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You have to be lean, as lean as possible, because being fat means that you’re lazy and pampered and a is the cinematic ur-example – you don’t get much more alpha than the totally jacked king of the Spartans – but the Internet provides its own real-life swole-models.
Witness the so-called “King of Instagram” (there’s that “alpha” leader title again), Dan Bilzerian.
To many men, the lean-yet-jacked look has become de rigueur – the In what seems like a sick parody of gender equity, men hear more and more about fitness “success” stories from other men.
Hugh Jackman tweets his workouts to get into superheroic shape with “fitspo” slogans like “if the bar ain’t bending, you ain’t lifting.” Chris Pratt – having gone from chubby schlub to wash-board-ab-bedecked guardian of the galaxy – gets asked over and over about how he achieved his transformation.
Zac Effron traded in an almost feminine beauty in his younger days to look like something that – quoting Seth Rogan’s character in – a gay man designed in a laboratory.
When you browse Tumblr or Pintrest, you can’t help but see women drooling over Chris Evans as Captain America or Chris Hemsworth as Thor or the men of Magic Mike oiled up and strutting their stuff.
Now to be a movie star means having visible muscle striations in your pecs and a perfect runner’s girdle pointing at the family jewels. In the hypermasculine ideal that Ed Norton’s character wishes he could be.
In his article The Rise and Rise of the Spornosexual, writer Max Olesker decided he wanted to explore what he saw as the new trend in young men – predominantly men in their early 20s, but many ranging up to their 50s – to sport bodies reminiscent of modern porn-stars, sports heroes and of course, movie stars.
In Hollywood, being built has become mandatory – even from people who aren’t typically action stars.
The everyman hero – think Bruce Willis in Die Hard, Will Smith, Keanu Reeves – the man who’s athletic and in shape but still someone you might see at work, is dead. ” Tyler Durden asks, pointing at an underwear ad – perfectly airbrushed abs hovering over tiny tighty-whities.
The work that women are expected to put in to chasing the ideal is expected to be invisible.
The “cool girl” rant from captures the dichotomy perfectly – they should be drinking beer and eating steaks yet look like they exist exclusively on salad. Men need to be muscular but lean, able to party hard and guzzle booze and beer like their bros on The Jersey Shore or The Only Way Is Essex but still maintain those perfect abs.
Just as with women, those men are given a boost with some traditional Hollywood and Madison Avenue magic – carefully planned lighting, artfully applied make-up and, of course, Photoshop.