Apatowcalypse Now: Dawn of the Dudebros

So. Hunter-gatherer societies. The truth about them is this: The two primary methods of food procurement from whence comes their name were long presumed to be strictly divided along gender lines—men hunted big game; women hunted small game and gathered plants. There are, however, some well-documented exceptions, societies in which most of the women hunted, too, or most of the men gathered, too, or everyone did a little of both.

There is even documentation of cultures that existed right here on the very land we now call America in which gender itself was fluid, and cis and trans women and cis and trans men and androgynes hunted or gathered or built structures or cared for children, filling whatever role best suited them, irrespective of their sex and gender and sexuality.

Ahh, complexity of human culture, how I love you. I love you exactly as much as misogynists don't.

Lazy misogynists fetishize evo-psych, and thus they compulsively wank to the idea that hunter-gatherer societies were built around Men of Action and Women of Submissive Servitude—because that means it's human nature, and that means feminists and gender-queers are indeed the nefarious harbingers of the unnatural, the unorthodox, the aberrant totems heralding the downfall of humankind that misogynists claim them to be.

And so it is that misogynists will insist, despite evidence to the contrary—no less the common sense informing a conclusion that humankind is intrinsically varied, always abundantly evident when human culture is allowed to blossom into a spectrum of experience free of the rigid, binary bonds of dichotomous thinking—that men were hunters, goddammit, and women were gatherers.

Unless, apparently, they're making an Apatovian masterpiece about "Year One" (cleverly titled Year One), in which case they erase women from the equation altogether, relegating them instead to sexy slaves and potential victims of rape at the hands of our heroes.

Voiceover: Get ready to go back, way back, to the year 1.

Jack Black: What do I gotta do to make you my woman? Tell me you can say no to this. [gyrates fat belly, because fat is hilariously unsexy HAR HAR] Give it a second; let it work on you.

Actress Whose Name I Don't Know: [raises arm revealing hairy armpit HAR HAR] I think I have to wash my hair.

Black: You washed your hair last year!

Voiceover: For Zed and Oh—

Michael Cera: Hi, Eema! [is ignored by blonde girl]

Voiceover: —life was tough.

Cera: She doesn't even know I exist.

Black: Give her a little tap on the head. Women respond to that.

[Cera taps her on the head with a club. She says, "Ow!" She grabs the club and hits him back. Watching from the bushes, Black cringes. In another trailer for the film that shows an extended clip of this scene, Black precedes the "tap on the head advice" by exhorting Cera to "drag her back to your hut." When Cera replies, "What if she struggles?" Black then makes the recommendation to "Give her a little tap on the head."]

Voiceover: Zed was a hunter.

Black: Tonight we feast. [launches arrow at a Scottish Highland cow (!), misses, then tackles it, and falls on his ass]

Voiceover: Oh was a gatherer.

Cera: [big dude knocks plate of berries out of his hand] Well, there won't be any berries in the fruit salad now, so we all lose.

Voiceover: And together they were destined for greatness.
There's more, including an awesomely funny joke about how Eema has been enslaved and ergo will never "get off work" for a date, but you get the gist.

The entire premise is that men were the hunters, men were the gatherers (and, beyond the main characters, we also see that men were the farmers, the soldiers, the priests, etc.), and women were/are the sex class. And thus has it always been, since Year One.

And thus shall it ever be in the Apatovian Paradise that is the modern dudebro misogycom.

I know I should expect nothing less from seemingly every male comic actor working in Hollywood today (and shame on you, Harold Ramis, for directing such slop), but this particular clusterfuckery of human history is getting under my skin in a way that most of them don't—not just because the cultural anthropologist in me is metaphorically barfing her brains out at the wanton mockery of her discipline, but also because it underlines just how far the backlash is really going.

Now, it's not just that women aren't hunters and must be consigned exclusively to the "unimportant" role of gatherer; it's that men did it all, bitchez!—and women were passive beneficiaries of their labor, gratefully rewarding the menfolk with megapussay for their toil.

"Together they were destined for greatness." Two dudes. The sausagefest of civilization.


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