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“The typical metrosexual is a young man with money to spend, living in or within easy reach of a metropolis — because that’s where all the best shops, clubs, gyms and hairdressers are. He might be officially gay, straight or bisexual, but this is utterly immaterial because he has clearly taken himself as his own love object and pleasure as his sexual preference.”


“That oddly flat-but-friendly gaze that peers out from billboards and behind Police sunglasses looks to millions like the nearest thing to godliness in a godless world. People fall in love not with him – who knows what Beckham is ‘really’ like, or cares – but with his multimedia neediness, his transmitted “viral” desire, which seems to spread and replicate itself everywhere, endorsing multiple products. Becks’ desire, via the giant shared toilet handle of advertising, infects us, inhabits us and becomes our own.”


“Bond is now the Bond Girl of the opening credits. It’s his silhouette we see – and nary a dancing naked babe in sight. Perhaps to compensate for this, in the actual film he gets his tits out a lot. He emerges from the sea glistening, showing off his pumped boobs, like Ursula Andress in ‘Dr No’ — save his nipples are more prominent. Bond has finally become his own Bond Girl.”


“When Air National Guard absentee and former male cheerleader George W. Bush famously dressed up in Cruise’s “Top Gun” costume and used the USS Abraham Lincoln as a giant, nuclear-powered strap-on, that was as brazen an exhibition of cross-dressing as there’s ever been.”


“The so-called ‘menaissance’ in the US against metrosexuality is mendacious. This isn’t retrosexual at all, but hummersexual: a noisy, overblown, and frankly rather camp form of faux masculinity that likes to draw attention to itself and its ‘old-fashioned’ manliness, but tends — like driving an outsized military vehicle in the suburbs or wearing leather chaps in bars — to be a tad counterproductive.”


“A well-dressed mixed-race, polyglot male who makes the Free World wait on his gym visit every morning. A man whose looks are regularly praised – particularly by male journalists. A man who won the Democratic nomination in part because he was much prettier than his more experienced female opponent. His wife Michelle is very attractive too, of course – but in some ways Obama is the first US President to be his own First Lady.”


“In a spornographic age it’s no longer enough for the male body to be presented to us by consumerism as merely attractive, or desiring to be desired, as it was in the early days of nakedly narcissistic male metrosexuality. This masculine coquettish-ness, pleasing as it is, no longer offers an intense enough image. Or provokes enough lust. It’s just not very shocking or arousing any more. In fact, it’s just too… normal. To get our attention these days the sporting male body has to promise us nothing less than an immaculately groomed, waxed and pumped gang-bang in the showers.”


Even without the financial meltdown Brown was never going to win those brightly-lit TV debates on our Widescreen HDTVs. Not because of anything he said of course, but because he looked like death on toast. Really dry toast.


“Yes, it was cute the way that they both tried to place their hand on each other’s back, to broadcast to the world they were both ‘versatile’ – or rather, both tops – but as the big, heavy door to No.10 began to close behind them, it was Cameron’s hand ever-so gallantly, but ever-so firmly in the small of Clegg’s back, pushing him forwards into their ‘new politics’. And probably, after the door slammed shut, over.”


“Which brings us onto an apparently paradoxical aspect of the ‘progressiveness’ of the metro-politicians admiring their reflection in the polls. Whilst they may be more appealing to many women voters than more traditional, plainer politicians, and are often keen to present themselves as feminist-friendly, they tend to regard themselves as so sensitive and lovely that they don’t actually need women in their cabinets. Unless they’re a bit camp like Theresa May. Or a bit scary like Hillary Clinton.”


“Unfortunately, in an attempt to make the movie eco-friendly and now-ish, there’s more than a little Al Gore in Keanu’s Klaatu, which in movies not actually made with PowerPoint is not a good thing, and his character falls between two melting icebergs…. But if the Earth/America is dying as a result of our voracious consumerism, then Mr Reeves must bear quite a bit of responsibility for that himself.  You don’t get to look fourteen years younger than your birth certificate without using a lot of product.”


“Jesus’ organ — because it was never used and was the product of a penisless birth — was as holy as all others were damned. His foreskin or prepuce became a holy relic, so holy that there were thousands of them. Hence the taste test, a medieval version of the Pepsi Challenge: chewing on the shrivelled leather to determine whether it was wholly or partially human. Saint Agnes imagined she was swallowing the Holy Prepuce at Communion (with no gag reflex).”


“An all-guy marriage is about as All-American as you can get. God may have created Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, but in the imagination of the American Wilderness, forever on the run from domesticity, he created us Adam and Steve, Huck and Tom, Butch and Sundance, Starsky and Hutch.”


“Is there a support group for people who didn’t like ‘Brokeback Mountain’? We must, if the rave reviews and the newspaper reports are to be believed, be a very tiny — not to mention vulnerable — minority. Am I dead inside because I didn’t experience the torrent of emotions I’ve been reading about? Am I as emotionally crippled as Ennis because I didn’t blub and hug after sitting through this ‘visceral’ movie, but instead wanted to go and ‘help with the roundup’?”


“Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the best footballers ever to play in this country, and one of the best looking, brought out the worst in the English. He prickled you see, our ugly, mean-minded, spiteful, spitting jealousy. We were jealous of his talent, his looks, his body, his youth, his money and most of all of his total lack of interest in what the English media and terrace culture thought of him and his dress sense and the way they kept shouting “winker!”, “poof!”, “twinkletoes!!” to try and get his attention.”


