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Transcript of AVGN Episode Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde: Re-Revisited

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(The episode begins with a black-and-white clip; the first few seconds from the original Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde review from 2004. The Nerd's voice can be heard over this.)

In May of 2004, I gave a warning about a game called Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. I made it perfectly clear: DO NOT PLAY THIS GAME. But, from what I understand... people played it. They didn't listen. But, it wasn't their fault, I only showed about one minute of footage from the game, and even though I talked about it at great length, it didn't do any good.

(The Nerd drinks some Rolling Rock.)

I called it a piece of shit. I called it an awful pile of steaming goat shit. But, that was honoring it. I could have said anything, it wouldn't have mattered. I could have taken a shit on it, but my own shit would have been offended to lay on this loathsome piece of FILTH. Just the thought of covering this thing in doo-doo is like encasing it in gold.

I curse the day I ever laid eyes on it. I curse the plastic that holds this abomination. My words are insufficient in describing the total insult to humanity that this "game" has provided. Everything that I've ever said, and anything that anybody else has ever said, is not enough. It must be shown.

(He drinks more Rolling Rock.)

(Takes out a fake toast piece from the Nintoaster and starts to put in "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," but, he stops.)

What's up with the guy on the cover, anyway? He looks more like Two-Face. (Shows the front of the NES cartridge.) You know, I wonder where this guy is today. Did he even realize the magnitude of what he's taken part in? He's the one who made me want to play this game. (Zoom in on the person on the cartridge.) He meets your eyes with this hypnotic gaze, luring you in, thinking that you're gonna play somethin' cool. But, really, you've just been fooled, like biting into chocolate-covered shit.

(He moves to put in the game, but stops again.) You know this game was made by Toho? The same company that made the Godzilla films? No wonder Godzilla's been extra pissed off lately. (The Nerd pulls back from putting in the cart again.) You know that the proper pronunciation is JEE-kyll? That's what the author of the novel insisted, Robert Louis Stevenson. But, only the first sound movie got it right, which was the one starring Fredric March. And every movie since then said Jekyll, and nowadays, that's kinda... I know, I'm only delaying the inevitable. (He sighs, then pulls the cart back, yet again.) You know, puppy dogs in France in 1951 had a... UGH! All right. God-damn, let's do this.

(The Nerd tries with all his might and is reluctant at first, but he finally puts the game in with shaky hands. He turns the game on, thunder booming and lightning flashing ominously. He makes to drink Rolling Rock, but changes his mind. The Nerd switches to a large glass decanter filled with what appears to be tequila. He considers using a shot glass, but then tosses it over his shoulder, downing it straight from the bottle. The hand is at the start option, and the Nerd is about to press start but then he stops and notices the music)

Wait a minute. That music. Okay, you ever played Rygar? You know, that action-adventure game? Well, listen to this. (A clip of the music from "Rygar" plays and it sounds familiar to "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.") Sounds familiar, right? Yeah, all right. Let's play some Jekyll and Hyde. Oh, God. (He plays the game, turns from Dr. Jekyll into Mr. Hyde, gets struck by lightning, drops dead in his tracks, dies, and gets "Game Over." The Nerd is horrified and speechless as he sinks down onto the ground from the futon. He drinks more of the tequila from the glass bottle.)

Here's the deal: if you die as Jekyll, you turn into Hyde; die as Hyde, the game's over. There's two ways to die as Hyde. #1: The traditional way; Getting hit too many times. #2: Getting as far as Jekyll. Yeah, you know whenever lightning strikes, and you drop dead in your tracks for no apparent reason? Well, that's the reason. You got too far.

You see, when you're playing as Hyde, you're actually playing the same stage that you played as Jekyll, but in reverse. So, if you reach the same spot where you died as Hyde, die as Hyde. Wrap your head around that. (He drinks more tequila.)

The whole idea is to turn back into Jekyll. You do this by killing certain creatures which relieve your Stress Meter. (A yellow arrow points to the Stress Meter.) You get the meter back down, and you go back to being Jekyll.

