Secret Origins Of The Freeman

I was watching a documentary series on the history of brain surgery, where I learned that Walter Freeman was the creator – and enthusiastic proponent – of the infamous (but previously highly popular) lobotomy procedure, and I was struck by how similar he was to Gordon Freeman of Half-Life fame.

They both have glasses, the same sort of beards, short hair (though Walter is a bit more on the bald side, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Gordon also started going bald in a dozen or so years), and they have the same scrawny academic build you get from a life spent buried in books or in laboratories. Definitely looks like they could be related.

But the similarities do not stop at the mere physical. They are both doctors, although in different fields with Walter going for medicine while Gordon went for physics. They also have fairly mundane weapons of choice, Gordon opting for the crowbar whereas Walter goes for the ice pick and mallet combo. And last but not least, other than sharing surnames, their first names both have the same amount of characters, namely six.

Are these all coincidences, or did the people behind Half-Life take some inspiration from the real-life neurologist Walter Freeman when designing the game’s protagonist, Gordon Freeman?

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