I’d like to begin this article with a prayer of thanks and a quick round of self-flagellation in honour of Jeremy Parish. He has a very special power wherein any rare game he drops a ton of money on promptly becomes available on the digital marketplace, or as a retail re-release. You, sir, are the Jesus we need (but not the Jesus we deserve).
My husband and I bought Misadventures of Tron Bonne sometime around its initial release. We weren’t married at the time; I had stopped for a visit in North Carolina, and we bought the game at a now-defunct Media Play. I remember the cashier looking down at the game, looking up at us, then looking down at the game again. She didn’t know what to make of the little girl (badly) rendered on the jewel case, I guess. Man, for the days when Capcom still took risks with its properties but didn’t bother with silly things like compelling presentation art.
The Misadventures of Tron Bonne isn’t perfect (gosh dang those sliding box puzzles to heck) but it’s colourful, joyful, and just damn happy about its own existence.
There are many amazing things about The Misadventures of Tron Bonne – kidnapping thoroughbreds for money, the subsequent “horses can’t be astronauts” joke, harried police woman Denise Marmalade inadvertently admitting she still depends on her mom to wake her up in the morning – but I really want to take a moment to talk about one of the game’s primary villains, Glyde Loath.
Glyde Loath is gayer than a unicorn in springtime, and he is so okay with that.
Though the PlayStation opened up North Americans to a new world of uncensored game content, it was still pretty unusual for gay game characters to be this suggestive about their homosexuality. Even in the year 2000, Glyde’s open lusting for Teisel Bonne is the kind of character trait that normally suffered an “Oops!” under the localizer’s scalpel.
And Glyde’s a creeper, don’t get me wrong. Inferring you’d like to bang an unwilling hostage like a screen door in a hurricane is vile, regardless of the genders involved. At the same time, it should be noted Glyde’s sexuality wasn’t dissolved into total joke fodder, and that’s cool.
Yeah, Glyde’s pretty flamboyant, and he has a thing about roses. But he’s also all business, and he’s damn good at his job. The game doesn’t show him getting shit done in spite of the fact he’s some silly, prancing homosex jester. He is a merciless kneecap-breaker who just happens to prefer keeping intimate company with dudes.
He also rocks that brown-and-gold colour scheme like no straight person ever could.
So if you happen to be wondering if it’s worth dishing out $5.99 on PSN to help a 14-year-old air pirate rescue her brother from a well-dressed, back-flipping loan shark that commands an army of bird robots…
Yes, dear. It is.