Take-Two Responds To Italian-Americans Offended By Mafia II

Mafia II, Take-Two’s newest entry in the open-world crime series comes out later this month, but it has already ruffled some feathers, according to 1UP. In what is literally straight out of a Sopranos episode, UNICO National, an Italian-American advocacy group sent the publisher a letter, stating the game is an:

“inappropriate and insulting perpetuation of the pervasive and denigrating stereotype of organized crime being the exclusive domain of Italians and Italian Americans.
“Why would [Take-Two] foist a game on their target audience of young people wherein they will indoctrinate a new generation into directly associating Italians and Italian Americans with violent, murderous, organized crime, to the exclusion of all the other ‘mafias’ run by other ethnic and racial groups,”

The spokesman for UNICO, Andre DeMint, then called for the game’s release to be delayed until all references to Italians and Italian-Americans can be purged from the game.

Take-Two’s response was matter-of-fact, pointing out that no one at UNICO has to play the game and since the it is rated M for Mature, it is specifically NOT targeted at young people. And of course there was the obligatory reference to all the great crime movies, books and TV shows over the years and games have just as much right to express themselves as any other medium.

So where do you come down on this? Personally, I can’t stand when a group gets offended by this. Just having a game about the Mafia doesn’t imply that every single Italian acts this way in real life. Just like not every Italian acts like Snooki or The Situation from Jersey Shore. What say you?

Source: 1UP

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Age: 34 PSN ID: Starkiller81. I've played games since before I can remember, starting with my dad's Atari and I haven't stopped yet. Keep them coming and I will keep playing them.

8 thoughts on “Take-Two Responds To Italian-Americans Offended By Mafia II”

  1. You can’t be everything to everyone. In this day and age you can’t even open your fucking mouth without being a sexist/racist/homophobic/etc.

    If NO one is offended, you probably haven’t done it right.

  2. I agree with Julez. The medal of honor, playing as the taliban, nothing is wrong with that, it’s true to what happens over in the middle east. This is exactly what happened mid 1900s. Just because you’re putting history into a fiction game doesn’t mean it’s wrong. They’d need to complain about nearly every documentary about the mafia too.

  3. I understand why people get offended over the perpetuation of popular ethnic stereotypes in media, but it’s hard for me to feel sympathy for Italians when every Italian neighborhood in a big city has several shops selling things like “Italians Do it Better” t-shirts.

    I guess it’s like the old George Carlin bit about how it’s okay to hit your own gang, but it’s also not like Italian-Americans (which is a stretch of a term anyway, since most of them have been in America for several generations) are consistently discriminated against.

    Besides, shouldn’t they be more concerned about the effect those nitwits from “Jersey Shore” are having on the image of the Italian-American community than with a video game that is just ripping off the same mob movies Hollywood has been churning out for decades?

  4. Come on, people. I’m sorry that you’re embarrassed by the well documented fact that SOME ITALIANS (read: not all) were involved in organized crime, but them’s the facts.

    There are bad apples in every group. I mean, I’m a white person of Eastern European decent. Am I going to get offended by a movie about white supremacists from Eastern Europe? Nope. A tortured example maybe, but I’m not going to get my underwear in a twist over it.

    Also, I love how UNICO’s only solution is to purge every reference to Italian Americans from the game. Over-reaction much? Although if the CEO of Take Two wakes up with a horse head in his bed, he might consider this.

    Also, best thing to come out of Jersey Shore:

    http://www.imbringingbloggingback.com/wp-content//jersey-shore-gif1.gif (NSFW)

  5. Once in a while, a game likes to base itself off of real events. Ya know, like the Crusades, the War in Afghanistan, or the Italian Mafia. IT’S THE BLOODY MAFIA, WHAT ELSE DO YOU WANT!?

  6. As an Italian American with a last name reflecting such and a family history that may have been involved… I am not the least bit offended and I don’t think they should be either. This is a piece of entertainment, not a history lesson. If you can’t figure out whats what then STFU. Capice?

    I also second Julez opinion.

  7. at least the game portrays Italians and Italian Americans as having the balls to take it like a man…something UNICO seems to lack.

    I agree with Julez as well. If you do something right someone is going to be offended, However if I was Italians or Italian American I would be more offended by UNICO than by Mafia 2. seriously UNICO, grow a pair.

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