So I just got finished reading the New York Time's assessment of Paul Rudd as an image of the new man...published in time for his new movie, "I Love You, Man".

I'm not going to lie, Paul Rudd is really pretty and has given credibility to some more open-minded, less anxious performances of masculinity. But there's still something that bothers me about all of this, and I'm not entirely sure why. Anyone else feel this way?

I think part of my uneasiness is articulated in the NYT article:

"He is the rare straight actor to have played a serious gay role early in his career — in 1998’s “Object of My Affection” (“I figured everyone thought I was gay anyway,” he said) — but also seems compulsively drawn to gay jokes, a hallmark of buddy comedies, and is usually shrewd enough to make them register as lampoons of homophobia."

It still seems as though despite the fact that he's chill about playing gay, about bending certain rules of masculinity, he's still creating his identity by sternly defining himself against gayness -- this is pretty much a staple for the construction of hegemonic masculinity and many other kinds of masculinity. You're only as straight as you're not gay. Sure, he can have bromances and make out with guys, but he's...not like that. Am I just being silly?

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