Part One. Marketing to a Demographic and the Assumed Demographic Feed Off Each Other in a Symbiotic Relationship.
1. Television markets to a stereotyped demographic. For example, MMA fighting has ads for young males with a very narrow definition of masculinity. Or soap operas market to married women with a very narrow personality type. These ads reinforce roles and have a lot of influence on the viewers who “become” like the very ads they’re supposed to be like in the first place. In turn, the marketers see the demographic traits as “proof” that they’ve defined their audience and this cycle repeats and reinforces itself.
2. Sometimes these roles “match the expectations and fantasies of their intended audience.” See page 203.
3. Men’s Men: The man is the embodiment of hyper masculinity. As such, he seeks “escapism and male camaraderie” like in the Acura or Carl’s Jr. commercial. In this latter commercial, the man is always young, handsome, and smarter than the losers who get ripped off in steak houses. They want to be alone. “Get your own burger.” Or “Leave me alone. I’m eating.”
4. Men’s Women: Often depicted in beer commercials, these women play out a man’s perennial adolescent imagination.
5. Women’s Women: These women have the same desires and insecurities of the women audience. They fear being fat, falling short as housewives and as mothers. They desire to be desirable and perceived as smart and thrifty in the community.
6. Women’s Men: These men fulfill women’s fantasies of the ideal man.
Part Two. Essay Option:
In half a page, summarize Steve Craig’s major points. Then choose 4 commercials OTHER than the ones Craig uses and show how each ad markets to the four categories of people.
Part Three: Contrasting the Bro and the Metrosexual
The 12 Qualities of the Bro (also called the Dude)
1. He is self-conscious about people ranking him high on the Heterosexual Scale. He does this by amassing Man Points.
2. The less meticulous his fashion style, the more Man Points he receives.
3. His definition of masculinity is narrowly focused on feats of strength, athleticism, toughness, and general competitiveness as for the Bro masculinity is born from a fantasy of dominating others.
4. He prefers a dumbed-down image of women, in which they are accessories and as such do not inconvenience him from his true passion: hanging out with other guys. His image of women conforms to his intractable adolescent imagination.
5. The Bro prefers technology that heightens his sense of male power and dominance. Therefore, cars are a central theme in his technological world, as are violent computer games.
6. The Bro has a streak of misogyny (hostility toward women) in which he looks at women as threatening to his freedom and independence. Therefore, a lot of car and truck commercials depict men getting together and “escaping their women” on a variety of expeditions, treks, and general getaways.
7. The Bro can never reconcile his perennial contradiction: He bloviates endlessly about how much he loves women but he forever longs to escape from women and enjoy the escape of male camaraderie.
8. The Bro often feels disgusted and oppressed by the “feminization” of popular culture and he seeks relief from this disgust by becoming absorbed in violent, conspicuously male pursuits: football, MMA fighting, bellicose computer games.
9. The Bro loves hanging out with other Bros or “dudes,” but he demands that the number be three men or more since two men on an outing is too intimate and suggests a relationship not sharply heterosexual and masculine.
10. The Bro only dances when drunk and even then his dancing cannot be over-choreographed because an expertise in dancing suggests a lack of Man Points. In essence, the Bro dances as a “necessary evil,” part of the mating game he must put up with.
11. The Bro is comfortable with his ignorance and finds intellectual curiosity less than manly. He thus seeks other men who are as comfortable with their ignorance as he is.
12. The Bro is essentially conservative in nature, meaning that he hates change. He believes things are a certain way and to try to change them is to tinker with nature, a foolishness that will result in chaos and destruction.
The 12 Qualities of the Metrosexual (also called the Hipster)
1. The metrosexual is a heterosexual who unlike the Bro is meticulously concerned with grooming and fashion, to the degree that he budgets for a variety of beauty and grooming products and does so without feeling insecure about his sexuality.
2. The metrosexual is a highly refined consumer who pursues the best products available and distinguishes between high quality, mediocre quality, and low quality. While the Bro drinks Bud Light, the metrosexual is more inclined to drink Grey Goose or a mojito. A Bro does not know and does not want to know what a mojito is. While the Bro wears Gap jeans, the metrosexual wears Diesel or Evisu. However, the Bro wouldn’t get caught dead in those designer labels.
3. The metrosexual is open-minded to new experiences, travel, and change, things considered anathema and an abomination to the Bro.
4. While the Bro is provincial, clinging to the cultural mores of one small town or area, the metrosexual is cosmopolitan, gathering influences from all over the world.
5. The idea of a “feminine side” is abhorrent to the Bro, but the metrosexual embraces his feminine side in order to express his full humanity. The metrosexual not only goes to “sensitive” movies that the Bro would never go to; the metrosexual cries with no shame at those movies.
6. For the Bro, a lack of style is the hallmark of his bedroom. In contrast, the metrosexual looks for a very distinct style and is not ashamed to consult with an interior decorator or some other fashion consultant.
7. While the Bro frets over others accusing him of being a homosexual, the metrosexual is blithely indifferent regarding what anyone thinks of his sexuality since he is very secure in his deeply-rooted heterosexual orientation.
8. While the Bro eschews books and reading in general, the metrosexual is constantly haunted by the idea that he is behind in his reading and is constantly eager to start a new book.
9. The Bro clings to old traditions while the metrosexual is always on the cutting edge and is often perceived as a “cool setter.”
10. While the Bro likes to “get up and go,” the metrosexual will prepare himself in the bathroom twice as long as the average woman. Even the metrosexual’s closet will be oversized to accommodate his abundant fashion choices.
11. The Bro orders plain, provincial food like a hamburger while the metrosexual eats from an international menu. For example, the Bro cannot eat with chop sticks while the metrosexual is fluent in this form of eating.
12. The Bro goes out of his way NOT to dress in gay attire while the metrosexual and gay attire are often the same.
Part Four. Essay Option:
Summarize Warren St. John’s definition of a metrosexual and McMahon’s definition of a Dude. Then choose a metrosexual and Dude you know and profile them in a contrast essay.