An Open Letter to Hollywood’s Favorite Character: The Whiny Man Baby

Dear Whiny Man Baby,

Hi, it’s me, that girl you don’t like because I wear glasses and roll my eyes when you complain about how “no one understands you.” Whiny Man Baby, you deserve some kudos. Since the early 2000s, you’ve been stealing the show in every mainstream comedy, and your sophisticated take on life never fails to impress me. Whether you’re complaining about having to share your room with your 40-year-old step brother, or complaining about getting boarded by pirates after that girl you hired specifically told you not sail in unprotected waters, or complaining about how all women are superficial whores because they don’t want to date you, you consistently provide an invaluably nuanced perspective on the world. Frankly, I don’t know what we would do without you.

It’s hard to get the male perspective these days, which is why I’m glad that you’re finally getting the attention you deserve. Throughout your venerable career you’ve shed light on many obscure, but vitally important issues facing 35-year-old white men today. I’ve compiled a comprehensive, but not exhaustive list of these issues below:

  • Unfulfilling careers
  • Difficult bosses
  • Money problems
  • Cheating wives
  • Frigid wives
  • Controlling wives
  • Emotionally detached wives
  • Wives who will not forgive you for that one-night-stand you had with a 20-year-old even though it was “just sex” and it meant nothing and it’s your wife’s fault anyway because you felt like you were both “growing apart”
  • Wives who just don’t “get it”
  • Wives who aren’t supportive of your half-hearted attempts to “make something of yourself”
  • Wives who will not fund your ocean documentary/stop motion movie/comic book collection/other obscure hobby that you can’t pay for because you don’t have a job
  • Mothers who expect something of you and are disappointed that you smoke weed all day and occasionally work on a porn site
  • Parents who kindly request that you find employment and pay for your own living space because you’re 35 years old
  • Children who don’t respect you
  • Children who act out at school because you’re an uninvolved parent
  • Single women who are unreceptive to your advances
  • Single women who date Channing Tatum but won’t date you because they find you unattractive, which is a double standard even though you wouldn’t date them if they weren’t attractive
  • Single women who find your frat-boy pranks childish because you are 35 and live in a condo
  • Women who are better than you at your job
  • Women who are promoted before you even though technically you were hired first
  • Women who tell you what to do
  • Women who are mean to you because you still don’t know how to do your job even though you’ve been working there for a decade at this point and it’s getting kind of sad
  • Men who are more attractive than you because they put effort into their appearance
  • Men who have created a successful balance between their home and work lives and make you feel insecure because you haven’t done any of that
  • Men who are nicer than you
  • Men who are smarter than you
  • Men who excel at their career
  • Any person who tells you, in no uncertain terms, that it’s time to grow the fuck up

Chilling stuff indeed, and this list just barely scratches the surface of the debilitating issues facing the Whiny Man Baby today. I’ve always appreciated your fresh takes, which is why I’ve especially come to value your opinions on today’s pressing issues. For instance, I would have never known that it’s all society’s fault that you can’t hold down a job. I also never would have known that women are too sensitive and can’t take a joke.

Most importantly, you’ve taught me that there is nothing harder in this world than being you. Ever since you were born to an upper middle class family in a five bedroom house in the suburbs, you’ve always had it hard. Even though you coasted through school, partied in college, and showed little promise in your career, you’ve always done your best to demonstrate to your boss that you deserve that high-paying promotion. After all, you do show up on a daily basis. Despite your admirable attendance, you can never manage to swing that new position. For some reason, a woman keeps getting it instead, which is just another example of how difficult you have it. And don’t even get me started on your love life. Even though all your friends tell you that you’re a great guy, you have difficulty maintaining long-term relationships. But that’s not your fault! Life dealt you an unfair hand by saddling you with a schlubby aesthetic, niche hobbies, a preference for crude, childish humor, and an inability to empathize with anyone outside of yourself. You hope that one day you’ll find your dream girl, maybe an Emma Stone or a Mila Kunis type, a woman who is so hot, cool, and open-minded that she won’t care that you look like Jonah Hill.

All this to say that after watching your countless movies, I have a new, more enlightened perspective on the world.

Whiny Man Baby, I used to worry that you were becoming irrelevant. When a woman won Best Director at the Oscars for the second time in 92 years, I was sure you were finished. But like a barnacle on the underside of a ship, you have a tenacious grip on the film industry. You might even be its muse. How can Hollywood get rid of you, their shining star, when you’ve graced such prestigious films as Scarface, Jerry Maguire, A Few Good Men, every Quentin Tarantino movie ever made, every Paul Thomas Anderson movie ever made, every Wes Anderson movie ever made (though he gets a pass because at least he makes you look pretty), and every Martin Scorsese movie ever made? I don’t mean to slut-shame, but you really do get around. You’re a chameleon who can jump from genre to genre, only recognizable by your iconic, and totally relatable, whining.

But Whiny Man Baby, movies are changing, and audiences want more diverse characters to relate to. Maybe it’s time to evolve. Maybe it’s time for you to mature.

Just kidding!

You’ll always be relatable, Whiny Man Baby. As long as men are directing, writing, producing, and starring in the majority of Hollywood movies, you’ll always be featured front and center. Statistics show that when women direct movies, they have “women comprising 45.1% of all speaking roles and 83.3% of leading/co leading characters. For movies with only male directors, the respective percentages were 32.5% and 37.5%.” Clearly, the more women who direct movies, the less opportunities there will be for a Whiny Man Baby to star. And we can’t have that! What about free speech? What about diverse perspectives? I ask you, who has a more sophisticated perspective on social issues than a Whiny Man Baby? You can rest safe in the knowledge that you will always be considered the voice of our generation. Your problems will be considered a national emergency, and your thoughts will always take precedent over everyone else’s. And if those things start to change, even a little bit, we know that you’ll be there to whine about it. Thank you, Whiny Man Baby, for everything you’ve done and everything you will do in the future. I hate to imagine what type of sick world we would live in without you.

Sincerely,

Me

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