In the movie “Wild life”, Jeanette, the lead female character, finds herself in an affair with a much older man than her husband. Her lover isn’t handsome, but he’s rich, and full of promises. The film doesn’t show who made the first move, but it’s understood that he was the one to pursue Jeanette.
It takes two to tango. Jeanette could refuse his advances. But she’s seduced by him. But why does she choose him? In an interview, Carey Mulligan explains Jeanette is angry. She’s angry because her family has moved 8 times, as her husband can’t find a good job. She’s angry because all of sudden, her husband decides to leave for a dangerous job. She feels her world is collapsing.
In theory, a seducer should be a handsome man. But it’s not always the case. The word “handsome” doesn’t pop into my mind when I see one of my ex-coworkers, who tried to seduce every female journalist in my newsroom. He didn’t score with everyone, but he managed to seduce two of my female coworkers. The guy has a long list of contacts, who could introduce him to the greatest exhibitions, cocktail parties, concerts… in my country. He’s also very charming with women in general. He can’t help giving compliments to a woman during a simple conversation.
Another one in my newsroom just preys on the young one who are just recruited in my company. Usually, the young recruit doesn’t know anyone in the company yet, and is relieved to have someone to talk to at the coffee machine or at the cafeteria. At least, at the very beginning.
Michel Houellebecq, in “Particules élementaires”, writes men who used to be bullier when they were younger have easier than other men to seduce beautiful women, as they have understood how to seduce them. He doesn’t say if those women felt weak, but in his book, the bullier ends up with a beautiful but fragile orphan woman.
Of course, it helps if the man is handsome. But there are handsome men who are not at ease with women in general. And not that charming. In my newsroom, one of our photographers is a very handsome man. But he’s shy and doesn’t hit on the female workers. As women don’t like when it’s too easy, they are numerous in my company who offer him to have a lunch with them. Sometimes, he just likes to eat on his own, reading his magazine.