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Feminism in Portal and Portal 2

John and I found an article written by Chris Holt who shares the same gender related analysis that we have previously commented on.

Feminism is a reoccuring theme throughout Portal and Portal 2. It is depicted by the difference between the voices given to the characters. For instance, GLaDos is given a robotic voice which makes her sound more intelligent. In Portal 2, it is revealed that she was designed to be the most sophisticated and powerful artificial intelligence within the facility. On the other hand, the characters who are given realistic human voices are male. The human voices represent lower intelligence and a higher level of dependence. For example Wheatley, who is given the most humanistic voice was infact designed to slow down GLaDos and to be the most "moronic" robot. Also, the turrets are given human voices and represent a low intelligence level with the exception of the operatic singing "momma" turret at the end of Portal 2.
The previously linked article discusses and shares our views on Chelle and Wheatley's mutual dependence on one another. Their relationship can be viewed almost as a marital partnership where one cannot accomplish a goal without the support of the other and vice versa. Throughout the beginning of Portal 2, Wheatley creates a bond with Chelle in order to have her help him. He is unable to get the portal gun himself, nor is he able to change tracks without the assistance of Chelle. On the other hand, Chelle would not be able to navigate through the facility without Wheatley's knowledge nor would she be able to pass through certain doors. GLaDos however portrays a strong, independent woman who refuses assistance and support of a partner. In the finale of Portal 2, GLaDos is humbled once she is turned into a potato battery and is made helpless. That humbled characteristic that accompanied the "Caroline" side of GLaDos was deleted by GLaDos herself after regaining her independence.


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