1. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Full nudity, why so few guy parts? (Warning - very frank discussion)

    Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by GingerCoffee, Sep 23, 2013.

    So I'm watching the Emmys (it's easy to write with it on, you don't need to pay close attention) and supporting drama actor goes to Bobby Cannavale from Boardwalk Empire. I start thinking about all the total nudity in Boardwalk Empire and Game of Thrones. Did I just miss the penis shots? Neither of those two shows hold back on the full frontal nudity when it comes to lady parts. And there are plenty of guy backsides.

    There's an active thread on sexism in readers so I began to think about the sexism in the new nudity standards. Did I just miss the penis shots? I could have. I've only seen a couple of episodes from each of those two series. Has anyone else noticed?

    So do people think it's the writers, the actors, the writer's expectations of what the audience wants, or something else that is responsible? Do you suppose concerns about erections or the lack thereof could be the problem?

    Heck, if the audience can see people humping, I think that same audience understands the variability of a man's anatomy.
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I think a big part of it is simply a continuation of old standards of female objectification being given a green light by western culture where male objectification has traditionally not seen the same treatment, at least not to the same ubiquitous extent. There's also the simple fact that with the garments of modern western culture, there is much less of a surprise factor with women. It's not like a gal is going to disrobe and you're going to see something utterly different than expected. However, unless a fellah is unusually endowed, a pair of jeans tends to equalize most of the normal range of equipment. (cue Mr. Gump. "...like a box of chocolates. You never can tell.")

    Though, to be fair, there have been recent premium channel shows where male objectification and the full Monte is utterly and undeniably center stage. The Spartacus series that aired on Starz (almost always bundled together with HBO in cable and satellite packages) was a Jimmy Dean Jamboree! The show shied away from nothing when it comes to displays of every flavor of male sexuality and accouterment. And they recently announced they will be re-airing an "uncut" version of the serious starting October 16th, 2013. I'm left to wonder, if the series I saw was the cut version, am I really ready for the uncut? :eek:o_O
     
  3. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    A "Jimmy Dean Jamboree!" really made me laugh. I'm curious, did the Spartacus series show arousal?

    As far as the surprise factor, I'm not sure what you mean about how it would affect the decision to show or not show?
     
  4. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    In Game of Thrones, the nudity is going to be a bit skewed because of the brothel scenes. You have a similar situation in The Sopranos (strip club), and that I can forgive for the sake of realism. I don't watch much TV so I may be wrong here, but it seems like the shows that have lots of nudity are shows men tend to watch.

    While we're on the subject, I do think a lot of the nudity and sex scenes on Game of Thrones was unwarranted. Fortunately, there was less nudity as season 3 progressed (I don't think there was any in The Rains of Castamere).
     
  5. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I can only speak from a guy's POV, but I think it affects the general mindset of men. A single high school, after-PE shower could easily bring to a light a "pecking order" utterly different from the one in play in the hallways when everyone is dressed. For some, to a distinct advantage, for others, not so much. And there's the whole penis size = status culture amongst men the world over.

    Also, and I forgot to mention this before, there is also the fact that men still dominate behind the camera in the business of entertainment. Shows like Boardwalk Empire and GoT are being directed at "what men want to see". I give LOGO as the alternate example. LOGO is a network dedicated to LGBT people, but mostly to the G of LGBT. The shows on LOGO like Dante's Cove give the full Monte on the regular. Men behind the camera, making shows under the same paradigm, "what men want to see", but in this case it's "What gay men want to see" and, well.... ;)

    EDIT ~ Oh, and no, Spartacus did not show male arousal, so to speak. I think for American TV, that would cross the line too clearly into porn as it stands today.
     
  6. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    At least some of the nudity in Boardwalk Empire was also gratuitous. Makes the sexism imbalance even more visible.
     
  7. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    The way I've heard this discussed, and I think it makes sense is that guys REALLY don't want to see penis. And women generally don't really like to see it, either. So -- there you go.
     
