From Sean Combs to Sean Astin
Though we likely won’t know for sure until the full game is released on February 16th, right now it appears that Brazilian Street Fighter III brawler and little brother to Street Fighter V‘s Laura has gone through a radical racial transformation. In this image spotted on BasedPavy’s twitter, the formerly brown skinned, kinky-haired combatant now sports a decidedly Caucasian look, complete with straight, light brown locks and a peachy-keen skin pigment. He also appears to now have a piece of tape where his nose once was. Maybe he’s still recovering from some Michael Jackson-style facial/racial reconstructive surgery?
This isn’t the first time that Capcom has given one of their characters a racial make-over. The original Street Fighter Alpha took Birdie, the Anglo-punk from the very first game in the series and transformed him into a brown skinned, large lipped semi-stereotype. Capcom never explained how or why that happened, though they did decide to keep Birdie brown for Street Fighter V, albeit with a lot more skin on his frame in general.
It seems like Capcom is making an extra effort to make Street Fighter V feel inclusive and culturally sensitive for the Global market, but with this move, I’m less and less confident that they have any real idea of how to do that.