Oh God, Fortnite Made Peely Worse

Fortnite characters from the Summer Legends pack (Screenshot: Epic/Kotaku)
Fortnite characters from the Summer Legends pack (Screenshot: Epic/Kotaku)

Fortnite’s terrible banana has a new summer look, as part of yesterday’s Summer Legends cosmetic pack. It raises some questions, mainly: Dear God, why?

This isn’t the first time Peely’s gotten a new skin. We’ve seen him dressed as 007 and as a half-rotten monster full of — oh my god — bones. He had his peel in those variations, but in Summer Legends his peel has gone missing, making him… well, not naked exactly, because he’s wearing swim trunks. Shaved? He seems like the type who’d shave his entire body before going to the beach, honestly.

Fortnite's Unpeely skin in a hat, glasses, and swim trunks (Screenshot: Epic/Kotaku)

For starters, we can now truly understand how nonsensical Peely’s head is. He has no chin or neck to speak of. I’m not sure how those glasses stay on, since he doesn’t have a nose or ears. The top of his head is horrible to consider, and somehow even worse when it’s poking out of his tattered hat. In his other skins, his eyes and mouth are on his peel, but here they’re on his banana flesh itself. Does he have two faces? Or does he get ready for beach times by taking off his facial features, removing his peel, and then putting his face back on, like a horrible Mr. Potato Head? Perhaps, reader, it’s best not to know.

Props to Epic’s artists: Peely’s peel-less body is intensely evocative of actual bananas. When you look at him, you can practically feel the squishy, nubby sensation of peeling a banana that’s been sitting in your beach cooler all day. As I’ve made clear before, I hate bananas, so I find his colour and texture admirably revolting. Imagine holding his terrible, naked banana hand as you stroll the boardwalk for fried clams and novelty t-shirts. Now stop imagining that, because you don’t deserve such a punishment.

Fortnite's Unpeely skin in glasses and swim trunks (Screenshot: Epic/Kotaku)

For me, the wildest part is his feet. In real life I’m not a foot guy, but I’m fascinated by male video game characters’ feet, which always feel so unexpected and intimate to me. Peely’s feet are truly a triumph of game dude feet — he doesn’t quite have toes, even though he had toe bones in that Peely Bone skin, but the banana seams make him look like he does. I don’t understand his footwear at all — did he make those sandals himself? — but it fits with his look. If I stare at his feet too long I can just hear his sandy banana heels flapping around in those sandals. These are the true form of the feet that carry you to so many victory royales when you choose his skin. They’re strange and fragile, but they’re his.

I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’m rooting for this version of Peely. He’s pale and nerdy and awkward and monstrous. He stands next to the two human Summer Legends skins either ignorant of his own horribleness or embracing it wholeheartedly. He’s so out of place, but damned if he isn’t going to the beach with you, and damned if he isn’t going to make everyone witness the nonsensical crime against nature that is his exposed body. I hope you have a nice time by the sea, beach Peely. You deserve it. 

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