Victorians, Edwardians, the Great War, the Jazz Age, the Great Depression, the Greatest Generation… The past is always a time when Men were Men, a time when Good fought Evil and triumphed, a time when glamor was more glamorous. Just look at all those Greats: things were real back then, were bigger, better, nobler, more.
The reality, of course, is much more ambiguous. Masculinity takes many forms. Good and Evil are two ends of a spectrum with a lot of gray in between. It’s sometimes hard to tell, from where you stand, where on the spectrum you’ve planted your feet. Nostalgia can lend glamor to banality and even ugliness.