Channing Tatum is seeing a backlash to his selection as People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive, as some critics feel the award is too narrow in who it selects.
As The Daily Beast notes, critics have said the award generally goes to a certain stereotype — white men. Writer Tricia Romano notes: “Tatum is part of a 26-year-long tradition of anointing square-jawed white men as the hottest in the land,” she writes. “The one exception: when they chose a square-jawed black man — Denzel Washington in 1996.”
She adds that there are African-American men inside the issue itself, but are “scattered throughout like chocolate sprinkles on a vanilla ice cream cone.”
Some are putting the criticism more squarely on Channing Tatum. Slate writer Amanda Hess says that the Sexiest Man Alive should “reflect our developing understanding of the sexual desires of women and gays.” But then she adds some criticism of Tatum himself:
“And what is going on in 2012? Our Sexiest Man is white. Straight. Ginormous. Frequently goateed. Wearing a white tank top in his cover photo. Yes, he can dance. But as a nation, we must ask: What is left of Channing Tatum’s sex appeal after the final strains of Ginuwine’s “Pony” recede? Buzzfeed has described Tatum as “a thumb” and “a gyrating human potato.” His sexy is bland. Traditional. Republican in a Democratic year.”
Channing Tatum has the only support that may matter, however. Appearing this week with his wife, Jenna Dewan-Tatum, Channing appeared happy and his wife seemed especially pleased with the honor.