Watching The Matrix, having recently watched Avatar and the ads for "Bondathon", it's a point of culture fatigue for me-the male character who's every potential vanity is validated.
He's special and magnificent and admired by all. He's the Chosen One, the Chick Magnet, the Hero, the Demi-God whom everyone should have believed in all along.
This theme is SO prevalent that there's barely room for any other in films or TV.
The greatest parody of it was done by the writers of Red Dwarf through the character of "Ace" Rimmer, the ultimate hero counter-character to Arnold The Jackass Rimmer. Ace knows everything, does everything right, is always noble and is sexually desired by most people. The show makes brilliant mockery of this, all the more brilliant because it's so rarely done in American shows and films. In fact, Brits are far better at this, at the imperfect male protagonist who doesn't have to be all things to all people in order to be worthy of our respect.
It's one reason I love my British shows, films and literature. It's also the reason I turn to feminist fantasy a lot. I get VERY sick of seeing another guy who's SO GREAT that he Gets All The Goods at the end. I'm very tired of that character, of the lowering of other characters to make way for his Greatness bloat, and the oversimplification of plots and conflicts to also deal with his Greatness bloat. I'm tired of demi-god male protagonists.
It's just one reason I need to write.