’s recommendation when she needed someone for this job. (It may at this point be apparent from my wild speculation that this particular point is not addressed in the game. Or if it is, I’ve forgotten it.)
But yeah, there was definitely a touch of “hey, gotta have a Drake in here!”
At least it WASN’T Nathan. I liked the wrap up to his story in 4: I’m glad they let him retire in peace. It would have felt awkward to drag him back.
A big drag. That would’ve been just plain cheesy.
Yeah, Sam goes off with Sully. Indeed, you’re left thinking they paired up for good, as Drake’s daughter sees the pictures of Sully and Sam together, older.
Yeah, that’s right…the postcard from Sam and Sully. Well, Sully introducing Sam to Chloe at some point between games could still make sense, since they’re all in the business and all. It’s not completely out of the blue for them to be acquainted.
I keep thinking “Man, you know, this game is pretty cool on the whole feminism front. Even more so than TR, because it lacks tropes, passes the Bechdel test with flying colors, etc.,” and as SOON as I think that, they pull out some “I’m doing it for dead father” (AGAIN with dead fathers! I digress) or “So did you bone Drake” or “Oh look, a man in the middle of the mess” trope. They keep getting THIS close to being real trope breakers….and then they blow it.
But they had to rescue the dude from the middle of the mess! He was a dude in distress! Which is at least a trope-flip, even if it doesn’t completely avoid the ‘a dude must always be a critical component in any situation’ idea.
And he neatly avoids any attitude of “OK ladies, the dude is here and will now take charge, so y’all can finally relax.” Which would have been really, really awkward. So I dunno, I certainly didn’t NEED Sam to be there, but his presence was not a particular annoyance to me.
Fair. I dislike the “doing it all for dead dad” trope more. For multiple reasons. I mean, shit. Not only is it SO done, it’s SO done IN THIS GENRE. Lara Croft: Same deal. Fuck, even with dudes! Indiana Jones! Doing for his (inexplicably Scottish) father. Even Nathan was doing it for his (great great) grandfather!
C’mon, Naughty Dog, you can do better.
Yeah, the inspirational dead dad is hackneyed and lazy, I’m with you there.
And with Naughty Dog’s smart style, you’d think even if they couldn’t come up with better motivation than a dead relative, it could have been a dead favorite cousin or something, just to show that at least they KNEW they were being lazy. A dead beloved dog! A dead iconic pop star!
“I’m doing this for you, Frank Sinatra!”
Not a dead child though, that’s as bad as dead dads for a female character.
Here’s the basic inspirational dead relative chart:
- Anyone can be inspired to anything by a dead dad.
- Dead moms are standard and not usually inspirational.
- Men can be inspired (usually to bloody revenge) by a dead (usually murdered) wife.
- Women can be inspired (sometimes to some act that helps others, and/or to scary, weird hermitude) by a dead (usually from tragic illness or accident) child.
- Children and young adults can be inspired to achievements that promote personal growth by a dead grandparent of either sex.
Does that about sum it up?
Pretty much. Though see TLOU. Kid dies before the title screen. Though that also plays on the “Men can be inspired by protecting a (usually female) child, who is replacing a dead child (or a child that they thought was dead)” trope, which we saw in TW3 as well.
I’d make a joke about dads and inspiration and stuff, but no. Still clinging to some optimism in the new year.
Oh yeah, the chart isn’t meant to cover everything, merely the basics.
I think you’ll agree that a father being inspired by a dead child, while it certainly happens, is less common than a man being inspired by a dead wife.
Hm…I was thinking of Joel more as a trope-flip than a full trope, but you’re certainly right that there is a long tradition of grizzled older guys (hi Joel!) helping/teaching/guiding younger people who remind them of their long-lost children, and ‘this kid reminded me of dear Sweet William’ is certainly a form of ‘I was inspired by dear Sweet William to notice this kid,’ so you’re probably right.
That being so, I was also going to say fathers inspired by dead children are probably somewhat less common than mothers in the same position, but considering all the ‘reminded ofs’ this may not be true.
Then, too, mothers in these kinds of active roles are so uncommon, there may be just as many fathers (not that there are many fathers either: action/adventure characters tend not to have children) purely because there are more men overall.
Also, wait, why is Geralt inspired by a dead child? Wasn’t Ciri just a child-figure, full stop, not a replacement? Did he lose a previous child-figure in a game I didn’t play?
All trope charts are incomplete.
And yes. The dead wife is almost as done as the dead dad.
True. Joel is tropey. Sadly. Even well written games have tropes.
We’re weird about moms. Serious mom issues.
As for the Witcher, well, she “died,” then came back, so it was more of a “I can’t lose you again” deal. She got taken by the hunt in game one, then stayed gone a long time, there was much “She is gone to me…” then she’s back and white haired and shit. Can you be your own replacement?
I’m going to allow it. For the trope.