Albert Wesker – Resident Evil 0-5, Umbrella Chronicles
♦ Resident Evil 0-5, Umbrella Chronicles synopsis/summary:
Albert Wesker is arguably the most tenacious, formidable, and cunning villain of the Resident Evil franchise.
On a “real world” front, he’s had 4 voice actors and two movie actors but remains a fan favorite with a fierce following. I proudly count myself among them.
I’m going to discuss a stack of games that cover 49 years of his life, so this isn’t going to be any shorter than the Sauron posts. Remember, to get the most success lessons out of his story, we have to first know the story. Part 2 comes out next week. There we’ll look deeper at how he can help us succeed. Check out his score on the Villain Matrix too.
Wesker’s genius-level intellect, icy calm, and thirst for power, combined with his Machiavellian approach to gathering influence, make him far more dangerous than any mutated Bio Organic Weapon (BOW). Ever calculating, he ensured that every project he undertook brought him closer to his goal of superiority over the entire human race.
Origins of the boy genius:
He was born and raised to be the ultimate life form. His parents possessed superior intellects and genetic characteristics. However, he was raised by the Umbrella Corporation, a global pharmaceutical corporation with a secret program to develop combat BOW via viruses and genetic engineering. The company’s founder, Oswell Spencer, placed Albert and many other similarly gifted children in a program called the Wesker Plan. “Wesker” was the surname of the project’s founder.
At the age of 17, Albert Wesker graduated to become a researcher for Umbrella. Step one to world domination: take your education seriously. His research partner was William Birkin, who would go on to develop the G-virus. 1977 brought Wesker to the Umbrella Executive Training Center, led by Doctor James Marcus. In 1978, Wesker and Birkin became chief researchers at the Arklay Laboratory outside of Racoon City. Their goal at this facility? Apply the Ebola virus to the t-Virus, which was still in experimental stages.
After thirteen years, they finally created the Tyrant. Goes to show that persistence pays off. They had their fair share of failures, but they kept at it.
Spencer ordered Wesker and Birkin to assassinate Marcus, who’d outlived his usefulness, and steal all of his research. They were happy to follow orders. Soon, Birkin’s research produced the G-virus from Lisa Trevor, a test subject who somehow survived many years of medical experimentation. His competition with Alexia Ashford motivated him. This work with viruses made Wesker suspicious of Spencer’s real intentions. Secretly wanting to know more, Wesker requested and received a transfer to Umbrella’s Intelligence Bureau.
Upgrade your life and watch the Wesker Reports. They give Wesker’s version of events. (Plus, DC Douglas‘s voice is always easy on the ears.)
Shooting S.T.A.R.S.: Game time!
In 1996, Wesker transferred again, this time to the new Special Tactics and Rescue Squad (S.T.A.R.S.) in the Raccoon Police Department. The RPD’s chief was under Umbrella’s thumb, so he had no problem making Wesker captain of S.T.A.R.S. Alpha Team. It’s who you know, right? But Wesker is no slouch where combat is concerned, either.
Two years later, a number of cannibalistic murders occurred in the Arklay Mountains. This is where the Resident Evil games come in. Enter S.T.A.R.S. Bravo Team , the other half of the S.T.A.R.S. They disappear during the investigation. Mysteriously. It didn’t help that their chopper engine was sabotaged. Mysteriously. Wesker was well aware of their fate: he used their fights against the BOWs as a way to field test the experiments and gather battle data for Umbrella.
As Bravo battled BOWs, Umbrella charged Wesker and Birkin with saving the Umbrella Training Facility. Step one: have the U.S.S. Delta Team secure the Ecliptic Express, which teamed with BOWs and ran out of control. Fail. When it became apparent that the facility was also lost, Wesker decided to abandon the sinking ship of Umbrella. Knowing when to turn in your resignation is a valuable skill.
Evolution begins: the Mansion Incident:
Wesker took his Alpha Team to investigate Bravo’s fate. As soon as he and his people landed, a Cerberus pack attacked. These BOWs are a fine introduction to the horror that awaits. The ever reliable Brad Vickers took off in the chopper, abandoning them. The team shelters in the nearby mansion. Only Wesker knows the mansion’s deadly secrets. Yes, it’s an Umbrella creation. Spencer was into spy fiction, complete with booby traps and secret passages. While Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine, and Barry Burton fight for their lives, Wesker destroys evidence of his connection to Umbrella while trying to secure data that will help in his own goals.
