The most disturbing theme of Resident Evil is not zombies — it’s eugenics


The premise of the Resident Evil series is seemingly simple. The basis of the game is an event that took place in the Arkley Mountains in June 1998. It starts with a simple training mission that fails. The STARS Alpha team, a special mission unit of the Raccoon City Police Department, will be dispatched to investigate the missing Bravo team at Spencer Estate, a mansion owned by the founder of a pharmaceutical company called Umbrella. What happened inside the mansion would later lead to a sequel to Umbrella’s range of influence.

The real horror of biohazard, buried deep inside the corpses of umbrella employees and civilians who have transformed into carnivorous zombies, lies in the similarities between games and real-world events. After all, zombies are completely fictitious, but government-sponsored science departments are willing to experiment with unwilling employees and citizens. And that’s where the fear of biohazard is the most effective and arguably the most specific. This series uses concepts such as global capitalism and the eugenics movement to create something that feels somehow rooted in our reality.

The term “eugenics” Originally built by Sir Francis Garton in 1883Is deeply rooted in racism and classism, advocating the belief that people with good genes produce “improved” humanity. This methodology and concept has been used by Nazi Germany, the Empire of Japan, etc. (Consulted with Herbert Spencer in the 18th century), And in the United States, the U.S. movement is backed by the Carnegie Science Center and other companies. Early 1900s.. Proponents of eugenics, whether individuals, movements, or governments as a whole, often present their theories with the backing of a scientific language that seeks to justify it.

Image: Capcom

Since the release of the first Resident Evil game in 1996, more than a handful of sequels and spin-off titles have been released, along with transmedia material. This includes novels, folklore-focused novels, and even more closely linked CGI films that further presume the origin of Umbrella Corporation and its relationship to government. In effect, this series created a figurative mansion on the humble foundation of the franchise and stitched various plots through 10 mainline games (yes, Resident Evil-Code: Veronica This is the main line game). Together with Umbrella Corporation as the series’ main adversary, it created a comprehensive story focusing on horror derived from unethical experiments driven by global capitalism.

Resident Evil 3 It became clear that eugenics was the main motivation for the creation of the umbrella.Then the following title Resident Evil 0 It provided additional insight into corporate motives before the T-virus became a pandemic. This further folklore was about the establishment of the company itself, detailing the development of a precursor virus that would eventually be used in a eugenics project called Project W or the Wesker project. Apparently, the umbrella was founded solely for the purpose of raising funds to pour into this project. The main story up to that point was about conspiracy and government collusion, which later led to a project that embodied the background of the series’ adversary Albert Wesker. Albert Wesker’s design effectively conveys the theme that remains at the heart of the franchise, with pale skin and blonde hair that evoke the aesthetics of what is associated with the Nazi ideals of Ubermensch. Wesker acts as a physical embodiment of the eugenics project founded by the company’s founder, Oswell E. Spencer.

Throughout the history of Resident Evil, various degrees of commentary surrounding it are provided through the documentation inside the game itself and the documentation extended by external sources such as the Resident Evil “Perfect Guide”, which is open only to Japanese viewers. was.To Resident Evil 5, Players are keenly aware of Spencer’s intention to create an umbrella followed by a virus created under the company name. It is clearly explained in the cutscene between the founder and Albert Wesker. Spencer reveals that Wesker was part of an experiment to effectively find a suitable successor to bring about a new era of superhumans. At the end of the game, the player confronts Wesker in a tense battle. In the meantime, if it is pulled out long enough, he begins to share his plans.

Wesker’s monologue RE5 Includes common ones Social Darwinist Issues drawn from Friedrich Nietzsche’s issues Superhuman theoryIt perfectly shows that the visual metaphor and the substitute Wesker materialize.Niche himself did not present his theory to the Nazi party, but his belief was shared with the party as he died a few years before the party was formed. Through his sister..Later, this Ubermensch idea was used to enhance White supremacism envisioned by the Nazi Party.. This soliloquy from Wesker, combined with the previous stories found in the series, creates a sense of fear that goes beyond vision and leads to truly uneasy and deep political stuff.