“Farrell’s Alexander isn’t haunted, or driven, paranoid, or threatening, terrifying or charismatic: his eyes are just too close together. When wearing his giant war helmet in the battle scenes his beady little eyes peer out blinking like Marvin the Martian. Likewise he is utterly lost in Stone’s movie. Farrell’s face is as blank and thoughtless as the world that has made him a “star”. It’s difficult to believe that anyone would follow him to the 7-Eleven let alone the edge of the world.”


“His tight-T-shirted, sweaty muscularity was openly erotic; his brutish, built but sensual Stanley Kowalski was the streetcar named Desire (‘Stell-la!’). Clift and Dean were faces, but Marlon was a face on a pouting body.”


“Yes, there are lots of comely, busty ladies in TudorWorld and their bodices keep ripping, and Jonathan keeps shtupping them. But the fact that they‘re usually rather better actors than him just underlines the fact that HD Henry is the real sex-object in his sex scenes. His tits and ass are always the first out and the last in, and the widescreen camera makes sure his body is always, very vulgarly, on display. In fact, Rhys Meyers‘ looks more rent boy than royalty. Maybe that‘s why his King of England speaks – on the rare occasions when he doesn‘t have his mouth full of wench – like a rent boy ordering in a posh restaurant.”


“Looking at the pictures, snapped at night with flash photography (like many of the pictures of Diana), it’s difficult not to wonder at how such an expensive, glamorous, chauffeur-driven, bodyguard-accompanied limousine could end up such a shapeless mess — or how such a mess could have been a car at all, let alone such a famous one. To wonder how a limo whisking someone from the Paris Ritz could have turned so suddenly into a hearse. To wonder just how mangled the expensive, glamorous Diana was. Celebrities tend to lead car-crash lives, and if they also happen to have car-crash deaths then who can blame us if we want to slow down and take a good look?”


“And then in 2001 the man who rapped ‘I don’t want no damn Grammy’, appeared on the damn Grammys, in that very disturbing duet with the evil fairy godmother of showbiz pop blandness, Elton John. Millions of viewers were treated to the sight of Slim Shady conscientiously sucking the Grammys’ cock while a pink-polka-dotted bewigged Elton sucked his.”


“Apparently, a good sadist is hard to find. But, I can reveal, a good masochist is even harder to find. Whenever I hear the words: “Use me! Abuse me! Do anything you want to me!’ My heart and manhood always sink. Not because I have any problem with the idea of using someone. Rather, it’s that I know that not far behind this invitation to selfishness are always the words, ‘Not that! This! Not there! Here!.’


“It was my parents who had planted the suspicion of Action Man’s masculinity in my head and turned me into a closeted Action Manophile: ‘No, Santa won’t be bringing you one of those dolls, Mark.’ ‘He’s not a doll!! He’s a soldier!’ Of course, they were entirely correct in their concerns. Despite his butch trademarked name and rugged camouflaged gear, he was clearly Passive Man, as was betrayed by the advertising copy that shrieked at you to: “Move him into action positions!” Action Man: on land, on sea, and legs in the air.”


“We expect as a matter of course that our male leads these days will have perfect pectorals, bounteous biceps and corrugated steel stomachs that speak of thousands of hours of sweat, tears and neurotic dieting. ‘Brad Pitt’ is now Esperanto for ‘six pack’. What, after all, is the point of being a film star if you can’t hire the most sadistic personal fitness instructor in town and feast on egg white omelettes and rice cakes?”


“Gays have become the unpaid secretaries of desire, filing and cataloguing human weakness. Promiscuity is now a form of bureaucracy. Tedious, eye-straining, number-crunching slave work.”


“James Tiberius Kirk, the famously gung-ho Starfleet Commander, went commando, swinging boldly where no man had swung before. This was the crucial difference between the sweaty, highly Freudian original ‘Star Trek’ series and the sexless, sweatless P.C. ‘The Next Generation’. Can you imagine Jean-Luc Picard not wearing spotless knickers with a built-in containment field, changed twice a day and incinerated after use?”


“Every man would suck his own penis if he could, but that’s why God gave every man except Jeff Stryker a penis shorter than his backbone – to make sure they expended an awful lot of energy doing other things to get blow jobs. Things that might seem to some rather daft and pointless otherwise, but without which the world would be a duller place — things such as rock ‘n’ roll, politics, cunnilingus, religion, and odd-jobs around the home.”


“Whatever class you are born into, your destiny, your happiness, your salvation, is not your property and certainly not your right. If you try to escape your British birthright by becoming something you’re not, then you will be Found Out. And everyone will point and laugh and call you a wanker.”


“The supersonic nuclear blast-wave of Ms Houston’s version of ‘I Will Always Love You’ — “IAEYAEYAEYAEYAE!” — just flattens everything before it. Whitney’s voice didn’t need any soul; it was pure Will. Whitney is speaking a frightening truth here about romantic love: it’s a form of egotism, perhaps the purest. “I will always love you” is a stalking, psychotic declaration of a love for one’s own ability to love, regardless of all obstacles. Duch as, say, the beloved’s total indifference.”


“Every night was wet jockstrap night (without the jockstrap) at the Roman baths, and especially well-endowed bathers were likely to be greeted with a round of applause. During the reign of notorious size-queen Emperor Elagabalus, those who hung low at the baths were promoted to high office.”


“Raised on ‘Skippy’, Rolf Harris and swimwear catalogues I too yearned for a country where the sun shone all day every day, where everyone was your mate, kangaroos could talk and ‘Speedos’ was Australian for ‘Y-fronts’. And then I visited Australia. And it quickly dawned on me that Australia, like Australian skin, is much better in long-shot. Australia is much more Australian from a distance. Close up, it’s just not really worth 24 hours of recirculated flu viruses, deep-vein thrombosis and Love Actually. It’s been left out in the sun too long.”

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