Meat the Spornosexual

The second gen­er­a­tion of met­ro­sexu­als are cum­ming. And this time it’s hardcore

Dan-Osborne-Spornosexual

by Mark Simpson

What is it about male hip­sters and their strange, pal­lid, highly ambi­val­ent fas­cin­a­tion with bod­ies beefier and sex­ier than their own? Which means, of course, pretty much everyone?

You may remem­ber last year that last year the Guardian colum­nist and TV presenter Charlton Brooker had a very messy bowel-evacuating panic attack over the self-sexualisation of the male body exhib­ited in real­ity show Geordie Shore.

Now the hip­ster bible Vice have run a long, pas­sion­ate – and some­times quite funny – com­plaint about today’s sexu­al­ised male body by a Brooker wan­nabe (and lookali­kee) titled ‘How sad young douchebags took over mod­ern Britain’.

At least the Vice writer isn’t in total denial. Brooker was so threatened by the brazen male hussies on Geordie Shore and the con­fu­sion their pumped, shaved ‘sex doll’ bod­ies, plucked eye­brows and pen­ises the size of a Sky remote pro­voked in him that the poor love had to pre­tend that they didn’t exist out­side of real­ity TV. That they were some kind of sci­ence fic­tion inven­ted to tor­ment and bewilder him and his nerdy body. Perhaps because he’s rather younger than Brooker, Mr Vice on the other hand has actu­ally noticed that these guys really do exist and are in fact pretty much every­where today, dipped in fake tan and designer tatts and ‘wear­ing’ plunging ‘heav­age’ condom-tight T-s.

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In a media world which largely ignores what’s happened to young men Mr Vice is to be com­men­ded that he’s clearly spent a great deal of time study­ing them. Albeit with a mix­ture of envy and desire, fear and loath­ing – and a large side order of self-contradiction and sexual confusion.

He laments that these ‘pumped, primed, ter­ri­fy­ingly sexu­al­ised high-street gigo­los’ have been impor­ted from America, but uses the exec­rable impor­ted Americanism ‘douchebag’ to describe them – over and over again. What’s a douchebag? Someone with big­ger arms than you, who’s get­ting more sex than you – and prob­ably earn­ing more than you, des­pite being con­sid­er­ably less expens­ively edu­cated than you.

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But by far the most infuri­at­ing thing about ‘sad young douchebags’ is that they are so very obvi­ously not sad at all. They and their shame­less, slutty bod­ies are hav­ing a whale of a time, thank you very much. They’re far too happy being ‘sad young douchebags’ to sit down and write lengthy, angry ration­al­ising essays about why someone else’s idea of a good time is WRONG. Or read one. Or read any­thing, in fact. Apart maybe from Men’s Health.

A strong smell of nos­tal­gia eman­ates from this Vice jeremiad, like a pickled onion burp. The writer laments a lost Eden of mas­cu­line cer­tain­ties and whinges that these young men with their sexu­al­ised ‘gym bunny wanker’ bod­ies have replaced older, more ‘authen­tic’ English mas­cu­line arche­types, ‘the charmer’, ‘the bit of rough’, ‘the sul­len thinker’ (which, I won­der, applies to him?) and that as a result:

Nobody wants to be Sean Connery any more. With their buff, waxed bod­ies and stu­pid hair­cuts, the mod­ern British douchebag looks more like a model from an Attitude chat­line ad than a poten­tial Bond.

Ah yes, Sean Connery – the former Mr Scotland gym bunny wanker ex chorus boy who wore a wig and fake tan in those glossy, slutty Bond films. Masculinity is never what it used to be. Even back in Ancient Greece every­one was whin­ing that real men went out of fash­ion with the Trojan War. And what’s so wrong with want­ing to look like an Attitude chat line ad, rather than a hired killer?

Oh, that’s right – coz it looks gay.

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All this moan­ing, along with the writer’s com­plaints that these buff young men are dis­ap­point­ingly ‘soft’, crap in a fight and don’t have nearly enough scars, reminds me of those gays on Grindr who stip­u­late in their pro­file ‘I like my men to be MEN!!’. Or the camp queens who over the years who have sol­emnly informed me: ‘If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s camp queens!!’ Actually, it reminds me of myself when I was much more hope­lessly romantic than I am today, and before I real­ised real men were really slutty.

