Grand Theft Auto 5 makes one of the most surprising self-commentaries I’ve encountered in a long time: the average person likes the violence in Grand Theft Auto because they’re average.
For a long time, we – the ones who toil away spewing our best attempts at piercing commentary about interactive media on (relatively) narrowly read corners of the internet – have said, dismissively, that, “average people like the violence in the GTA series,” but I don’t think anyone has made the connection that the masses are drawn to GTA specifically because they feel faceless as part of the masses.
Yet that’s exactly what the game itself postulates. Early on in the game, Grand Theft Auto 5 gives players an opportunity to visit a therapist as Michael, one of the protagonists in the game. The visit serves as a stage set up so Rockstar can give their best case for why they do what they do, or at least so they can take their best guess at why people seem to like it so much.
As Michael starts to go into why his life is going so bad, and some of the recent troubles he’s had, his therapist rightly observes that Michael feels the … Read More »