Arnold's Bizarre Affair Spotlights Pretty Wife, Homely Mistress Conundrum 1While the world is still reeling that Arnold Schwarzenegger secretly fathered a son, now 10, with his longtime housekeeper, many are shaking their heads in disbelief that Arnold’s mistress is an overweight, frumpy woman.

The discovery made millions of people wonder why Schwarzenegger, 63, would cheat on his pretty, slender, accomplished wife, Maria Shriver, 55, in favor of the dumpy, chubby Mildred Patty Baena, 50.

Photos of Arnold with Baeba underscore a stark physical contrast between the muscular 6’2″ former bodybuilding champ and his dowdy, flabby mistress.

While psychologists and self-help gurus are debating the stunning incongruity of Schwarzenegger’s longtime affair, the issue has previously been explored in pop culture and films.

Arnold's Bizarre Affair Spotlights Pretty Wife, Homely Mistress Conundrum 2

In the 1989 French movie Trop Belle Pour Toi (‘Too Beautiful For You‘) starring French superstars Gérard Depardieu and Carole Bouquet, Gerard’s character has a passionate affair with his homely, overweight secretary even though he’s married to the gorgeous Carole.

Essentially, the movie suggests that Gerard’s character feels inadequate with his beautiful wife and is more comfortable and can be himself with his unattractive secretary.

Similarly, the hit HBO series Sex and the City explored the theme in the 1998 episode “Secret Sex.” In the episode, Carrie’s male friend has a girlfriend he keeps secret from his friends because she’s plain and frumpy.

He admits to Carrie he’s embarrassed to be seen with his secret girlfriend in public or introduce her to his friends, but he enjoys her company because he has no anxieties around her because her plainness doesn’t intimidate him the way a beautiful woman’s looks would.

So what does this say about beauty, men, sex and relationships? Sadly, not a whole helluva lot.

Samantha Chang is the executive editor of TheImproper and a celebrity writer at Examiner.