I came across a post that posited Elvis as a symbol of social sexism – The Beatles were named too – but it was the “in every Elvis movie” that tripped my pedantic statistical tendencies.
which I re-blogged
Love Me Tender, he does smack Debra Padget, but he doesn;t hit a girl in Loving You. Jailhouse Rock he goes to prison for killing a woman beater and Walter Matheau hits Elvis in King Creole – he only hits ronnie to try to revive. He doesn’t hit Juiet Prowse in GI Blues – but there is a punch and judy show – Flaming Star- he died, no hitting girls, he fights boys in Wild in the country – and he spanks one of the girls in blue hawaii. I can run through all of them and there are some he does and most he does not – but to say elvis and then parent’s generation – elvis would be 80 now – and the 1950s are the grandparents generation. domestic violence stopped being socially okay in north america in the 1970s so it’s also false to say it’s tolerated – the problem is religion in the public square and the idea that hitting a stranger is a crime but someone you are related to is a family matter. it’s how workplace abuse becomes acceptable and why there is now 1 mass public shooting every day in the USA.
and even as I was writing it, I could feel the rationalizations and fan-defense turn hollow and I just started to generalize.
THEN the power went out, The Southern part of British Columbia in now day 3 of a 4 day projected windstorm – and normally this kind of storm we get in November and here it is August – anyway – our house was in the 48 hour power out – so yeah hoarder houses and well stocked and me well actually most of my emergency prep gear is in storage……
while I was in the dark literally, my new blogger pal had continued the conversation!
I think that this is excellent and it can often help to see your words through someone else’s eyes.
I will also add that in Elvis’ own life – live in 50s girlfriend Anita Wood reports Elvis shoved her, his ex-wife Priscilla reported that he raped her when she said she wanted a divorce.
It’s not like he treated “women” well either – he had the chauvinism and hangs ups of the day – it is hard when a person is more advanced in some ways (ethnicity) but not so much in others – gender.
Elvis Presley was famously hiding in a movie theatre when his first Sun 45 was played to overwhelming demand of repeated spins and wanting to know – who and what – was this new singer?
Elvis wanted to be in movies and he didn’t really want to sing in them, he wanted to be taken seriously as an actor. Almost every movie he did, required a context to explain this Southern American in the setting – Elvis abroad or in the army solved most of the scripting issues.
So in an age where actors put their lives at risk doing stunts or their health at risk with extreme weight gains or losses – Elvis’ only change was in Change of Habit – he had fluffy hair.
So, let’s not take Elvis that seriously – him being dead – he doesn’t get to control the message or his meaning anymore.
Love Me Tender – the civil war – a family in turmoil over internal dynamics and choosing which side of who’s law to be on – the transition of war to peace and social standing by having the correct type of currency. Making the Clint worship of the older brother a teeny bit more payton place and it’s really an incesty Brokeback mountain.
(Elvis smacks Debra Paget around, falls in with the bad guys and dies trying to switch back)
Loving You and Jailhouse Rock – the Good/Bad Boy has “intensity” with Older Female/Male Mentor but marries the good girl.
Jails were never co-ed, eh….
King Creole – the only change this needs is the alternate scene with Debra Paget doing what it took to secure her man: premarital sex and moral obligation. A more adult themed version of an already seedy enough film with serious talent above and below the line.
GI Blues and Blue Hawaii – GI Bubba woos women to show off for his GI Buddies, then he returns home to his Daddy’s Pineapple Business, The Girl He Left Behind and Daddy Issues Galore, eh?
FLAMING STAR – here’s a Western a basic White Settlers vs The Indians – there are no law man characters, it’s all taken into one’s own hands!
The family tension between the Older all White son who has the girl and the younger half-breed son spills over into the border settlement of townies and landowners and Indians – remove the few Elvis songs and replace that with more graphic attacks on the named but not seen – and make it a political under town of invaders vs indigenous…
the angry disaffected man – at what colour tone does the change from freedom fighter to terrorist occur?
WILD IN THE COUNTRY
White Boy Gone Wild – Elvis the family whipping boy fights back and lands in juvie, romancing girls and again with the killer punch slaughters a man, who’s Dad he’s hound dog his Cougar.
Returning to the original version with the carbon monoxide suicide maintains more the pathos of the European marketing, posting Elvis more sophisticated about sex than the American marketing allowed in the about to be swinging 60s
with a bit more emphasis on the educated man, books being more subversive
Elvis drove, raced and piloted everything but fell short of doing anything science fiction.
In Clambake, Elvis plays a Chemist and creates the Rock Star Scientist Archetype that Jeff Goldblum is via The Fly and Jurassic Park.