This is no town, like in a Zelda game. These people don't want to talk to you, oh, no. They simply want you dead. For what reason, I cannot imagine. Your only weapon is a cane, but it does nothing. When I first played this, I thought I was doing something wrong. I mean, there's gotta be some explanation, right? But, no, there is none. The cane has no purpose whatsoever! Why would you put a weapon in a game that you can't even use?

When you're Hyde, it's like playing an entirely different game. Ahh! Help! Help! I can't walk backward! I'm getting scrolled. Even when the steps come, you're forced to jump. Even though the enemies here look far more threatening, you can actually fight back, by shooting crazy projectiles that the game calls the psycho-wave. Very creative. It certainly travels in a wave-like path, and yes, I call it psychotic, too. With a pattern like that, you have to be lucky to hit anything. Oh, and guess how you pull off the move: by pressing Up and B. Yeah, Up and B. Not too cryptic, but not too obvious either. B punches, but why would you want to punch when you can shoot? It's not like you could run out of ammunition either, so, the punch is worthless.

The irony here is that when you're Jekyll, it's unplayable. But, when you're Hyde, it actually starts to feel kind of like a fucking game. But, you're not supposed to let yourself become Hyde, as if bad is more fun than being good. That's the idea, right? Jekyll's good, Hyde is bad.

So, why do the townspeople hate Jekyll? Shouldn't it be Hyde they're fighting against? When you're Hyde, you're just defending yourself from evil monsters. You should be going around the town beating people up, walking into bars, starting fights, getting drunk, raping women, and causing a ruckus. That's Mr. Hyde. No, instead, you're shooting fireballs at ghosts, demonic babies, and brains with legs.

Now, I'm sure the same thing is on everybody's mind: "Does any of that shit that happens in the game, happen in the book?" Well, I have read the book. And, no, it doesn't. Although, I can say the game is very true to the original title of the book, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, because this game is certainly a very strange case, indeed!

Supposedly, the Japanese version has more levels, while the U.S. version replaced them with some of the same levels, repeated. So, I guess the Japanese version is... better? Kinda like eating a skunk, versus eating a skunk with a little salt on it. All you do is walk to the right. Don't stop for anything. It's not like you can attack, anyway. Just keep walking, and walking, and walking, and occasionally jumping or waiting for a spider to move. Ugh, I'm actually out of breath from looking at this.

Why do you walk so slow? You know what, it's not that you walk slow, you walk normal like a real life human being. But, everybody else comes flying at you with all piss and vinegar! What did the good doctor do to make everybody so upset? I can see the townspeople sittin' at the local pub, talkin' about him all day. "Yeah, ya see Jekyll, ya see him? Ya see him walkin', he just keeps fuckin' walking! I don't like him. Think he's an asshole. He wears his underwear backwards. He has eyeballs for testicles!"

Well, according to the manual, Jekyll's on his way to his wedding, and the kid with the slingshot named Billy Pones has a crush on Dr. Jekyll's fiancée. Wow. I'm impressed. I didn't think there'd be a reason. But, it doesn't explain all this other shit! Who's this jackass with the bomb? Don't you just hate it when you're walking down the street, minding your own business, and somebody puts a fucking bomb in front of you?

This is the worst part of the game. If you get hit by the bomb, it takes half your life, and sometimes all of it. And the range of these bomb blasts is truly remarkable. You could be a mile away and it still hits you. And each level has about a thousand of them! Why can't the bomb kill anyone else? Is the rest of the town immune to bomb explosions? Even the spiders don't die.

Oh, these bees! Go away! (Uses the cane to kill a bee in-game) What happened? I killed a bee?! (Kills another bee) I killed something! The only thing you can kill in the whole game, and it's a little tiny stupid FUCKING BEE! (Angrily drinks some more tequila.)

There's a grave digger throwing dirt in your face, there's a hunter shooting ducks out of the sky that conveniently drop on your head, and there's a singing lady who hurts you with her musical notes. Honestly, that's the explanation that they use in the manual: "Her singing is so bad, it hurts you." Not at all like the music we hear the whole fucking game!