Wesker threatens Barry’s family, effectively turning him into an inside man. Bravo Team Captain Enrico Marini uncovered evidence that implicated Wesker and Umbrella, but murdering Enrico ties up this loose end. Chris and Jill eventually learn the truth.
As his chances for decisive victory declined, Wesker took the ultimate risk: he injected himself with the Prototype virus Birkin gave him. Little did he know this put him in the next phase of the Wesker Plan. All but one of the other test subjects died from the virus after injecting themselves. His options shrunk further as Chris and Jill closed in on him. The Tyrant provided an exit, impaling him on its 4-ft claws and going on to attack Chris and Jill. Yes, I said impaling him. Way to think outside the box. Sometimes the most dangerous thing can be the best option. But rather than killing him, the virus bestowed regeneration capabilities. Other free gifts included superhuman speed, strength, agility, intelligence, and reflexes. The cost? Supposedly the loss of his humanity, but considering how low he was on that stat to begin with, it’s hard to tell. It may have simply stripped away most of the limitations that forced Wesker to “play nice.”
Wesker tried to snag the data from the Red Queen computer system, but Sergei, another Umbrella heavy hitter, beat him to it. The scene’s been popular on YouTube among the spoofers.
Foiled but not FUBAR’ed, Wesker blew through BOWs on his way out before the facility could self destruct. When he escapes safely, he remarks that he’s “cheated death itself.” He will rise like a phoenix.
Wesker promptly uses the data – combat and research – he acquired to land a position in one of Umbrella’s many rival organizations. It’s known only as “The 3rd Organization.” It could be Pfizer, for all we know.
Wesker strikes back: Rockfort and Alexia:
Wesker stays in the shadows for a few months as he aligns his resources. Then he and the H.C.F. , his highly trained, heavily armed storm troopers, assault the Umbrella facility on Rockfort Island. The T-Veronica virus sample is their objective. Girl wonder and genius Alexia Ashford developed the virus for Umbrella when she worked as one of their chief researchers. The attackers fail to find Alexia and the virus, but they do find Claire Redfield, Chris’s little sister. (I’m not going to talk about Alexia’s cross dressing, wack job twin brother.)
Wesker and Chris have a happy reunion later in one of the Tyrant labs. Chris is shocked his captain survived. They lock horns, but Wesker makes short work of Chris. Before it’s game over for Chris, though, Alexia’s image appears on an overhead screen. Wesker tosses Chris in with a Bandersnatch and takes off for the Antarctic Base, where Alexia awaits. Chris follows.
Wesker faces Alexia and requests a sample of the virus. Alexia is super-powered herself thanks to the virus. She’s in no mood to deal. Wesker escapes her attack. Later, he runs into Chris again. After soundly defeating Chris and proudly proclaiming his superiority, Wesker prepares to send Chris off. But Chris manages to have a bundle of steel girders drop on Wesker. It’ll take more than a few tons to keep a good man down, though. Wesker shakes it off and picks up where he left off, but an explosion from the self destruct sequence knocks a fiery pillar in between them. He escapes, though Chris believes him dead. Again. Eight years would pass before they face each other again.
As usual, Wesker snatches a victory, securing a sample of the virus from Steve Burnside’s corpse. Ever the opportunist!
Snake pit: Operation Javier:
2002: Javier Hidalgo leads the South American drug cartel the Sacred Snakes. His wife falls ill. Umbrella generously gives him the t-Virus to “cure” her. Shockingly, it fails. Then his daughter also sickens. He contacts Wesker for help, because that’s the first person I’d think of too if I needed medical treatment for my family. Wesker sells him the t-Veronica virus and instructions for use for a sizable sum and a share in the cartel dealings. Wesker will later find Javier Hildago’s mutated corpse.
