Saturday, September 26, 2009

Teen-Age Gangsters, 1957

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Just what is the problem with kids these days, anyways? Here's a classic blonde bad girl - pouting, smoking, and sexy in a cheap and downtrodden sort of way.

Up for your enjoyment this afternoon is an iconic publication on juvenile delinquency, a pocket-sized magazine from Hillman in 1957, square between The Wild One and West Side Story. And just who do I think the readership for was for this publication? Why, teen-agers of course. Here we are once again riding that fine line that the 50s pulp media mastered of condemning outlaw and unaccepted behavior while simultaneously indulging in it. With echoes of Wertham (who gets a shout-out in the introductory article), the editors give their motivation. The truth must be known! Sincerity? A guilty disclaimer? or just a nice hook?

The contents. Every vice covered! A mixture of teen sexual fantasy, true crime, and propaganda, no rock goes unturned...

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Get the scan here. I'm surprised I haven't seen the cover on a fridge magnet or whatnot, the whole pub is classic American kitsch.

Samples. Violence, Dope, Sex and Liquor. Wasn't High School great?

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What sort of twisted and abnormal kid would ever ever write such a thing? Surely a sociopath...

My favorite pic in the whole mag, the inside back cover. I loved just hanging out on the street with my buds as a teen, a gang just waiting to happen!

Next time on volunteer radio - scans so good it's a crime. True crime magazines! Some representative scans and undoubtedly a few ruminations on the genre...

Bonus scans. Here's my sendspace folder of pocket magazines. A number of these are from McCoy and other scanners, thanks, guys! I wonder how many collectors there are of pocket magazines. I love em! It seems like sort of offshoot of comics, the small format with more innocent varieties of men's magazine material. When the comics industry started to crumble, perhaps they looked to other products like this. Tucked away easily, I can imagine kids hiding these out of view from their teacher or parents. I guess these only survive today at the checkout as astrology and soap publications.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Romantic Movie Stories, June 1936 / Zoe Mozert

Romantic Movie Storeis ran from 1934-1937 on Fawcett. It began as a pulp and turned into a bedsheet in 1935. Most of the covers are glamour shots of stars. You can find these on ebay often listed among Hollywood mags. They can be pretty expensive (especially with a cult actress on the cover), but you can find em for cheap sometimes tucked away even though they are listed pretty high in Bookery's (the equivalent of Overstreet for pulps). The magazine features movies in story form but was only a pulp with fiction for a few years before changing into Movie Story Magazine.

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The cover artist is the wonderful Zoe Mozert. She is probably best remembered for her pin-up calendar work for Brown and Bigelow, but her skill goes beyond figure work, as her portraits and glamor shots are also lush and vibrant.

You can see some of her magazine work here:,z.htm

or see some more bio and a picture of her posing here:

As for this pulp title, it's an interesting number. It has slick sections at front and back with a pulpier paper in the center section. I suppose it's still a pulp, but really the production values are high and it reminds me more of a glamour/hollywood mag. It's bedsheet sized (bigger than a regular pulp) with nice cover stock and is packed with photos, cheesecake, neat ads, and stories of current movies.



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Cheers! I hope you've enjoyed this short look at some early Hollywood publications this weekend. Imagine what a resource a comprehensive, free, and instantly available library of film magazines would be for fans and researchers alike... We can do it :)

Get the full scan here.

c2c moment. I love this ad (excuse the unrestored spine, sometimes they aren't worth the hassle, but I hate to leave it out!):

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And another aside - I was asked by a reader if I minded if they used images from one of my scans for a blog post recently. Of course I don't mind! By all means, these may be my scans, but besides any craftsmanship that might be involved in the digital presentation, I lay absolutely no claim to this material except to ask that my scans be used for non-commercial purposes only. Scans make great blog fodder in terms of both images and subject, so have at it. Beyond the fact that I just love the act of scanning and working with old images, I mean to share the sense of discovery, bewilderment, and appreciation that the hobby of scanning magazines brings with it, so I love seeing a magazine I've scanned being shared elsewhere. Of course, my main aspiration in sharing my scans out in the open like this is to inspire more people to try their hand at scanning their own magazines. Besides my wonder at the breadth of our magazine culture, I work in so many areas because I'm always hoping to spark the niche collector into scanning their own magazines.

