Mad Max: Fury Road is currently killing it at the box office. The post-apocalypse action flick impressed fans and critics with its surprisingly tight structure and convention defying feminist plot.
Naturally everyone had high hopes that the companion game, Mad Max: The Savage Road would continue to push the same buttons. However, with the game’s most recent trailer dropping just hours ago on YouTube, it looks like fans should get ready for a dose of disappointment.
Savage Road certainly looks to be lovingly rendered in the style of the film, complete with desert dwelling savages, roving gangs of marauders, and a desolate open sandbox world. However, there’s one thing missing. Players are invited to take on the role of the film’s ostensible protagonist, “Mad” Max Rockatansky as he defies futuristic warlords and vicious gangs, but anyone who has seen the latest installment of the Mad Max franchise knows that Max barely qualifies as the star. The film’s real standout, and de facto star, is Charlize Theron’s ruthless female road warrior, Imperator Furiosa.
Putting a woman in the driver’s seat, both literal and figurative, of a big budget action film is still a surprisingly unorthodox choice in 2015. Furiosa steals the spotlight from Max at every turn without ever veering into love interest or sex-object territory. A casual viewer could be forgiven for totally forgetting Tom Hardy’s mumbling Max, but everyone who walked out of a screening of Fury Road remembers Furiosa.
Fans and gaming pundits are disappointed that the game’s latest trailer shows no sign of the franchise’s newest star. While the game version of Max is modeled closely on Tom Hardy’s rendering of the character, there’s no indication that Furiosa appears even as an NPC let alone as the playable character that many had hoped for. It’s not a surprising turn of events as female characters often draw the short straw in games, especially ones tied to big budget action properties. However, in this case it feels like a dramatically missed opportunity to leave the film’s most recognizable character on the proverbial cutting room floor.