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  8. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    I think it's more simple than all of that. A womans vagina is mostly hidden unless she is spreading her legs for the camera, which would be considered pornographic. It's the same with a penis, if it were to be shown, flaccid or erect, it would quickly cross over into pornographic. Breasts on the other hand, are more accepted simply because they are less 'personal' and more 'public' than their lady bits.
     
  9. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Anyone seen Orange Is The New Black yet? First show shows plenty of lady parts in the showers of a women's prison and the men are all like "Here we go, grab the popcorn!" Then show after show it spirals downhill. I got the impression Netflix (the makers) said, "Fuck the storyline, just show naked women looking at each other in the showers, maybe ape some humping - we need advertising to make something real next time". Pure pandering to stereotypical straight men like me but even I got bored of it very quickly.

    As for the lack of a penis in GoT or Boardwalk (which I loved), let that continue and as for showing excited men - I think that's just porn.
     
  10. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    So why is a penis that isn't erect any less pornographic than a woman's labia?

    I wasn't suggesting there should be erect penises, I was just asking if that was part of the issue.
     
  11. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    It's not, I was just saying that full frontal for a woman shows much less than full frontal for a guy. A woman's bits are more hidden whereas a guy's junk is all like 'Here I am look at me!'
     
  12. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I think it can be. I completely disagree that showing a flaccid penis crosses quickly over into pornography. Leave Hollywood and head over to European cinema and suddenly the penis is not the object of mystery it is here. I don't think I've seen a single Almodovar film that didn't have some chorizo on display. But the penis in action (or ready for action) is another story. There are numerous films wherein the line was crossed that make for films difficult to know where to shelve. Shortbus (2006) is not porn, not to me, but it does take a frank look at our sexual insecurities and hangups and does so with an honesty that goes so far as un-simulated sex, to include, of course, the erect penis. Many might see this as automatically making it porn because the sex is real, penetration is actually visible, a black and white border has been crossed. I personally don't think that to be the case, but we are definitely entering into the land of subjectivity here.
     
  13. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I find the cross cultural aspect fascinating.
     
  14. DH Hanni
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    A flaccid penis isn't considered pornographic if we're talking about cable shows. An erect one is considered pornographic which is why you won't see one unless some show is going for that affect. Heck even when Cinemax was known as Skinmax for it's seamlessly endless stable of soft core porn, you never saw a penis. And I've yet to see a woman's labia on cable.

    I'm guessing the main reasons for the lack of penis in shows is because of the actor's comfort level and people being way more offended by full male nudity than full female nudity. Plus there is an inherit beauty to a woman's body that both genders can agree upon. Not so much with a man's body.
     
  15. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Not sure I've ever seen an erection or a labia in a mainstream movie. No matter how hard we tried freeze-framing Fatal Attraction we still didn't see the beaver shot :(
     
  16. Kramitdfrog
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    Just a note for people who want to do this and don't want to see a big picture FULL SCREEN shot of a placid penis. Do a frame by frame on the flashes in fight club. Note Norton's character states that he likes to put pornographic pictures on movie reals where he works. Well a friend of mine kept seeing the flashes all through the movie and guess what they are as Norton states also in the movie... "pictures of giant flacid penis"

    Ive seen this movie aired on TV a few times. I wonder if anyone has actually slowed those flashes down frame by frame...
     
  17. Thomas Kitchen
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    @Kramitdfrog - they are indeed there. The only flash I saw properly was the one right at the end - the final frame. I saw something flash across the screen, and promptly rewound it. As I paused to see, I realised it was a penis, not erect, mind you. But to be honest, I just laughed.

    I'm not saying, as an extremely straight guy, that I like to see penises on screen. But I don't understand why, as Ginger said, a woman's genitals are more acceptable on-screen than a man's.
     
  18. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I would argue that there is an inherent beauty to a woman's body that both genders are allowed to agree upon given the social rules of western culture. Men know when other men are pretty and have enviable physiques and endowments. They know it. Unless they are gay, most (I said most, not all) men will never, ever, evah admit to such an aesthetic appreciation, but that is culturally imposed, not inherent. It is an emic lie they would take to the grave rather than be seen breaking this particular social rule. There is inherent beauty in the human body that is autonomous of social conditioning.
     