The storm rages: Umbrella folds:
2003: Wesker hunts Umbrella’s Russian branch plant. He meets Chris, but has bigger BOWs to fry. Leaving Chris to the Hunter Deltas, Wesker escapes. He finds his goal, a house with a safe that holds evidence regarding who caused the original BOW bio hazard outbreak. It’s a trap: he barely escapes the explosion. His trip isn’t a waste, though, because he retrieves another disc.
Later, Wesker slips into the Russian Umbrella Facility and infects the place, turning it into a bio hazard. He’s sent an anonymous tip to Chris and Jill that Umbrella’s last BOW, T-A.L.O.S., is there. While they hammer away at it, Wesker faces off with Sergei Vladimir. Wesker emerges victorious, killing a mutated Sergei Vladimir. Seeing Sergei’s transformation causes Wesker to consider Marcus’s transformation as well. (Marcus researched leeches and mutated into having leech-control abilities. Just…go play the game.) Wesker speculates that T-virus final forms come from the mind of the host. Where does that leave him, then?
Wesker takes the Umbrella Archives data from the Red Queen system, purges the memory, and shuts down the facility. With all of Umbrella’s data at his fingertips on his HQ’s servers, he can at last he create his own Umbrella! He planned to fund this venture by selling Umbrella-created virus samples to its rivals.
More evil drug companies: TRICELL:
The data provides an in with TRICELL, another pharmaceutical corporation. They’re behind the trend of having biological weapons. If one company wants to make a product, there are always others ready to copy it. They want a sample of the new Plaga parasitic organism. For research purposes only, you understand. They were specific on their preference: Dominant Species Plaga developed by Los Iluminados cult leader, Osmund Saddler.
Ada was to handle Luis Sera (killed later by Saddler) and Leon S. Kennedy. Her previous bond with Leon makes her hesitant to kill him despite Wesker’s orders to kill him if he survives Saddler. She betrays Wesker by sending only a subordinate Plaga, but Krauser’s body harbors a dominant type. Mission accomplished.
Wesker then assists TRICELL in creating a bioweapons division. He keeps them as an ally, but secretly furthers his own projects. Excella Gionne, an employee of TRICELL and descendant of its founders, drew his professional interest. Smart and power hungry, she made the perfect pawn. He helped her rise to TRICELL’s upper management.
Now one thing remained: to confront Spencer and supersede him as the one to create a new world.
Revelations: a new god arises:
2006: The massive power base Wesker built failed to stem his rising tide of questions regarding Spencer’s true aims. Did the old man really just want to create weapons, or was there a grander plan? Wesker wanted answers. He flew to Spencer’s European castle, let himself in, killed Spencer’s bodyguards, then confronted Umbrella Corp’s creator. The old man surprised Wesker, seeming to expect the former employee’s arrival.
After years of being the manipulator, it was time for Wesker to be the manipulated: Spencer was controlling of ever aspect of Wesker’s life from the start. Even Albert’s return to Oswell was a manifestation of the virus’s programming. Spencer wanted purge inferior humans from the earth and rule the world as a god. But to achieve godhood he needed the Progenitor virus as a blueprint, Umbrella Corporation’s funds, and subjects/servants. Wesker – and for that matter all the children of the Wesker Plan – was to be one of the evolved race that would populated the new world. Unfortunately, only he and Alex Wesker survived.
Spencer’s idea struck a chord in Wesker that would rock the world. He, not a dying old man, had the right to be a god. Wesker put his fist through Spencer’s chest and claimed his birthright,
Moments later, meddling kids Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine burst in. Cue spectacular fight scene. Beautiful choreography is a hallmark of Resident Evil 5. Even the Resident Evil movie Afterlife copied it move for move. More in that later.
Don’t bring a knife to a superhuman gunfight. Wesker is about to finally kill Chris, when Jill tackles Wesker, carrying them both out of the window and off the cliff edge but saving Chris. Jill’s sacrifice lands her in Wesker’s custody. After providing her with the medical treatment she required, he placed her in a cryogenic sleep. Think putting leftovers in the fridge for later.
