Saturday, May 8, 2010

Vintage Girlie Magazines / The Land of Milk and Honey

Something a little different tonight. A parade of girlies. I usually keep it pretty toned-down on Darwination Scans, and I'm not ready to start posting scads of naked womens, but I feel like it's time I give the girlie magazines their due. There was a time not so far back when I wouldn't have considered scanning girlie magazines from prudishness and some ill-formed conceit that such material is not worthy of digitization, but just a cursory exploration of the girlie magazines of the 50s and 60s has cleared the fog. Many of the competitors of Playboy were very well done, and any cursory dismissal of the whole genre as mere smut ignores the fact that much excellent fiction was printed in these magazines and that the production of many of the hundreds of titles over the years was performed with utmost care. And before I go justifying or apologizing or whatever this foot-shuffling I'm engaging in is, smut has its charms, too.

But, really, in the age of XXX & internet porn, these magazines are downright quaint, a wholesome appreciation of the female form. Playboy and Penthouse these days don't seem much different to me than a Maxim or FHM. They are all glossy and polished with sanitary and conventional graphics layout and the magazine content is barely distinguishable from the advertising content. The girls tend to be stick-skinny and all reality-airbrushed from the whole thing and they are trying very much to keep the amplifier at 11. It's hard to call out the modern girlie magazines as being more objectified, but I can say unequivocally that I find the magazines from the 50s and 60s to be sweet and intimate, something you just cannot say about modern productions.

I probably won't be blogging that many of these, but I'd direct those with an interest in exploring the wide world of vintage girlie magazines to this site:

You won't find runs of Playboy or Penthouse here, but you will find a wide variety of gentleman's magazines from pulps to pockets to sweats through a wide variety of pin-up and nudie publications. I post regularly there and think the site has a lot of potential as a library and database of a whole variety of magazines. You can find any of these issues I'm posting tonight there with further detail as to contents as well as many other magazines from other scanners, so check it out. But onto the parade of magazines, you can click the issue title and number to go to the download link for each magazine. And before I forget my silent partner here, thanks to McCoy for the edit work on many of these issues. I'm sure he would agree with me that editing this type of magazine is a pleasure. Let's kick it off with a smokin' issue, I can almost feel the hellfire ;)

Sizzle v01n01 (1959.Spice)(DOM)

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Featuring Tura Santana of Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! fame. Watch out, boys.

21 n04 (1956.Monogram)

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Featuring an article with a psychological approach to spanking with many panels from Eric Stanton's Madame Adista, illustrated fiction, burlesque ads, a neat article on the girlie pulps of the 20s and 30s (which makes a convincing argument that the mags from the 50s were no naughtier than their predecessors), poetry, cartoons, and more.

Beau v01n03 (1966-08.PDC)

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With features on Jayne, Alan King, Rolls-Royce, Will Bardot Be Another Monroe?, Sybil Burton and the Wild Ones, Ann Austin, rock climbing and more.

Jayne Mansfield for President (1964.Books, Inc.)

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Not exactly a girlie magazine exactly, but a novelty publication, and a nice companion to this last issue. The thriftstore-in-the-hood where I got it wanted way too much for this not-so-great copy, but I drove all the way back to the store to get it the next day after a sleepless night. I'm happy to have it now and to share the scan with you. I scanned it back during the election, and I still say Jayne for President.

Escapade v01v06 (1956-03.Dee) (McNation)

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This mag included illustrated fiction, articles, poetry as well as pictorials. There is a feature on Corliss Archer along with a few photos of Bettie Page taken by Bunny Yeager.

French Frills v02n02 (1962.American Art Agency)(D&M)

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An early-ish magazine from Milton Luros' American Art Agency that is now more commonly known under the Parliament banner (the company that distributed the magazines). The Parliament mags are still highly prized by collectors for the great girls and great photography.

And one last magazine, I'll have to get up the rest I'd planned on posting tonight tomorrow. Much yard work, two soccer games, two birthday parties, and two chocolate brownies have me ready to curl up in bed early with a paperback, so I'll finish up with another handful of these tomorrow.

Nugget v01n02 (1956-02.Nugget)

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I became interested in this magazine from my interest in Archer St. John's comics. Early in life he and his brother, Robert, tangled with Al Capone when they ran a small newspaper rallying against the mob. Before he died perhaps of a speed OD, the comics industry had started to falter,and Archer St. John had been putting a lot of effort into this stylish men's magazine and the classic crime magazine Manhunt. After his death, Archer's son stepped in to see this published. On the contents page there is even a reference that the magazine was founded by Archer. Running mostly literary reprints and photo shoots, this is a neat magazine with cool photos and illustrations. This a classy magazine, from when we could mix a little playful nudity in with literature and esoterica. Nugget is still around (um in a far naughtier form), but it has surely been bought and sold many times since back when.

More tomorrow!


Bert said...

Stumbled on your blog today, what a nice surprise.

Beautiful, inspiring material, your work is much appreciated!

Jorge A. Trejos I. said...

Excelent material...awesome hard work.... thank you very much.....

northierthanthou said...

So much more interesting without all the modern day polish.