CSI Miami: Urban Hellraisers | My Two Cents

I Guess They'll Never Get It By J. Sternberg
            I originally saw the CSI Episode entitled "Urban Hellraisers" months ago, and until it showed up again on my DVR, I had pretty much written it off. All initial outrage fades when exposure is minimized, but it had to show up again, and now I have to get it out.             The plot revolves around teenagers (high school through college age) mimicking a popular video game Urban Hellraiser and participating in all manners of lawbreaking. The game is modeled to look somewhat like any of the Grand Theft Auto titles, and the kids are basically larping through it. They run around Miami in real life copies of the game's "levels."             Now, I won't deny its a great episode, much like any other CSI, it will keep you guessing, but the theme and approach to it, really frost my balls.             Keep in mind that with the popularity of network television, in particular shows like CSI: Miami, and the cross section of viewers vs. gamers vs. viewers/gamers is going to be a little lopsided. To some people, this episode of CSI, combined with all the coverage of Jack Thompson, GTA, and school shootings, will be their only exposure to anything video game related since Pong.             I don't believe that video games are the devil, that's no secret, you take one step into my apartment and you'll see several consoles, posters, cardboard cut outs and the like strewn about. It's a veritable shrine to the gaming gods. My problem with this episode of CSI is that it was written by someone who's only interaction with video games since Pong has been vilification in the media.             The "game" in the episode is really just an pot luck of extreme exaggerations as to what violent video games are, and with the tact of a cinder block to the skull the writers prove exactly how many games they've played. Buckle up, grab your barf bag, and listen, cause I will not repeat myself, and its possible you'll feel sick.             In one of the "levels" a character attempts to get "bonus points" for raping a bank teller. When a character passes a level, the game has a voice over that says "Congratulations you've made it to the next level" Ya get that?             Ahem, video games haven't had levels in years, in particular the crime genre, nobody uses points anymore, and a game has not featured rape as a way to score points since Custer's revenge on the original Atari 2600. Actually part of that statement is false. No American game has featured rape as a way to accomplish something since Custer's Revenge. In Japan, rape games are quite popular, as are tentacle rape based Hentai pornography. I digress.             The major issue here is that this type of media will only further the cause for people who refuse to take education on issues that they will somehow feel strongly about because in the end they look better for taking a stance than admitting they're utterly clueless. You want more proof of irresponsible media cocking things up? Go to youtube, and search fox news mass effect.             I take issue with this, personally, because as a kid I was almost hospitalized after the beating I received for playing Mortal Kombat 2 on the Super Nintendo. A real beating, after a digital bloodbath, from parents who allowed me to play Doom, all day long. Doom was not in the news for its violent content, so it was fine. All of this because someone who "knew what they were talking about" (the news) told someone who didn't know what they were doing, that something they've never experienced, was very very bad.             Wrap your head around that for a second. Ignorance is far more dangerous than any video game, movie, or album ever will be. I'm J. Sternberg and that's my two cents