During the male meiotic prophase in mouse and man, pairing and recombination of homologous chromosomes is accompanied by changes in chromatin structure. In this review, the dynamics of assembly and disassembly of the chromatin-associated complexes that mediate sister chromatid cohesion (cohesin) and maintain chromosome pairing (the synaptonemal complex) are described. Special features of the meiotic S phase are discussed, and also the dynamics of several key players that act together after the S phase at sites of meiotic double-strand break DNA repair. Current knowledge on histone modifications that occur during the male meiotic prophase is discussed, with special attention for the inactive chromatin of the X and Y chromosomes that constitutes the sex body. Finally, it is discussed that in the future, it will be possible to view the true chromatin dynamics during male meiosis in time, in living cells, through analysis of fluorescent-tagged proteins expressed in transgenic mice, using advanced fluorescent microscopy techniques. Copyright