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Why Resident Evil: Welcome To Raccoon City's New Images Has Fans So Divided

The tales of the "Resident Evil" T-virus zombies have long captured our collective imagination. The very first game in the series dates back to 1996, and the film franchise starring Milla Jovovich lasted from 2002 all the way up to 2016. However, even calculating for the longevity, it is still safe to say that the "Resident Evil" franchise is having what we might call a "moment" right now.

Within 2021 alone, fans have seen the release of "Resident Evil Village" — which spawned an obsession with everyone's now-favorite giant woman, Lady Dimitrescu – and while people have been talking about her, cosplaying her, or both, there have also been the successful remakes of both "Resident Evil 2" and "Resident Evil 3," as well as the exciting integration of classic baddie Nemesis into popular asymmetrical horror game "Dead by Daylight." And that's just talking about the games: On the adaptation side of things, there's been an animated Netflix series called "Resident Evil Infinite Darkness" which dropped in 2021, as well as a star-studded live-action series on the way. 

To top this off, while we haven't seen a movie in this universe since "Resident Evil: The Final Chapter," there's a new film on it's way, too — and that's the upcoming "Resident Evil: Welcome to Racoon City," which will be released before the end of the year. On August 30, "Resident Evil" fans got their first look at some of the cast in costumes, and reactions are already popping up on social media.

The big debate is over Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield

"Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City" is entirely unattached to the previous film franchise. The film's goal, instead, is to weave a scarier story more accurate to the original games. Even a cursory glance at the characters for the film will give fans of the games flashbacks of its origins. We're getting both Claire (Kaya Scodelario) and Chris Redfield (Robbie Amell), Leon Kennedy (Avan Jogia), Jill Valentine (Hannah John-Kamen), Ada Wong (Lily Gao) and Albert Wesker (Tom Hooper) — and while that's provisionally exciting, the new images which dropped on IGN have left fans debating whether or not this new movie succeeds at accurately adapting the games.

"Ew not gonna lie this looks fan made," tweeted @XxWolfxx2004, adding, "and the actor playing Leon looks nothing like Leon, come on guys what happened? But at least Claire looks good and accurate." But on the other hand, others feel very differently about Avan Jogia's look as Leon. "Who the —- cares about accuracy, Avan Jogia is living fan service look at the man," wrote @craziestevandel.

Of course, there are some people who are simply excited to see something different from the action-heavy previous film franchise. "Better than Milla Jovovich," tweeted @Gamercosplays succinctly.

However, it's probably @Lemmonhead92 whose tweet thread most accurately reflects the conflicted response we're seeing from fans thus far: "I'm liking the look of this so far, seems like they're actually going for game accurate costumes. Only thing that bothers me is that Claire ain't got her hair tied back. Looking forward to it though [...] Also, where's Jill's shoulder pads & hat?!?!" He summarized, though, by writing "I'm just being nit-picky, if #welcometoraccooncity is semi accurate to the games plot wise and the characters are accurate to their personality in the games, then I'm sure I'll love it!"

"Resident Evil: Welcome to Racoon City" arrives in theaters on November 24.