The Trailer for the New Mortal Kombat Is Out, and It Looks Sort of ... Eh

The Citizen's Guide to the Future
June 3 2014 4:10 PM

The Trailer for the New Mortal Kombat Is Out, and It Looks Sort of ... Eh

screen_shot_20140603_at_2.08.49_pm
Yawn.

Screengrab from YouTube.

Like many '90s mothers, my mom hated the video game Mortal Kombat. It seemed like everytime she'd walk into the room, I'd be using Scorpion (always Scorpion) to orchestrate either the dismemberment or barbecuing of an opponent—his signature "get over here!" followed immediately by some of the most graphic and gory deaths in video games at the time (or ever, when taken in context). Beheading, charbroiling, impaling—the fatalities in MK were impressively unique in their sadism.

To me, the gore was just cool—nay, awesome. But it would surprise me not at all to hear that my mother lived in constant fear of the day when 10-year-old me would ask for a samurai sword for Christmas, mere minutes after using one to split Johnny Cage in two at the waist. I was an impressionable kid, and the video game blood lust was very, very real.

Advertisement

Which brings us to Mortal Kombat X, the latest installment in the franchise that began in 1992. When someone flagged the teaser trailer—which can be seen below—for me, I was intrigued, wondering just how over-the-top the present-day gore would be. Mortal Kombat carnage plus 2014 graphics? Yowza.

But honestly? Eh.

Maybe it's because I just watched someone crush another man's skull with his bare hands on Game of Thrones, or that I spent my college years mowing down terrorists by the dozens in Call of Duty, but I was shocked by how underwhelming it was to see Sub-Zero's head ripped clean off his shoulders and pinned to a tree by Scorpion's chained-spike. It's almost embarrassing to say, but as someone who is at least attempting to be a pseudo-adult, I was disappointed in how not-revolted I was by it.

Of course, it's possible that I have been desensitized to that type of thing. But given the lack of controversy surrounding the game's release—as well as an informal poll taken on a Slate email chain—it's more likely that Mortal Kombat-style gore has just become uncontroversial. And while I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing, per se, it's definitely something.

All that said? "Finish him" is still incredible to hear. Every single time.

Mortal Kombat X, developed by NetherRealm Studios, is due to hit shelves in 2015.

Future Tense is a partnership of SlateNew America, and Arizona State University.

A.J. McCarthy is a Slate Video blogger.

TODAY IN SLATE

History

Slate Plus Early Read: The Self-Made Man

The story of America’s most pliable, pernicious, irrepressible myth.

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada. Now, Journalists Can’t Even Say Her Name.

Mitt Romney May Be Weighing a 2016 Run. That Would Be a Big Mistake.

Amazing Photos From Hong Kong’s Umbrella Revolution

Transparent Is the Fall’s Only Great New Show

The XX Factor

Rehtaeh Parsons Was the Most Famous Victim in Canada

Now, journalists can't even say her name.

Doublex

Lena Dunham, the Book

More shtick than honesty in Not That Kind of Girl.

What a Juicy New Book About Diane Sawyer and Katie Couric Fails to Tell Us About the TV News Business

Does Your Child Have Sluggish Cognitive Tempo? Or Is That Just a Disorder Made Up to Scare You?

  News & Politics
History
Sept. 29 2014 11:45 PM The Self-Made Man The story of America’s most pliable, pernicious, irrepressible myth.
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 29 2014 7:01 PM We May Never Know If Larry Ellison Flew a Fighter Jet Under the Golden Gate Bridge
  Life
Dear Prudence
Sept. 30 2014 6:00 AM Drive-By Bounty Prudie advises a woman whose boyfriend demands she flash truckers on the highway.
  Double X
Doublex
Sept. 29 2014 11:43 PM Lena Dunham, the Book More shtick than honesty in Not That Kind of Girl.
  Slate Plus
Slate Fare
Sept. 29 2014 8:45 AM Slate Isn’t Too Liberal, but … What readers said about the magazine’s bias and balance.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 29 2014 9:06 PM Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice Looks Like a Comic Masterpiece
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 29 2014 11:56 PM Innovation Starvation, the Next Generation Humankind has lots of great ideas for the future. We need people to carry them out.
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 29 2014 11:32 PM The Daydream Disorder Is sluggish cognitive tempo a disease or disease mongering?
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 28 2014 8:30 PM NFL Players Die Young. Or Maybe They Live Long Lives. Why it’s so hard to pin down the effects of football on players’ lives.