Archive for October, 2012

You could argue that the spray-tanned, big pec-ed narcissism of the men contestants on Take Me Out was ‘well gay’ already, whatever their orientation. But just to hammer the metrotastic nature of the programme home, Danish TV have commissioned a ‘gay’ version. Will it seem any different from its heterosexual counterpart? I doubt it.

But I applaud this move by the forward-thinking Danes. And I hope some of the more heteronormative, metro-denying  dating and reality  shows such as Dating In The Dark, Geordie Shore and Sing Date follow suit soon.


h/t @antoineJarvis


The Olympics may have been over months ago, but Tom Daley hasn’t stopped since.  Is he training for Rio 2016? Is he diving for his life? Well maybe, but only inbetween photoshoots, ad gigs and… er… this little self-promotion pic.

Ostensibly Tom’s ‘cheeky pic’ is inviting us to follow him on Keek, yet another social media site which involves sharing photos and videos. But MetroAuntie gets the impression that the bronze medal winning diver has another aim in mind. He, like many fit young metro boys, takes any opportunity he can to show off his body. And why not?

Well, as Nadal who was nowhere to be seen in the Olympic tennis competition has done, Daley could be seen to be prioritising his rampant narcissism and self-objectification over his sport. And though the results are lovely to look at, one does wonder why a top tennis ace is advertising a poker gambling company when he could be practising his backhand.

Back in February this year, Tom’s coach warned that the young diver’s media career and metrosexual antics could cost him a gold medal in the Olympics. The lad seemed happy with his bronze, and maybe he has weighed up his options and decided he prefers to be a world-beating tart and forgo some sporting gongs.

I am interested in the ongoing tension between ‘active’ and ‘passive’ masculinity, a tension which Daley embodies quite poetically.  But which one will win through? Only time, and a few more sponsorship deals will tell.

Brad Pitt is the new ‘face’ of Chanel – a signature women’s perfume brand. The ad itself is nothing to write home about, and has a definite whiff of a ‘wanabee’ cool. It looks to me like it is emulating  that famous Guinness one, also in Black and White with a man’s voice speaking. But the words, the words in the Guinness ad are a lot more memorable than this vague mumbling from Chanel.

Joanna Schroeder at the Good Men Project has identified why even though it is stylistically dull, this advert is worth commenting on.

She writes:

‘I think, as Pitt explains with an emo gaze into nothingness, the world does turn, and we do turn with it. Which perhaps means that life as we know it is changing.

Is this Chanel’s way of saying that the idea of what is “masculine” is blurring with what is “feminine”? That a man may wish to wear a soft, thoughtful, delicate fragrance as opposed to Axe Body Spray, and that’s just fine? Or are they just using a hunk to hock expensive stuff to fangirls?

Either way, I think it’s an interesting choice to cast a man to sell ladies’ fragrances, and am very interested in how the market will react and in what (if any) way the costumer base of Chanel No. 5 may shift.’

Exactly. Now men are pin ups, and men use products as much as women, having a man advertise women’s perfume seems natural.

Though of course the macho metro-denying  ‘male grooming’ industry may disagree. Grooming bloggers such as Lee ‘Grooming Guru’ Kynaston are still desperately clinging onto gender difference and the important distinction between men’s ‘fragrance’ and women’s ‘perfume’, ‘male grooming’ and ‘women’s beauty’.

It’s all Greek to me. I don’t wear perfume, or fragrance. But I know metrosexuality when I see it. And for the sake of that blurring of gender lines that Schroeder mentions, I like Brad’s ad.

I have never had an open thread on my blog before – maybe I am a bit of a control freak and am scared of such a loose structure. But I am on holiday, real life hoiliday in the south of France, so this seems a good time to leap into the unknown and give you my longsuffering readers and writers the chance to lead the discussion.

An open thread is just that so you can talk about anything you like below the line, but as a starting point here are two articles I might have blogged about if I hadnt been so busy drinking wine and going to the beach!

The first is by Jane Fae at Huffpo, a cautionary tale about freedom of speech without limits:

The second is classic Suzanne Moore in the Graun. She has resurrected once again feminism’s favourite zombie, ‘patriarchy’:

Over to you, #QRGMassive !

This is a short post – whilst I get ready to go on holiday tomorrow – YAY! – to announce a blogging prize.

The UK prize for science blogging is now open or entries :

As regular readers of this blog will know, I am sceptical  about using science to study sex and gender. Of course the physical body can be examined using scientific method, but when it comes to understanding sexual orientation, gender identity and ‘what turns us on’, science often obfuscates rather than clarifies the human condition.

I have been having some discussions about this on twitter:

But whatever your view on science, I am glad there is a prize like this. The organisers assure me they are defining ‘science’ here in its broadest sense, so social science bloggers  including those writing on psychology, gender and the environment can enter.

I don’t think I’ll enter. My track record with entering blogging prizes is not very illustrious! >>

But good luck to those who do.

Not sure about the ‘genocide’ slur, apart from that I call a tie.