King of Kong: Fistful of Quarters took me by surprise in a lot of ways. First off, I actually liked the film, which was something I never thought I would say. Secondly, I was surprised by how invested I became in the characters’ lives and personalities. I don’t think I have EVER hated a character like I hated Billy Mitchell. He was rude, conceited, and a liar. He was just the worst. However, I came to love Steve Wiebe (probably as a result of my hatred of Billy because he hated Wiebe). I was literally cheering for him out loud, which woke up my roommate… oops. Anyways, I am pretty sure most everyone felt this way therefore I have said my peace and now I will move on to the true topic of this blog post: Steve’s family.
As much as I loved and rooted for Steve, I couldn’t help but sympathize with his wife and children. He almost seemed to neglect them at times and laugh about it. This can be noted in the video he sent Fun Spot where his son comes up screaming and crying “Stop playing Donkey Kong daddy!” Now, I understand Steve’s frustration in that particular moment since he was actually about to break a world record and all. That is not exactly what bothers me. What bothers me about this situation is that the way the little boy is crying makes me think this is more of a family issue than portrayed. It makes me think that older family members (specially the mother) have asked Steve to stop playing or complained to other people about how upset it makes them (her) and the little boy has overheard it, repeating it now. Another example for why I feel this way comes when Steve is in the backseat with his daughter and she says something along the lines of “I hear people that play video games are ruining their lives..” This kind of comment seems like something an adult would say therefore reinforcing my theory that the kids are overhearing their mother complain (that also may just be me reading into things too much… I tend to do that).
However, even if this is all true, that Steve is neglecting his family, I honestly don’t think he is meaning to. His parents mention they have theories that Steve is autistic. This may explain the lack of social skills and cues to be with his family more, playing the actual game of life instead of donkey kong.
Overall, the film was very entertaining! Thanks professor!