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Exposé: Alex Kidd – Animal Puncher, Gambler, Twat?

January 22, 2012

Alex Kidd punches a hand-faced crab monster

Alex Kidd (アレックスキッド Arekkusu Kiddo) was a big child star in the 80s, the eponymous protagonist of a number of Sega video games, such as Alex Kidd in Miracle World, and Alex Kidd in Punching a Frog in the Face. Wait, what? That’s right, Alex Kidd was a little boy with a big heart and an even bigger fist, which he used by turns either to punch creatures, or to gamble recklessly. His life involved generally moving from the left side of a level to the right side, hitting animal folk along the way, before finally challenging bosses to a game of rock, paper scissors, aka ‘Janken’ in Kidd-speak.

What is Sega's fist-fixation here?

The first of many anti-climactic battles

While it is commendable that Kidd chose to use a form of non-violent confrontation to defeat level bosses, this really doesn’t make up for the hundreds of creatures smashed with his massive hand along the way. To some extent, his actions may in some way be excused by the fact that punching blocks in levels often yielded bags of money or jewellery. It could well be the case that Kidd, like so many of us, was conditioned by Sega to believe that smashing things would make money appear. However, one can’t help but feel that Kidd would then have just smashed the bosses in the face too, instead of resorting to cowardly games of Janken to fight them. Kidd’s actions here demonstrate that he is no more than a spoiled bully, lashing out at frogs and birds, driven by his insatiable greed and twisted ambition.

Alex Kidd: Hitler Youth?

His actions are brought even more into contrast with decency when compared with those of his peer, Sonic the Hedgehog, who spent his time freeing animals from inside of robots. This also lends weight to the popular argument that Alex Kidd is in fact the son of Dr. Robotnik, the infamous egg-based villain, and that Kidd’s violent behaviour is indicative of his desire to gain his father’s approval. Either way, Kidd’s time is now spent wandering the streets of Swindon, challenging confused passers-by to games of Janken in order to progress to the next level. However, this is a level which he will never reach until he learns to buck his ideas up and fly straight. Kidd needs to wake up and realise that he can’t just punch all of his problems away. And get a proper job.

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