Thinkin’ About the Fellas

I watched the Sex and the City movie this afternoon.  Wasn’t really that into it.  I liked the shoes and the New York City bit, but I just couldn’t get into it.  On further discussion with the lovely Girl Clumsy this evening, I realise what has stuck in my craw.

It’s the attitude to men in it.  It felt to me that every man in it was either a piece of man flesh, or an arsehole.  With exception perhaps to the dark haired woman’s husband (I know, I don’t know their names except for Carrie and Samantha) who really was a bit of a shadow through the whole movie, he had about three whole lines and wasn’t given any substance.
It’s got me thinking a bit about how men are portrayed in film and television.  Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that how women are portrayed is any better, but at least we all speak up about that regularly.
But when it comes to how men are portrayed, it is open season.  How many ads can you think of on TV at the moment where it centres around a doofus male who just can’t find something or asks a stupid question, or makes a big gaffe doing DIY etc?  Can you imagine the uproar if a woman was portrayed like that?
When we see a movie and the women in it are all either portrayed as tarty bits of flesh for the men’s amusement, or complete bitches that make a man’s life hell, don’t we all get horrified at it?
Now I’m not saying that all movies should be touchy feely and everyone nice.  What I’m getting at is that when a whole gender is negatively portrayed, it just feels really wrong.  Sure, have your bad guy, but also have the hero who helps save the day.  Have your bitch queen, but have another woman who is cool.  Go for the bit of sexy  man flesh, but give him some depth of character.  Make your gals sexy AND smart.
I’m also not saying that men can’t be arseholes and that women can’t be shallow bits of fluff.  But to tar a whole gender with the same brush in a film or television show just makes me feel uncomfortable, you know?
I know ladies, I know, we’ve all been treated REALLY badly by a man or men in our past.  Some of us in our very recent past.  But does that mean they’re all bastards?  You know we all have heard the thing where women are somebody’s daughter, somebody’s mother, somebody’s sister?  Well the guys are somebody’s son, somebody’s father, somebody’s brother.  And like women, guys deserve a chance before they’re all written off.
Two wrongs don’t make a right is all I’m sayin’!
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February 1, 2009. gender, generalisations, men, movies, sexism, stereotypes, thoughts.

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