“It was designed by Santana”

In the League, masculinity is reaffirmed through the presence of attractive women and the continuous talk of sports, a traditionally masculine topic. Similar to what we talked about with the music videos in the beginning of the semester, the presence of scantily clad women (Jenny and the strippers) reinforces the idea that the men in the group are straight. They do ignore the women, but only because they are focusing on the draft, and the women fall secondary to the plot until they force their way back into focus by joining the world of the men and demonstrating proficiency in their ‘language’ of sports. Examples of this are when the stripper calls their attention back to her and then shocking them with her ‘masculine knowledge’ of sports, and when Jenny shows up in Vegas to be part of the league.

Despite the apparent gender role twisting that goes on when the women take part in the draft, femininity is still shown as a negative or lesser quality. The women are adept at the draft in spite of their gender, not in conjunction with it.

Andre is repeatedly demeaned by being called a woman, referred to as “she,” and is continually downgraded for his clothing style and mannerisms. When Jenny shows up in Vegas, wanting to join the League, Chad Ochocinco says, “I would have voted for you…There’s already one woman in this league, ain’t I right, Shidre?”

Because I have not watched other episodes of the League, I don’t know if Andre is actually gay or not, but he seems to be the most marginalized character and his masculinity is constantly reduced by those around him. He is arguably the least hegemonically masculine character in the group, a point that is stressed over and over.

In response to Ochocinco’s comment, Andre replies “I’m payin’ for your room, man!” His main claim to masculinity seems to be the fact that he is a doctor and  his considerable financial resources. However, even this status is mocked when Andre tries to get through security and tells the TSA agent that he is a doctor, the man says “a doctor wouldn’t wear that hat.” This shows how since Andre is more fashion conscious than the rest of the guys, his straight masculinity is pushed further into doubt.

After Andre yells “You’re gonna get ‘andraped’,” he ironically has a misshape with the statue which emphasizes his lack of traditional heterosexual masculinity. An exceedingly random rap performance shortly after capitalizes on his pain and embarrassment.

Even if Andre is not gay, the questioning of his masculinity creates a hostile environment in which non hegeminically masculine men are at the bottom of the totem pole. In order to reaffirm their masculinity, the other characters use Andre as an example of something ridiculous and feminized.

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2 thoughts on ““It was designed by Santana”

  1. In addition, Andre also appears to be more self-conscious than the rest of the guys, and even wears a shirt when he and the rest of the guys are in the pool. He also seems to forget to add his penis to his trophy statue. When the others point out his oversight, he quickly tries to act as if he didn’t forget, suggesting that to him a penis is not a large part(or perhaps any part) of his identity. The situation is further exasperated when Andre claims to have “found” the penis on the statue and rubs the barren region between the legs of the statue, something that the other men view as queer and gross.

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