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Chris Redfield

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Chris Redfield
Resident Evil character
Chris-Redfield-RE7.png
Chris Redfield in Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
First gameResident Evil (1996)
Created by
Designed byIsao Ohishi and Jun Takeuchi (Resident Evil)[1]
Portrayed by
  • Charlie (Resident Evil live-action cutscenes)
  • Will Lupardus (viral series)[2]
  • Wentworth Miller (Afterlife)[3]
  • Seijirō Nakamura (stage play)[4]
Voiced by
  • Scott McCulloch (Resident Evil)[5][6]
  • Michael Filipowich (Code: Veronica)[6]
  • Joe Whyte (Resident Evil remake)[6]
  • Kevin Dorman (The Umbrella Chronicles, Vendetta)[6]
  • Dave Wittenberg (Pachislot Biohazard)[6]
  • Roger Craig Smith (Resident Evil 5, The Darkside Chronicles, Revelations, Marvel vs. Capcom series, Resident Evil 6)[6]
  • David Vaughn (Resident Evil 7)[7]
  • Hiroki Tōchi (Japanese, Afterlife, Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Revelations, Project X Zone, Resident Evil 6, Resident Evil remake HD remaster, Project X Zone 2, Resident Evil 7)
Motion capture
  • Tetsuya Matsui (Resident Evil remake)
  • Reuben Langdon (Code: Veronica, Resident Evil 5, Resident Evil 6, Vendetta)[8]

Chris Redfield (クリス・レッドフィールド, Kurisu Reddofīrudo) is a playable character and one of the protagonists in Capcom's Resident Evil (Biohazard in Japan) horror video game series. Chris debuted as the protagonist of the original Resident Evil video game, where he is depicted as a member of the Raccoon City police departments Special Tactics And Rescue Service (STARS) team, along with his partner Jill Valentine.

He is also one of the two protagonists of the game Resident Evil Code: Veronica, in which he looks for his missing younger sister, Claire, and one of the main characters of Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, where he manages to take down the Umbrella Corporation with Jill. Chris returned as the protagonist of Resident Evil 5, working alongside his new partner Sheva Alomar, and is one of the protagonists in the game, Resident Evil: Revelations. Chris returns as one of four protagonists in Resident Evil 6 where he and his partner Piers Nivans attempt to stop a worldwide bio-terrorism attack. He also has a cameo appearance at the end of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard and starred in its downloadable campaign, Not a Hero, where he leads a revised, seemingly benevolent Umbrella Corporation team, in search of the villainous Lucas Baker, while also having to battle hordes of more aggressive "Molded" creatures.[9]

Chris also appears in Resident Evil: Afterlife, the fourth film in the live-action film series, played by Wentworth Miller. Chris also appears in the 2017 computer animated film Resident Evil: Vendetta, set in the same continuity as the video games, as one of the co-protagonists. The character has been well received by critics, being considered one of the most important characters in the franchise, and recognized for his sex appeal. His redesign in Resident Evil 5 has been the source of both praise and criticism from critics and fans alike.

Appearances[edit]

Resident Evil games[edit]

Chris Redfield debuted in the original Resident Evil as one of the playable protagonists,[10] along with Jill Valentine, partnered with the rookie officer Rebecca Chambers. He is introduced as a former U.S. military pilot[11] hailing from New York City,[12] and a member of the Raccoon City Police Special Tactics And Rescue Service's (STARS) Alpha team, sent to investigate the disappearance of Bravo team after their helicopter goes missing in a nearby forest. Chris, accompanied by Jill, Albert Wesker, and Barry Burton, soon find themselves trapped in a nearby mansion, filled with horrific monsters and deadly traps. Chris' scenario is more challenging than Jill's, as he has a smaller carrying capacity and lacks certain items. Unlike Jill, he is not equipped with a lock-pick and needs to find keys. He can take a lot more physical damage from enemies than she can.[13] In the end, Chris and his comrades learn how the incident began, and witness the death of Albert Wesker, who was betraying them all along. They also face and kill a prototype Tyrant released by Wesker. Following the so-called "Mansion Incident", Chris leaves Raccoon City, embarking on a personal mission against the Umbrella Corporation, after learning of how Umbrella instigated the viral outbreak in the mansion.[14]

