TGIF: JHMS Themed, Men in Leather Jackets

One thing that really struck me about the new JHMS trailer released today was how delightfully familiar SRK looked in that leather jacket.  I could do a whole other post on the psychological meaning of leather jackets (Western, motorcycles, slightly forbidden, impractical (SO HOT IN INDIA), helps hide narrow shoulder and expanding waist issues), but we don’t need that, we just know that men in leather jackets=bad boy sexy.

First, and I paused and screenshotted the trailer just to get this for you because I love you (and also because I wanted it for myself), the newest incarnation of leather jacket SRK.  And I kept boring European dude in the corner, because you really need the contrast to make it pop.

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Okay okay, I will give you the close-up version as well.

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Okay, this is pretty good.  The bad boy thing undercut in the best possible way.  (there is a reason for all those romance novels with titles like “Cowboy Detective Doctor Spy Millionaire Duke Biker Boxer Bad Boy and Baby”)

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(the baby is either catatonic with ecstasy, or sleepy and doesn’t care who is holding him)

And just for comparison (thank you Indiatimes!), let us look at Shahrukh of the past versus Shahrukh of the present.

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And then, because I felt so bad about missing him until Karthik pointed it out in the comments on the sunglasses post, Hrithik gets the next slot!  How does he look better in a candid shot than most models look posed?

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Okay, I’m not crazy, right?  The half-unshaven plus leather jacket look is really good on Varun here?

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You know who can surprisingly make a leather jacket work?  Maybe because it adds a touch of powerful manliness to his baby boy vibe?  Ranbir!

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Even in glasses!  Or maybe especially in glasses?

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But I think the hipster knit cap is a little too far.  Leather jacket in India looks like “I am so cool, heat has no effect on me”.  Knit cap in India looks like “I am a hipster idiot”.

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Dips-like, for me, after Ranbir always comes Ranveer.  And I think he may look terrible?  You need a certain kind of “I don’t notice what I wear” to pull off something as obviously impractical as a leather jacket (setting aside the heat in India issue, it’s a super expensive item of clothing that replaces something that will perform the same function for a fraction of the price).  And Ranveer always looks like he cares.

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This is a little closer, but still not great Ranveer.  Plus it’s got early-Ranveer hair, which has a certain nostalgia to it, but is otherwise unattractive.

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Arjun‘s got Mubarakan coming out, feel like I should acknowledge him.  Plus, this photo is like the definition of “swag”.

Image result for arjun kapoor leather jacket

And if you were disappointed because you thought I meant the other Arjun, not to worry!  He is here too!  And it’s possible a leather jacket may be the one thing he can’t wear?

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Scratch that, this version works.

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Oh young John Abraham!  Why don’t you look like this any more?

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Oh, that reminds me, young Abhishek too!  I like current Abhishek fine (better to age into a slight gut than age into whatever we would call current John Abraham), but Dhoom 1-era Abhishek had something a little special.

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Present day real life Abhishek has a different take on the leather jacket, less dangerous dork, and more “Yeah, I can be cool and sweet because check it out, I am married to the most beautiful woman in the world.”

Image result for abhishek leather jacket

 

Okay, I could go on like this forever, and I am sure you will have things to add in the comments, but I have to stop sometime!  And so, finally, the most classic leather jacket of all Indian film.  No, not DDLJ, Maine Pyar Kiya came before that and has the one true leather jacket of Indian film.

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PS  One more!  I check out the real original leather jacket wearer:

Image result for dharmendra leather jacket

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33 thoughts on “TGIF: JHMS Themed, Men in Leather Jackets

  1. Knit cap and leather jacket is a great wardrobe option for the winters in the plains. Temp goes down to 0 degree C and lingers below 10C the the fog months. Even Mumbaikars complained about how cold it was last winter. Leather jackets may look stupid in the south but they kind of make sense in the north. In Mumbai, if a star is expected to stay indoors for an event, the venue WOULD be airconned. So the leather jacket makes sense again. We really should acknowledge that these stars literally never need to live in actual weather for long. It’s airconned car to airconned venue to airconned home to airconned studio.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t know, the knit hat still makes me want to punch him in the face.

      What blows my mind is that the studios aren’t actually necessarily air conditioned. As recently as 2005-2006 when Tejaswini Ganti was researching her massive book on production processes, the norm was unairconditioned studios. Oh, and no dressing rooms or toilets. Stars had/have their vanity vans, but the dancers and extras were expected to change in the bushes or their cars. The title song from Khuda Gawah, for instance, was filmed with no air conditioning. I can’t remember where I saw it, but there was some interview somewhere where Amitabh talked about how hard that was, since they were all in fur coats.

