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Role reversal game with the Devil

The Devil Wears Prada is one of the most iconic movies made on the fashion industry. And any work dedicated to the fashion industry shines a light on themes of body image and unreal beauty standards and eating disorders. The protagonist, Andy Sachs, played by Anne Hathaway allows us a peek of it all from the POV of Miranda Priestly's second assistant. Her transformation from an uninterested, unfashionable journalism graduate to a chic and glamorous workaholic inspiring envy from her colleagues is what drives the narrative.


This transformation has a sizable impact on Andy's relationships. Her friends and boyfriend have a hard time adjusting to this new overworked Andy and they express it by teasing her. The change gets too much for Nate, her boyfriend, when Andy misses his birthday. With this being the last of a string of events that indicated neglect, Andy and Nate take a break. This comes right before her work trip with Miranda Priestly to Paris.


While Nate can be seen as an unsupportive partner when it came to Andy's career with his constant nagging and whining, the screenwriter for the movie recently defended him. She said that by the end of the movie, when Andy goes back to him and apologizes, that was the right thing to do on her part since Nate was right to be that demanding with her.


The lack of attention from a partner is unpleasant for both men and women.


Most of the media I've consumed has shown men being inattentive and women are shown to support their man with momentary expressions of discomfort. I can't help but think that this has shaped expectations on women in this situation.


When the tables are turned, the man isn't subjected to the same expectations. This movie, as well as its screenwriter, sympathize with Nate's constant expression of discontentment and irritation. It places more value in that than in Nate being supportive. And by the end when Andy and Nate get back together, it tells men in similar situations that if they behave the way Nate did they're doing the right thing. She'll eventually come back leaving her goals and ambitions to accommodate you.



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Great post Ans! This movie is one of my all time favorites and I despise Nate's character. While I do agree that Andy at times was not the most supportive partner but having her leave her job and going back to Nate was not the right choice. I found Nate to be extremely condescending towards Andy especially when she starts to take a genuine interest in her Job and starts to enjoy it. Like you said "sympathize with Nate's constant expression of discontentment and irritation. It places more value in that than in Nate being supportive." Nate honestly came off like a bitter partner throughout the film, someone who was not supportive at any point, not when Andy hated her…

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Rafay Abdul Razzaq
Rafay Abdul Razzaq
Aug 07, 2022

Hello Ans!

Wonderful blog you've written and I couldn't help but think about one of our classes where we were discussing these norms. It all makes me think: what if I write a story? I write a book, one where I consciously make the protagonist's gender entirely vague and do not disclose it in any way. Without even introducing a romantic partner in this story, I believe that the audience, from their own learning of gender roles through society and media, will determine for themselves what gender the protagonist has. Considering I switch gender roles for the whole story and portray the protagonist in masculine norms and stereotypes. In the end, if I reveal in the epilogue that the character…


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Iman Aamir
Iman Aamir
Aug 07, 2022

Hi I agree on this point of view …. most movies end up making the women sacrifice her career ambition and it’s projected in the name of Love … if the man was to do the same they would say the women isn’t accommodating or loves him wholeheartedly and it’s mostly our media which portrays it as such and creates Tumhe expectations form both genders

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Hey Ans!


Thanks for sharing.


This movie shows how the society expects the career-oriented women to leave their goals and come back to the love of their life even if he is the most unsupportive partner and a typical representation of a patriarch. However, this is true for all women irrespective of their education or style. This is a very popular culture in the Pakistani media as well which is nurtured and enforced by the Pakistani society. I agree with you on most of the aspects which you have pointed out in this blog. This movie is problematic in many ways but again it is doing what most media productions do - encourage male superiority over women. Women are the…


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The movie presents a very interesting reversal of stereotypical gender roles. Its succesful in identifying how real this very issue is provided the genders are reversed. Lets say there is a woman is nates role. Should she be expected to "be supportive" when her partners career is damaging the relationship. The scenario is extremely problematic in both ways. I think we should detract and look at it from a differrent perspective. I think the issue is about media selling hustler mantality which is very capitalisitic in nature. We might be conditioned to think what success is defined as. Any person succeeding in there career but working like a robot to the extent where their close relationships are damaged are no…

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I think with the growing debates on work-life balance and Covid giving people a taste of a healthier versions of it, people have started to recognize that there's really no need to chain themselves to their cubicle/office.


Also, when speaking about capitalism itself, women experience it differently than men. Meryl Streep describes Miranda as an accomplished woman and not a happy one. With many men that is the case as well, but for someone like Andy the society overstates the cost of what she'd have to give up whereas for a guy, the society is more accepting towards them if being accomplished is set as a priority.

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