Next up: Zip Gun Killers, Thrill Pills, Switchblade Gangs, Smut Peddlers, Oh my!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Paris and Hollywood, March 1927 / Charlie Chaplin and Lita Grey

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Get the full scan of this magazine here!

A fresh scan up today from my raws with edits from the ever-excellent McCoy of a pulp-sized magazine from 1927 full of scandal, gossip, and movie and broadway news. The name lends a continental air, and there is a bit of content in here also regarding the glitterati of Europe and fun examination of the Europan vamp set aside the American Flapper. The magazine is published on slick paper with a section of leaves printed on a thicker stock with a nice green-toned ink. I'm told this is Fawcett's first film magazine. There's a nice movie magazine bibliography here that lists this magazines evolution as:

So This is Paris (March 1925) title changed to
Paris and Hollywood (April 1926) title changed to
Paris and Hollywood Screen Secrets (1928) title changed to
Screen Secrets (April 1928) title changed to
Screen Play Secrets (April 1930) title changed to
Screen Play (October 1931)

Leading off this issue is the scandal of the day, Charlie Chaplin's messy divorce from his second wife, Lita Grey. Chaplin married Grey when she became pregnant during the filming of The Gold Rush. He had known her for years (he married his first wife, also mentioned in the article at 16 as well) and the marriage was quite the scandal, from what I understand something of a shotgun wedding in Mexico. Upon their return to Hollywood, Lita and her calculating mother moved in with Chaplin and began to re-order his household, all the while taking many notes on Chaplin's purported abuses, dalliances, and sexual preferences that would make help make up Lita's argument for divorce and a record-setting divorce settlement. This material would also be leaked by Lita's lawyers in a 42 page pamphlet called Complaint by Lita Grey which this article mentioned and which would make a very nice scan if anyone out there happens to have a copy.

I'll go ahead and post images for the entire Chaplin article and then get on with the rest of the magazine.

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Really, it's hard to decipher what went on here, but it sure is spicy. On the one hand you've got Chaplin who is no doubt (to use Kenneth Anger's term from Hollywood Babylon) a chickenhawk. And a womanizer. On the other hand you have a calculating mother and participating daughter out to drive Charlie mad and take him for all he's worth. Chaplin says the whole thing aged him 10 years, and I don't doubt it.

But on to the rest of the magazine. Contents!

Samples. Flappers vs. Vamps. Go Flappers!

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The green-inked sections of pictures of Hollywood stars are full of nice cheesecake photos. The inclusion of the word "Paris" in the title probably cued readers in that there were some girlie photographs in here. Indeed, I'd like to see the earlier incarnation of the mag "So This is Paris" to see if it actually includes Hollywood material. The title may have begun as more of a fashion/photo sort of magazine and morphed with changing tastes. Anyways, some photos from the sections "Our Gallery of Hollywood Babes" and "Filmland Femininity""

There's a funny article in here commenting on the use of bathing beauties in the cinema and their soaring popularity. Lest the editors look too condescendingly at the practice, they've included these bathers.

Cheers and enjoy. Thanks again to McCoy for his editing work, a splendid job. Next stop on scan-o-vision, 1936, Movies in Story Form, Zoe Mozert, Carole Lombard, and more. All aboard.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Film Fun, February 1917 / Kissing Crow

Hopefully, a fun post this weekend for fans of the early cinema. Let's hop on the scan-o-matic time machine, destination Hollywood. I'm going to post one new scan and couple of older scans in an exploration of some of our early film magazines. First up, an early issue of Film Fun, a scan of mine from a couple of years ago. For a more in-depth look at this magazine, I highly recommend wandering over to the Enoch Bolles Blog. The proprietor is concerned mainly with Bolles' art but has done some nice posts that further explore the life of the magazine.

Our issue tonight features a pre-Bolles cover, and, as far as I'm concerned, it's show-stopper.

