Why a Tekken 7 Character Is Being Called a Phoney

Illustration for article titled Why a Tekken 7 Character Is Being Called a Phoney

This is Josie Rizal. The recently revealed character is Tekken's first Filipino character. For some, she's not Filipino enough—or rather, Filipino at all.


Josie Rizal is named after one of the country's most important national heroes José Rizal—something Tekken series producer Katsuhiro Harada confirmed.

Her outfit is red, blue, yellow, and white, which mirrors the colors of the country's flag. Josie Rizal's fighting style is eskrima and kickboxing. Eskrima is the Philippines' traditional martial arts. So what's the big deal?

There are fans who seem pleased, but others don't think Josie appeared Filipino in either the way she looks or dresses. Well-known Philippine-born artist and poet Adonis Durado summed those feelings best to the Gulf News, "The problem with Josie Rizal’s character is too obvious: it doesn’t have any trace of Filipino-ness-neither in her physical attributes nor in her outfit."

Continuing, Durado added, "If her fighting style is purportedly eskrima, where are the arnis sticks? So the Filipino-inspired name is simply a token."

Illustration for article titled Why a Tekken 7 Character Is Being Called a Phoney

So far, it doesn't seem like the character speaks Filipino or have a Filipino accent. As reported on the Gulf News, one fan hoped the character gets a Filipino dub and says things like "Aray!" (ouch) when fighting.


Filipino site GMA News reports that the country's National Commission for Culture and the Arts expressed dismay over the character.

Dr. Leodenito Cañete from the NCAA is quoted by GMA News (via Rouken at NeoGAF) as saying, "It's hard for us to prevent other countries from making characters like this because Philippines is very popular around the world."


The government body is considering looking into the matter to "correct" incorrect impressions Josie Rizal gives. Maybe it can do something about those deja vu attacks, too.

To contact the author of this post, write to bashcraftATkotaku.com or find him on Twitter @Brian_Ashcraft.


Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.



Hi guys! Filipino here! Actually, not a lot of us really care about Josie not being "filipino" enough. I mean. Beauty Pageant winners here are usually mixed race females. Look into the recent winners of Binibining Pilipinas. Filipinos are addicted to being "white" and purchasing multitudes of whitening products.Aesthetically speaking, other than her height, Josie does look like a Filipina. Her accent isn't a big issue. Eddie Gordo didn't have an accent in previous games. Lily's accent only appeared in the latest game. The only ones who are calling this an issue are the older generation, who unfortunately, have slightly bigoted beliefs. In a sense, We'll still buy the game and play it.

TL:DR Filipinos are butthurt.