This is Your Brain on Dudebro

Pop Culture

This is Your Brain on Dudebro

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

T

his past weekend a few of you might have watched a 120-minute long film while munching popcorn without wholly understanding the cultural milestone you were witnessing. Baywatch, the $70 million extravaganza starring breasts, bikinis and beefy bodies is only masquerading as a film, but is in fact a timely documentary – one whose contents should be looked at with utmost scrutiny.

Beneath the testosterone-porn that the film disguises itself as, Baywatch is actually a window to the future of a world dictated entirely by dudebros, with superpowers that let them get away with anything. The film also issues a clear warning of a terrifying reality: There is no power in the world greater than the power of two dudebros uniting.

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The “dudebros unite” is an unfathomable force we’ve witnessed playing out in real life time-and-again, in the form of dudebro extraordinaires Donald Trump and Sean Spicer actively steering America toward the path of near-extinction, and closer home, with Narendra Modi and Amit Shah, who’ve heralded a new way of life in the country, that involve uncontrolled lynchings and stone-peltings. Baywatch has then, adapted this very dudebroship on the big screen, and in its ode, gives us a sneak-peak into how the rules of life would be in a world, populated and presided by dudebros. In doing so, it shows us a future we neither need nor deserve, but one that’s hurtling towards us with unfathomable speed.

In Baywatch, dudebros Mitch (future US president Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) and Matt (High School Musical-er Zac Efron) find each other on Emerald Bay, which they are tasked with protecting. Since the film is set in a “dudebro dimension”, these dudes play multiple unnecessary self-appointed roles — detectives, police officers, and by the end of the film, upholders of the judicial system. The fact that there was really no need to take on these added roles, or that there were other more qualified people doing these jobs meant very little to the dudebros, who make it clear early in the film that their unbreakable bond with each other stems from the fact that they share a common enemy: Logic.

In their world, arguments are settled and decisions are made through a strenuous series of tests titled, “So You Think You Can Abs?” This involves the two dudebros showing off their glistening six-packs by picking up tires, fridges and every other appliance in their vicinity. This is of course to prove their supremacy over each other and other wannabe dudebros. Basically, the more abs you have, the more say you get.

That’s the striking feature about the dudebro world: The way it treats women. Here, it is apparent, that respect for women is an utmost priority.

If there’s one more thing these dudebros love more than their abs, it’s penis jokes, so naturally one of the film’s two biggest running gags is a joke about a nerd getting his penis stuck in a wooden beach bed because he was aroused by a life-guard in a bikini. Promptly sympathising with his plight, the dudebros gather every resident of the beach to watch as they separate horny boy and beach bed. Lest the audience thinks that these dudebros are all about hard work, the other joke – also related to penises — is a testament to how they can perfectly balance work and play. When Matt and Mitch are both in a hospital morgue, Mitch tricks Matt into examining a dead man’s testicles for evidence. It’s all very funny and Mitch gets some pictures of Matt the pervert in the process.

There is a female life-guard accompanying them to said hospital morgue, and the benevolent dudebros let her participate in their exclusive gag by giving her the most important task of all: Standing guard at the door so that they remain undiscovered. It takes men with great hearts to not let a woman be sidestepped.

Baywatch

Since the film is set in a “dudebro dimension”, these dudes play multiple unnecessary self-appointed roles — detectives, police officers, and by the end of the film, upholders of the judicial system.

Image Credit: Paramount Pictures

That’s the striking feature about the dudebro world: The way it treats women. Here, it is apparent, that respect for women is an utmost priority. The women’s contribution to the film is not just limited to sashaying their sculpted body parts. Additionally, they’re also allowed to ride a jet-ski without any adult supervision, wear really nice bikinis, help a man find a button and then watch him press it, get the highest honour there is (kissing a dudebro) and most importantly, live a short-lived illusion of being a villain in a big-budget film like Baywatch. It is this attention to detail that makes Baywatch such a riveting documentary.

Before watching the film, I was apprehensive about a future where dudebros have taken over the world and possess the power to get away with anything, but after spending over two hours watching Baywatch, I’m convinced, there’s no better place to be. And clearly, the once great feminist icon of Mary Kom fame who hangs around the fringes of this testosterone world wearing a snaky green dress, agrees.

Well done, PC!

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