Rise of the world serpent: Uroboros:
Back at TRICELL, Wesker formally partnered with Excella Gionne. She rose to become CEO with his aid. Together they reopened the Umbrella Africa Research Center, where many years ago Umbrella Corp’s founders discovered the Progenitor virus. Wesker had a full set of virus samples, which he combined with the Progenitor to create the ultimate evolution of the virus: Uroboros. It was his hope that it would force humanity to evolve. It forced a bit too hard, though, mutating and killing its hosts. But Jill’s blood teamed with antibodies (from her infection with the t-Virus back in Racoon City) that could tame the dragon.
Speaking of Jill, Wesker used her as a weapon against Chris Redfield and Sheva Alomar. Jill became his puppet thanks to the new chemical P30. His other minions were Majini. The Type 2 Plagas and Type 3 Plagas ensured their obedience. With the henchmen front secured, Wesker loaded missiles bearing the Uroboros virus into his stealth bomber jet. The aircraft would releasing the virus into the atmosphere, ensuring complete global saturation. Most of the population would die. Just the price of doing business and creating a new world, in Wesker’s eyes.
Eventually, the BSAA butts in, sending Chris and Sheva to investigate B.O.W.s on the black market. They run into a disguised, brainwashed Jill. As the BSAA operatives learn more about TRICELL, they tangle with Wesker a few times. He has better things to do than fight them, though – like become a god. He fights them for “seven minutes,” then leaves the newly revealed Jill to face her old partner.
After Chris frees Jill from the device that pumps P30 into her bloodstream, she reveals that Wesker must inject himself with PG67A/W (Progenitor derivative) regularly to manage his virus. Excella carries a case of the serum.
Pro tip: don’t let the agent that weakens your superpowers wander around your base unsecured.
Excella feels a romantic attraction to Wesker, but he’s almost elusively Weskersexual. He plays along with the idea that she’s going to rule at his side. Unsurprisingly, she turned out to be an unfit host for the virus, but her mutated form made a great distraction for Chris and Sheva.
Final boss battle: Chriiiiiissss!
While Wesker prepares to board his jet for the maiden voyage of destruction, Chris and Sheva arrive. Cue another epic battle. Teamwork allows them to inject Wesker with the PG67A/W, which weakens him. He jumps onto the jet and takes off, but you just can’t shake the BSAA.
See the move-for-move match between Resident Evil: Afterlife and Resident Evil 5?
More combat ensures ( <- YouTube) in the jet as he monologues about his plan to destroy humanity as we know it and institute his own dominion as a god. It’s all very stirring and dramatic, and if traffic around here gets any worse, I might agree with his logic.
Chris opens the jet’s hatch, causing depressurization. Thanks, Chris, now everyone’s almost sucked out of the plane. Did I mention it’s over a volcano for some reason? Apparently Mt. Doom is in the flight path. Wesker loses his grip but survives. Again. Chris and Sheva survive the crash somehow.
Wesker is mad as hell and isn’t going to take it any more. He punches a missile tank of Uroboros and bonds with the ultimate virus. He mutates, tentacles merging with metal wreckage to generate his most powerful – and unstable – form.
He attacks Chris and Sheva, but soon a chopper appears to rescue them. Not so fast! Even while waist-deep in lava, Wesker grabs the chopper’s struts with a tentacle. He gives the iconic roar: “Chriiiiiiiiissss!” Chris and Sheva respond by firing a pair of RPG-7 rockets at his head. When in doubt in Resident Evil, fire an RPG.
(Yes, that’s his real voice actor, DC Douglas, who is also a Wesker fan)
He disappears into the lava in the explosion. “Officially” he is deceased, but we the fans hope for a revival.
But wait, there’s more!:
He also lives on thanks to his voice actor, DC Douglas. Catch Douglas’s Erotic Fan Fiction panel at one of the many conventions he attends. Audience members cold-read dialog from select fan fics, while DC Douglas supplies the blond bad-ass elements. YOU NEED TO SEE THIS BEFORE YOU DIE. I don’t care if erotic fan fic isn’t 100% your thing. I don’t even care if it isn’t 1% your thing. You’ll get a killer ab workout from laughing! I’m going to see it again next chance I get. By the way, DC is a great guy as well as a great VA, so go say Hi when you’re there. You’re welcome.
Check out Part 2 for a better understanding of Albert Wesker’s motives and actions. Oh, and how he can help us succeed in life. Also check out his Villain Matrix score.
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