October 8, 2008

Missed Connections

Does Hideo Kojima need an editor? The internet thinks so, to the tune of 98 Google hits for the phrase "kojima needs an editor" (now it's 99).

I think that Kojima is likely aware of the criticism, but because of his success is free to dismiss it and continue in his over-expository ways. I think, also, that there is someone close to Kojima, perhaps a brother-in-law, who happens to be a professional editor and really could use the work. He thinks it would be a dream to work in video games, not least because he is currently employed proofreading ad copy for toilets. He has never discussed the matter with Kojima, who has always remained silent and impassive despite repeated and insisted hints. At one family dinner, the editor has his laptop on the table and pulls up a negative Metal Gear Solid 4 review that highlights Kojima's problematic verbosity. He plans to casually yawn and swivel in his chair, and with his outstretched arm push the monitor around to face Kojima, hoping to draw his eye and make it look accidental. He misjudges his velocity though and the laptop flies through the air and hits Kojima's wife in the neck.

If Kojima had asked him to join the team then it would be a very different story, he thinks. A collaboration with Kojima would be like a first-class ticket to genius city. The editor would be able to unleash his full potential, and Metal Gear Solid would be all the better for it; focused, tighter, incisive. He would accompany Kojima on whirlwind press tours, sitting in on interviews and game signings, and when Kojima is asked about his copious narrative talent he would demure and sing his editor's praises. And the editor would erupt with delight. Coquettish cheerleaders dressed as Meryl Silverburgh and Naomi Hunter would whisper in astonishment: that's the editor. He would get his own interviews as the press began to grasp the full measure of his intellect. Eventually the city would celebrate his contribution to gaming by throwing him a parade and driving him down Main Street in a convertible. The crowd would cheer and he would stand up in the car with his arms wide, letting the waves of otaku appreciation lap at his feet. A squadron of fighter jets roar overhead.

That's what he thinks when he's sitting in his cubicle watching smokers and pigeons out the window. He looks back to his work, which reads "The 2008 Vanguard model has sleek aerodynamic curves and a porcelein finish which makes it a keeper for any bathroom." He crosses out 'aerodynamic' and notes, "A toilet has no wings to fly. 'Porcelain' has one 'e.'"

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