PlaySwitch examines the merit of 'Marcus Rivers', Sony's latest addition to the PSP's ongoing advertising campaign.
For one, I’m happy that a Black person gets to BE the representative for a videogame console. Black under-representation in the videogame industry is real and rampant.
Barely any characters are Black, barely any developers are Black, hardly any press figures are Black, hardly any company representatives are Black. Yet there are many players and have long been many players who are Black.
Ultimately I’m NOT ashamed of Bobb’e’s portrayal of Marcus in these ads. If his portrayal is offensive, then so is Nintendo’s Punch-Out!! with the Russian boxer Vodka Drunkenski (sanitized as Soda Popinski) and the ape King Hippo from the South Pacific where the Polynesians are from. If Marcus is offensive, then so is Mario himself with his exaggerated Italian accent. If he’s offensive, so is the entire cast of Street Fighter II.