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I do not know the artist, so if anyone out there does, feel free to pipe up. A striking vision. Is she ugly or beautiful? Is kissing a crow's mouth tender or just creepy? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, eh? And what is beauty, anyways? Look at the women in this magazine and you'll see a very different version of glamor and the feminine ideal than we have today but also a Hollywood in its early days that perhaps worshiped the feminine a bit more than in our modern times. The magazine itself mentions that the male film star is lacking greatly in appeal to his feminine counterpart. Being male, I completely agree.

And make no doubt about it, these are indeed the early years of Hollywood right here in this magazine. We have President Wilson taking his wife to their first movie for an anniversary, discussion of the explosion of theaters across the globe and what nations prefer what type of movie. Also, front and center in this magazine is the early fascination with what happens on that casting couch. Women from all over the U.S. flocked to Hollywood, the myths and realities of what happen to these aspiring actresses walk a fine line between seedy participation and cautionary tale. But here we also see the success story of D.W. Griffith told by his wife. Only 8 years making movies and already Griffith seems solidly a Hollywood legend. These magazines are a great lens through which to view our classic cinema, not in some rarified air, but in the mags that film fans were gobbling up from corner newstands all across the country. Moreover, all fans of classic cinema know that so many films from the early days of Hollywood are gone and these magazines are a route to perhaps catch a glimpse of some lost bits of our popular culture. I hate to be so blunt as to draw an analogy between lost movies and lost magazines, but make no doubt about it, the time to digitally capture our printed heritage is now.


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Get the scan here!

Next stop, 1926 and a slightly less demure publication - let's see what that scamp Charlie Chaplin is up to...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The National Police Gazette 1907-10-26 & 1919-10-11

A quick post today of a couple of issues of The National Police Gazette scanned by McCoy and edited by yours truly.

When I made my introduction post for this publication I shared a magazine issue from the 60s, but I wish I'd began with an earlier issue like these here that might give a better idea of what the publication was like in its heyday.

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This issue features a ton of photos, a feature on Thomas Molineaux (a black American that fought in England in the early part of the 19th century), an expose on the prospects of rehabilitation for released convicts, much boxing news, a page in which the inquiry department answers "many intricate questions", settling bets far and wide, a feature on a prominent saloonist, baseball statistics, and many period advertisements for risque materials, cures for opium and alchohol, and the equivalents of our modern day viagra.

Get the scan of this October 26 1907 issue here.

And here's a second issue, this time from October 11, 1919

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This issue features Hollywood news, a pugilistic look-back at Irish bare-knuckle boxer Dan Donnelly, James Corbett reveals the toughest man he ever boxed, lightweight championship history, changes facing the Reds and the White Sox in the 1920 campaign, and more.

Get the scan of this October 11, 1919 issue here.

Thanks again to McCoy for the raw scans, these are a pleasure to work with.

I keep all the scans of this publication I come across in this folder here, so if you like to read these you might check back now and then for new ones. Scan yours today!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The New Eve - May 1926

An older scan tonight but I thought I'd take a chance to get it up here on my blog.

This magazine is exactly the sort of artifact I'm most happy to scan. I came across this magazine in my searches for an issue of The Flapper and think it's absolutely one of the most beautiful mags I've had the pleasure to scan. I couldn't find any information about this publication, so it seems pretty obscure and I don't know how long it lasted. It's printed on a nice slick paper and the cover stock texture is very neat. It's a superbly crafted magazine, with neat ink colors - I must say it's aged very beautifully over the years. I didn't do too much to the raw scans of this one just because it's so darn nice just the way it is.

Flappers and roaring 20s culture looms large in my imagination as a cool period in American culture. There was a great sense of style and also a sense of the possibilities for the modern era. In the magazines, there was also a surplus of production values, and the mags from the mid-20s are at their thickest, widest dimensions, and with most photos and pictures (seemingly we had money to burn). I like this snippet on the inside front cover:

This idea of shedding the conventions of the past is very strong in modernism. Women had gained suffrage and there really wasn't this strong of a feminist movement again until the 70s. The mag starts with a set of photos of follies girls. I don't know much about the history of the follies, but they are most certainly a precursor to the burlesque that was to follow, tho probably more upper-crusty. Don't the French still have that sort of revue? Anyways, a couple of the lovely starlets:

There's also a piece of fiction in here (amazingly almost every kind of magazine used to have at least a little fiction in there it seems, we have all sorts of stories to preserve in all sorts of magazines we don't even start to have scanned examples of):

I'm not sure what all W. Carey Wonderly wrote in the magazines, but he did seem to have something of a career as a screenwriter:

There's also fashion, design, and lifestyle sort of articles within these pages. Definitely an interesting snapshot of an earlier time.



