It’s Canadian election season, which means our national leaders are dialling down on civility and strapping on gloves for another bout of political mud-slinging. Grab an umbrella. Shit’s gonna get messy.
But the latest Conservative attack on Liberal leader Justin Trudeau, “The Interview,” really sparked conversations.
“I see he’s included his picture,” says a woman, as the camera focuses on a photograph of Trudeau, a single chestnut curl grazing his forehead.
A conference of interviewers then picks apart the candidate’s stance on legalizing marijuana, his knowledge of balancing a budget and the prospect of sending winter jackets to Syria (“Like that’ll stop ISIS?!”)
But the real kicker comes at the end: “Nice hair, though.”
While the entire ad was laughable, that final line was comedic gold. Everyone knows that the best jokes are rooted in honesty, and the reason the hair jab resonated with viewers was not because it was a low-blow. It was just so true.
Canada has been fan-girling over Trudeau’s luscious curls for years. Just Google “Justin Trudeau hair.” The Canadian Press dedicated 500 words to Trudeau’s haircut in 2013, detailing its evolution: “Over the years, Justin has embraced a tousled, hipster bed-head look, played around with goatees and moustaches, and given his curls free range around the ears.”
The Huffington Post has a play-by-play gallery on the Liberal leader’s hair with sassy titles like “Wild Thing,” “Wind in My Wings” and “Mr. Slick.”
And then there’s the Toronto Sun, the gleaming beacon of journalistic integrity, who, in 2012, published the headline: “Justin Trudeau: Great hair but no credentials.”
Which leads us to the biggest question: Why are we so obsessed? Are we jealous of that tousled-but-tame fountain of gleaming chocolate locks? Is being fuckable a detriment to becoming the next Canadian prime minister?
Let’s run with that last question. We put on our hot-or-not glasses and took a stroll down memory lane, and we’re sorry to report that our prime ministers’ screwable-to-not-screwable ratio is grim. John Diefenbaker (1957-1963) had a mild smoulder, even if his hair resembled cauliflower.
John Turner had a nice smile and dad-like cuteness in black-and-white photos, but in colour? Girl, it’s called moisturizer.
We kid. Sort of.
Female politicians have always had their image dissected by peers and media. Same goes for high-profile women in business, law, journalism, film — you name it. Men? Not so much. We’ve had some serious four-outta-tens as CEOs, president and prime ministers.
So why is Justin, once called a “pretty boy” by the Globe and Mail, getting all the flak for being flat-out fuckable? One theory: he’s the first metrosexual to enter Canadian national politics. While young, urban voters are nonplussed over a fancy shmancy $50 hairdo, older, flannel-wearing voters (we’re looking at you, Moose Jaw) are clutching their pearls.
Still, that doesn’t really connect the dots between Justin’s hair and his inability to lead a first-world country. Maybe some voters see Trudeau as self-obsessed, which plays into the he’s-just-doing-it-for-the-fame theories. Some might see him as all pomp and zero substance, which isn’t completely unfair. Trudeau does have fewer years of political leadership under his belt than sloppy-hair Thomas Mulcair and human Lego man Steven Harper.
Then again, maybe it’s all about shampoo prices. How can he balance the budget when he spends $39.99 on Aveda’s rosemary mint conditioner? [Editor’s note: It is unclear exactly which line of hair products Justin uses.]
In response to the Conservative’s laughable attack ad, a few members of the Liberal party shot a own spoof targeting Prime Minister Steven. In similar fashion they tear Harper to shreds, pointing out his poor management of the economy, his handling of the recession and inability to work across party lines.
“Notice he didn’t include a picture?” one interviewer asks.
Buckle up, folks. The election is still months away, and we expect a lot more hair-splitting (and cringeworthy) attack ads. But please, don’t take them too seriously.
Do you think Justin Trudeau’s hair matters? Let Vv Magazine know in the comments below, or tweet us @ViewtheVibe.