Earlier this week, a model who had previously worked with Katy Perry posted on Instagram that the star had exposed his penis in public and insisted this was tantamount to sexual assault.
Josh Kloss, now 38, appeared nine years ago in the music video for Perry’s single Teenage Dream (see still above) and says the incident of misconduct happened some time after Perry’s divorce from comedian Russell Brand.
Kloss claims he ran into Perry several times following her divorce, one of these occasions being at a mutual friend’s birthday party, where the incident was alleged to have occurred.
“When I saw her, we hugged and she was still my crush,” tells Kloss. “But as I turned to introduce my friend, [Katy] pulled my Adidas sweats and underwear out as far as she could to show a couple of her guy friends and the crowd around us my penis.”
Kloss says he felt pathetic and embarrassed by the incident, and was compelled to tell his story so as to address the balance in harassment issues within the entertainment industry.
“I say this now because our culture is set on proving men of power are perverse. But females with power are just as disgusting.”
The incident on its own may seem trivial to some, but Kloss does make an important point. While the #MeToo movement has encouraged female victims of sexual abuse to speak out, it has also spawned a kind of reversal in misconduct, where it is supposedly okay for women to treat men as sex objects to the point of groping them inappropriately in public.
We see it all the time on television and on the big screen, with female cast members in top positions in business and entertainment treating men like sex toys or at the very least, disposable eunuchs. It’s evident in recent films like Late Night and Long Shot, and in TV series like Great News and No Activity. It’s also very evident in music videos, with the likes of Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Miley Cyrus, and even Billie Eilish all treating their male counterparts like the proverbial meat-tray.
It’s as if Hollywood and the music industry think it’s okay to demean men in any way, shape or form; as though this sort of retaliation in abuse has been overdue for years / decades / millennia.
But if men are now expressing their offense at what they deem to be sexual abuse or misconduct, what room will be left for any flirtation, let alone sexual activity, on the entertainment scene? Already, cinema is going through a difficult and dissonant time trying to come up with interesting stories without offending either sex. It’s the reason we’re seeing so many remakes of childhood stories (Dumbo, Aladdin, Lego, The Lion King) so as to keep things safe, and why we’re noticing films set in eras where the subject of sex was bound behind corsets and buttoned-up vests (cue: a host of movies set between the late 1800s and 1950).
While both men and women are lodging complaints of sexual misconduct, actors and musicians – and of course producers and directors – are being forced to mind their every move, on-screen and off.
Without sex as an easy subject to inject into scripting and songwriting, film and music would pretty much dry up in content. The movie-making industry was practically built on glamour and excess, and as a result of these, sex, and the music industry, well, it is where the adage ‘sex, drugs and rock’n’roll’ was born, while the aforementioned pop stars all rely on sexuality as a selling point in much of their music videos and stage shows.
While both men and women are lodging complaints of sexual misconduct, actors and musicians – and of course producers and directors – are being forced to mind their every move, on-screen and off, remaining careful not to offend their co-stars or industry counterparts. And the results of this caution will show through in the product they make.
Keep this in mind when watching television, film and music videos over the next few years. You’re going to notice the content becoming so over-censored and diluted down that movies and music – which were originally created as a means of entertainment and escape – will end up evolving into being just plain boring.