Sunday, 24 February 2013

Rugby Players: The Perfect Alpha Male?

This weekend - blogging aside - has been taken up a fair amount by the RBS Six Nations Championship.

For those of you who are unaware of this annual tournament, let me just summarise it for you.  Six countries.  Fifteen games. Many many manly men rolling around in the mud with each other.

To the delight of my sister's housemates I hijacked the television and sat down to fret over the England v France match.  The Twickenham game was nail-bitingly close at times, the saving grace being the French coach's bizarre decision to substitute the new team with older players.  Thankfully - after much pointless yelling at the screen - we won, but it led me to think about the role of the alpha male within romance fiction.

I am personally of the opinion that there is a very thin line between the alpha male, and an overbearing hero who is convinced that women cannot possibly make decisions for themselves.  International rugby players, therefore, are close to being the perfect romance novel hero.  They are manly enough to make the heroine swoon, and yet are renowned for supposedly being gentlemen.

Perhaps unsurprisingly then, Mills & Boon and the RFU (Rugby Football Union) agree.  Back in 2009 they teamed up to release eight steamy romances - each anchored with passionate moments on and off the pitch.  Being the proud owner of each (how could I not - with my love for the game outweighed only by my love of novels) all I can hope is that M&B commission a new series.  As soon as possible.

And if you're still not convinced, perhaps this may change your mind:

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