Fareeha Amari

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Character
Name: Fareeha Amari, Pharah
Occupation: Egyptian Army (formerly), Helix security International
Title/Rank:
Location: Egypt
Status: alive
Relationships: Ana Amari (Mother)
Fandom: Overwatch
Other:
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Fareeha Amari, also known as Pharah is a playable character from Overwatch, a first-person shooter game by Blizzard Entertainment.

Canon

Fareeha dreamed of joining Overwatch like her mother Ana Amari, and joined the egyptian army to pursue this dream. Unfortunately it disbanded before she could join. Instead, she was offered a job at Helix Security International, where she guards a God AI called 'Anubis' from Omnic attacks.[1]

Amputee Theories

Many characters in the Overwatch universe - including Jesse McCree and Jamison Fawkes have lost limbs in canon. Due to this, there was discussion within fandom whether or not Fareeha had limbs. This conversation mainly stems from the fact that her armor looks suspiciously thin in-game, with ball joints where her elbows would be.[2]

Other speculation stemmed from the canon information that Fareeha had left the Egyptian army with an 'honourable discharge'. Some fans mistook this to mean that she had left due to injury, which fueled the amputee theory.

Overwatch Reddit user Melexiious said:[3]

Even though it's pretty clear-and-cut, I'd actually prefer it to be an amputee and honestly it might've? been in development.

Also, looking at her concept art a lot of the early ideas seemed to have really bulky legs, and tbh they look really bad so. They might've thought 'okay! big legs on flying person bad, lets make them thinner' Which.. might've led them to making her legs seem impossibly thin, which lead to this discussion.

IDK, really. if I was a betting man I'd say she's got some legs under that armor but really, it's kinda impossible to tell. Logic points to amputee, and blizzard says no.

On 19 May 2016, the official Overwatch Twitter page responded, confirming that Fareeha is not an amputee.[4]

Father Discussion

Fareeha's mother Ana Amari is a playable character in-game, which has led to theories and headcanons about who her father is. The most popular theory is that Reinhardt Wilhelm is her father.

In the christmas comic Reflections, Fareeha is shown talking to an older man. Some fans theorise that this man is her father, but it is uncomfirmed.

In the Uprising event, a spray for Fareeha depicted a man who is likely to be her father.[5] He is not an already established character and his name is as yet unknown.

Alternate Skin Controversy

In-game, Fareeha has two skins called 'Raindancer' and 'Thunderbird' that appear to be based off Native American culture. This led to some discussion amongst fans as to whether this was racist, or cultural appropriation. The main issue was that fans felt that Blizzard was considering dark-skinned cultures to be 'interchangeable' or homogeneous.

As algonquin113 wrote on the Overwatch reddit[6]:

With that said, I’d like to begin addressing the issue at hand: Pharah’s new legendary skin, the Thunderbird. I’ve seen some people already give a quick rundown of the basics of why this skin is problematic. Pharah is Egyptian, and yet the entire skin is very clearly inspired by Native American art and regalia, including her hair and painted face. I’ve seen the argument made that the costume represents an Egyptian Thunderbird and not a Native American one, but there’s nothing Egyptian at all about those designs. Most people should be familiar enough with the stereotypical ‘native’ look to immediately see that there’s nothing Egyptian in that skin at all.

Responses were varied. Some fans denied that it was cultural appropriation, instead suggesting that it was a celebratory sharing of cultures. Others speculated that Pharah may have native american heritage on her fathers side.

A response from a deleted user stated:

I think it's paying homage to Native costumes. Blizzard knows Pharah isn't Native, however presented with the idea of a badass looking thunderbird costume, why the hell not put it on the character with wings. Think of it as if Hanzo was wearing a Native headress and had a wooden bow. They don't mean disrepect, rather, "damn this is cool, lets pay homage to it in one of our characters."

Fandom

Tropes within fanworks include:

  • Reinhardt Wilhelm and Jack Morrison acting as fatherly figures to Fareeha
  • Fareeha and Jesse McCree having a sibling-like relationship
  • Many fanworks focus on her relationship with Ana
  • Her Ultimate voice line 'Justice rains from above' is a very popular focus

Shipping

The juggernaut ship including Fareeha is Pharah/Mercy. This ship is incredibly popular because the two characters work together very well in-game and have positive voice line interactions. It is one of the biggest ships in the fandom.

Smaller ships include McCree/Pharah and Pharah/Symmetra.

Example Fanworks

[Examples illustrating common tropes; gen works; pairings other than those with their own articles]

Fanfiction

Fanart

Fareeha Communities and Archives

References

  1. Pharah - Overwatch Wiki
  2. Pharah amputee fan theory - Reddit
  3. Bastion PTSD Discussion - Reddit
  4. Amputee Debunk - Overwatch Twitter
  5. Pharahs Father Revealed - Overwatch Reddit
  6. Pharah Thunderbird discussion - Reddit