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Pretty males in action

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Certain ideals are expected to be embodied by male and female characters for them to be seen as attractive to the opposite sex. Sexy female characters are physically desirable; sexy male characters are strong and proactive. This is a consequence of Men Act, Women Are as applied to sex appeal: A woman's attractiveness is mostly due to her passive physical attributes, while a man's attractiveness is mostly a result Pretty males in action his behavior.

For female characters, passivity does not detract from their attractiveness. In extreme cases, female characters who are very active will be seen as undesirableor that they can only love a man stronger than themselves. Furthermore, a physically unattractive woman will always be unattractive regardless of how proactive she is.

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Male characters are viewed as less attractive if they are passive. In fact a dynamic evil man is more likely to be viewed as attractive than a decent but weak man. A physically unattractive man's dynamic qualities can also make him more attractive.

Some male characters who are physically attractive — particularly in a " Pretty Boy " kind of way — will be seen as weakless than a man, or suspected of being gay. This holds doubly true if they spend time cultivating their attractiveness. In summary, physical attractiveness only ever adds to a woman's sex appeal while being active may or may not detract.

Pretty males in action for men being proactive only ever adds to a man's sex appeal while being physically attractive may or may not add to his desirability. These differing standards lead to the genders being held to equally damaging but different standards of attractiveness and have numerous Unfortunate Implications. Pretty males in action

Specific Examples:

For women the implication is that your actions are irrelevant to your attractiveness to the opposite sex. As long as you're beautiful, even if you're lbs of useless deadweight or a complete and utter bitch you're still desirable. And if you're not born beautiful enough, no matter what you do, Failure Is the Only Option for you.

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The Unfortunate Implications for men are that men are shallow and only after one thingthus they don't care if a woman is a dynamic, active character, and that women have no worth beyond their looks.

Also, Pretty males in action characters will end up pulling more than their own weight, emotionally and physicallyin works where this trope is in effect. And, just like the beauty ideal puts incredible pressure on women to be beautiful, the strength ideal puts incredible pressure on men to judge themselves against an impossible standard of stoicismwillpower and physical strength. These pressures have not received as much press or attention on their effects on men and boys, partially due to the idea that men aren't as emotionally fragile as womenthat things that affect women are worse than things that affect men.

This in turn enforces another Double Standard: That women must be defended from the evil media, while men should be able to just shrug it off.

In the last few decades there has been more of a push to create dynamic female characters. Unfortunately this can often mean the male characters they are paired with are seen as incompetent and emasculated.