Incendiary Image of the Day: Playing Down the Gunplay Edition


Grand Theft Auto offers players plenty of gun violence. Always has. Always will. Strange, then, that the recently released official screen caps include only one gun-wielding character amongst [a portfolio of] 22 images. Perhaps Wayne “Get Off My Lawn” LaPierre’s post-Newton shout-out to GTA cowed Rockstar Games into creative submission. Hollywood’s also downplaying the gunplay. Well the stars are, in interviews and Bloomberg-sponsored Demand a Plan montages. Less PC actors are relying on ye olde “red pill blue pill everyone knows the difference” excuse. “(This is) entertainment,” former California Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger told NBC referring to his forthcoming gun-lovin’ flick The Stand, “and the other thing is a tragedy beyond belief.” [Insert line about tragically awful Schwarzenegger movie while remaining sensitive to the suffering at Sandy Hook.] The entertainment industry’s marketing mavens may downplay the gunplay, but their products continue to give consumers what they want: guns, gore and gruyere. Or is that just me going a bit crackers?


  1. avatar jwm says:

    Last Axction Hero. Kindergarten Cop. Red Sonja. Twins. Oh wait, wouldn’t it be easier to list Arnie’s movies that weren’t tragically awful? Let’s see now……….nope can’t come up with one.

    1. avatar AlphaGeek says:

      Hey now, that chick in Red Sonja was eminently spank-worthy to the teenage version of me. Pretty sure that was the main selling point of the movie.

    2. avatar Ralph says:

      What about “Hercules in New York?” I thought Ahnold showed even more emotional range as Hercules than he did as the Terminator.

      1. avatar AlphaGeek says:

        I’m slightly amazed that there is an Arnold movie I’ve never heard of. Now I’m going to have to track it down and watch it just to see how bad it really is.

        1. avatar Ralph says:

          It’s possibly the worst movie of all time. In comparison, “Plan 9 From Outer Space” was “Citizen Kane.” It was so bad that all of Ahnold’s dialog was dubbed by someone who could actually (kind of) speak English.

        2. avatar Paul W says:

          It is awful. There’s plenty of youtube clips, but really, unless you’ve just murdered a whole convent of nuns, you don’t need to do that to yourself.

        3. avatar Paul W says:

          Watching too many Arnold movies may be bad for your taste, but I don’t think it makes you violent.

        4. avatar AlphaGeek says:

          You guys do realize that all of this just makes me want to track down a copy even more, right?

          Though, to be fair, that urge has subsided to the level of “find a used DVD on Amazon” and, failing that, download it from BitTorrent…

    3. avatar speedracer5050 says:

      “It’s not a “tumah”!! Sorry I couldn’t resist!!! Hollywood has made a living for decades off of shoot’em up westerns and action movies thus making a lot of money for stars and producers/directors alike yet they feel like we don’t need guns because they are dangerous???
      Lead by example then!!!! Let’s see how good the ratings are for NCIS(one of my favorite shows btw) when you take away all the guns and shoot’em up good and bad guys!!!
      I can’t wait to see Leroy Jethro Gibbs headslap some bad guy into submission so he can be cuffed and stuffed!!!

  2. avatar AlphaGeek says:

    Anyone who fully participates in modern electronic entertainment (see what I did there?) knows that there is ZERO difference between sublimating our desire for tribal conflict by shouting at a TV screen during a football game vs engaging with interactive entertainment. Both satisfy and redirect impulses which are not productive in modern society, namely the urge to form up into groups and go beat the stuffing out of Those Other Bastards.

    I would argue that we don’t have “football” (aka soccer) hooligans and riots in the US because we have widespread adoption of shooting sports and, yes, video games to give us an outlet for our innate desire for resolving conflict Viking-style.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      I’ll never understand soccer hooligans. How do they manage to stay awake long enough to cause trouble? Watching a bunch of guys in gaily colored shorts keek the ball back in forth at midfield just makes me drowsy. At what’s with them peeling off their shirts after a goal? Is that how they make the extra point?