There is noth­ing gayer than the long­ing for mas­cu­line cer­tain­ties like this. Especially since they never really exis­ted any­way. It’s like believ­ing that the phal­lus is the real thing and the penis is just a sym­bol. It’s Quentin Crisp’s Great Dark Man syn­drome, but sans the self-awareness, or the arch­ness and the henna.

In fact Mr Vice is so nos­tal­gic – and so young – that he seems to think met­ro­sexu­al­ity is some­thing prior to, dis­tinct from and more taste­ful than these sexed-up shame­lessly slutty male bod­ies that insist on grabbing his atten­tion, wist­fully con­trast­ing how the ‘nat­ural con­fid­ence’ of met­ro­sexu­al­ity ‘has been replaced by some­thing far more flag­rant’. Take it from metrodaddy, today’s flag­rantly sexu­al­ised male body is merely more met­ro­sexu­al­ity. More sexy, more tarty, more porny, more slapped in your face. So stop bitch­ing and suck on it. Metrosexuality has gone hard-core –the ‘sexu­al­ity’ part has gone ‘hyper’.

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The met­ro­sexual was born twenty years ago and had to struggle to sur­vive in an untucked ‘no-homo’ 1990s — but the second wave take the revolu­tion he brought about in mas­cu­line aes­thet­ics for gran­ted. Steeped in images of male desirab­il­ity from birth and mas­turb­at­ing furi­ously to hard-core online porn from puberty, they have totally sexed-up the male body and turbo-charged the male desire to be desired, which was always at the heart of met­ro­sexu­al­ity rather than expens­ive fash­ion spreads and fas­ti­di­ous lists of ‘dos and don’ts’. Their own bod­ies rather than clob­ber and cos­met­ics have become the ulti­mate access­ory, fash­ion­ing them at the gym into a hot com­mod­ity. Nakedly met­ro­sexy.

If we need to give this new gen­er­a­tion of hyper met­ro­sexu­als a name – other than total tarts – we should per­haps dub them sporno­sexu­als. These mostly straight-identified young men are happy to advert­ise, like an Attitude chat line, their love of the pornolised, sporting-spurting male body – par­tic­u­larly their own. Along with their very gen­er­ous avail­ab­il­ity to anyone’s gaze-graze. Especially at premium rates.

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And every­one is call­ing their num­ber. Though admit­tedly not many do it via the extremely kinky route of writ­ing long essays denoun­cing them and explain­ing why they’re TOTALLY NOT INTERESTED. Hipsters, who of course think them­selves above the vul­gar­ity of sex­i­ness, are simply the ironic, anti-sexual wing of met­ro­sexu­al­ity – which is to say, abso­lutely fuck­ing point­less.

It’s the obvi­ous, if often obli­vi­ous, visual bi-curiosity of today’s totally tarty, hyper met­ro­sexu­al­ity that alarms people even more than its ‘vul­gar­ity’. Male bisexu­al­ity is still largely a taboo pre­cisely because it threatens the final, fond, sac­red, and highly phal­lic myth of mas­culin­ity: that it has an (het­ero­norm­at­ive) ‘aim’ and ‘pur­pose’. The scat­ter­shot slut­ti­ness of sporno­sexu­als sig­nals a very sticky end to that virile delusion.

Mr Vice argues repeatedly that these young men enjoy­ing their bod­ies and their lack of inhib­i­tion com­pared to their fath­ers and grand­fath­ers, are hav­ing a ‘crisis of mas­culin­ity’. This just smacks of more middle class resent­ment dressed up as ‘con­cern’ – a pissy, pass­ive aggress­ive way of call­ing them ‘sad douchebags’ again. Or ‘gay’. When people talk about a ‘crisis of mas­culin­ity’ they’re usu­ally talk­ing about their own – in deal­ing with the fact that mas­culin­ity isn’t what they want it to be. And par­tic­u­larly when work­ing class chaps aren’t what middle class chaps want them to be.

It’s true that our post-industrial land­scape often doesn’t know what to do with the male body apart from shag it or sell it, but that’s not neces­sar­ily such a ter­rible con­trast with the ‘glor­i­ous’ past. For a younger gen­er­a­tion of young men no longer afraid of their own bod­ies there’s no crisis – but rather a lib­er­a­tion. From the dehu­man­ising, sex­ist con­straints of their fore­fath­ers. Men’s bod­ies are no longer simply instru­mental things – for fight­ing wars, extract­ing coal, build­ing ships, scor­ing goals, mak­ing babies and put­ting the rub­bish out that must renounce pleas­ure, van­ity, sen­su­al­ity and a really good fin­ger­ing and leave that to women and pooves.

