The series Alpha Males humorously questions the notion of masculine toxicity and gender equality in contemporary discourse. “Alpha male” means “macho alpha” in Spanish, in reference to ethological studies. It refers to the dominant male and to machoism, a term which denotes the phallocratic supremacy of the male. It ridicules patriarchy insofar as it is “what remains of the father when he no longer embodies any symbolic dimension but rather embodies a power which he misuses”. It also ridicules the current discourse about gender issues.
The series thematises love setbacks of four friends and their partners. The men pursue an “internship on deconstructing masculine toxicity”, which is considered to be misogynous and homophobic, in order to reach a “more healthy virility”. Man’s future is to be deconstructed. Pedro, a man who excels at everything, finds himself unemployed, replaced by a woman, in an enterprise where feminism washing is practiced. At the same time, his partner, Daniela, has a breakthrough on Instagram as an influencer. This is a reversal of the situation of what has been until then ordering their relationship. While Raùl, taken by the facelift of his love life, gets ready to propose to his partner, the latter proposes an open relationship. Luis, a local policeman and father of two children, grapples with the desire of his spouse and the absence of their sex life. As for Santi, who has just come out of a painful divorce, he has a series of dates, which are stage-managed by his 15-year old daughter Alex. She puts his details to Tinder to get him back into the game of romantic encounters. Adherent to his daughter’s woke discourse, he picks up in his friends’words any macho, sexist or homophobic insults, and even fat shaming.
Alpha Males humorously exposes patriarchy and its decline: “All of a sudden, everything is patriarchal; we are like a virus. You declared war on the Y chromosome!” The loss of traditional reference points leaves the four men wrestling to reinvent their ideals of masculinity. The series shines a light on how the unsteadiness of semblants lays bare the absence of the sexual relationship. For when the phallic semblant, signifier of lack, no longer operates in the connection between men and women, when traditional reference points evaporate, and ideals have vanished, these masculine subjects find themselves disoriented, bamboozled in the love encounter. And they no longer know how to locate themselves in their masculinity in crisis. However, the women are not outdone: Daniela who films every instant of her day-to-day life on her vlog and who exposes her life online, Ester who falls in love with her sports coach, the ex-wife and Santi’s dates; all of them embody, each one in their own way, the boundlessness of female madness and ravage.
On the question of love, each of them will have to invent, one by one, a solution which allows for the absence of the sexual relationship. For, patriarchy or not, “there is no pre-set formula for the relationship between the sexes”.
References from the autor.
 Alpha Males, Television broadcast, Caballero A. & L., Spain, Netflix, 2022.
 Leguil C., “Critique of the monopoly of legitimate jouissance”, Authoritarianism, blog Pipol 11, 17 March 2023, online : https://www.pipol11.eu/2023/03/16/critique-du-monopole-de-la-jouissance-legitime-clotilde-leguil.
 Vinciguerra R.-P., “L’avenir de l’homme”, Discours woke, blog Pipol 11, 26 February 2023, disponible en ligne.
 Cf. Vincent F., “La mode du ‟féminisme washing” atteint les entreprises”, Le Monde, 8 janvier 2018, disponible en ligne. [Vincent F., “The fashion of “feminism washing” reaches the enterprises”, Le Monde, 8 January 2018].
 A vlog is a video blog.
 Cf. Lacan J., The Seminar XX. Encore. On Feminine Sexuality. The Limits of Love and Knowledge. 1972-1973, edited by J.-A. Miller, translated with notes by B. Fink, New York, London, Norton, 1999, p. 44.
 Miller J.-A., “La théorie du partenaire”, Quarto n°77, July 2002, p. 22, our translation.
Translation: Eva Reinhofer
Proofreading: Sébastien Dauguet
Picture : © Nathalie Crame