It’s amazing what a change of perspective will do. Simply by virtue of looking at certain events from a new angle, heroes can become villains and vice versa. Take Steven Spielberg’s 1975 blockbuster Jaws, for example. The standard take on this story is that it’s about a merciless shark who terrorizes a New England community before being brought down by a ragtag group of shark hunters. But that’s looking at it from a human being’s point of view. What about the shark’s point of view? For him, this is the story of a creature who simply needs to eat to survive, just like any other animal, and will consume whatever happens to come his way. Is it his fault that these idiots are practically feeding themselves to him? What’s he supposed to do? Not eat the skinny-dipping girl? Brazilian illustrator and animator Fernando Rangel presents the other side of the story in “Jaws (Tubarão) 8 Bits,” a video newly posted to his Toon Doom YouTube channel.
Formatted like an old-school arcade game, complete with a reminder to “INSERT COIN,” the video summarizes the action of the movie in under three minutes. The aforementioned skinny dipper is the focus of the game’s first level. Here, in a clever twist, the player takes on the role of the shark. Successfully devouring the teen will earn 500 points. Just like that, what was once a tragedy is rendered as a triumph. In another round, the shark attempts to eat as many tourists as possible, all while a grim-faced, digitized Roy Scheider watches stoically from the beach. Later, the shark hero will be able to score additional points by destroying parts of Quint’s boat, the Orca. But players are advised to watch out for those irksome pests, Brody and Hooper, who are essentially the Pac-Man ghosts of this game. If they succeed in their mission to kill the shark, it’s game over.