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The world of gaming has been buzzing with Jimmy Kimmel news this week following a series of monologues wherein the late-night host called out folks who enjoy watching other folks play video games. As promised, however, he has now given let’s play gaming a try and captured it for all to enjoy...or at least cringe their way through.
For those who have missed out on the hubbub up until this point, Jimmy Kimmel recently made comments to the effect that people who watch other people play games are “double wasting their time,” the implication here being that playing games is a waste of time in the first place.
Many members of the gaming community responded in a less than civil fashion, going so far as to send death threats and abusive emails Kimmel’s direction.
Kimmel, of course, capitalized on this opportunity and posted additional segments in which he puts some of these offensive comments on display for his audience to laugh at.
To his credit, Kimmel followed-up by saying he would give members of the let’s play community a chance to educate him on the hobby, quickly making good on the promise by recently meeting up with well-known streamers Markiplier and MissessMae to play some Rocket League.
Not trying to be difficult here, but if Kimmel really wanted to extend an olive branch, maybe he shouldn’t have continued to take shots at the folks who agreed to be a part of this sketch and, you know, not show up wearing a Power Glove?
I have a few other problems with this whole mess, too, one of which is that I can’t talk about those problems without going against my desire to stop giving this matter more attention. This entire debacle has meant a huge boost for Kimmel’s viewership, which means he’s basically making money off of a group of people he offended. Then he goes and creates a let’s play video for his audience to watch, which they sure as hell seemed to enjoy. That’s kind of bizarre, right?
Another issue I have is that Kimmel seems to think that the reaction he received was unfounded since he was, you know, just making jokes. While I agree that the type of responses he put on display are never okay, I doubt the reaction would have been any different if he, say, called people who watch late night television a bunch of idiots.
There’s also the issue with his proposed “education” on let’s play videos. Taking part in one isn’t the solution. The solution is making a comparison he might be able to understand. If you were to ask Kimmel why he enjoys watching football or even a movie, his explanation would likely be identical to why many folks watch others play video games. The fact of the matter is that Kimmel doesn’t understand that a good match in Madden, Mortal Kombat or League of Legends is full of all of those same qualities you find in a solid sports match-up.
Kimmel is one of those people who still sees games as kid’s toys. Those folks don’t know that games can tell powerful stories or offer intense competition that’s worthy of experiencing even if you’re not the one holding a controller. That’s not something you can really “teach” someone to understand. It either clicks or it doesn’t and, for Kimmel, it clearly doesn’t. The fact that he doesn't "get it" isn't an issue. Making his initial jokes isn't even the issue, really. His attitude about the matter and continued mocking, coupled with the fact that he's making money off of offending a group of people; that kind of bothers me.