One tried and true boy band tactic is to sing lyrics aimed directly at the group’s female fans. From The Backstreet Boy’s “As Long As You Love Me” to One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful,” these songs offer a particular kind of wish fulfillment in which attractive, nonaggressive dudes tell their listeners exactly what they want to hear. But the modern internet-savvy woman isn’t just interested in emotional vulnerability and words of affirmation anymore; she’s most likely got feminism on her mind, too. And that’s where the Woke Bois come in.
Mocking boy bands and self-congratulatory feminist allies in equal measure, the music video parody “White Male Feminist” comes from the YouTube comedy channel The STATION by MAKER. As writer Courtney Pauroso explains in a behind-the-scenes video, the song pokes fun at a particular type of male feminist who is both informed but also a little too eager to perform his “wokeness” on all things feminism. In other words, The Woke Bois appear to be using their newfound feminism (“And I know you don’t even want to hear me speak / But I spent the weekend reading the Feminine Mystique”) to both smash the patriarchy and seduce their fans with their sweet-talking understanding of systems of oppression.