marty o'donnell gillette

Halo 3/YouTube

Video game composer boycotts Gillette after anti-toxic masculinity ad

Marty O’Donnell worked on 'Halo' and 'Destiny.'


Joseph Knoop

Internet Culture

Posted on Jan 16, 2019   Updated on May 20, 2021, 9:23 pm CDT

Famed video game composer Marty O’Donnell (whose credits include Halo and Destiny) just joined the cavalcade of conservative men attempting to roast Gillette for its ad urging men to push back against toxic masculinity.

The ad has whipped conservative men into a frenzy over its primary call-to-action is to just “be the best men can be,” which includes not being sexist or bottling emotions.

“Hey @Gillette!” O’Donnell tweeted Wednesday afternoon. “I just signed up with @DollarShaveClub! Thanks to your great advertising.”

O’Donnell is referring to the Dollar Shave Club, a shaving kit subscription service. In an apparent (but not explicit) response to the Gillette ad social media fervor, the Dollar Shave Club tweeted out “Welcome to the Club” on Monday.

O’Donnell’s work as a composer for games like the Halo series, the first Destiny, and the Flintstones Vitamins jingle of all things, has been lauded as some of the best video game music of the past several generations of video gaming. That said, O’Donnell was unceremoniously fired from Bungie in April 2014 after a long series of disagreements between O’Donnell, Bungie, and Activision. The latter company substituted O’Donnell’s music for its own during an E3 2013 trailer reveal, leaving the composer furious.

In early 2014, O’Donnell’s frustrations with management increasingly resulted in poor performance reviews and complaints to management from fellow audio designers. O’Donnell was fired before the official release of Destiny, and two separate lawsuits resulted in $140,000 being paid out to O’Donnell in Bungie stock.

The composer has since founded his own game studio, Highwire Games, and is working on a project called Golem for the PS4.

As for his political leanings, O’Donnell’s conservative viewpoints have been plain enough to see for those who went looking. The composer said he identified as a conservative on a podcast hosted on back in 2017. His mocking Gillette would seem to line up with conservative thinking on masculinity.

O’Donnell did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comment. 

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*First Published: Jan 16, 2019, 6:05 pm CST