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The Greatest "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes"Moments In Pop Culture

By: Hana Tilksew

Marilyn Monroe

It’s probably the most famous scene in Old Hollywood history. With its bright red backdrop, dozens of background dancers, and of course, the incomparable Marilyn Monroe, “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” from the 1953 film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes is a musical number that people still know the lyrics to today. Marilyn’s sultry voice kicks off the tempo change: “I prefer a man who lives and gives ... expensive jewels.”

This scene has been parodied and recreated a thousand times over, but only a few replications capture a similar magic to the original. In no particular order, here are the greatest Gentlemen Prefer Blondes moments in pop culture.

1. Ryan Gosling — “I’m Just Ken” at the 96th Academy Awards

Ryan Gosling

It was the performance heard ‘round the world: someone (thankfully!) convinced Ryan Gosling to sing a TV performance of the Oscar-nominated and Golden Globe-winning song that became the most comedic part of Barbie. Gosling’s fellow Kens, including Simu Liu and Ncuti Gatwa, joined him onstage, and he serenaded co-stars Margot Robbie and America Ferrera in the audience.

It’s safe to say the crowd went wild: the show’s ratings jumped through the roof, and Martin Scorsese’s daughter even shared a video of her dad grinning through the performance.

2. Margot Robbie — Birds of Prey

Margot Robbie

Ryan isn’t the only member of the Barbie cast who can do Marilyn. Margot did her own “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” musical number as Harley Quinn, with a hot pink outfit and platinum roller curls to match. Who knew pro-criminal Harley was into vintage movies?

3. Blake Lively — Gossip Girl, Season 5 Episode 13

Blake Lively Gossip Girl

Old Hollywood references were a running theme on Gossip Girl, used to emphasize how Serena and Blair were always character foils of each other. In her dream sequences, Blair imagines herself as Audrey Hepburn, the sophisticated brunette she wants to relate to. In contrast, Serena imagines herself as Marilyn, the voluptuous, attention-grabbing blonde. Even if you’ve never seen the show, you can tell a lot about these characters based on the actresses they identify with.

4. Kylie Minogue — Grand Opening, Fox Studios Australia

Kylie Minogue recreated Marilyn’s entire musical number at the grand opening of Fox Studios Australia in 1999. She might be the closest imitator of Marilyn in recent decades, especially when it comes to her voice and dance moves. No one else has nailed the performance better, except for Marilyn herself!

5. Kylie Jenner — Halloween 2019

Kylie Jenner Halloween

Kylie Jenner unveiled this look for V Magazine on Halloween Day, and we’ve all been obsessed ever since. The magazine described Marilyn as “a vintage version of the celebrity archetype” that Kylie is now: the bombshell that everyone can’t stop talking about. It’s hard to think of a more fitting Halloween costume.

6. Madonna — “Material Girl” Music Video

Madonna Material Girl

Because what else would you reference in a music video about material wealth, other than a musical film also about material wealth? It’s kind of a no-brainer.

7. Jane Russell — Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

Jane Russel Gentleman Prefer Blondes

Jane Russell, Marilyn’s co-star in the 1953 film, was the first to parody “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend.” Fun fact: the sexy showgirl costume Jane wears in this scene was actually the costume Marilyn was supposed to wear in her solo performance. But studio executives wanted her to be more “covered up,” so she wore the famous hot pink gown instead. That meant the OG costume could be worn by someone else, and Jane boldly took up the mantle.

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