The Witcher 3’s Tribute to Paul Walker

 

paul walker fast and furious gif
Image Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Illegal Street Racing as Geralt

I’m finally finishing up The Witcher 3, year too late I know, and just participated in an illegal street race that is a subtle nod to the late and great Paul Walker and the Fast and Furious series.

It’s well documented that there is an achievement titled “Fast and Furious” that players can earn by winning all of the horse races throughout the game, but I couldn’t find any record of this other reference to the series, and Paul Walker specifically.

witcher 3 palio paul walker race
Image Courtesy of CP Projekt Red

A Race for Cash, and Respect

The race I’m referring too takes place as part of “The Great Erasmus Vegelbud Memorial Derby” side quest. After you beat every other contestant in the derby, you are crowned champion and subsequently approached my one of Cleaver’s henchman, Cleaver is a dwarf crime boss in the city of Novigrad. Meeting with Cleaver results in him inviting you to compete in an underground and illegal street race through the city of Novigrad. There’s a vague reference here to Fast and Furious being that’s  it’s an “illegal street race” in a fantasy setting, which seems intentional, but it is also still part of the previously mentioned “Memorial” side quest and the race is known as the Palio for no discernable reason. Still pretty thin I know, I didn’t even make the connection yet, I had to replay the section after the race.

The King of Beggars isn’t exactly one of the scantily clad women that kicks off almost every race in Fast and Furious movies, but the line about respect is an obvious allusion to the scene in the original Fast and the Furious movie where Paul Walker’s character makes himself know the street racing kingpin, Dominic Toretto.

“I lose, winner takes my car, clean and clear. But if I win, I take the cash, and I take the respect… To some people that’s more important.”

The Palio is introduced as, “above all, a race of honor,” where, “the winner doesn’t  just win a reward, he earns our respect as well.” Taken altogether, this is a wonderful tribute to the late Paul Walker that seems to have been completely overlooked by most fans. Given that I’m a huge fan of the Fast and Furious and now the Witcher games, it was still pretty subtle overall.

But that’s not all! The icing on the cake is that after the races conclusion, there’s a humorous nod to the police chase following the race in the movie, except it’s a dwarf shouting, “temple guard, scatter,” rather than a street racer yelling, “we’ve got cops, cops, cops, go!” over a mic.

Someone at CD Projekt Red is obviously a fan alongside me, and that only makes me love the experience that is the Witcher 3 even more.

 

A Rabid Fan and his Newcomer Girlfriend Go See Furious 7

Furious-7 Poster

I Finally Saw Furious 7

Last Saturday night I finally got my chance to experience Furious 7! I went with my girlfriend Abby due to a condition of our relationship formed after she refused to see the 6th installment of the series with me, it was her first experience with the Fast and Furious series. She loved it! But not for nearly the same reasons as me, she was just now forming connections with the extensive cast of characters and somewhat enjoys driving but is not at all interested in cars. We both loved the movie, but for very different reasons.

I love cars, I work as a content creator and marketer for an automotive company and love researching and driving cars, mostly of the everyday driver variety, so I especially love the fantastic take on cars and driving that the Fast and Furious franchise has adopted. Anything is possible with these cars, from stunts including cars skydiving out of a plane to the incredible, out of this world, customizations that they achieve to keep the movie cars far away from anything that you could see on the road on a daily commute.  I’m a huge fan of everything Vin Diesel does, so I am heavily biased, especially toward the Fast and Furious series.
Given my fandom, I love talking about the series and get excited whenever a new one comes out, no matter what number is attached to it. But even with my tremendous excitement about the series and the record breaking amount of tickets and cashflow generated consistently by the movies, I still have friends who aren’t open to seeing a new Fast and Furious movie. Maybe they just think I’m into the movies because I have been since the beginning, but there are still installments that I’m not cray about, I’m not blindly devoted to them and  I’m somewhat picky with the movies that  even take the time to watch. So, when I told my girlfriend Abby that she had to go see the 7th movie with me when it came out the day I saw the 6th one in theaters or else we were breaking up, it was the start of my experiment to see how someone with dissimilar interests to me as to what I enjoy from the movie will think of it.

 

Since making that deal, I’ve tried a couple times to get her to watch some of the movies that lead up to furious 7 to no avail, she’s not crazy about watching movies to stat out with o it’s pretty difficult to get her to commit to anything she’s not excited about. But, she agreed to go see Furious 7, we didn’t end up going until it had already been out for a week, which actually ended up being beneficial as she looked into some reviews and scores and saw how much people (outside of me) were praising the movie. When we finally decided to go after I had been on the edge of my seat waiting for a week, she was actually pretty excited to see it and probably to get me to shut up about it.

 

I loved every second of it, which is to be expected. I’m invested in the series an love the characters and they reliably outdo themselves with the stunt work every time. Moments I loved include the insane stunt like the sky dive onto the road and the retrieval of the hacker girl and the flying Lycan in Dubai, but also that moment the second time when Vin Diesel and Jason Statham are charging each other and Dom pops a nuts torque wheelie, because I called it as soon as they lined up.

 

My Girlfriend Loved Fast and Furious 7!

Abby, while she enjoyed the stunts, loved some other parts, particularly the funny one liners from Tyrese specifically. “Can I check my email real quick?” I’ve always found Fast and Furious movies entertaining in all ways with a small comedy element included, but they were some of the instances where she responded most strongly which I found interesting. People always tell me they haven’ seen the Fast and Furious movies because they’re not as into cars as me, but this is some proof that there’s really something in them for everyone to enjoy. Though, as we were walking out, Abby said that the movie gave her a small glimpse into why I get so excited about cars. Now, I don’t know if that’s an at all accurate or healthy glimpse into my fascination, but its a start…

Bonus Video: Live Action Bambi (Because you should watch it if you haven’t)

Images and Trailer Courtesy of Universal Studios and SNL