Wesker grabs an oncoming missile before attacking with Resident Evil 5

Image: Capcom

Resident Evil 6 Taking it one step further, I make a clear statement that the US government was involved in the various resurrections of Umbrella throughout the series. This has remained a constant plot point since the game’s first entry. One of the main adversaries of this entry is Derek C. Simmons, who was the National Security Adversary of the then president of the series. Simmons was responsible for the decision to effectively destroy Raccoon City using hot vapor missiles and erased most of the evidence that tied the umbrella to the US government. Resident Evil 6 We will revisit the case to prevent Simmons from playing an integral role in the outbreak of the virus and making this information publicly available a few years later.

[Warning: The links in the next two paragraphs describe real-life examples of government-sanctioned torture.]

The same thing is happening in the real world when it comes to exchanging information. For example Operation Paperclip US intelligence was involved calling on Nazi scientists and personnel to support military efforts.Information about these practices was not revealed until 50 years later. Declassified CIA document..

Also, during the Asian colonial rule of the Japanese Empire, Unit 731 was formed with the clear intention of creating biological weapons for the Japanese government. The official title of the unit. “Kwantung Army Epidemic Prevention and Water Purification Department, “Effectively masked what was being developed under the unit. This included the potential development of a “plague bomb”, which was subsequently dropped on the Chinese people to see if these inventions could be used to initiate an outbreak. Many of the things developed by this unit in 1995, whether successful or not, Interview published by The New York Times The length of the experiment conducted by Unit 731 was clarified. The article further revealed that most of this information was largely hidden in order to exchange information with the US government, where some key members of Unit 731 left without affecting the atrocities. Committed under both the unit itself and the Japanese Empire.

Rebecca Chambers stares at Resident Evil Zero corpse

Image: Capcom

Resident Evil Not necessarily inspired by these events, the portrayal of a large corporate umbrella game and its willingness to test its employees and citizens feel like a disturbing resemblance. This can be seen in a quote from the aforementioned interview with Unit 731 members. Former scientists say children’s experiments are not out of the question as long as their parents are believed to be spies. Similar plot points for unethical testing effectively cross the boundaries of war crimes, Resident Evil 5, Along with Umbrella (later effectively reborn under Tricel and other pharmaceutical companies and governmental organizations), used Africa as a test site to facilitate research, The actual pharmaceutical organization has been to the past..

Recent biohazard games do not explicitly include these themes. Resident Evil 7 I tried to touch them through the creation of the more recognized biological weapon Evelyn. Blue umbrellaInvolvement in the Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance (BSAA). However, none of these things are explained or extended in substantial detail.

on the other hand Resident Evil 7 This particular line of commentary, which was otherwise the center of the franchise, was missing, Resident Evil Village At least in some respects, he seems keen to get it back.So Resident Evil Village At the end, players will learn about the rogue unit in BSAA, the Hound Wolfhound Squad, and their involvement in the game’s events. The series’ flagship Chris Redfield is part of this rogue unit, with the BSAA main unit sending BOWs (or bioorganic weapons) to effectively clean up the rest of the biohazard. Learn thatTo Resident Evil 5, Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine learned about corruption within the BSAA, and Tricell was one of the leading funders and supporters of the Bioterrorism Countermeasures Unit.Since then in other biohazard games RE5, The plot thread was lightly touched, but nothing happened — until village..

Chris Redfield in Resident Evil Village

Image: Capcom

The Resident Evil series has the potential to return to previous long-standing commentary, along with the horrors that many already see today. While Albert Wesker was dead and buried, and with him, Spencer’s eugenics-led dream of a “new era” of mankind Resident Evil Village Let’s take a look at the previously ignored plot thread on the BSAA and its potential behind-the-scenes motives. BSAA’s claim using BOW, which has the potential to study the Blue Umbrella, recalls the first game that had already hinted at Umbrella’s government ties and the development of biological weapons.This plot thread could also extend something already woven into the story of the series: the critique of military exceptionalism is deeply intertwined with concepts such as: Imperialism used through various permanent troopsAnd above all, how do these groups help those with the most money and politics?

Resident Evil is known for its standard horror elements (dim corridors, hordes of undead), but what makes it really classic is eugenics, white supremacy, the military-industrial complex, etc. , An ever-evolving story that reflects the horror of modern society. And capitalism. All of these concepts combine to create a much more horrifying and comprehensive story than zombies or cheap jump scares. It remains effective almost 30 years later.