The Impact of Archetype on The Reader and Its Examples

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An archetype is a model situation, person, or idea that has been copied or emulated many times and is widely recognizable and is deep within the human consciousness so much so that it is something we don’t mind hearing again and again.This reappearance actually strengthens the impact it has on the reader.

One idea of this could be the idea of the macho man or a male figure who always saves the day and gets the woman in the end. This idea can be found within many works older and newer such as 1953’s Casino Royale, a book from famed author Ian Fleming. The books feature the exploits of British Intelligence Officer James Bond and his escapades which always involve saving the world from some evil megamind and then of course getting a woman in the end. He is presented as far better than the average man, almost like a superhero. Other examples can even be found in Greek Mythology with Hercules. A man with incredible strength ready defend his people at a moments notice. The macho of Hercules has been exploited further in film such as 2014’s Hercules, starring Dwayne Johnson in the title role.

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The idea behind the macho man or strong male figure could be seen as sexist in modern times however, as the women presented in the stories are generally weak or shown as damsels in distress, while the men are shown as strong and brave. What the macho man represents is a strong male character who can do something greater than that of a regular man, which usually involves saving the day and defeating evil.

The present day is full of these types of characters, especially with how many superhero films come out every year, with the likes of Batman, Superman, and Thor all being a form of the macho man or dominant male figure. One example I especially enjoy is the 1987 film “Malone”, starring Burt Reynolds in the titular role. In the film Reynolds is a former CIA Agent and now drifter who goes from town to town cleaning them up and making them safer from the criminals running amok in them. He faces many villians along the way, but he of course dispatches any threat that comes his way with ease.

The funniest thing about the macho man archetype is that they are all essentially exactly the same, the one thing that really differs them apart from one another is the villain. When you read a book or watch a movie with a macho man, you know that in the end they are going to win, but how the villain reacts to them or who the villain is revealed to be is what keeps them different and entertaining from one another.

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