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A Brief Anime History of The Himbo


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Kuzu



Joined: 13 Sep 2019
Posts: 90
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 12:15 pm Reply with quote
Not that its the intention of the article, but why do I feel like the implications here are that women can only be comfortable around when they're mentally inferior?

I mean, I find the concept hilarious speaking as a man myself, but still.
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Takkun4343



Joined: 19 Jul 2007
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Location: Gahanna, Ohio
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 12:52 pm Reply with quote
Funny enough, despite the word being around for so long, I never heard the phrase "himbo" until this past year.

I don't even really like the word all that much.
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octopodpie
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 12:56 pm Reply with quote
Kuzu wrote:
Not that its the intention of the article, but why do I feel like the implications here are that women can only be comfortable around when they're mentally inferior?

I mean, I find the concept hilarious speaking as a man myself, but still.


A discussion I had with someone else that made a lot of sense to me is that it's not about men being 'mentally inferior'. The implications of that suggestion kinda sucks, because it implies women are naturally 'mentally inferior' to men and need men to be dumb to be comfortable.

The idea is that these characters are appealing because they're harmless. They're attractive and strong but their personalities dictate that they are in no way dangerous to women. The popularity of the himbo has more to do with how women are socialized to fear or at the very least, question the intentions of men as a personal safety precaution. With a himbo, you don't have to worry about any of that.
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AsuraTheDestructor



Joined: 24 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 1:22 pm Reply with quote
The Problem with Himbo, as someone who's on the autism spectrum, is when this term is applied to real life men, and has implications of Ableism.

Many men on the Autism spectrum would be seen as a "Himbo" despite having a disability that makes it near impossible to work without losing any sort of disability benefits, whether it be medication, social security or health insurance.

I like the character type too, but there's a point where it can have some level of bad implications for real life men with debilitating disabilities of that nature.
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Kuzu



Joined: 13 Sep 2019
Posts: 90
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 1:40 pm Reply with quote
octopodpie wrote:
Kuzu wrote:
Not that its the intention of the article, but why do I feel like the implications here are that women can only be comfortable around when they're mentally inferior?

I mean, I find the concept hilarious speaking as a man myself, but still.


A discussion I had with someone else that made a lot of sense to me is that it's not about men being 'mentally inferior'. The implications of that suggestion kinda sucks, because it implies women are naturally 'mentally inferior' to men and need men to be dumb to be comfortable.

The idea is that these characters are appealing because they're harmless. They're attractive and strong but their personalities dictate that they are in no way dangerous to women. The popularity of the himbo has more to do with how women are socialized to fear or at the very least, question the intentions of men as a personal safety precaution. With a himbo, you don't have to worry about any of that.


Naw I got that part, just that they're harmless because they're dumb. That a mentally sound, and intelligent man is somehow more dangerous or someone that women need to be weary of.

I understand where it comes from mind you, but its kind of shame that its gotten to this point where women feel that unsafe around other men that they can only feel comfortable when said man is too dumb to intentionally do any harm.
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ATastySub
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 2:46 pm Reply with quote
Kuzu wrote:
octopodpie wrote:
Kuzu wrote:
Not that its the intention of the article, but why do I feel like the implications here are that women can only be comfortable around when they're mentally inferior?

I mean, I find the concept hilarious speaking as a man myself, but still.


A discussion I had with someone else that made a lot of sense to me is that it's not about men being 'mentally inferior'. The implications of that suggestion kinda sucks, because it implies women are naturally 'mentally inferior' to men and need men to be dumb to be comfortable.

The idea is that these characters are appealing because they're harmless. They're attractive and strong but their personalities dictate that they are in no way dangerous to women. The popularity of the himbo has more to do with how women are socialized to fear or at the very least, question the intentions of men as a personal safety precaution. With a himbo, you don't have to worry about any of that.


Naw I got that part, just that they're harmless because they're dumb. That a mentally sound, and intelligent man is somehow more dangerous or someone that women need to be weary of.

I understand where it comes from mind you, but its kind of shame that its gotten to this point where women feel that unsafe around other men that they can only feel comfortable when said man is too dumb to intentionally do any harm.

It really is a shame that men have created this problem. Both for women, and for why you think this is an insult to "a mentally sound, and intelligent man." Because one of those would easily understand this.


Last edited by ATastySub on Mon Mar 15, 2021 2:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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tintor2



Joined: 11 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 2:47 pm Reply with quote
Hard to see the appeal these guys have to women. I mean Dragon Ball started as a really ecchi series where Goku used to touch everybody's crotch region and his master's attitude was the subject of a lot controversy whish resulted into a major complaint in regards to a late Super episode.

Ryoga starts as innocent but his obsession with Akane... also, while Kamina sure is an appealing male, there was the famous incident from an early episode that had to be toned down due to the timelot not fitting for Kamina wanted to see every girl naked regardless of cause.
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CelestialEmpress



Joined: 01 Jun 2011
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 2:52 pm Reply with quote
This article misses the most obvious, textbook example of a himbo in the current crop of megapopular anime.

Buff


Kind


And dumb as a brick


In conclusion, stan Mirio Togata.
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octopodpie
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 3:07 pm Reply with quote
Kuzu wrote:


Naw I got that part, just that they're harmless because they're dumb. That a mentally sound, and intelligent man is somehow more dangerous or someone that women need to be weary of.