Set five months later, Resident Evil Code: Veronica sees Chris return as the protagonist of the second half of the game. He attempts to rescue his younger sister, Claire, from the Umbrella Corporation's research facilities on the fictional Rockfort Island, in the Pacific Ocean, and in Antarctica. Upon discovering she is in Antarctica, Chris is briefly confronted by Wesker, who is revealed to have survived the events of the "Mansion Incident" and now has enhanced strength and speed, and is seeking revenge on Chris for having destroyed his plans. Eventually, he confronts Alexia Ashford, the creator of the T-Veronica virus. At the end of the game, he fights with Wesker shortly after killing Alexia. He is no match for him, and their fight is cut short because of the imminent destruction of the base. They vow to finish things another time.[14]

Chris is one of the main characters of Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles,[15][16] reuniting with Jill Valentine. Sections of the game are essentially a retelling of Resident Evil. The two join a private biohazard containment force, and in 2003 embark on a mission to destroy the Umbrella Corporation after hearing rumours of a new Bio Organic Weapon (BOW) being developed. The resulting attack on an Umbrella facility in Russia's Caucasus region is successful.[14]

In Resident Evil 5,[17] Chris is the protagonist and a founding member of the UN paramilitary group Bio-terrorism Security Assessment Alliance (BSAA). In the game, he investigates a terrorist threat in Kijuju, Africa while looking for Jill, who is missing and presumed dead. Accompanying him is his new partner Sheva Alomar.[17] Eventually, they manage to find and free Jill, and ultimately defeat and destroy Wesker who was planning to release a new virus into the atmosphere, ensuring complete global saturation.[17]

In Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles Chris appears as a playable character in the "Game of Oblivion" scenario's last chapter, a re-imagining of Code: Veronica.[18] He is also available in the Extreme Battle mode featured in the later versions of Resident Evil 2 (the PlayStation 2 DualShock edition and the PC, Dreamcast and GameCube ports),[19] and is one of the eight playable characters in Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D.[20]

Chris returns in Resident Evil: Revelations, with Jill Valentine.[21] After co-founding the BSAA, Chris is sent by director Clive R. O'Brian to investigate the return of the terrorist group, Il Veltro, with his new partner, Jessica Sherawat. In the mountain ranges of Finland, the two lose contact with the BSAA, but they find Il Veltro's air base. After re-establishing contact, Chris and Jessica learn that Jill and Parker Luciani have gone missing while searching for them. Eventually, Chris and Jessica find them on the ship Queen Zenobia. Chris teams up with Jill once again to neutralize the t-Abyss virus. O'Brian then directs them to another ship, Queen Dido, where they find Il Veltro leader, Jack Norman, who injects himself with the t-Abyss virus. After a grueling fight, the two find a video containing evidence of the crimes the director of the Federal Bioterrorism Commission, Morgan Lansdale, who was behind everything.[22]

Resident Evil 6 sees Chris return as one of the three protagonists alongside Leon S. Kennedy,[23] and Jake Muller, the son of Albert Wesker.[24] In the game, Chris leads a squad of BSAA soldiers to investigate a bio-terror attack in Europe. Ambushed by Carla Radames, posing as Ada Wong, they suffer severe casualties. Only Chris and Piers Nivans survive the assault, with the rest of his team being turned into monsters by Carla. Chris is overwhelmed with guilt and resigns from the BSAA. Piers convinces Chris to rejoin the BSAA to avenge their fallen comrades. They travel to China to investigate bio-terror activity and find themselves in another C-virus outbreak. While attempting to rescue Jake Muller, who possesses the anti-bodies needed to stop the outbreak, Chris and Piers encounter HAOS, a powerful BOW. Piers is grievously injured during the battle and injects himself with the C-virus to gain super-human powers. He saves Chris, but sacrifices himself to ensure HAOS is destroyed. Chris continues to serve the BSAA in Piers' memory.[25]

At the end of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, a man identifying himself as "Redfield" arrives to rescue Ethan Winters. While the credits refer to the character as Chris Redfield, the helicopter he arrives in is branded with the Umbrella Corporation logo, which is now blue instead of red, initially causing people to question the person's identity, but it was revealed to really be Chris, in spite of the noticeable change in his appearance due to a different actor portraying him.[26][27] Chris appeared in the downloadable content campaign, Not a Hero, which was released on December 12, 2017.[28][29][30] This sub-chapter focuses on Chris and his comrades attempting to apprehend a man named Lucas Baker. However, their mission goes awry when Lucas captures Chris' soldiers. Chris receives information via radio, from a woman called Veronica as he ventures through salt mines that are filled with monsters, toxic gas and Lucas' traps.[31] Despite losing his men, Chris manages to foil the plans of Lucas after he mutates like his parents had, and Chris also destroys the computers about to relay information to "The Connections." Chris also appears at the conclusion of End of Zoe, to discover that Zoe Baker has been rescued by her uncle, Joe, and that she has been cured of her infection by Eveline.[32]

