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Starting Where It Began: The Tale of Battle Royale

Battle Royale has been the gaming worlds golden child for the past couple years, ever since PlayerUnknowns Battlegrounds lifted it from H1Z1’s forgotten ashes and Fortnite brought into the mainstream with funny dances and a fish character that deserves to die. Now, I was under the impression that The Hunger Games established the genre when Katniss and Peeta shot an arrow into our tween hearts but was surprised to find that it was not quite the innovator over an overdrawn genre.

The progenitor comes from a Japanese novel simply titled “Battle Royale” from author Koushun Takami. The novel generated an acclaimed film and comic, so naturally, I had to watch the movie and read the book in quick succession to see just what this genre started out as.

Turns out, it was much better than what it’s become. I suppose that I was surprised to find a strong narrative in a genre where the story has always been on the back burner. There have been attempts to correct these ideas, such as within Fortnite’s various season’s, they’ve instilled a narrative, so at least they’re trying.

I always enjoy something a bit different. I watch weird, obscure movies that were made on a $350 budget that are burning piles of garbage, or I’ll buy a horrendous shirt because I think it looks weird. 90% of the time, it doesn’t work in my favor (although watching Queer Eye has opened my eyes and I’m stepping up my fashion game), but every once in awhile, I find something that works, and “Battle Royale” works.

The novel has something to say, going more into detail about criticisms of the government censorship and violence against citizens, but it has no goal of bringing the system down. They’re just kids who want to survive and it shows the confliction that some of the students go through with trying to justify taking life with surviving, and the fates of those who can’t come to the decision fast enough.

Personally, I’d probably die. I’m 5’6″ and 140 pounds. I’m not built for survival, I’m built to sit at a desk and write shitty blogs about obscure movies/novels from the late 1990s and early 2000s. You’re not much of a threat when you have to stand on your toes to reach the microwave that’s on top of the fridge.

As for where the genre goes is a bit of a gamble. I’m afraid to say that I think the era of movies has passed for this genre, at least for the time being. Any attempt to do so would just bring forth comparisons to titles such as The Hunger Games. Maybe a few years down the road, when everyone’s forgotten about the god damn fish, we can come to truly appreciate the story that started it all.

In the Circle

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Hello! My name is Jordan but you can call me Jordy! I'm an aspiring young writer/creator who focuses primarily on video arts such as movies and video games, as well as anything else that catches my attention. I'm a pretty mellow, introverted guy but I welcome conversation so feel free to reach out! Thank you for taking the time to read this!

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