      Someone in the comments (maybe Moimeme?) talked about how for whatever reason the southern films have much more advanced studio facilities, which might be part of the reason Hindi film people are so willing to film southern cameos or small parts, and sometimes even request that their Hindi films be made in the Madras studios.

      It’s all changing rapidly of course, Yash Raj is all new facilities and so in. But when you are talking Filmcity or Mehboob Studios or RK Studios or any of the older locations, you might end up in some studio set that hasn’t been updated since 1955.

      Which isn’t really related to anything you are saying, it just makes me feel better watching those poor heroines shiver in Switzerland and thinking “yeah, well, at least when you are filming in Bombay in some 60 year old windowless room under hot lights, you get to be in a sari and he is stuck in a full suit”.

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      • Hah! Yea the sari in snow thing makes zero sense to me. It feels like our filmmakers are ignorant or assume that the audience it. Remember the long skirt kareena wears in the song Yeh Ishq Hai in Jab We Met? That’s sexier than any of the sari/short skirt in snow idea! Us northerners watch those mindbendingly stupid costume ideas and go “yeah that’s what a mumbaikar thinks is a good dress idea for when the weather’s cold!” *endless eyerolling * 😁

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        • My two cents, sari in snow makes zero realistic sense but total aesthetic sense, filmmakers are willfully ignorant of the realism part yes, big enough numbers of the audience (myself included) like it, and on the sexiness quotient it is short skirt > sari > long skirt

          Wonder if Margaret has ever tried on a sari lol.

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          • Well half the audience comprises of women too. A topless hero in the snow also makes a lot of sense. 😁

            Also, I’m just immensely glad indian filmmakers are devoting mote screentime to topless male actors. 😁 even if the obligatory semi naked item girl is there, she’s there for less than 5 minutes and the topless male actors dominate the rest of the movies’ length!! 😁

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        • Surely women comprise nowhere near half the tickets sold in India although I’ve read in the US they actually outnumber men at the theaters.

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          • So you’re saying the filmmakers are dedicating 80-90% of screentime to highly sexual portrayal of our top actors FOR A PREDOMINANTLY MALE AUDIENCE?!

            Wow, that’s really making me think!! I thought that was eye candy for the ladies.. But that as eye candy for the men is a very interesting interpretation… Tapping into latent homosexuality is actually a very smart move. Good observation dude!

            Although I still find an even number of women at our theatres. Even the single screens in the obscure lanes get female audiences. Maybe not for the late late shows though.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Oh, there have been journal articles about this! The whole “Sallu Bhai looked so great in that shirtless scene” kind of conversations between young male fans. What is up with that? There’s the argument that is common for all of Indian society, the “men who have sex with men but aren’t gay” phenomenon thanks to the unavailability of socially acceptable ways for men and women to interact making it acceptable for male friends to bond in ways that blur the lines between friendship and romance. And that same blurring would occur in their interactions with their favorite male stars.

            I lean more towards a total lack of homophobia argument. Since the idea of a tough young teenage boy being gay is so impossible, there is less fear of acknowledging an aesthetic appreciation for the male body than there would be in other cultures.

            However, I also think there is a large female audience component. If nothing else, the largest ticket sale block is the family groups, and if your wife and mother and teenage daughter are eager to see the film, you are more likely to buy tickets for the whole family than if it only appeals to yourself and your son. Right? At least, that’s how it happens in my family.

            On Sun, Jul 23, 2017 at 6:28 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I don’t agree with your view that the idea of a tough young teenage boy being gay is impossible or close to it. All the gay indian guys living in India that I know are tough and to the extent that I know they have been tough young teenage boys in their youth. Being the flamboyant gay teen boy is the real challenge in indian society because it’s far more a dent to the family izzat is their SON turned out effeminate than if he were tough and gay.

            I agree that a majority of indian boys and men don’t have the socially acceptable means of interacting with and forming a sense of the opposite sex outside familial settings and yes our men a lot more comfortable displaying bromance publicly.

            But then again, the bhai is god phenomenon basically only exists for Salman Khan in the entire indian film industry. He can’t go an entire film without taking his shirt off so there’s no way to tell if his shirtless act is aimed at his male audience or his female audience.

            As a fact, I know that the well-built shirtless movie star is not targeting the male audience. That seems to be kartik’s view. I believe in shirtless well built men, Indian filmmakers found the perfect way to serve sleaze to family audiences with minimal objection.

