Midgar as a pizza.

Dionysos

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Anyone familiar with FFVII should remember that Midgar's plate is compared to a pizza. The Midgar citizens suffering in the slums in the shadow of the plate are heard to joke that they are living "underneath the rotting pizza".

The metaphor makes sense. Midgar is round and divided into pizza slice-like sectors. Midgar's 'pizza' blocks out the sunlight for those living underneath. For them, life really does seem to be rotting around them, while the truly rotten people live atop the plate.

But did you know it goes a bit deeper than that?

Midgar's Mayor (who doesn't actually have much authority in real terms) is named Domino, after Domino's Pizza. The Deputy Mayor is known as Hart in the English translation, but in Japanese he is known as ハット / Hatto (which can be translated into 'hat' or 'hut'), after Pizza Hut (the Japanese for Pizza Hut is apparently ピザハット/ Pizahatto)...

Therefore, the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are both references to dominant American pizza restaurant chains... The English translation just missed this particular joke.

The "rotting pizza" wasn't just a half-baked, throwaway line. They meant it.

I think this strengthens an already powerful metaphor. The plate of Midgar is a rotting pizza, suffocating the unfortunate cockroaches and undesirables who dare live underneath it, and yet the Mayor and Deputy Mayor (representing hugely successful restaurant chains) are essentially rotting along with the discarded pizza they delivered. Meanwhile, Shinra grins and collects the profits.


The whole Final Fantasy franchise is a stuffed crust of clever, subtle references. I find this one particularly fascinating. I'd overlooked it until recently.
 
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