Chuchel has been redesigned to avoid racist association
The creators of Machinarium have listened to the commnunity and created a new Chuchel.
Czech indie studio Amanita Design has published today a statement through their official Facebook page concerning the recent redesign that their character Chuchel has gone through in order to avoid being associated with the 19th Century American racist avatar “Blackface”.
Blackface was a stereotypical racist character born in the United States during the 1800’s and was embodied by white performers all around the country wearing black paint on their faces and orange paint on their lips. Blackface has been a symbol of deep racism in the United States and carries seriously negative connotations.
CHUCHEL is a comedy adventure game by Amanita Design, featuring a main character by the same name and created by the developers behind Machinarium, Botanicula and Samorost. Chuchel is a little creature that was formerly designed with a black face and orange lips, as well as an orange hat.
This is how Chuchel looked before:
Aware of the resemblance with Blackface, the gaming community pointed this out to Amanita Design ir repeated occasions, until the studio finally announced today that Chuchel has gone through a complete redesign in order to avoid this comparison and prevent any association with the racist avatar.
The studio stated the following through today’s Facebook post:
“In reaction to a number of requests we’ve seen coming from the players throughout the year, we ultimately decided to swap Chuchel’s colours and change his body colour from black to orange. We acknowledge that due to significant differences in culture and history between Central Europe and other regions, we did not consider the possibility of Chuchel, a living dust bunny, being associated with ‘blackface’, a theatrical racial stereotype which emerged in the United States in the 19th century.”
Amanita also apologized for any offense that their character may have caused: “We would like to sincerely apologize to anyone who has been offended by the original appearance of Chuchel”, they wrote.
So, now that the redesign is over, Chuchel has an orange face and body and his hat is now black, while his lips are yellow. The change will probably be seen with good eyes as Amanita Design has made a statement with this that shows that they care about these concepts and will go as far as completely changing their characters in order to prevent the possibility of spreading the wrong message.