If it weren’t for the likes of Angie Everhart and Cynthia Dicker, redheads would be sorely represented in the world of modeling. And when it comes to redheaded male models, well, have you ever seen one? If so, they should be tagged for further study.
Tall, dark, and handsome remains the standard for male masculinity, with tall, blond, and handsome a close second. And when mythology creates a god who’s tall, redheaded, and wields a mighty hammer? Well, the obvious decision is to give that guy blond locks, which is what Marvel did with Thor, which opens in theaters today.
Merrill Kaplan teaches Norse literature and folklore at the Ohio State University, and in an article in Newsarama she discussed how the mythological Thor looks decidedly different from the on-screen incarnation played by Chris Hemsworth. In short, the mythological Thor is a lot less pretty.
Thor of mythology is supposed to be a redhead and have a beard, which Kaplan admits may sound “picky,” but is related to the system of Norse mythology in an important way. “This was a society where beards are an important signifier of masculinity, and Thor in the mythology is very much about the ideals of masculinity,” she said. “You take that away from him and it changes who he is.”
I’m not sure why he wasn’t created as a redhead. I suppose you can make some interpretations about what the blond is about. After all, we’ve got understandings about what “blue-eyed, blond” means.
As the article notes, Hemsworth’s Thor does have a beard—a close-shaven one that’s less akin to the scraggly type associated with uber-masculine types and one that’s more tame and pleasing to the likes of Natalie Portman.
And so a redheaded guy with a full beard becomes a blond supermodel with David Beckham’s jawline. We all know that makes perfect sense.
We redheaded guys understand that we fall short of the traditional standard of male attraction. In fact, giving short shrift to gingers is on par with the prejudice exhibited towards bald guys and overweight people—basically acceptable.
Hey, such is life. We can’t all be Mitt Romney (thank god).