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Instead the male body has been rad­ic­ally redesigned, with the help of some blue­prints from Tom of Finland, as a sen­sual sex toy designed to give and par­tic­u­larly to receive pleas­ure. Maybe it’s not ter­ribly heroic, and admit­tedly some of the tatts are really grotty, but there are much worse things to be. Such as a slut-shaming writer for a hip­ster magazine.

Of course, I would say that. Because I find these sporno­sexual, totally tarty young men fuck­able. But that’s kind of the point. They des­per­ately want to be found fuck­able. It would be extremely rude and ungrate­ful not to find them fuck­able when they have gone to so much trouble doing all those bubble-butt build­ing bar­bell lunges at the gym for me.

And in fuck­able fact, it’s their fuckab­il­ity which makes the unfuck­ables hate them so fuck­ing much.

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© Mark Simpson 2014

Mark Simpson’s Metrosexy: A 21st Century Self-Love Story is avail­able on Kindle.

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Totally tarty Dan Osborne gifs from here - h/t DAKrolak

It’s a Queer World

Deviant Adventures in Pop Culture

Saint Morrissey

The acclaimed ‘psycho-bio’ of England’s most charm­ing – and alarm­ing – pop star.

Metrosexy

A bio­graphy of the metrosexual.

By his dad.

End of Gays?

What’s left of gay­ness when the homo­pho­bia stops?

Male Impersonators

The book that changed the way the world looks at men.

Sex Terror

This book will change the way you think about sex. It may even put you off it altogether.

Diet Cock: Coca Cola’s Porno Promo

As an avid voyeur of the media’s mar­ket­ing of the male body I meant to write about this new Diet Coke advert ‘Gardener’ when it first strut­ted its stuff a a month or so back, but it com­pletely slipped my mind — like a chilled, bead­ing soft drink can in a lubed hand. Apologies. Obviously there’s not enough NutraSweet in my bloodstream.

For its 30th anniversary Diet Coke, a sticky, fizzy, calorie-free brown drink aimed at women (Coke Zero is the ‘male’ equi­val­ent — the girly word ‘diet’ replaced by a manly stat­istic), has resur­rec­ted its most mem­or­able cam­paign trope, The Diet Coke Hunk.

Back in the 1990s Diet Coke suc­ceeded in con­nect­ing itself with the emer­gence of female sexual assert­ive­ness — and also of course emer­ging male sub­missive­ness, objec­ti­fic­a­tion and com­modi­fic­a­tion: after all, a ‘hunk’ is a face­less, name­less, if appet­ising thing. In doing so Diet Coke made itself mod­ern and tasty.

Naturally, every­one in the new ad, now set in the brave new, arti­fi­cially sweetened, colour-enhanced met­ro­sexy world that Diet Coke helped usher in, is slim, young and attract­ive. No one here needs to do any­thing as vul­gar as actu­ally diet. Diet Coke is a life­style, a sens­ib­il­ity — cer­tainly not a util­ity or a neces­sity. The women look like they’re tak­ing a break from shoot­ing on loc­a­tion for the British ver­sion of Sex in the City. Or at least, the British ver­sion of Daughters of Sex in the City.

The Hunk is a blandly attract­ive boy with a fash­ion beard — he could eas­ily be a con­test­ant on Take Me Out, and prob­ably has been. As usual in Diet Coke Land The Hunk is labour­ing away in some menial, manual capa­city while the middle class women, relax­ing from a higher vant­age point (remem­ber ‘Diet Coke Break’?), enjoy lit­er­ally look­ing down on him. He cuts the grass; they sit on it. He works; they watch.

When one of them rolls a can of the product down the hill towards the sweat­ing pro­let­arian this seems like a hos­tile act. It could after all have gone into the spin­ning lawn mower blades and caused dam­age and injury. Perhaps even scarred that pretty face!

Instead it comes to rest on the side of The Hunk’s mower. When the thirsty, sweaty chap opens the can it sprays him with the con­tents - in slow, money shot motion. The women from their lofty, grassy vant­age point find this hil­ari­ous and it seems as if this had been the plan all along. Maybe they even shook the can before rolling it down the hill. The minxes.

So now our man of toil is covered in ejac­u­lated stick­i­ness. And our tri­umphant, thor­oughly mod­ern women have had their fun.

