For the past couple days, GQ’s been awarding “Men of the Year” prizes to various celebs as part of their annual issue, and surprise!, there are several women included in the batch. Mila Kunis grabbed the “Knockout of the Year” award, and comedy star Kristen Wiig has been designated the magazine’s “Bro of the Year”… meaning what, exactly? The designation is fraught with contradiction, and it doesn’t help that Kristen poses for the mag in lingerie and a tuxedo jacket.
By my estimation, what GQ means by “Bro of the Year” is that age-old archetype of the woman who likes football and drinks beer and makes crude comments, but is still thin and pretty hot. She’s the woman who self-defines as “one of the guys” despite everyone’s awareness that she’s very much a gal – and that’s exactly the type of stereotyping Kristen Wiig’s Bridesmaids didn’t do.
Bridesmaids has been touted as the great beacon of hope for women in comedy. It’s a film created by and starred in by women that nevertheless had widespread appeal across gender lines. So to say that by succeeding in this medium, Kristen has become “one of the guys” is to minimize her achievement. She didn’t make a women’s comedy for men, she made a people’s comedy for people – so why is she being shoved into a pre-existing box that easily sums up “the kind of woman” she is?
I’d venture to say that Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids’ breakout star, won’t be shooting any GQ spreads anytime soon. And that’s because she’s a larger-figured woman, and GQ has a certain aesthetic to maintain. Kristen Wiig is a thin, conventionally attractive woman who just so happens to prefer the role of a clumsy cook to that of a ballerina. So she’s designated a “hot chick bro” by GQ , and that degrades