Thursday, June 3, 2021

My Thoughts on Elvis & Rudy

My thoughts on the Previous Post, "Elvis & Rudy":

I think the issue of Elvis and Rudy is not so much about the personality traits and personal tastes, etc. which is it is about the epic followings they garnered and so quickly. And just as Valentino's legacy is tarnished by the lies of his detractors today...I think Elvis suffers some of that disdain also but in a more sociological way.

I think there was, and is, a class division and attitude regarding Elvis; I remember that well when he was first popular because I am that old! You either loved him or he was the devil. And perhaps we have forgotten that historically this was also true to a great extent about Valentino when he was at the height of his fame.

I know my grandmother considered herself so far above it all, she would not deign to go to a Valentino movie and people then associated Valentino with screaming flappers and out of control “sheiking” teenagers. I think now Valentino has been elevated to a great degree by his veneration. But it was not always so.

The one point I will add to this discussion is Rambova. Unlike Elvis, Rudy had a lover/talented designer and classy lady... by his side for several critical years who groomed him, outwardly and inwardly into the slick, esoteric gentleman he would become. Without Rambova's influence, artistry, vision and guidance, I think Valentino would have had a different outcome professionally.

One thing that can not be denied about both icons is their genius. I never had a feeling either way about Elvis until I watched his live concert, I believe it was in 1973...and I was blown away.

Thanks for all the great comments!


  1. I do know one other thing Valentino and Elvis have in common. They are both the victims of David Bret's fictitious poison pen.

  2. So was Gary Cooper, Clark Gable , and Errol Flynn were also slandered by David Bret.

  3. Anything i guess to make money off dead people.Plus jealousy is an ugly thing.My opinion of course.

  4. I agree with Ms. Zumaya's assessment that most of the similarities in the lives of Valentino and Presley derive from the public reaction to each of these icons. While their economic backgrounds were totally dissimilar (Presley was raised in a very poor environment; Valentino was strictly middle class), each of them experienced severe public derision, as well as extreme adulation as young men in their twenties. It certainly could not have been easy for each of them to manage. I also agree with Ms Zumaya on the vast difference in their preference of women. Both of them had absolutely no trouble attracting ladies from all walks of life, but Valentino's public predilections were reflections of what he desired to be: intelligent, aristocratic, patrician. Presley, on the other hand, preferred young, innocent, sightly immature women he could mold into what he wanted them to be. I agree Valentino was certainly blessed, even wise, to have chosen the inimitable Rambova as his partner. Presley was certainly lacking Valentino's vision on that score, even though both of them died divorced men. Yet, in my opinion, the greatest similarity Valentino and Presley shared was their indisputable charisma. I don't believe there were any other males in the 20th century who created such a cultural reaction in their day or who exuded such magnetic sexuality (Sinatra, maybe...). One only has to view Valentino in The Sheik or watch Presley perform live to witness that powerful charisma and to experience that tantalizing effect both of them had on the public.