Jerry Seinfeld Explains Why He Misses ‘Dominant Masculinity’ in Society: ‘I Like a Real Man’

Jerry Seinfeld
Matt Winkelmeyer/WireImage

Jerry Seinfeld based his Netflix film Unfrosted on the past eras of “dominant masculinity” of the 1960s.

“I think it is the key element and that is an agreed-upon hierarchy, which I think is absolutely vaporized in today’s moment,” Seinfeld, 70, said on the Tuesday, May 28, episode of The Free Press’ “Honestly” podcast. “I think that is why people lean on the horn and drive in the crazy way that they drive because we have no sense of hierarchy, and as humans, we don’t really feel comfortable like that.”

Seinfeld directed and starred in Unfrosted about the launch of Pop-Tarts. He based his character, Bob Cabana, on influential men of the ‘60s.

“If you want to talk about nostalgia, that is what I think makes that moment attractive looking back. And the other thing is, as a man,” Seinfeld told host Bari Weiss before joking, “I’ve always wanted to be a real man. I’ve never made it.”

He continued, “I really thought when I was in that era, again, it was [John F. Kennedy], it was Muhammad Ali, it was Sean Connery, Howard Cosell, you can go all the way down there. [I thought,] ’That’s a real man, I want to be like that someday.’ Well, now, I never really grew up — I mean you don’t want to as a comedian because it’s a childish pursuit.”

According to Seinfeld, he misses “a dominant masculinity” in modern society that the likes of Kennedy, Ali and Connery exhibited.

“Yeah, I get the toxic thing,” Seinfeld said. “But still, I like a real man.”

Seinfeld Cast Then and Now

Related: ‘Seinfeld’ Cast: Where Are They Now?

It’s hard to believe, but 30 years ago, a show about nothing quickly became a show that everyone talked about. When Seinfeld debuted on July 5, 1989, no one imagined that the NBC sitcom, created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld about friends living in Manhattan, would go on for nine seasons. It spanned 180 […]

Seinfeld enlisted a slew of stars for Unfrosted including Melissa McCarthy, Amy Schumer, Jim Gaffigan and Hugh Grant. He wanted to make the film as a distraction from the depressing political climate.

“We started during COVID because I couldn’t take the sad faces. In comedy, we hate that,” Seinfeld told Weiss, specifically referring to Donald Trump’s controversial presidency. “We can’t fix the world, but we just want to make a face happy, even just for a few minutes.”

He continued, “I was saying to a friend of mine today, ‘It’s one of the greatest Jewish traditions.’ That’s why there are so many Jewish comedians and such a great tradition of comedy in the culture of Jewish people. With all their crap that they had to live with, they used their incredible brains to make each other laugh. You do what you have to do and save a big part of your head to laugh. Because that will get you through a lot of things.”

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