Paris Hilton’s Rhetorical Mentor: Popeye?
Most of the western world has figured out that Paris Hilton’s favorite word is “hot.” Paris has gone so far as to trademark the phrase “that’s hot” and is even suing Hallmark for using the phrase and her image on a greeting card.
Now that’s devotion to “heat.” But did you ever ask yourself, where did Paris pick up the word hot as an adjective for appearance? Only Paris knows for sure, but her primary rhetorical influence might be Popeye the Sailor Man. I’ve tracked that usage of “hot” back to 1931 in the Popeye comic strip. Observe, below, as Popeye and King Blozo discuss what’s hot from June and July of that year. Then watch Popeye say “That’s hot” in his own inimitable accent from December 1932.
And if that isn’t coincidence enough, consider the similarity of figure between Popeye’s best girl, Olive Oyl, and Paris. It wouldn’t be hard to imagine Paris stepping right into the strip…