      1. avatar speedracer5050 says:

        Soccer is like hockey….you go to the fights and a game breaks out!!!

  3. avatar Michael B. says:

    “LaPierre’s post-Newton shout-out to GTA cowed Rockstar Games into creative submission.”

    I hope not.

    I was three when I first played Contra. Four when I played Rush N’ Attack (Russian Attack). Both Cold War, Reagan-era anti-communist violent videogames and I never turned out to be an anti-comm– well damn. Maybe they do influence kids.


    Now it’s considered impolite to produce anti-communist videogames, although I did get a chuckle out of finding the M1 Garand in Fallout: New Vegas with “This machine kills Communists” etched into the stock.

    1. avatar Gyufygy says:

      Impolite or passé? Games have moved on to terrorists and zombies, although Nazis were the popular enemy for awhile.

      Then again, CoD Black Ops 1 was all about the Cold War commie…terrorists… oh…

      Also, I feel bad for admitting to playing the trash heap of a single player campaign in Black Ops 1. That was just awful.

      1. avatar Michael B. says:

        The Call of Duty games were made by a bunch of cowards who wouldn’t even portray the enemy terrorists in CoD: Modern Warfare as a bunch of psychopathic homicidal religious fanatics. Instead the enemy was a random quasi-communist regime and some Russian ultranationalists. After 9/11. In the Middle East. Ridiculous.

        The stories are typically also a bunch of statist oorah twaddle targeted to military-aged kids who don’t know much about life. Good recruiting tools.

        I actually liked Black Ops’ story, though.

      2. avatar Mashashin says:

        Better than black ops 2

  4. avatar Lance says:

    Yeah had a cartoon making fun of Hollywood for making blood bath movies then say we cant own any firearm shows they are the worlds biggest hypocrites.

  5. avatar Ramell says:

    That’s nothing new, previous screenshot releases for GTA V have been the same.
    They’re showing off the world, vehicles and characters, which are also important to the game, it’s not just about shooting people .

    Besides, it’d get boring if all the screenshots were thugs running around shooting at cops.

  6. Video games and movies are already highly regulated. I had to show my ID and listen to a rehearsed sentence about the blood and violence when I purchased Assassin’s Creed 3 and Black Ops 2 recently. They restrict different content to age groups. What more could they do?

    1. avatar Lolinski says:

      Seriously? You have to hear a rehearsed sentence when buying videogames? I buy them over the internet.

  7. avatar Mr. Pierogie says:

    As a former child myself, I played many violent games, watched all the bloody movies. Never did I develop any urges to hurt anyone or anything.

    Kids need to be taught right from wrong and adults need to explain to them that games and movies are not reality. 99% of us understands this and we follow the rules, yet whenever the 1% commits an atrocity, certain politicians feel obligated to “do something” which ends up punishing us all.

  8. avatar Totenglocke says:

    Disappointed in this one, Rob. Studies have been done again and again that movies / music / video games / books do not cause people to become violent. It’s been a common cop out for decades to blame media (like them blaming comics in the 50’s for crime) instead of holding people responsible for their actions.

    1. avatar g says:

      Reading comic books causes children to be FEROCIOUS! Oh, the humanity!

      “Badly drawn, badly written, and badly printed – a strain on the young eyes and young nervous systems – the effects of these pulp-paper nightmares is that of a violent stimulant. Their crude blacks and reds spoils a child’s natural sense of colour; their hypodermic injection of sex and murder make the child impatient with better, though quieter, stories. Unless we want a coming generation even more ferocious than the present one, parents and teachers throughout America must band together to break the `comic’ magazine.” -Dr. Fredric Wertham

      Paperbook fiction / magazines / comic books / rock & roll / rap music / video games. Yep, the blame trail hath been trod many a time before.

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