When I was nine-years-old, I went over to a friend’s house for his birthday. His older sister had Resident Evil: Director’s Cut, and all the pre-teens in the house went upstairs to see it. My twin sister and I watched up until Jill finds the zombie munching on some dude’s neck, a scene that scared us so badly that we were deathly terrified of zombies for six years. Imagine two dweeby twelve-year-olds sprinting up the stairs, begging the other to turn out all the lights in the house so that the lucky twin could make a break past the zombies that were surely waiting to get us.
So Resident Evil is certainly a franchise that has a history of scaring people. However, it has long been a complaint that the Resident Evil series jumped-the-shark in survival-horror with Resident Evil 4, and Resident Evil 5 looks to keep the trend going. This is a major drag for fans looking for the scary “dog-through-the-window” moments of the original, as opposed to the waves of enemies and hoards of ammo in Resident Evil 4.
“Well, I think there is some truth to that,” admitted Mike Webster, Marketing Director for Resident Evil 5, “but I think we have maintained a lot of the roots within the Resident Evil franchise. Certainly with regards to the story and the characters, and that’s what people love about the Resident Evil franchise. There’s plenty of things that makes Resident Evil very distinct, and there’s the element of fear and the ability to scare. There’s plenty of that in Resident Evil 5. I’ve experienced a lot of it. We’re just able to that in the light now, as well as the dark.”
But will Resident Evil 5 instill a crippling fear of the undead for pre-pubescent children? Or will the constant threat of Gary Glitter keep them holding their breath under seven blankets pretending that said blankets offer protection from a horrible fate? Not like I’d know anything about that …