Actors are men, and men have chest hair. This particular quirk of human anatomy, like natural tooth color, is one that television has spent the last decade annihilating. (Dreamboat actors used to look like this.) But battling natural phenomena is a loser’s game. There’s only so long that you can fight the rising tide, stop the setting sun, or convince Americans that the male body’s ability to sprout pectoral fuzz until death is disgusting. And so, chest hair on television is making a comeback. As proof, please look no further than the young men of Gossip Girl.
Prior to this season, Dan Humphrey and Nate Archibald were clean-shaven from the nose to the navel. (Chuck Bass was never quite, but he’s always worn his shirts buttoned to the top.) But over the course of this year, the gossip boys became men. Apparently, it’s cool to have chest hair once you’re in college. Consider the evidence.
This is Nate back at the beginning of season two, in one of the OMFG series of ads:
This is him earlier this season:
Here’s Dan at the beginning of season two, hairless, in a tank top.
Here’s Dan in a tank top this season.
Just to reiterate, Dan in season two:
Dan growing out his hair in this season’s post-threesome episode:
Dan with his hair fully grown out:
In conclusion: Where the pretty boys of Gossip Girl go, others are sure to follow. Burt Reynolds was overdue for an appreciation anyway.