I mean, it works in reverse too. Have you met the Nekopara fandom? Some dudes want an inept catgirl that might pee herself, some women want the male equivalent of a golden retriever.

I don't think anyone here who has watched a lion's share of anime would argue that most female romantic interests are presented as equal to their male counterparts, be it intellectually, fighting prowess, skill level, or the like.
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Kuzu



Joined: 13 Sep 2019
Posts: 90
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 3:17 pm Reply with quote
octopodpie wrote:


I mean, it works in reverse too. Have you met the Nekopara fandom? Some dudes want an inept catgirl that might pee herself, some women want the male equivalent of a golden retriever.

I don't think anyone here who has watched a lion's share of anime would argue that most female romantic interests are presented as equal to their male counterparts, be it intellectually, fighting prowess, skill level, or the like.


OH yea, its why Nekopara always made me uncomfortable personally.

ATastySub wrote:

It really is a shame that men have created this problem. Both for women, and for why you think this is an insult to "a mentally sound, and intelligent man." Because one of those would easily understand this.


I said I do understand, so...
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ATastySub
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 4:37 pm Reply with quote
Kuzu wrote:

I said I do understand, so...

Kuzu wrote:

Not that its the intention of the article, but why do I feel like the implications here are that women can only be comfortable around when they're mentally inferior?

The thing is that if you really did you wouldn't need to ask this. As already explained it's not about mental capacity, it's about harmlessness. Plenty of Himbos are intelligent, and part of their appeal is how smart and capable they are at their passions. The article even includes examples of this. The part worth examining here is your "Why do I feel" statement, and understanding that you saying
Kuzu wrote:

I understand where it comes from mind you, but

means you really don't. And it's ok not to know that! The article even opens with how the concept in reality doesn't fit what you would assume at face value, because the term Himbo is taken from is soaked in the same misogyny that the character type is an escape from. Any problems with the implications there are the problems with the patriarchal system they are standing away from. In the same way that same culture pushed the idea that women could only be friends with gay dudes, only to then be reactionary about how media portrays straight men as predatory for not having female friends without sexual interests. So no, as much as you think you understand I think it's more that you lack the recognition that you don't, and not brushing off explanation's like the article itself and Octopodpie's response in favor of stating that you already knew, while stating something opposed to that understanding, is a good way to actually begin to understand.
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whiskeyii



Joined: 29 May 2013
Posts: 1935
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 5:01 pm Reply with quote
For me, himbos are close cousins of the cinnamon rolls, which is another trope I heartily enjoy. I know there’s a looooooot of media out there, particularly aimed at women, that like to indulge in spicy, edgy, or even dangerous male archetypes, and those are popular for a reason, but for me, there’s just something so overwhelming pleasant about having genuinely nice guys to root for, in the vein of Mob, Steven Universe, Deku, Tanjiro, etc.
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 5:16 pm Reply with quote
I'm hardly an expert in such matters, but besides Kamina and Galo most of the characters mentioned don't seem very close to the himbo archetype at all, if for no other reason than their physique. I mean, most of them are twigs. The ur-example of a himbo in my mind is Kronk from The Emperor's New Groove: built like a truck, dumb as a brick, incredibly kindhearted, and makes a mean spinach puff.
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JoelBurger



Joined: 14 Oct 2011
Posts: 23
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 5:21 pm Reply with quote
If "plenty of Himbos are intelligent", then it feels like there should be a more accurate term for the character type than "Himbo"
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DuskyPredator
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Joined: 10 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2021 6:45 pm Reply with quote
I have certainly been interested in the cultural ideas of the Himbo, the reclamation of the Bimbo, and I guess the spread of the Thembo once there is a good idea of what that is. Positive elements of these character types can go a way of breaking certain bad tropes. I watched a few videos from larger YouTube channels.

The Himbo in specifics feels like a hit against the idea of toxic masculinity, since they have all the physicality associated with strong masculinity, may not put a lot of importance on being or appearing really smart, but are actually super kind, try hard to do right and be supportive of other people. Not for everyone, nor needing to be a glorification of a pretty body with no smarts, the himbo can be smart but just thinks other things are more important than looking smart. The himbo also would not shame anyone for not being like them.

The idea should then be that the new bimbo, I again have been hearing some women are reclaiming it, should be in the same vein. Like Legally Blonde's Elle Woods, who is actually really smart, but puts other things ahead of needing to make people think that way, such as being super kind and expression to build her self confidence. I was kind of hoping that the anime called My First Girlfriend is a Gal would be a more positive push of not being judgemental, rather than the kind of gross fanservice thing that it turned out. Kind of like Please Tell Me Galko-chan, which made any questions of her intelligence separate from expressing how she wants and kind and supportive to other people.

Trying to think of some more anime himbos, my thoughts went to the Osomatsu-san series, with I would say that Karamatsu might be the closest, being that on average his good intentions is offset by his lack of smarts, although he does have his more selfish or bad takes. Lloyd from Final Dungeon Boonies is a bit of a himbo, since his smarts are not his main trait, but is incredibly kind and strong, even if his self confidence is shot with him not aware he is strong or comparatively weak to others. Maybe Legosi from Beastars, I am not sure. Klaus from Blood Blockade Battlefront might actually be a super smart example. And Takeo from My Love Story.
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