I don't know if you've noticed but there are an awful lot of shows on television today that feature male characters bonding with other male characters. And I don't mean like the type of male bonding that took place in the Wedding Crashers but guys who have developed real relationships with each other where they can discuss things one tier more advanced than the typical superficial male banter. Don't get me wrong, there's plenty of stereotypical male banter on shows like How I Met Your Mother (another show that I like) but it's somewhat refreshing to see these fictional men evolve. Surely that means men will eventually get credit for evolving in the real world as well.
It's a trend: best-friends men. Heterosexual buddies. Close chums. Sitcom guys don't have to just sit around drinking beer and watching football. They can talk. They can share. They can be intimate — emotionally.
"The whole culture of masculinity is changing, and changing quite radically from the days when John Wayne and the Lone Ranger were the top images of what it meant to be male," says Judith Sherven, a relationship expert and author of several books with her husband, Jim Sniechowski, also a relationship expert. He says it's an outgrowth of the feminist movement. She says it's a breaking down of barriers.
"There aren't rigid sex-role stereotypes that govern everyone's behavior anymore," she says, adding that women always have comfortably had friends, and now TV characters are reflecting men's freedom to express themselves with their friends.
"Now men are open to the fact that this is certainly within the realm of being masculine. It doesn't mean they're acting like women. They're following a human instinct, and there aren't the prohibitions against it."
Interestingly, I tend to watch most of the shows that are featured in the article. I don't think it's because I find them more relatable (although you never know how the subconscious works) but they actually tend to be well-written shows. Maybe talent actually does see a societal trend and can creatively use that while hacks fall back on stereotypes. I guess that hypothesis is still in test.
Read the entire article here.