Machohomo v. Metrohetero?

According to this report, the "macho look" is making way for... for....

Well, for something else:

PARIS (AFP) - Macho man is an endangered species, with today's male more likely to opt for a pink flowered shirt and swingers' clubs than the traditional role as family super-hero, fashion industry insiders say.

A study along these lines led by French marketing and style consultants Nelly Rodi was unveiled to Fashion Group International during a seminar Tuesday on future strategy for the fashion industry in Europe.

"The masculine ideal is being completely modified. All the traditional male values of authority, infallibility, virility and strength are being completely overturned," said Pierre Francois Le Louet, the agency's managing director.

"Authority, infallibility, virility and strength" (all classical values, BTW) are, we are told, being replaced by looks like this:


I don't know whether the above constitutes the "metro" look, but I flunked the metro test, and I don't know too many men who either look like that or want to. Like some of the bizarre women's fashions to which we're often treated, this is a look to which most men simply do not -- and will not -- aspire.

Lest anyone think of blaming "the gay agenda" or launching another boycott as a way of fighting this sinister sissy plot, I think it's only fair to point out that for the most part, your average homosexual man is attracted to precisely the "macho man" look we are now told is doomed.

Gee, what if that's part of the problem? Might it be, in a sort of perverse paradoxical kind of way?

Might the "Metro man" be a "homophobic" reaction against the homoerotic "macho man"?

I doubt it. I think most people would just like to be themselves.

And I think it's all a little dull. But it's obviously not dull for everyone. Might be the sort of thing people like to get worked up about.

There's money in this for someone somewhere (or at least a desire for attention) or they wouldn't be doing it.

I think that even the blasted culture war should have better things to do.

UPDATE (06/10/05): James Lileks has more:

this is mostly nonsense. At least here in the US. Perhaps itíll work in Europe, which has a large class of silly people inclinded to be is post- everything - post-national, post-religious, post-modern, post-gender. (It wonít work with the Muslim segment of their population, though.) It might work in America for a wee thin slice of the male population that lives in coastal cities, has the requisite vanity to carry it off, and is looking for a new role to replace the boring old Red State values he fled, seeking an enlightened place where people never say "Ozzie and Harriet" without rolling their eyes.
Oddly enough, I find myself wishing it would work (with the Muslim side of the population, of course....)

posted by Eric on 06.08.05 at 02:41 PM


I don't know for fashion, but speaking as a straight woman, he's incredibly unsexy. My first thought was that someone had accidentally let him out of his institution.

Backward suspenders. Heh.

Jen   ·  June 8, 2005 3:15 PM

To upholed his something, no doubt.

Eric Scheie   ·  June 8, 2005 6:09 PM

I think it's an offshoot of the youth culture. Teenage girls don't like manly looking men because such men are scary. They like men who look like women- DiCaprio, Depp, even Brad Pitt before he started juicing, all look like teen idols- like that kid from the Partridge Family. As younger people define male beauty male beauty is defined as more feminine.

Or maybe I'm just spiteful because I'm huge and hairy, lol.

Harkonnendog   ·  June 8, 2005 7:03 PM

Speaking as someone who very occasionally wears suspenders, the thing that bothers me about that photo is the potential for facial injury if the clip lets go.

wheels   ·  June 8, 2005 8:17 PM

Nope, aint gunna do it. Pass me a 6-pack and a carton of marbs, unfiltered. I need something to preoccupy myself till my 5lb steak is done 'aging' on the grill.

mdmhvonpa   ·  June 8, 2005 10:20 PM

Now I remember where I saw that look ... Clockwork Orange.

mdmhvonpa   ·  June 8, 2005 10:21 PM

Masculinity on its way out? That's what we were told in the 1970s. It hasn't happened yet -- except, all too obviously, in the milieu which these fops inhabit. There have always been fops and sissies, there have always been "macho" brutes, and there have always been real men. Same for the female equivalents. Authority, infallibility (hail to Pope Benedict XVI -- may he be another Pius IX!), virility, and strength -- the Classical Values -- will never go "out of style", for they sre style.

You are quite right that male homosexuals gravitate toward real men. That's why I call them men's men. And Lesbians must love all that makes woman womanly and lovely. The Linear Angularity of Man. The Encircling Curvaceousness of Woman. The eternal polarity of the sexes. The eternal order of the Divine.

I'm not saying that there aren't effeminate homosexuals, mind you. Nor am I saying that I have any quarrel with them. It's just that they're not going to call the shots for most men, and I don't think they want to.

Eradicating macho men is simply not in the interest of homosexuals -- neither the effeminate nor the masculine types.

This stuff is (I think) being promoted by people with a different kind of agenda.

Eric Scheie   ·  June 9, 2005 9:40 AM

Oh wow, it's the Keebler Elf look. Suddenly bellbottoms look sensible. Isn't fashion wonderful?

Raging Bee   ·  June 9, 2005 11:25 AM

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