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What Is the ‘Dadbod’? What Does It Mean?

Jason Segel: The ultimate dadbod.
Jason Segel: The ultimate dadbod. Photo: Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

What is the dadbod? Do we like the dadbod?

These are the questions that have plagued the Cut staff since we first learned the term yesterday. To answer the first: The dadbod is a physique characterized by undefined muscles beneath a light layer of flab, usually topped off with a beer belly. “The dad bod says, ‘I go to the gym occasionally, but I also drink heavily on the weekends and enjoy eating eight slices of pizza at a time,’” explains Mackenzie Pearson, a Clemson sophomore, at The Odyssey.

To answer the second, we discuss:

Isabel Wilkinson, senior editor: Okay, does everyone know — or have you known — a man who could be considered a dadbod? Do you like dadbods?

Allison Davis, writer: Pro dadbod here. Don’t ever want to see a defined muscle. A dadbod makes me think we could eat pizza in bed together and never feel guilty or judge one another.

Isabel: I know someone who divorced her dadbod.

Kathleen Hou, senior beauty editorWas he always a dadbod, or did he become a dadbod over time?

Isabel: Everyone else knew him to be a dadbod, and somehow she just did not see it.

Kathleen: I feel like there are two different types of dadbods: (1) Sloth-grossness-girls-want-to-bang-me-anyway (Leonardo DiCaprio) or (2) Sloth-fun (I just like Netflix in the winter).

Isabel: I think dadbod is more channeling a state of mind — that of letting one’s self go, and all of the self-indulgence associated with that. Right?

Diana Tsui, senior market editor: Every dad I know — and they’re young dads in their mid-to-late 30s — are super into CrossFit, triathlon training, everything. They’re fighting the dadbod.

Molly Fischer, senior editor: Real dads fight the dadbod, whereas the young frat men of Clemson embrace it.

Ella Cerón, social media editor: Fratbod leads to dadbod, I feel. All those brews add up.

Stella Bugbee, editorial director: Is dadbod a laxbro after he gives up lacrosse?

Molly: Dadbod is when laxbro gets lax about lax.

Stella: Can we talk about dadbod sex?

Allison: My friend has a theory that men with dadbods and doughier tummy areas are good at sex — better, even — than, say, a ripped-abbed man, because their guts push against your pubic bone in a pleasing way. I also think dadbods might be more enthusiastic oral-sex-givers. Perhaps to compensate for their lack of abs.

Emily Shornick, photo editor: What’s great about dadbod sex is that you know you’re gonna have great postcoital snacks. Dadbod definitely has some cheese in the fridge.

Ella: I’ve always found the dadbods I’ve been with pass judgement on my eating habits — probably because they project. Like, they have always been the most enthusiastic about me eating a salad.

Isabel: Dadbods want to date skinny girls?

Leah Rodriguez, producer: Yeah.

Ella: YES.

Ashley Weatherford, associate beauty editor: I dated a dadbod in college, and he told me I needed to work out.

Molly: Dadbod as outer manifestation of his sense of entitlement??? DADBOD = PRIVILEGE???

Isabel: Dadbod = power, privilege, smugness.

Molly: Plus vast, slick sex torso.

Allison: No! Dadbod = comfort, pizza, better sex.

Emily: I can’t stop thinking about how offended I would be if men were talking about the “Mombod.”