“I don’t know how else to put this: Make sure they remember you.” As the character Haymitch Abernathy voiced in the 2012 film The Hunger Games, in order for a tribute to have a fighting chance in the dystopian world Panem’s annual life-and-death game of survival, the chosen competitor must make a lasting impression, as heroine Katniss Everdeen of District 12 did in her first appearance in the Hunger Games.
But in comparing Panem to our modern world, who would be our Katniss? How would the Hunger Games have unfolded if “queen of the hunt” Eva Shockey had been a character in the series? Let’s face the fact that most of us would have gone down in the bloodbath at the Cornucopia, and though Katniss Everdeen definitely held her own, if Eva Shockey had been a tribute in the Hunger Games, she would have had four distinct advantages over Katniss (and the rest of us).
Click ahead to read what they are…
As an outdoors woman, Shockey would likely hail from District 4 of Panem, where the main industry is fishing. Katniss is from the coal-mining District 12, and though she is self taught in survival skills, Eva has a lifetime of exposure to the science of survival. Shockley also has time on her side, as a 26 year-old woman, whereas Katniss was dragged into the Hunger Games as a mere 16 year-old girl. Don’t get me wrong. Katniss could still take down any one of us, but Eva could probably do it more quickly.
In the 74th Hunger Games arena, the tributes competed in an vast outdoor setting consisting of a lake, streams, forests, meadows, caves and a wheat field. Katniss struggled with the open field layout, and almost got knifed by Clove, the tribute from District 2. Eva, though, spends 250 days of the year visiting different locations around the world to test her hunting skills, which means that she can adapt to dozens of environments and would have been more prepared for navigating the arena’s drastically differing landscapes, while those of us in the audience are just navigating the movie theater concession line.
One truly impressive aspect of Katniss’ character is that she is almost entirely self-taught. Though she did receive some training and advice from former champ Haymitch Abernathy, their time together was short lived. Shockley, on the other hand, grew up in the outdoors as the daughter of famed hunter Jim Shockey, debatably one of the greatest hunters in the world. Eva began hunting at age 20, giving her a full six years under the tutelage of her father. For those of us not raised in a hunting, shooting, fishing family, our only hope of gaining the proper survival skills would be to receive the proper training and certification like the ones found at HUNTERcourse. And, Shockey just so happens to be the poster girl for this hunting education provider.
Both Shockey and Everdeen can rock the hell out of a bow and are archers of the highest decree, but the main advantage Shockey has in the weaponry department is her versatility. Katniss can shoot an arrow and catch a fish, but Eva is fluent in archery, knives, and firearms, so whatever weapon she drags out of the Cornucopia are going to serve her well, as we moviegoers battle with boxes of Raisinets.
Though Katniss Everdeen is the reigning queen of the Panem games, queen of the hunt Eva Shockey would give her a good run for the money if she were a character in The Hunger Games. Whomever it is you are rooting for, “May the odds be ever in your favor.”