Way Back Wednesday: Ugly Guy, Hot Wife

Aphrodite was the most beautiful goddess ever. And she was married to arguably, the ugliest guy in the pantheon. The “how did HE end up with HER?” trope abounds. ) In today’s media though, there’s two potential answers to the question of how. Either ugly guy has a heart of gold, and hot girl fell in love with his beautiful soul, or she’s a shallow trophy wife and she married him for material gain. Very rarely in today’s media do you see the reason for this particular marriage used.

She didn’t have a choice in the matter.

But I’m retelling the myths in modern day. And while I haven’t exactly decided how to best use Heph yet (I have it plotted out, but until the scenes are written everything can change), I can pretty much guarantee Zeus isn’t going to sell Aphrodite to Hephaestus in exchange for getting his wife out of a chair. But the ugly guy hot wife trope is often played in a way that’s super offensive to both parties involved, which I’ll go into more on Friday. Here’s a few instances that handled it pretty well.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame Gets an honorary mention here. No, he doesn’t end up with Esmerelda, but it had nothing to do with his looks and much more to do with a major discrepancy in life experience. Esmerelda and the Captain are very much played as adults when compared to Quasi who is portrayed as very naive, idealistic, and childlike.  He does end up with a pretty blonde in the sequel, but if memory serves, (and it’s been a while), she was a lot more like him in terms of general outlook and fluffiness.

Who Framed Roger Rabbit I’m not even going to try to explain this one when it was done SO well here. Jessica Rabbit is by far one of the most misunderstood characters ever created, and it’s really ironic HOW people interpret her considering what she was created to lampshade. Worth noting that in the cartoon universe, he was the attractive one, but still.

The Darkest Powers Series by Kelly Armstrong Chloe is a conventionally attractive, smart, kind, amazing person of a character who ends up with a character described as having horrible acne, oily hair, and being hulky and unattractive/mean every couple of pages. It works though, because you have to be reminded every couple of pages. He’s an awesome character and the reader absolutely gets what she sees in him and what he sees in her, and it’s not looks.

Can you think of any other examples?

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