Modern advertising, by James Lileks.
Here’s your Male Archetype 2016: big hole in his ear, inked arm, curated beard, ineffably self-satisfied, involved in artisanal jams but yet bacon-aware because he’s a Man, and concerned with sustainability because he wears only thrifted tees.
We’re supposed to admire him but not really. He’s a cliche, a laughable sort – but not really. Women are supposed to be impressed that he can get out a stain, and they’ll say they wish more men could just . . . take care of themselves, you know? But tbh they’re sorta messy themselves and can’t do much in the way of domestic stuff either. It would be nice if a guy knew how to do that stuff. Some of it. Not all of it. And not if he, like, has lots of ideas about domestic stuff, and is always saying you’re doing it wrong when you try to make a sandwich or lectures you for using Conflict Olive Oil. IT’S SO COMPLICATED.
Personally I am over the “stupid man, wise woman” thing on tv, which has been running all my life. It is only men who are the butt of jokes or make mistakes on tv, especially in advertising. Which rather suggests that women are less strong and less competent … because only men are strong enough to be the butt of jokes, while there is apparently some need for women to be cast in an unrealistically positive light. Hmmmm.