            Previously, if a family of 6- dad, mom, kids plus the kids’ chacha and g

            Liked by 1 person

          • Oh, I should have phrased that differently. I meant that in other cultures we might be more open to the idea of anyone at all being gay, there would be a greater likelihood of it being “suspected”. Whereas in India it seems as though the invisibility/impossibility of queerness in the mainstream in some ways can act as a protection, behavior like male friends holding hands or sharing a bed would be immediately frowned upon in America, as would a teenage boy having a glamour shot of a male actor as a poster on their wall rather than an actress, But in India, it seems to be more accepted, and I wonder if that is because the whole idea of queerness is so unheard of that such behavior doesn’t come with as much baggage as it might somewhere else.

            I do love the female gaze aspect of Indian film as well. And it’s not just in the shirtlessness, you know? All those moments when the hero plays with a baby or helps cook or in some other way fulfills a specific female fantasy. Greatly appreciate them! One of the main reasons I was first attracted to Indian film, it was so open to the “female” side of things.

            On Sun, Jul 23, 2017 at 10:04 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • On the contrary, queerness is quite prevalent. It’s just that nobody talks about sex and sexuality unless it’s weird suggestive humor between relations (devar-bhabhi, jija-sali). In general, friends of the same age and sex are a lot more comfortable with PDA because that’s what we see in our homes growing up. I sleep in the same bed with my mother now that my dad’s passed away and my BFF slept in the same bed with her father when her mother passed away. When my grandmoms or my aunts visit or when we visit them, we sleep in their beds with them if their husbands are away or if it’s a family gathering where certain rooms are designated as men’s sleeping areas and others are designated the women’s areas. Since we see non-sexual physical contact happen between members of the same sex all the time, there’s no taboo around it.

            Even our homophobia is imported. Both legally and socially. We’ve all known men who were sworn bachelors and lived with a BFF all their lives. Since there’s a sense of “honor” in saying “I don’t desire the opposite sex” and being a yogi, nobody really bothers asking about their sex life and preferences. It’s not complicated. It’s just not talked about.

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          • That’s the impression I had, kind of. That there’s no process of “coming out” necessarily or all the social functions that we have created in the west to acknowledge homosexuality because there is no need for a big public announcement, it’s just not talked about.

            You know where I notice this the most? Rajshri films! They almost all have a character with a really really close male friend in a way that in America would make us go “wait, what’s the label for this relationship? What’s happening here exactly?”, but in the Rajshri film is just sort of “they are friends and love each other and can’t stand to be separated” and that’s all that needs to be said.

            On Sun, Jul 23, 2017 at 11:39 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I love the couples like Shakti and Anwar in Dilwale, or Doctor and Guru in Aaja Nachle where they are two men who have shared their whole lives, but it’s not the main point of the film, it’s just something in the background just like you would see it in the background in society. Or heck, Shahrukh and his best friend in Raees! Whatever was going on with them was real and deep and unnamed, just as strong if not stronger as his connection with his wife.

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          • Yes! Can’t really think of the female equivelant though. Except for those gypsy duet songs. Can you think of anything? am I missing something obvious?

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          • I know, right? A woman falls in love when the marriage thread is tied around her neck and suffers through sexual behaviors of her husband as part of her duty.

            Oh! Preity and Rani in Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega? Maybe?

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          • They’re just sweet girls who are put on the earth for the sake of men who may find husbands or create complications in the future marriages of one another. But they can never ever want each other. More seriously though, one of the reasons why we can’t think of any examples of possibly lesbian relationships is because a) women aren’t given roles and plots of their own, and b) we don’t acknowledge women’s right to consent to sexual activity.

            Consent isn’t sankari. And female characters without sanskar are unacceptable in indian society.

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          • This is so nice, a little balance to those comments I get sometimes saying I just don’t understand Indian culture and Indian women’s virtues and therefore am putting unnatural desires into the characters. I may have to cite this next time I need to explain why a romance film can be feminist merely by acknowledging female desire exists, and then fulfilling it.

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          • On the ground, desires of all kinds exist. In film, only what sells does or like you put it, what the star tells filmmakers will sell.

            Like imtiaz with his unrequited collage romance on a college trip, the filmmaker’s subjective preferences dominating what we see on the screen repeatedly forever.

