Indeed, just this past weekend he got a few hairy backs up on Twitter for daring to suggest that the movie Alien hadn’t aged well, and would be improved significantly by a CGI update.
Once upon a time, Phil Harrison was a dyed-in-the-beard Sony man. Kick him in the rectum and he’d have shat out a PlayStation. And then he left Sony, and suddenly ceased to have any further opinions about the PlayStation brand.
For a while, at least.
Eventually – following a few years spent prancing around at Infogrames and some cloud gaming investment company, like a poncing, preening dandy (please note, this latter statement is conjecture, not fact) – he nailed his flaps to Microsoft’s dewy, pink, underbelly, as one of its corporate vice presidents.
Who can say why?
History recalls that, once upon a time, Mr Biffo had a thing with Phil Harrison (no, no - not that sort of thing). Writing for his Edge magazine column, Biffo told of witnessing the somewhat misjudged antics of Phil Harrison at a Marillion convention. Of all things.
As observed first-hand by Biffo, Phil Harrison made a ham-fisted, but well-intentioned, attempt to hijack a charity raffle, in a bid to auction off a PlayStation 3 to the interest of utterly nobody. It was difficult to know who it was more excruciating for – the band, the audience, or Phil Harrison.
ON THE EDGE
Unfortunately, Edge didn’t feel this was a suitable tale to tell within its pages – admittedly, it was more a needlessly spiteful eyewitness account than the usual opinion piece Biffo was paid to deliver. However, Biffo, with the permission of Edge, posted his caustic telling of the tale on his blog. Unfortunately, this was to prove a bad move.
Blog hits soared temporarily to eye-wateringly absurd levels, as the story went global. Ironically, Marillion finally found themselves on the radar of the kind of youngish audience that had eluded them since the 1980s. But it also had the sweaty misfortune of making it look as if a) Edge had pulled the column so as not to upset Sony, and b) Phil Harrison was a complete idiot.
We don’t know if Phil Harrison is an idiot – we’ve all debased ourselves in front of others at one point or another, and given Phil Harrison's ability to hold down senior positions with two of the largest corporations in the world, it seems unlikely. And that's before we even mention Phil Harrison's excellent taste in music.
Indeed, let’s be really controversial for a moment, and consider that there’s no such thing as “idiots”, just behavior that others might perceive as idiotic. The French eroticist Anais Nin (we know, we know...) once said: "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
If you don't know what that means, go and look it up.
Nonetheless, there is a certain prevailing opinion in the horrible world of online gaming debate, that Phil Harrison is a bit of a plonk-stick. We know how important it is that people have someone to hate or abuse, and far be it for us to deprive anyone of that opportunity.
SILLY QUOTES GRUFF
Indeed, we now present for you a selection of entirely fabricated Phil Harrison non-quotes, which you might like to use as a starting point for a Phil Harrison-related trashing session, or to perk up a flagging flame war.
Just to reiterate one final time: Phil Harrison has never said any of these things. These are just the sort of things that you, and others of your ilk, think Phil Harrison might have said:
"Everyone's saying it wrong. It's pronounced 'Xbox Juan'."
"So I got drunk and threw a dart at a horse. Who hasn't?"
"Pay heed to the words of Harrison: Xbox One is a new pan-paradigm of gaming. We want to en-facilitate the gamer, the consumer, the kids at home, to go on spectacular mind-journeys into new dimensions of trans-interactive next-gentertainment."
"Stop complaining about the Tomb Raider exclusive, babies. Stupid, little babies."
"If Sunset Overdrive isn't the biggest-selling game of the year I'll tattoo a fist onto my scalp and run headfirst at your face."
"Let's face it, I'm at a stage in my career where I should be considered something of an industry legend."
"It doesn't matter how many bits the Xbox One has, because the bits it does have are about one hundred times bigger than whatever size bits used to be in the past."
"Ryse: Son of Rome is literally more historically accurate than a really posh history book. Apart from that bit at the end."
"The Kinect wasn't a failure. It was a massive success. You just perceived it as a failure because you weren't paying proper attention."
"The PlayStation 4 doesn't even exist, except in the minds of Sony fanboys. And as a games console."
"Let's face it - video games are a gimmick."
"We probably have absolutely no intention of releasing the Xbox One without a controller, HDMI connector, or power unit, I would've thought."
"Some nights, I stay up late facilitating conversations between Siri on my iPhone and my Kinect."
"Sony is run by The Illuminati. We used to have meetings in a big pyramid, topped off by a single, giant eye. Instead of cushions, we each sat on a cushion of bovine fat. I ruined so many pairs of trousers..."