This ad for 'manly' wedding rings is so ridiculously sexist we don't even know where to begin

Sirena Bergman@SirenaBergman
Saturday 11 January 2020 17:00
news
(Manly Bands)

Sometimes toxic masculinity goes so so far it's almost impossible to believe it could be real.

Such is the case with a sponsored Instagram post for a company called Manly Bands, which sells wedding rings - sorry bands - "manly" enough to make men feel comfortable wearing them. Because, as one Twitter user pointed out, what could be less "manly" than being married to a woman, right?

Over on their website, you can find a promotional video so absurdly heteronormative one wonders if it's actually all just a massive troll. But alas, it seems this is actually real - and there are men out there buying into this nonsense.

It portrays a woman who can barely contain her excitement at the thought of her wedding (and related ring), while her husband-to-be stands next to her looking bored out of his mind and sipping from a giant take-out soda paper cup (yes, this is obviously American). In case the imagery didn't make it clear, the voiceover tells us:

She has thought of every detail. He, however, has not.

It goes on to explain that the man does want the ring to be special, "after all, he thinks she's pretty special and all he did was swipe right!" Errrr. OK.

Enter: ManlyBands.com, because - we're told - the "one thing that men want" is to "not go to the store".

But worry not, gents! This brand has a band for every kind of man, because we all know men fall into one of the following categories: The Fire Chief (a firefighter), The Hero (a surgeon), The Cowboy (a cowboy), and The Record Producer (you get the picture). And they *even* have rings for "The Wuss" (a man who stands on Lego and winces, because men who either have kids or have nerve endings or both are obviously very unmanly).

And the rings are so manly they're even made of... dinosaur bone! Or antler! Even meteorite!

Honestly the rings might as well come with built-in testosterone drips to hook straight up into our veins because what is more manly than jewellery made out of animal bones, right?

And that's not even the best bit. You can buy styles with names as delightful as The Baller ("fast cars, hot girls. You are the consummate bachelor who finally decided to settle down") and The Intimidator ("you consistently keep yourself as the one the rest of the field is chasing, and have the trophies to back it up").

We're not even halfway through the video at this point and honestly we've seen enough, so back to the tweet.

Many people pointed out that the man in the picture seemed to be performing some sort of creepy death grip on his wife's hand.

Others noted that the ring in the picture isn't - by any measure - more "manly" than traditional wedding bands.

But mainly people were baffled by the whole concept.

And of course there were many, many jokes.

PSA to all men: your gender, sexuality and levels of masculinity are not determined by the jewellery you do or don't wear.

PSA to all brands: please stop with this toxic, misogynistic, homophobic rhetoric. It is not funny or witty, it is damaging to all people of all genders. Enough, now.

MORE: This is why the concept of 'toxic masculinity' can be problematic

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