Thursday, November 3, 2011

3 Men You May Not Know Responsible For Mass Hysteria

Let's get one thing straight here, when I mean Mass Hysteria, I don't mean that these guys were trending on Twitter or had the most Google searches today; I mean thousands of people were driven towards near insanity by their devotion and love of these men. They literally brought people together to be psychotic within close proximity to them without any particular cause or reason besides the fact that they existed. These guys are the bee's knees, not just one bee's, a whole hive's worth of knees. Yup, they're just that darn popular. Anyway, let's jump into it!

Note: To remain unbiased, Norman and I have both excused ourselves from this list. Your mass hysteria about us is very heartening though, so thanks!

1. Franz Liszt - Franz Liszt is perhaps the greatest pianist to ever live, hammering the ivories in the 19th century. A Hungarian, Franz began learning to play piano at the age of seven and it would be this instrument that would be his great success. Franz Liszt lived til seventy four, and while very successful, his personal life held many tragedies in failed romances and the death of his children. However, Franz held the attention of everyone who had ever heard him play. Franz Liszt was known in his time to be brilliant, as so few great people are. He was loved, adored, frenzied over to the point where a phenomenon known as Lisztomania occurred. Franz Liszt in his adept virtuosic playing ability would whip his adoring fans into literal frenzied states. They would rush around him and grab at his clothes. A glove or item of his clothing was a treasure of a lifetime. Women would grab his hair to gain a lock of it, a broken piano string from his often forceful playing from his own frenzy as he played would be asked as a favor. Franz Liszt held everyone captive, yet they were driven to a "veritable insanity" by him. Screaming fans of today's musicians cannot hold a candle towards Franz Liszt, though The Beatles "Beatlemania" and Elvis and his gyrations are more modern and somewhat similar phenomenon.

Go crazy.

2. Rodolfo Guglielmi - Rodolfo Guglielmi arrived in the USA at the age of eighteen looking for work. He became a taxi dancer, a person hired to dance with someone who probably would not know how to dance, essentially an escort within a dance hall who's sole job is to guide you for a fee. Rodolfo eventually found himself in Los Angeles through circumstance, where he began acting in films. Rodolfo began small but through changing film companies and coasts (again), he became a star. Rodolfo became the dream of American women, a seducer, a sex symbol, a man every woman wanted. He became immortal through the film The Sheik. You most probably know Rodolfo Guglielmi as Rudolph Valentino, an iconic film star of the Roaring Twenties. Valentino was unlike any man at that time, he wore a wristwatch, an effeminate then, a corset when he danced to appear slimmer and was very concerned with his appearance, wearing heavy amounts of makeup for films and dressing primly and properly constantly. Rudolph Valentino was the definition of a dandy, and women loved it just as much as men hated it. Rudolph was moderately successful with his Dandy, seducer image, though the minor hysteria was nothing compared to his sudden death at age 31. His open coffin funeral brought in a crowd of about 100,000 (which considering it was 1926, is a lot of people), mostly comprised of hysterical women, entirely breaking down that their tempter, their idol had died. Some killed themselves. Many had to be restrained by mounted police. All for an actor who's almost cold portrayals of men had drawn in the misty eyed dreams of thousand of women. To this day, Rudolph Valentino is still revered as a sex symbol and for his feminine seeming charms, still fiercely debated and argued about.

Can't you just see the seduction?

3. Amitabh Bachchan - Finally, someone who's still alive! Amitabh Bachchan is a veteran cinema actor from India, who's film industry is known as Bollywood. Undoubtedly, he is the most legendary actor ever from India where he has reached a status that is near godlike. His climb began in the 70s and never stopped. His appearance brings thousands. His house is surrounded by walls and guards to prevent anyone from getting near him, not that they'd want to harm him, it's just that everyone wants to be near him. On his 60th birthday, millions milled around his home to wish him well and lavish him with gifts and love. Even his son's wedding was called "the wedding of the century" (well his son did marry the supposed "most beautiful woman in the world"), where the country practically stopped to watch. He was voted in 1999 "Greatest Star of stage or screen of the Millennium" by an online poll conducted by BBC. His most legendary movie was shown in 2004 on public television for the first time. Every street was empty. Amitabh Bachchan is unlike any man on Earth. His name sparks conversation of his movies, his voice, his influence. He is respected, he is loved. Amitabh Bachchan simply put is a walking hysteria-inducing machine. In a good way of course. Also, he is part of the Legion of Honour and recipient of France's highest Civilian award for no other reason then being amazing. Yup, he's boss.

Don't mess, I have a goatee.

I am well aware that there are a few more mass hysteria inducing people, mostly from countries that are not America. This entire article could actually have been written about Indians, as the influence of a select few superstars there literally grip the nation. Anyhow, these three men here span not only time but location in their ability to do one thing and do it very well: make everyone absolutely bananas.