Male Nudity? Cue the Nervous Laughter

Comedies tap into America's 'adolescent reaction' to full frontal
By Kate Rockwood,  Newser Staff
Posted May 11, 2008 6:05 PM CDT
"America fears the penis and that's something I'm going to help them get over," says filmmaker Judd Apatow.   (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)
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(Newser) – Penises are in the Hollywood spotlight these days, with both Forgetting Sarah Marshall and the new Harold & Kumar offering full-frontal male nudity. They’re guaranteed to get a nervous laugh because there’s still an uncomfortable shock to seeing one on the big screen, writes Laura Hodes in the Chicago Tribune. "It is almost a permanent adolescent reaction that is built into American movies,” says one film prof.

Unlike the toned, sexualized female nudity, the movies show male members buried under bushy pubic hair, slight in size, and attached to pudgy, everyday bodies. "America fears the penis,” says filmmaker Judd Apatow, “and that's something I'm going to help them get over. I'm going to get a penis in every movie I do from now on."