Get the scan here.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Sensation, November 1939 / Should Wives Be Spanked?

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Ooh, boy, vintage magazine fans, you're in for a treat tonight. I admittedly began my hunt for this magazine based solely upon my curiousity about this salacious cover (purple, yellow, red and green -electric!) from Charles Overman (?) and was lucky enough to stumble upon a stunning little magazine. Sure the paper is pulpy and the content veering towards the titillating, but the design is just gorgeous. Printed with blue, red, and black inks and containing all sorts of cartoons, illustrations, and photos, this magazine has a very unique feel.

I think this was a one-shot publication but am unsure. The Aleister Crowley article promises more in the next issue, but I've seen no evidence of another issue (or really any information on this one for that matter).

But on to the issue at hand. Should wives be spanked? Mine gave me a cross look for the smirk on my face when I showed her this cross lass rubbin her bum and a-pouting, but the article inside, like many of the articles in this magazine, seems to take an approach different than you might expect. A peek into the sexual politics of 1939, yet the battle of the sexes rages on - perhaps there's some advice for the modern man in here as well. Or perhaps this line of thinking can get you in a lot of trouble with the Mrs. I'll go ahead and post the entire bit. The writer is Lawrence Gould, "Well Known Consulting Psychologist" who did some work for King Features. A google news search for "Lawrence Gould Psychologist" will lead you to some more of his opinions on the psychology of the day from the Milwakee Sentinel.

To lead the cover article, the cover artist returns for an encore. A quick web search didn't reveal anything about this Overman. I love the expression on the happy couples' faces.

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But John Barrymore looks downright menacing in this photo!

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I had to raise my eyebrow at the last paragraph, it seems that some standards of behavior just don't pan out when it comes to the bedroom.

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Anyways, enough discipline, on to the rest of the mag. Delish contents page:

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I'm going to try and be judicious here, but, really, almost every one of the articles in here is intriguing in one way or another, and there is great variety in subject matter. A nice rotation of hollywood gossip, sports icon examination, true crime, parenting and relationship advice and a brisk (lots of splash pages followed by short continuations in the rear of the mag will have you flipping all around) layout keep this magazine entertaining front to back.

A companion piece to the spanking article? A convincing examination of the modern American woman and her changing views, from George Jean Nathan, who with H.L. Mencken edited both The Smart Set and American Mercury. Otto Soglow cartoons adorn.

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Locked-out daughters! I think the writer comes to the compassionate conclusion. I like the look on the worried daughters face...

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Are these questions from a bygone era? The old custom of travelling from the city to the beaches for the hot season probably died with A/C, but I know some couples will take Summer vacations from each other. Watch out says this author! A great spread:

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I've already posted so many pics, but I'd be remiss not to post the centerfold, a creepy and intriguing article on mystic Aleister Crowley. Heck, I'll just post the whole article for web browsers.

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All props to McCoy for the fantastic edit work he did with this issue. All the ink colors turned out just right, it turned out is pulpy but elegant at the same time, just like the magazine, sensational!

Get the scan.

Ooh, one more pic. The femme fatale from "The Crimson Camera Case", she looks like one of those girls in the noir movies to die/ kill for so be on the lookout for this type - - -

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Showgirls, July 1947 / George Gross

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A George Gross cover kicks off this cool burlesque magazine. Gross did cover work for Fiction House on titles like Fight Stories and Jungle Stories as well as covers for many true crime magazines and paperbacks. No nudity in this one, but definitely a little kink here and there. Big thanks to McCoy for the edit.

The Scan

Sampleage. Me-yow.

Spanks for the memories!