However, when he takes his t-shirt off and wrings it out, flash­ing his abs and care­fully flex­ing his large pec­toral muscles, the women’s jaws drop. The look they give The Hunk’s body is one of total, gob-smacked long­ing and very unlady­like lust.

The Hunk seems entirely aware of his effect on the women and in fact this is both his revenge and his reward. He smiles a know­ing smile over his shoulder as he heads off, con­tinu­ing his mow­ing with a spring in his step. Objectification is a kind of gratification.

This moment reminded me of the corny line from Magic Mike: “You have the cock. They don’t.” No won­der the woman who rolled the can down the hill quickly presses her lips to the can in her hand.

 As the short ‘teaser’ below makes por­no­graph­ic­ally clear, with its close ups on undress­ing Hunk’s belt buckle and Voyeur Lady’s lips, Diet Coke is quite shame­lessly, quite expli­citly mar­ket­ing itself as the cal­orie free, car­bon­ated phallus.

 

Mâle Au Corps’: Mark Simpson talks to ‘Liberation’

Mark Simpson inter­viewed by Clement Ghys in France’s Liberation news­pa­per about the evol­u­tion of his met­ro­sexual off­spring – and Justin Timberlake’s ass.

(Unedited English email Q&A, April 2012)

CG: In 1994, you coined the term “Metrosexual”. Looking back, how would you say the concept has evolved? In what way do you find this defin­i­tion still rel­ev­ant?

MS: Well, nat­ur­ally the reason it’s still rel­ev­ant, Clement, because I’ve recently pub­lished a book on the subject!

More ser­i­ously, met­ro­sexu­al­ity is still rel­ev­ant all these mois­tur­ised years later because the breadth and depth of the mas­cu­line revolu­tion it rep­res­ents has been obscured – often quite delib­er­ately – in a lot of chat­ter about facials, ‘man­bags’ and flip-flops.

Ironically, out-and-proud male beauty isn’t itself skin-deep. Metrosexuality rep­res­ents a pro­found change in how we look at and think about men. The emer­gence from its closet of the male desire to be desired has revolu­tion­ised the cul­ture and also opened up the options of what a man can be.

Metrosexuality isn’t about man­bags. It’s not about men becom­ing ‘girly’ or ‘gay’. It’s about men becom­ing everything. To them­selves. In much the same way that women have been for some time.

For all its faults, met­ro­sexu­al­ity rep­res­ents a kind of ‘male lib­er­a­tion’. It’s the end of the sexual divi­sion of labour in look­ing and lov­ing – of bath­room and bed­room labour. And of ‘sexu­al­ity’ itself.

Male ‘passiv­ity’ is the flip side of female ‘activ­ity’ – and should be wel­comed or at least accep­ted as much as the lat­ter, but is mostly mocked instead. Metrosexuality has too often pro­voked a kind of reverse sexism.

How has the met­ro­sexual man blurred the bound­ar­ies between the “gay” and straight” labels?

Irretrievably. To quote metrodaddy’s own defin­i­tion of the metrosexual:

He might be offi­cially gay, straight or bisexual, but this is utterly imma­ter­ial because he has clearly taken him­self as his own love-object and pleas­ure as his sexual preference.’

There’s noth­ing ‘straight’ about met­ro­sexu­al­ity. Even though most met­ros def­in­itely prefer women in bed.

Narcissism was sup­posed to be the female qual­ity par excel­lence. ‘Vanity thy name is woman’. It’s con­sidered ‘fem­in­ine’ because invit­ing the gaze/exhibitionism is ‘pass­ive’. Likewise homo­sexual men were con­sidered devi­ant and ‘woman­ish’ because of their – real or per­ceived – passiv­ity. In a sense, homos exis­ted to lock up male passiv­ity in the homo body and keep it away from ‘nor­mal’ men.

Men were offi­cially sup­posed to be always desir­ing, never desired. Always look­ing, never looked at. Always act­ive, never pass­ive. Always hetero never homo.

Metrosexuality queers all of that. By out­ing the ‘passiv­ity’ in men, their desire to be desired, and also their keen visual interest in other men and their bod­ies. It’s pre­cisely because of this blur­ring between gay and straight that many older and more tra­di­tional types have reacted with phobic and often hys­ter­ical hos­til­ity to met­ro­sexu­al­ity. What indeed is straight a man to do – who in fact is he to be – if he can’t define him­self as NOT a gay?

