29/05/2014

The Phantom Pain Characters: Revolver Ocelot

Revolver Ocelot - Mcfarlane action figure
Back when bulky instruction manuals were still a thing, I always flicked through the pages, past the controls, past the copyright, and “how not to break the game” information to find the character pages. Partially because it usually contained information about the boss fights, and how to beat them.

As was the case with Metal Gear Solid, back on the PSone. The 11 year-old me giggled in delight to see the fantastic selection of enemies I’d be going up against. A psychic in a gas mask. A shaman with a minigun. The evil clone of the protagonist. Despite knowing Metal Gear Solid was a stealth game, I honestly couldn’t wait for the boss fights. I asked my friend who had already beaten the game who I’d be facing first. He shrugged. “Revolver Ocelot, I think.” My heart sank a bit. Out of all the wacky bosses we could face, the aging man with an antique pistol didn’t seem too exciting—how wrong I was.


Anyone who completed the Metal Gear series knows just how vital Ocelot is to the narrative. Other than the two series protagonists, Solid Snake and Big Boss, Ocelot is probably the most important character to the storyline of Metal Gear. When we first meet him though, he seems so unassuming. Introduced properly in a 1-minute cutscene before his boss battle (yes, Metal Gear once had cutscenes shorter than 30 minutes) we’re introduced to his style. He loves his 100-year-old gun, and spins it like an extra from a Sergio Leone film. He also has a passing resemblance to Lee Van Cleef—unsurprising that developer Hideo Kojima would put in such strong references to the Wild West genre, as he is noted as a cinephile—And then we’re plunged into one of the most simple, yet tense boss battles in the series. Two opponents, each armed with only a pistol. A small room. A hostage hooked up to C4 that would explode if touched. It all looked so simple on the face of it, but provided a sudden, unexpected change of pace in gameplay that tested a part of the game that players may not have experienced much yet, if stealth skills had succeeded. In a way, this boss fight summed up Ocelot perfectly. Mundane on the face of it, with countless hidden depths underneath.

"Six bullets. More than enough to kill anything that moves. Now I'll show you why they call me 'Revolver'. Draw!"
“Six bullets. More than enough to kill anything that moves. Now I’ll show you why they call me ‘Revolver’. Draw!”

Ocelot was, of course, the only antagonist from the game to survive, emerging unharmed, save the loss of his hand. The mystery surrounding his character only really began after the credits had rolled though, as we heard out gunslinging foe on a phone call with a man identified as yet another ‘brother’ of Solid Snake, as well as the President of the United States. Just a few words from him completely turned the series on it’s head.

Sadly, our interactions with him in MGS2 were somewhat spoiled by an incredibly lousy plot device. Namely that, for reasons unexplained in the game, he decided to replace his lost hand with the arm of his former boss, Liquid Snake. Which somehow contained Liquid’s ghost. Which occasionally possessed him. The less said about this the better, but needless to say it cheapened both Ocelot and Liquid. We did, however, learn that Ocelot was working for an Illuminati-esque organization called ‘The Patriots’, and was in fact working against his new boss, Solidus Snake. That’s 2 primary antagonists that Ocelot has served as right-hand man for, but was double crossing. Not bad.
“Ocelots are proud creatures. They prefer to hunt alone.”
Ocelot’s popularity seems to have skyrocketed with the debut of his younger version in prequel to the series,
Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater
. The 20-something cocky USSR agent seemed to connect more with players
than the mustached colt-twirler from previous installments. This might be because this version got more screentime,
a bit more backstory, and a strong rivalry with the man who would become Big Boss. As with MGS, we got
another Ocelot phone call at the games conclusion, revealing that all along he was, once again, working against his
boss. This time for both the CIA and the KGB. Ironically, in a game that revealed more about Ocelot’s past than
any previous entry, his mystery deepened. Who was he working for? What was his end goal? Was there anyone
he wasn’t betraying? We wouldn’t get the answer to all of these questions until the final cutscene of MGS4

Throughout most of the game, Ocelot is (seemingly) possessed by Liquid, right up until the moment of his death in the final boss battle of the game, a fistfight with Solid Snake. Thus, the first boss of the Metal Gear Solid series was also the final boss, one of the many ways MGS4 was supposed to represent the end of the series.
Telling exactly what Ocelot’s motives were would spoil the series, but needless to say, it involved a lot of betrayal. Of almost everyone he had worked alongside. Everyone he had worked for. He’d even betrayed himself, without even knowing it.

"I am Liquid's doppelganger...and you are his."
“I am Liquid’s doppelganger…And you are his.”

So why is Ocelot such a standout character in the Metal Gear series? For one, the fact that he harkens back to an older age. I’m not just speaking about his attire and choice of firearm. Well, I am, but not in the way you’d think. The Metal Gear series is filled with giant mecha, cyborg ninjas, nano-machines, AI powerful enough to control the world, etc.
Out of all of these, who becomes the most persistent antagonist? The guy with a six-shooter. He doesn’t have any psychic abilities, he can’t turn invisible, he isn’t covered in bees, and he can’t shoot lightning from his fingers. Yet, despite being surrounded by people like this, he managed to play them all for fools.
Like an unassuming mouse sneaking under the eyes of giants, Ocelot uses his (comparative) normality to his advantage throughout the series, keeping a low profile until the time is right.
Of course, the moustachioed-Machiavelli will be making a return in The Phantom Pain.
What will his plan be? How much of his activities in the 1980′s will we see?
Will it change everything we know about him?
One thing we can speculate on, however - it will contain plenty of betrayal.
And since Paz got her a bomb up her vagina in Ground Zeroes, and Ocelot being a interrogation torture expert, i guess lots of nude news will show up in The Phantom Pain... ;)
My Girl's Tatoo... xD

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