As an avuncular living-room presence for three generations, it’s easy to forget John Madden was the head coach of the Oakland Raiders back when they were the Raiders, and he had to lead characters like Ted Hendricks, Phil Villapiano, Jack Tatum and Ken Stabler. So Madden’s proficiency with the F-word should not be astonishing.
But is appearance had been left out of founding myth of the creation of the Madden NFL series, what had been portrayed, with a little corporate embellishment, as a kind of Kenny-Rogers-as-The-Gambler midnight train meeting with Electronic Arts’ Trip Hawkins back in the 1980s. As the story goes, Hawkins suggested that the first game bearing Madden’s name go light, maybe with seven players on a side, to cut down on the complexity of programming and playing the game. Here, according to the recently published All Your Base Are Belong to Us, is Madden’s reaction:
Fuck that and fuck you people. Either we do it fuckin’ right or we don’t fuckin’ do it at all.
You know, I would hope that, at EA’s Tiburon studio, that is mounted on a wall somewhere like Notre Dame’s Play Like a Champion Today sign.
Other excerpts, covering franchises like BioShock and Sam Houser’s stint working for Simon Cowell before heading Rockstar, can be found at the link.