Particularly in the mono­sexual US, which had a gigantic national nervous break­down over the met­ro­sexual in the mid-late Noughties, pre­cisely because of the queer­ness of met­ro­sexu­al­ity – pro­du­cing a so-called ‘menais­sance’ back­lash against it.

Though the back­lash was largely a phoney one. Metrosexuality con­tin­ued to con­quer that con­flic­ted con­tin­ent, albeit on the down-low, and even the US is now led by a svel­tely hand­some man who makes the world wait on his morn­ing workout and who, des­pite Michelle’s pret­ti­ness, is in many ways his own First Lady.

Even in less tra­di­tion­al­ist coun­tries like Britain there have been reaction-formations too, but less pro­nounced, and the younger gen­er­a­tion has gen­er­ally been quicker to seize the free­dom from gay/straight, male/female ghet­toes and bin­ar­ies that met­ro­sexu­al­ity offers. Recent research claimed that most hetero young men at uni­ver­sity enjoy kiss­ing their male friends full on the lips as an expres­sion of affec­tion. Quite a turn­about for an Anglo coun­try that sen­tenced Oscar Wilde to three years hard labour!

Recently in The Guardian, you said that “the met­ro­sexual revolu­tion has taken an increas­ingly phys­ical, sen­sual form”. Can you com­ment on that?

Metrosexuality is con­sumer­ist and fashion-orientated, but it isn’t neces­sar­ily about clothes. In fact, these days it’s per­haps less about clothes than the ulti­mate access­ory: the body. It’s almost as if male naked­ness has been abol­ished at the very moment that acres of male flesh are dis­played every­where you look. Young men have inves­ted a great deal of time, money and sup­ple­ments ‘fash­ion­ing’ their bod­ies into some­thing they ‘wear’ – and show off. Shaven (often every­where), sculp­ted, intric­ately tat­tooed, pierced. Never, ever unmediated.

The near-global hege­mony of ‘Men’s Health’ magazine with its Photoshopped cov­ers of men’s sculp­ted tor­sos bears testi­mony to this, along with the massive pop­ular­ity of real­ity shows such as ‘Jersey Shore’, which fea­ture young men like Mikey Sorrentino show­ing off their tits and abs.

In this they’re also fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of tarty sporno stars like David Beckham, Cristiano Ronaldo and Rafael Nadal, whose bod­ies are mar­keted and pro­moted by cor­por­ate consumerism.

A whole gen­er­a­tion of young men have grown up with met­ro­sex­i­ness. As the recent hit LMFAO single that is a kind of met­ro­sexy anthem puts it: ‘I’m sexy and I know It’.

In the same art­icle you evoked the highest and heightened interest of men in their own bod­ies (diets, ster­oids, gyms). What do you think is driv­ing this?

It’s partly an effect of post-industrialism. It’s inter­est­ing that its most pro­nounced amongst young work­ing class males who in the past might have looked for­wards to a life of selling their labour and work­ing on other men’s prop­erty, but who now instead of going to the fact­ory go to the gym to labour on their own bod­ies and turn them into a product. Their bod­ies remain the only thing they own – their only asset.

But now they turn their bod­ies into a com­mod­ity them­selves. By mak­ing them­selves desir­able they give them­selves value in a con­sumer­ist world. Not for noth­ing are ath­letes such as Beckham who will­ingly strip off and push their pack­ets down our throats on the side of buses often from a work­ing class background.

It’s also the effect of course of an increas­ingly visual world – of web­cams, face­book, cam­era phones, widescreen HD TVs, and real­ity TV. The desire to be desired is also about the desire to be noticed. To be wanted. To be pop­u­lar. To succeed.

And let’s not dis­count the import­ance of all the vast quant­it­ies of porn that men and boys are now down­load­ing, in which the male body is fully on dis­play. And is usu­ally worked out, shaved, tat­tooed, de-pubed. Lots of men aspire to be male porn stars these days. Or at least many of them seem to be audi­tion­ing for that job.…

In recent years, male bod­ies have been very much shot on screen.
Sometimes, even more than female bod­ies. I’m think­ing of Ryan Gosling in com­ed­ies such as Crazy Stupid Love, Justin Timberlake in Friends With Benefits or Alexander Skarsgard in the TV show True Blood. How do you explain this?

Friends With Benefits was a fea­ture film all about Justin’s ass! It was in almost every scene. We even heard from his girl­friend that he likes a fin­ger up it. His char­ac­ter was work­ing as an art-director for American GQ but had a body by Men’s Health. How met­ro­sexual can you get!