  19. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Like Wrey, I don't really agree with this, either. A really finely toned man's body can be very nice to see. (Not to the point where they are grotesquely muscular.) I don't much enjoy looking at naked women.
     
  20. JJ_Maxx
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    JJ_Maxx Banned

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    I disagree, as much as some people will go to their graves to make no clear distinctions between male and female, they exist. The female form is the definition of beauty, the soft skin, the flowing lines, the supple breasts. This is evolutionarily intended. Men, on the other hand have body hair, sharp lines, and stocky, muscular frames. It's not society, it's nature. Women are made for child-bearing and attracting a strong mate. They are made to be nurturing and soft, while men are made for protecting and hunting, for killing and fighting.
     
  21. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    And I repeat...

     
  22. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I think guys can tell when other guys meet the accepted societal standard for male beauty or attractiveness. You'd have to be blind not to be able to do it.

    I do think male genitalia being more obvious than female genitalia in a frontal nude shot has something to do with it. Maybe, too, the idea that many seem to hold that men are more interested in seeing nude women than vice versa, and so in terms of exploiting sexuality as a marketing tool, they feel that showing the female nude is more likely to provide the result they want.
     
  23. GingerCoffee
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    Oh for pity's sake.:rolleyes:

    There are many beautiful male bodies, and there are plenty of ugly female bodies. You are repeating a rather ludicrous stereotype and saying evolution is why is an unsupportable claim. In the animal kingdom there are two basic models (and a few miscellaneous tactics) for selecting gender attraction, beauty and brute force. 99% of the time it's the male who's competing for the female, and in many species the male's beauty is the selection factor for getting the female's attention.

    If men's bodies weren't beautiful, muscles and money would be the exclusive selection factor for women. Brad Pitt, Kevin Costner, Harrison Ford, and all the boy bands would have never made it big.
     
  24. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't see how this relates to the argument. No one is saying they aren't different -- indeed, that's the crux of this discussion.
     
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  25. jannert
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    I've been wondering if I should dive into this discussion, and every time I want to say something, the topic has taken a turn away from where I wanted to jump in! I gotta be quick off the mark here.

    My own suspicion is that this reluctance to show male genitalia on screen (and other places too) is very Victorian, and just hasn't totally vanished from our consciousness. The idea that 'the ladies' would be offended, take the vapours, etc, if they ever caught sight of a man's sexual organs. Heck, even in bed, Victorian women and men were supposed to be fully clothed, so the ladies weren't embarrassed or offended. Men were 'allowed' and encouraged to draw and paint nude women, but female artists faced a great deal of hassle and downright persecution if they dared to draw a nude male ...or even a nude female! The focus was always on keeping women 'pure' and unoffended!

    As much as I enjoy studying the Victorian period of history, both in the USA and in Britain, I would like to see the vestiges of this inane prudery finally disappear once and for all from our cultural makeup.

    On another tangent, I have always felt that men are more vulnerable than women in many ways. While women, even when naked, hide their external sexual parts unless they are deliberately displaying them to lovers or cameras (or the gynaecologist!), men have to exhibit theirs every time they remove their clothing. I certainly never remember the girls' locker room discussing the relative sizes of our labia, although we certainly commented on our breast sizes. But men have to put their most intimate parts on show and up for comment and judgement, whenever they take their clothes off in company. That must be incredibly difficult, whatever 'size' they happen to be. Admiration, scorn or indifference ...all can leave emotional scars.

    I'd like to see sex treated more honestly and intimately, onscreen and in books, as intercourse between characters, not just their body parts. Teasing near-subliminal glimpses of genitals are just silly. If you're going to show them, show them ...same as you would a face, a foot. Just be straightforward in the portrayal, let us see what needs to be seen, and get on with the story. Obviously if actors are unwilling to participate in real sexual activity, it will have to be simulated. But it's how they look at each other, touch each other, speak to each other, react to each other that gives a sexual scene impact and makes it memorable anyway ...and yes, sexy. Not who puts what where.
     

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