According to Capcom, the blue logo for Umbrella is meant to represent the good company that Umbrella originally was intended to have become, prior to their sinister actions, and Chris is still trying to bring down the bad people who remain within the opposition side of Umbrella, prominently featured in Umbrella Corps.[33]

In film[edit]

In the rejected Resident Evil film script written by George A. Romero in 1998, Chris is a Native American civilian and ultimately one of the few survivors.[34][35] In 2000, Capcom fired Romero[36] and replaced him with Paul W.S. Anderson, who wrote a new script.[37]

Chris appears in the 2010 live-action film Resident Evil: Afterlife, portrayed by Wentworth Miller.[3] In the film, Chris is found trapped in a maximum security cell after his unit's attempt to control the T-virus in Los Angeles goes haywire; the survivors who find him believe him to be a prisoner. He is reunited with his sister Claire, who cannot remember him because of memory damage caused by an Umbrella mind control device. He, Alice and Claire eventually defeat Albert Wesker and rescue imprisoned survivors being used for Umbrella's experiments. Miller said he prepared for the role by searching for images and videos of Chris on the Internet, as well as doing cardio for endurance.[38]

In 2017, Chris was one of the main characters in the film Resident Evil: Vendetta, alongside Leon S. Kennedy and Rebecca Chambers.[39] Unlike the live action films, the animated films are in the same continuity as the games.[40] The plot involves the three protagonists trying to stop a man named Glenn Arias who is attacking New York City.[41]

Other appearances[edit]

During the release of the Japanese Sega Saturn version of the original game, Capcom published a promotional sourcebook The True Story Behind Biohazard, containing an original short story titled "Biohazard: The Beginning" by Hiroyuku Ariga. It depicts the events before the first game and fleshes out Chris' character, describing the deaths of his parents in a car accident, and his service in the United States Air Force (USAF). Chris joined the USAF as a teenager, quickly becoming an accomplished pilot as well as a top marksman, but received a dishonourable discharge in the mid-90s for disobeying a direct order. He later became a drifter until enlisting (on Burton’s recommendation) in the newly established Raccoon City branch of the STARS.[14] Chris also appears in several Resident Evil comic books by WildStorm, Image Comics and Marvel Comics.[42]

Outside the Resident Evil franchise, Chris also is a playable character in the crossover fighting games Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds and Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. The game's first cinematic trailer showed him fighting against Hulk.[43] He also appears in the crossover tactical role-playing game Project X Zone, the first time in a non-Capcom game, wearing his Resident Evil: Revelations outfit.[44] He returns in the game's sequel, Project X Zone 2.[45] Chris also appears as a playable character in Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, and is featured in the story as one of the heroes fighting against Ultron Sigma.[46]

A double-pack of action figures of Chris and the monster Cerberus was released in 1998 in the Resident Evil Series 1 by Toy Biz.[47] Another action figure from the original game was released in 2002 by Moby Dick,[47] as well as two action figures (differing only by their color patterns) of Chris from Code: Veronica by Palisades Toys.[47] An action figure of Chris from the original game was released as part of the 2006's Resident Evil Anniversary Series 1 by the National Entertainment Collectibles Association (NECA).[47] An action figure of Chris from Resident Evil 5 was produced in 2009 by Hot Toys.[47] A PVC diorama figure of Chris facing the monster Yawn from the original game's remake was released in 2008 in the Bio Hazard Figure Collection Vol.4 by Organic (Beagle).[47] A statuette of Chris from the same game was also released in 2009 by Gaya Entertainment.[48] A sand globe with Sheva and Chris was included among the pre-order bonuses for Resident Evil 5.[49]

Design[edit]

