Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Tapping Resentment: Post-Revolutionary Sexism and the Modern Beer Commercial, Pt. 1

I just saw another beer commercial where the male "protagonist" lies to his girlfriend so he can go drink beers with his bros. Sooo rad dude. But seriously. What the H? Not to get all feministy on you - because heaven knows, that is the worst thing a woman can be - but yes, actually, to get feministy on you. I hate this pervasive image of a woman as the “warden” to your prison, the “gatekeeper” to your personal hell. We are so unreasonable that you actually have to lie to us to hang out with your friends and drink beer? That is insane.

First of all, women like beer. Why are you alienating a significant subsect of your consumership, Coors Light? Maybe because we only drink you at frat parties - and we’re definitely not paying for that.

Secondly, why do guys think they have to lie to go be somewhere else for a night? Will I really be upset about finally getting a night to myself without my sheets smelling like balls? No. By all means, no!

So of course all these ads are doing is perpetuating a stereotype about women as uptight shrews who are out to ruin your homosexual fun. Which makes it so that you don’t give us credit when we actually have a reason to get uptight and pissed about something, like now, because you’ve already decided we’re just being rigid and menstrual, so we never get our point across. And it’s not right! It’s not just! Stop telling me to calm down!

Or maybe it’s just a stupid, uninspired beer commercial.


Kim said...

Seriously, Jessie. The Boy and I actually had a fight about this, because he THOUGHT I would get mad if he wanted to hang out with the guys. He thought he was being a bad boyfriend if he did, or that I would be mad as his girlfriend if he wanted to hang out with his friends. This thought, I believe, is based on the subconscious "women as uptight shrews" thing which is not-so-subliminally inserted into "male" culture all over the place.

Stupid, uninspired beer commercial? Yes. Definitely. But you better believe that the men who make these commercials ('cause undoubtedly, it's men) are imposing their subconscious "mommy didn't love me, my girlfriend is crazy" beliefs onto the general population. Whether or not they know they're doing it is not the point.

And PS - there are some crazy biotches out there who DO care if their boyfriends go out with their buddies (I have lived with one, and they're all over reality TV). But I think (I hope?) most girls/women are like you and me and we should be noted as the typical girl and not just the coolest people around. Although...maybe Totally Awesome ladies like us ARE the minority, and we should relish in the fact that we're winners! Or "keepers," as boys' families will call us. Right?

This comment is almost as long as your post. Sorry.

Brandon Burkhart said...

I had to lie to my girlfriend so I could sneak away to read your blog. Ironic, no?

Jessie said...

Kim, thanks for the insight - never apologize for leaving a long-ass comment on my blog. And never apologize for being thoughtful enough to articulate the frustrations women feel about subconscious (incorrect) male prejudices!

Lisa said...

i like beer, too! but i hate coors.

TheTOB said...

Interesting. My initial thought was similar to what Kim said... not every girl is as cool as you. There are definitely girlfriends/wives who DO give their boyfriends/husbands shit every time they want to just go get drunk with their buddies.

On the other hand, also as Kim said, I feel like pop culture has sort of foisted these gender roles upon us from a young age. Not just in beer commercials. I don't think they are the real culprit, so much as they are a symptom.

Consider the movie Knocked Up. Paul Rudd's character lies to his wife about needing to work so that he can go see a movie by himself, and have his fantasy baseball draft with his buddies. As a dude who likes fantasy sports, I can relate to this scene. Girls think fantasy sports are pretty lame (and they are probably right, but I like them anyways). Luckily, I happen to be dating a girl who not only understands it, but politely indulges me when I complain about the poor performance of my team.

I digress.

So what is the real issue? Are most women (not you) like this, creating a situation where most men DO have to lie in order to go get drunk with their buddies? Or have men just been conditioned to think they are like this by pop culture?

Obviously, I think it's both. But just keep in mind...you are probably a very cool girlfriend. And while you wouldn't get all up in a tizzy if your boyfriend wanted to hang with the dudes, not all others are as cool as you are.