Women, who make up the major­ity of TV view­ers, have dis­covered an appet­ite for look­ing at men’s bod­ies on screen. In some ways the sexy scantily clad male has become a sym­bol of women’s con­sum­ing power and their new assert­ive sexual appet­ite. True Blood espe­cially seems to ‘feed’ on that.

But men also as we’ve seen also enjoy look­ing at other men’s bod­ies, and admir­ing, desir­ing and aspir­ing to them.

 What do you think of this quote? The actor Thomas Jane said, after appear­ing naked on screen, “I now know what it’s like to be a woman, because I now have to say dur­ing a con­ver­sa­tion, ‘Hey, my eyes are up here!’ ”

It’s a funny quote, but it’s inter­est­ing that the sex of the per­son he’s talk­ing to with wan­der­ing eyes is left unstated.

Men are ‘sex objects’ now too. Some might put it in terms of ‘men are the new women’. But actu­ally what met­ro­sexu­al­ity has done is to break down the bound­ar­ies between ‘men’ and ‘women’.

Ironically many fem­in­ists are com­pletely blind to this phe­nomenon of men will­ingly objec­ti­fy­ing them­selves and other males. Or they pre­tend it’s a mar­ginal thing in no way com­par­able to the objec­ti­fic­a­tion of women. When clearly in main­stream media, par­tic­u­larly TV and cinema, it’s at the very least the equi­val­ent of female objectification.

Male nud­ity and sex is now a full advert­ising argu­ment. How do you explain David Beckham’s “pack­age” on the Armani/H&M camaigns? Or the homo­erotic Dolce & Gabbana ads?

This is what I dub ‘sporno’ – the place where sporn and porn get into bed while Mr Armani and Dolce and Gabbana take pictures.

Sporno rep­res­ents an intens­i­fic­a­tion of met­ro­sexu­al­ity. Where early met­ro­sexu­al­ity was soft-core, sporno is hard­core. Metrosexuality is now so main­stream and so ‘nor­mal’ that male coquet­tish­ness isn’t in itself likely to turn heads. So instead you have to prom­ise the punters a gang-bang in the showers. Or, more usu­ally, a prone, pass­ive image of a sport­ing star with their legs apart lit­er­ally mak­ing them­selves avail­able for the view­ing public.

And of course the ‘hard­core’ aes­thetic of sporno is flag­rantly gay.

Some have tried to dis­miss all this as some kind of con­spir­acy by gay fash­ionis­tas to cor­rupt young straight men and ram their pro­cliv­it­ies down their throats. If it is, it’s worked. Spectacularly. Sporno is the aes­thetic of the 21st Century.

Likewise, met­ro­sexu­al­ity is now so main­stream that to point to someone as a ‘met­ro­sexual’ these days is almost redund­ant. That’s why I called my latest col­lec­tion ‘Metrosexy’ – because what we’re talk­ing now is not a ‘type’ but rather a whole new male way of look­ing and being looked at.

Do you think that gay ima­ging has now com­pletely entered (pre­dom­in­antly straight) soci­ety? How do you explain the fact that it is now a com­mer­cial tool?

Well as I say, it makes people look. Which is quite an achieve­ment in this jaded age.

But also ‘gay’ ima­ging is inev­it­able once the male body is com­mod­i­fied, and once men begin to objec­tify them­selves and other men. This is part of the reason why it was banned or res­isted for so long.

It’s impossible to straighten this stuff out. Of course, people try. Men some­times pre­tend that their self objec­ti­fic­a­tion is ‘strictly for the ladies’. But even if this weren’t a bare-cheeked lie it wouldn’t solve any­thing. Because the ‘queer­ness’ is in the male passiv­ity. It’s about as ‘straight’ as being fucked with a strap-on.

It even turns out that many women have male-on-male fantas­ies which increas­ingly com­mer­cial cul­ture is pan­der­ing to. In other words, men are being encour­aged to ‘act gay’ to turn the ladies on.

More cyn­ic­ally, or per­haps more real­ist­ic­ally, gay ideals of male beauty and per­fec­tion are largely unachiev­able. That’s really the point of them. They prom­ise end­less desir­ing – and also anxi­ety. Which is what con­sumer­ism needs.…

 Mark Simpson’s ‘Metrosexy’ is avail­able on Amazon Kindle.