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          • *grandparents all went to a film together, dad, chacha, grandparents and the male child all got very uncomfortable around their women when a sleazy item song came around. Because the focal point of the softcore sleaze was the female body and the objectification of the same made the men uncomfortable in the presence of the female members of their family. Now, when the focal point of the sleaze become the male body and lets not forget it’s kinda easier to showcase male eye candy than a female one, suddenly the male members of the family group felt relaxed. And the women didn’t need to worry about making the men uncomfortable because who the hell cares about women’s desires in indian families anyway. 😁

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          • Wow, what an interesting conversation. I have thoughts and one question. Asmita, you mention the real-life Uncles who never marry and live with a BFF with no questions asked. Are there also the equivalent of “Spinster Aunts” who never marry but set up their own household at some point, with or without a BFF? Or do those women stay forever in their natal home? Or do they marry and then act on other desires for sex and relationships discreetly? Ok, that was more than one question.

            My thoughts: one reason I like SRK’s films so much is that he seems really comfortable with being desired, and at least some of his films show women with sexual agency. I love One 2 Ka 4 for this–Juhi is chasing him, lusting after him, and falling in love with him, totally outside the bounds of any relationship at first. I just skip the weirdly violent gangster parts. 🙂 And of course he/Red Chillies were patting themselves on the back for showing independent women’s desire in Paheli (Juhi’s as well as Rani’s).

            My other and more fun thoughts–thanks to Margaret’s comments about Raees and Dilwale, I’m looking at the SRK/Jackie dynamic in Devdas and One 2 Ka 4 in a whole new light. Interesting.

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          • Yes, absolutely to the female desire in SRK’s movies. I was just saying that about Jab Harry Met Sejal, I am much less concerned about it turning into Tamasha and being so unbalanced between the male and female roles because it is a Shahrukh movie, and he seems to be aware that his fans expect his heroines to have their own desires and goals and personalities and stuff.

            On Mon, Jul 24, 2017 at 7:12 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Oh–it occurred to me I should clarify that I don’t think One 2 Ka 4 is some kind of statement of gender equality. Aside from the fact that SRK shoves and hits Juhi repeatedly, he doesn’t fall in love with her til she becomes much closer to the happy little wife and mother. But I like the female desire bit. And the firecracker oldest daughter! 🙂

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      • Wow, how an unintended implication from a casual throwaway comment has spawned an exchange with all sorts of notions! I just meant women do not make up anywhere near half the ticket sales in India in response to Asmita’s statement that half the audience are women which is not exactly true.

        Don’t know about gay men but for straight men AFAIK seeing a ripped male torso is just aspirational and uber cool, earns instant respect. Which is reason enough to have the heroes sport them and flaunt them esp if one can’t act well AKA Tiger. And of course it also works as eye candy for women so win-win.

        Compare that to a shapely actress with bare minimum clothing who obv is erotic to look at for men, whereas for women it just passes normally as in how the Pacha Bottasi moment barely even registered as a thing for many women as evidenced on this forum.

        I must also mention that certainly among men the general consensus is that a man has to work super hard to achieve an impressive looking upper body worthy of displaying shirtless (which is why it commands automatic respect like I said) whereas for a woman it is far more straightforward unless she is fat (as a tangent I’ve wondered about why fat-shaming predominantly seems to affect only women because fat men are physically equally unattractive to look at surely? Of course I’m not implying that fat-shaming is okay, just that it seems to affront women more than men).

        Lastly, like Saif said on KWK, I’d think that most men would be fine to just take the erotic pleasure seeing two girls kiss and make out without assuming they must be gay whereas it is a strict no no for men who are not. Personally this is what I’ve seen at the few parties I’d been to in grad school, straight girls having fun trigger happy to kiss other girls amidst all the drunken cheering etc but never saw men do that! Indian girls at those parties were okay with PDA only with their BF if they had one.

        PS: Margaret still hasn’t said if she has tried a sari

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        • The difference between male and female bodies in Indian films is one of the things that attracted me, and most of the non-desis I know, to the films. In western culture we have gotten so used to seeing an impossible deformed kind of female figure, with no hips or stomach or any ounce of fate. And then you see Anushka Shetty or Sonakshi Sinha or early Sridevi, and it looks like something actually attainable, that is related to what a woman looks like in “real life”. And then the men are the ones who have to do all the work for once 🙂

          Oh, and I wore a sari at a family wedding. Less comfortable and easy to maneuver than it appears. I almost set myself on fire/fell flat on my face multiple times.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Haha I suppose it is hard to be aware of where the loose end of your pallu is.

            And yeah there was this frankly stupid size zero craze that resulted in Kareena epitomising it on screen and I’ve never known any guy who found that lean a figure hot. Katrina now for example seems to have struck a balance between looking fit and sexy at the same time.

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