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Saturday, May 26, 2012

B is for Bromance

It's just Guy Love...
bro·mance. /ˈbroʊmæns, broʊˈmæns/ [broh-mans, broh-mans] noun. A relationship or friendship between two men that is extremely close, but does not involve sex. 

I love bromances. I've written quite a few of my own. The term really sums up what it is. Platonic love between two guys. Why did we need a word for this in the first place? Is it because love between two guys is unacceptable in our literature or in our fiction? Or is it that in this day and age the only conflict between men is supposed to be one of rivalry for jobs and women? Grunt, grunt. Caveman Dude no like other caveman dudes. Or is it to distinguish romantic love between men from platonic love between men?

Whoever coined the term, hit it on the nose. I love bromances because at their core, they're about love and friendship. Sometimes I think male characters get the short end of the stick in plots because they cannot connect deeply with anyone in the story. They have to be some wild loner Alpha male, or obsessed with a woman. Why can't the story focus around the rocky hardships of long term friendship between their best bud? Sure, slash fanfictioneers love bromances, because they want to see the bromance turn into a romance (By-the-by, I'm all for seeing more realistic and non-stereotyped LGBT characters, but I digress).

The bromance is really about connection with another male character in a non-sexualized, yet still emotionally charged way. And that's what we love. Emotional drama fo' yo' momma between two BFFs.

Take the final moments of the relationship between Doctors Gregory House, and his all time best bud, conscience, and the butt end of many a practical joke, James Wilson. For many seasons, the writers poked and prodded at the depths of each character's emotional state as studied by the other character. Wilson, as many BFFs can, saw through House's ruses to the true nature of his actions—and vice versa. (Warning: there be spoilers here.) So, when Wilson grows terminally ill, House must decide how far he'll go to be by his friend's side in the end. The friendship that they share takes curmudgeon House to the brink, in some of the best finger lickin' good drama.

These days bromances are happening more often, which I really love seeing. While some may point out that ol' J.R.R. Tolkien was bromancing it up with Frodo and Sam, I think the exploration of the love between two dudes is something that should be explored more often, rather than relying on old standby stereotypes like ultra-testosterone fueled machismo (okay, there can be that too, I mean Martin Lawrence and Will Smith were doing that in Bad Boys, as well as seriously bromancing it).

What are your favorite bromances?
 

2 Comments:

At May 28, 2012 at 12:21 PM , Blogger Carmen said...

You've mentioned a lot of my favorite bromances already, but I will add another: Psych's Shawn and Gus, childhood friends that will never let go of each other. Another one is Grey's Anatomy's Meredith and Cristina; they're the only two women I can think of that can fit this category. Guy love: It's love...between two guys.

 
At May 30, 2012 at 1:12 AM , Blogger B.C. Matthews said...

Shawn and Gus! I love those two.

And would Meredith and Christina be a bramance?

 

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