Chris smoking a cigarette in the original game's uncut intro sequence

Hideki Kamiya described Chris as a "blunt, tough-guy type", admitting that he was a fan of this archetype.[50] During the game's development, Chris was also designed to be physically tougher than Jill Valentine, being able to run faster and absorb more damage.[51] Reuben Langdon did Chris' motion capture for several Resident Evil games.[52]

In Resident Evil 5, Chris' increased muscle mass was to show that he had trained heavily in order to fight the series' powerful villain Albert Wesker bare-handed.[53] Modeler Yosuke Yamagata added that they "made a new design that retained their signature color—green for Chris, blue for Jill—to carry over the same look from the past. The facial structures are mainly based on the visuals of the GameCube version, and we added various details to these in order to develop a realistic structure."[54] For the sixth main game, Chris has been redesigned slightly; he now has a slightly disheveled look due to his alcoholism and post-traumatic amnesia.[55] In 2016, IGN made a video focusing on his evolution throughout the series.[56]

Reception[edit]

Chris' redesign in Resident Evil 5 was the subject of praise and criticism

Chris Redfield has been well-received by critics and fans alike. According to PSU.com in 2011, Chris is "as synonymous with the venerable horror series as the zombies and unintentionally hilarious, cheese-tastic dialogue" and along with Jill forms its "nucleus".[14] In 2009, GameZone ranked Chris as fourth on a list of the top five "gaming gods" of the year for his new look, describing him as "one gorgeous hunk" with "a killer body and dreamy good-looks".[57] PSU.com described the look as "a beastly, muscle-bound warrior with biceps the size of water melons".[14] That same year, Chris and his sister Claire were included in IGN's "Ultimate Zombie Strike Team", Chris for his "long, fruitful career killing zombies" that "proved that Umbrella's fearsome bio-weapons are no match for a lone warrior with guts".[58] Also in 2009, the Gameplanet website stated that if Chris and Leon S. Kennedy both appeared together in the next game it would be "awesome", adding that both are the series' main protagonists.[59] Chris was also repeatedly compared with Leon by IGN, both of them being regarded as the series' leading heroes.[60][61] In 2010, GamesRadar website featured his team-up with Sheva in an article about gaming's "most violent double acts" for their actions in Resident Evil 5.[62] That same year, Joystick Division's James Hawkins ranked Chris as the seventh sexiest video game character, commenting: "Though Chris gets matched up with some of the finest damsels in all of video gaming, he never comes across as sleazy. He shares the workload with his partners and has an unfaltering allegiance with them. That and he has awesomely massive biceps."[63] Hawkins also ranked Chris and Jill as the fifth top duo in video game history, as "the two of them together make a force that cannot be slowed by even the most sophisticated undead forces;"[64] in 2012, Brittany Vincent of Complex ranked them as the 15th "most ass-kicking" game duo.[65] In 2015, Logo TV ranked Chris first on their list of the sexiest male video game characters,[66] and was included on Pixel Vulture.com's 2016 list of most attractive characters from recent video games.[67]

Negative criticism includes Chris ranking fifth on IGN's 2009 list of most overrated video game characters, with a suggestion that he should "ditch the 'roids and concentrate on getting the job done",[68] and included in UGO.com's 2010 list of top ten out-of-luck game characters for his failures across the series.[69] GameSpy called his new design in Resident Evil 5 a cross between Colin Farrell and Hugh Jackman"[70] in particular, and became a source of controversy and was often ridiculed. GameSpot gave Chris the special award for "character most likely to fail a performance-enhancing drug test" in the Dubious Honors awards in 2009, adding that "the man is clearly a walking pharmacy".[71] Including him on its list of "ten game heroes who fail at the simple stuff" for his inability to shoot while moving in RE5, GameDaily recommended he "spend a little more time on the shooting range and a little less time pumping iron in front of a mirror".[72] Joystiq commented that during The Umbrella Chronicles Chris possibly started his "steroid abuse",[73] a suggestion also made by IGN.[68] In 2011, BeefJack featured Chris among the five game characters who are supposed to be sexy but turned out awkward, as "he looks like the runner-up in a Popeye lookalike contest".[74] On the other hand, when GamesRadar compared his Code Veronica and RE5 designs while trying to evaluate which would fit better for a zombie apocalypse, they found the latter provided a better chance to survive to a zombie attack.[75] It also judged Chris from the original game as "horribly ill-prepared".[76]

See also[edit]

Media related to Chris Redfield at Wikimedia Commons

References[edit]

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