Augh, I'm getting pwned by Billy Pones! I'm getting charged by women in pink dresses! I'm getting mutilated by rabid dogs and pissed off cats! Ergh! Watch out for the bird shit! The--whawhawhawhawhat?! (Notices birds shitting in-game.) It's definitely shit... in a Nintendo game. And are the birds shitting dog turds? Yeah, look at it: they shit half their own size. That's not right. Birds shit little white splatter pellets, not big brown coiled-up poop mounds. And they never stop.

Geez, wouldn't this be a good reason to call off the wedding? I mean, he has had quite a day. Wonder how the bride's been doing? She's probably worried about, I dunno, her dress or the color of the fucking flowers or some shit. Next thing, the groom shows up covered in bomb ashes and bird shit. "Sorry, honey, I'm late! I had quite a day. The whole, all living creatures in the whole fucking town tried to kill me, that's all!" (Drinks some more tequila.) What makes him think the church is gonna be any better? Is the priest gonna throw candles at him? Is Jesus gonna climb off the fucking cross and start hitting him with it?

(Notices a pissing statue.) Is that statue taking a piss? It's taking a piss. Oh, great. Now there's birds shitting into the piss fountain. This is perfect. Look at this picture. This sums up the whole game. When Robert Louis Stevenson wrote his story about a doctor who makes a potion that exposes his inner evil, he didn't realize that the potion would become a reality. Not in the form of chemistry, but through a late 20th century interactive electronic apparatus. Awful music, dreadful graphics, unspeakable gameplay, deceptive enemies, unavoidable hazards, useless weaponry, all mixed together and calculated just right. That... is a horrible concoction. Fuck! Fuck! FUCK! FUCK!! FUCK!!! UNGH!!!!

(He drains the last of the tequila, and falls over. The Hyde to Jekyll transformation music from the game plays as the Nerd starts turning into Hyde. His face is darker, he growls and looks menacingly about him taking a jump off the edge of the couch. The Nerd goes into his closet, takes a cape and top hat, and brandishes a cane. The Nerd takes the game out and tries to hit it with the cane, but he misses just like in the game. The Nerd growls in anger and yells to the ceiling.) ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON! YOU RUINED MY LIFE! (Walks up the stairs and out of the room, angrily.)

(Cut to a graveyard, the Nerd digs up a skeleton from Robert Louis Stevenson's grave. The Nerd chokes the skeleton, but the skeleton chokes him instead. Intimidated, the Nerd throws the skeleton away. The skeleton laughs in a monstrous voice and gives the Nerd the middle finger.)

Skeleton: Fuck you!

(The Nerd tries to hit the skeleton with the cane, but misses, and the skeleton laughs, completely unharmed.)

Skeleton: I am the devil! MUHAHAHA! Now go play some Dr. Jekyll and Mr. HYDE!!

The Nerd: NO!

Skeleton: HYDE!!

The Nerd: No.

(The scene fades to black and fades back in a blur. The Jekyll to Hyde transformation music from the game plays as the Nerd wakes up, back in his room, where he first transformed. He resumes playing the game, and has an epiphany.)

I think I get it. Why, it’s the best game ever made. It’s more than a game; it exposes the dual nature of the human spirit. The only way to win the game is to be Jekyll, but you wanna be Hyde so you can shoot shit. You see, it’s a constant battle between good and evil, and Jekyll must stay farther along his path than Hyde. If Hyde gains the lead, then evil will triumph over good, and that’s the true conflict to the human soul.

And to deny the evil completely, would only force it to the subconscious mind, like a city broken into different social classes. People don’t wanna step outside their own boundaries, like Jekyll wandering into the wrong section of town. He’s unwelcome. Nevertheless, he must abide by his own good nature.

No wonder the cane doesn’t work. The game does not reward you for acting upon your malevolent intentions. It’s a proposed guideline for a set of morality rules to be programmed through real life. It uses the Victorian era as a fundamental depiction of outward respectability and inward lust. It’s a metaphor for social and geographical fragmentation. It eludes the Freud theory of repression, in which unacceptable desires or impulses are excluded from the conscious mind and left to operate on their own in the unconscious.

Or, you could just say, "THE GAME FUCKING SUCKS."

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