I’m glad I was sitting down when I saw this: possibly the most controversial outfit Katy Perry has ever worn. She of the firework boobs and pedo-trawling hot pants is still made up like Mrs John Wayne Gacy, and still has that unflattering Not-Sure-If-Worth-Marketing-To-Goths hair colour, but the dress, shoes and bag are actually lovely and normal. By which I mean famous clothes-remover Dita Von Teese could wear them. Briefly.
When discussing powerfully iconic items of American clothing, three of the most important are associated directly with Marlon Brando: the leather motorcycle jacket, Levi blue jeans, and the white crew neck t-shirt.
It is this famous image above, from the movie A Streetcar Named Desire, of Brando in his t-shirt, that has seared this item of clothing into our collective national consciousness as the symbol of dangerous and forbidden sexuality. From that point forward, wearing t-shirts as outer wear became not just acceptable, but actually cool, and young men who courted the Brando-like image for themselves, copied the style, down to the surly look.
From that starting point, as we moved forward into the 1960s and 70s, the simple white crew neck t-shrt was customized with slogans and symbols, peace signs and smiley faces; still one of the markers of rebellious youth, although the stark white had morphed into the colors of the rainbow, and been tie-dyed almost beyond recognition.
And yet the expressive power of the simple white t-shirt remains, still as evocative as it has been since Brando first brought it out from beneath his shirt.
Legions of Bronies nickered with relief at the news that Cheryl Cole failed to find funding for her proposed production of the musical My Little Pony/Power Ranger crossover.