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The Objectification of Men: Satirical Films

Updated on August 19, 2014
social thoughts profile image

I have a B.A. in English with a minor in Gender and Sexuality Studies. I've been a Goth since age fourteen, and a Pagan since age fifteen.

Image courtesy of thaikrit at
Image courtesy of thaikrit at | Source

Men are victims of objectification just as women are. Men are expected to fit certain body types in order to be considered attractive or worthy of admiration. Some of these expectations include a lot of muscle, tall height and enough hair on their head. Magazines featuring men on the cover would not choose a man who is overweight and bald. It's necessary to recognize unfair gender rules for men if society ever wants to reach full equality.

Dr. Jack Michler: Sadly, I must report that the last patient I ever treated, the great lover Don Juan DeMarco, suffered from a romanticism which was completely incurable, and even worse, highly contagious.

Marlon Brando - The Wild One [Public Domain]
Marlon Brando - The Wild One [Public Domain] | Source

Don Juan DeMarco (1994)

Marlon Brando was not a stranger to objectification. He was familiar with being used in movies for the sake of his attractive appearance. For example, one of his memorable bad-boy "hunk" movies was A Streetcar Named Desire (1951). He teamed up with Johnny Depp for the film Don Juan DeMarco which pokes fun at male attraction. In the film, Depp plays a man who is convinced he is Don Juan. Brando plays the psychiatrist Dr. Mickler who finds him attempting to commit suicide, and takes him under his supervision. During their sessions, together, Mickler comes to realize Don Juan is still a mystery, but he makes very good points about perception of reality. Don Juan is so involved with romancing women that Micker admires his lifestyle, and begins to mimic it with his own wife, Marilyn.

Have you seen "Don Juan DeMarco?"

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Wade "Cry-Baby" Walker: Grandmother, Uncle Belvedere, you've made me the happiest juvenile delinquent in Baltimore! And guess what? I met a girl!

Photo of Henry Winkler as Fonzie from the television program Happy Days. 2 August 1977 ABC Television
Photo of Henry Winkler as Fonzie from the television program Happy Days. 2 August 1977 ABC Television | Source

Cry-Baby (1990)

Johnny Depp was put with Marlon Brando because he has experience being cast in movies for his physical appeal, too. Don Juan DeMarco was not the only film Depp has been in to mock this unfortunate reality. Earlier, in 1990, he was cast in John Waters' Cry-Baby. Depp plays Wade Cry-Baby Walker. Cry-Baby is a greaser-type, like the characters Marlon Brando has played, whose gang is his family. He's a drape who falls in love with a square, Allison (Amy Locane). The film makes light of the seriousness of greasers like Fonzie from Happy Days. It was an opportunity for Depp to make fun of the critics who applaud him for being their ideal physical type.

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Pootie Tang: I gots to say na nay no.

Pootie Tang (2001)

Pootie Tang is a satire of exploitation. Lance Crouther plays Pootie Tang, a musician who makes the women scream, literally. He speaks his own language, and lacks intellect; fortunately, his sex appeal makes people love him. He is used for marketing purposes, but his advertisements cause other products to lose money; therefore, the business men want to use him in commercials for products he disagrees with. When he refuses their demands, they use a double who causes major issues in the industry. Pootie has to fight to correct his newly ruined reputation.

Have you seen "Pootie Tang?"

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What is your opinion of satires?

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When used correctly, satire can be a very useful medium for getting opinions into the world. Not everyone would want to listen or read about such negative and upsetting situations in the entertainment industry, but satires allow the creators to be completely honest while having fun, too. When the satires are understood for what they are they inspire people to talk about these issues.

© 2014 social thoughts


Submit a Comment
  • social thoughts profile imageAUTHOR

    social thoughts 

    6 years ago from New York

    While I agree with most of what you're saying, there are absolutely men who have the same diet issues as women. To say only women have eating disorders is not accurate.

  • dashingscorpio profile image


    6 years ago from Chicago

    I believe satire is lost on most people. Very few people will buy into the fact that men are objectified. The number one reason is because it's not "manly" to see oneself as being a "victim".

    Very few men would complain about being seen by women as being a "hottie", "boy toy", "hunk", or "stud muffin". In fact I suspect one of the reasons why some men frequent porn sites and strip clubs is to enjoy the fantasy of women throwing themselves at them or acting like they can't wait to get their hands on them. Men aren't use to being overtly desired by women even when they are in relationships or married.

    We don't get "hit on", "flirted with", or seen as "eye candy" very often if at all. In fact most women think it's degrading to (directly) pursue a man.

    As for the magazine covers. Most of those are for women unless they're on weight training magazine or men's health. Even then guys don't become all that obsessed with trying to compete with the guy on the cover nor are they going to give up eating to get down to a certain size.

    Men in the U.S. are taught for the most part: "If you become successful you can have any woman you want." This rule applies to men who are old, short, bald, fat, or down right ugly. There will always be some beautiful model type of woman who wants the perks that come with being with a rich man. From that man's point of view it's a tradeoff.

  • social thoughts profile imageAUTHOR

    social thoughts 

    6 years ago from New York

    Thank you. That's so kind. :)

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 

    6 years ago from Olympia, WA

    I enjoy your thought process....and your thoughts...we need to get you a bigger audience.


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