Chris Redfield has been part of the Resident Evil franchise since the first game in 1996, but he’s looking a little different lately. Sure, graphics have improved over the decades, and Chris has gotten older, but his appearance in the Resident Evil Village trailer was a little shocking.
The truth has become clear: Chris Redfield is a little bit of a chameleon, and he’s changed into an absolute brick of a man for Village.
In the Resident Evil remake for Gamecube, he’s a normal looking guy. You get the sense he’s interested in craft beers, and worries about fuel efficiency. In Resident Evil 5, Chris has gotten swole, to the point where he punches a boulder into dust for daring to block his way. Resident Evil 7 has Chris show up again, and he’s a completely different guy who looks like he regularly updates his Instagram with pictures of his latest hike. What the heck is going on?
Then, in the new Resident Evil Village reveal trailer, Chris Redfield has — once again — undergone a complete overhaul in appearance to become a jowl-y, wider, much more intimidating man. He shows up this time around wearing an extremely well-fitted coat, and then shoots Ethan Winters’ wife, Mia Winters. Ethan was the protagonist of Resident Evil 7, and met Chris at the end of the main campaign. Ethan screams “Why?!” and Chris just coolly apologizes.
Chris Redfield has been getting increasingly bizarre as the Resident Evil series trucks onward and plot elements like clones or the President becoming a zombie are added to the mix. After Chris Redfield saved the world from complete global saturation of a deadly virus, and killed his long-time nemesis, Albert Wesker, he ended up getting amnesia. In Resident Evil 7, he was working for long-time villains, the Umbrella Corporation, claiming that this was a benevolent version of them. Now, he’s shooting Ethan’s wife.
I am in awe of the size and moral ambiguity of this lad.
Fans have spun up a meme of an unstoppable Chris Redfield stalking other male protagonists in an attempt to get them to marry his sister, Claire, and “continue the Redfield bloodline.” One photoshopped note — made to look like a Resident Evil 2 document — reads: “Leon. This is Chris. I have an important mission for you. Do not contact Ada. I have broken her cellphone and destroyed her car with a boulder.”
For these fans, the Village trailer just builds on that joke, showing Chris tracking down another male protagonist. While the modern zeitgeist of Leon S. Kennedy portrays him as a sex symbol and overall smooth operator, Chris feels more like an over-the-top version of the macho man who gets the job done, no matter the cost. It’s easy to crack jokes about his evolution over the years, since the changes have been so obvious and extreme.
We don’t know what Chris’s role is in Village. In a series like Resident Evil, it’s entirely possible that these events could be explained away by clones, genetic manipulation, viruses, hallucinations, or Umbrella infiltrators. But in this trailer, he seems more like the Mr. X from Resident Evil 2 than a good guy. Maybe this new, big Chris Redfield is here to ruin our days. I just want to know what happened to our good boy from the original game.
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