Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Here's a really sweet cover from 1928 and the best among the very few Bolles Valentine's day themes. A couple months back I included this image in a group of bulls-eye style compositions. For some reason Bolles had his sights on this theme in 1928; there were four true bulls-eye covers and another where the girl was framed by an easel, far more than any other year for Film Fun.

But back to today's theme. It's really too bad that Bolles did so few Valentine covers and because they are so rare I'll include one more from 1926, but not because I like it. Precisely the opposite, in fact. This is an example of a Bolles style I have my druthers with. It's not just that she is sub-clinical anorexic, but the combination of the slight frame and large head make her look too young, and the provocative (really provocative) nightie just adds to the discomfort level, at least for me. There a couple other seriously underweight cover girls on Film Fun in 1926 but the rest were more fulsomely framed, so go figure. I'll likely do an entire post on this particular style of Bolles girl because she reappeared in 1929 on the covers of Pep and Spicy before Bolles abandoning it in 1931. These covers, by the way are courtesy of Mark Forer, photoshop clean-up man par excellence.



I'm including one additional cover from 1933. Technically, she's not a Valentine girl but her heart's in the right place.

10 comments:

Mariana said...

Yeah, those poor little arms are sad to see. Happy Valentine's Day! :)

Jack R said...

Hi Mariana,
Happy Valentine's Day! The pics of Joan Crawford pics on Art Deco are great. Love her or hate her she really knew how to pose for the still camera.

BLDawley said...

I like the way you blog, sir.

Jack R said...

Hi Brandon,
Thanks!! I appreciate hearing this because sometimes it's hard to tell. My numbers have been a down and I've lost followers :(
Not that I'm trying to conquer the world through my blog or anything.
Jack

Bruce said...

Hi Jack,
Enjoy your blog. By the way, the men in charge of Canada Customs back in the 1920s shared your discomfort with the girl/young woman in the diaphonous nightgown on the cover of the March 1926 issue of Film Fun. On April 1, 1926, Film Fun was added to the list of publications banned from entry into Canada. The ban was rescinded in January 1927, only to be reimposed in March 1933 for over a decade.

Jack R said...

Wow, so it was her. I knew that at some point Canada banned FF but had no idea of when (and for how long). If you don't mind me asking, how did you get such specific info on this? (and thanks for sharing this).
Jack

Bruce said...

The information I have about magazines that were prohibited entry into Canada comes from my research in the national archives in Ottawa. The archives have the official memoranda which named the titles to be seized at the border - unfortunately reasons for the prohibitions, or correspondence related to the decisions, have not survived.

Jack R said...

This is really interesting and I appreciate you sharing it. It's interesting that the 1926 FF cover was the likely cause of the initial ban. I'm still trying to find the court documents regarding the U.S. Postmaster General's case against Film Fun.
Jack

Bruce said...

Hi Jack,
It sounds like we have overlapping research interests. If you'd be interested in more information about spicy magazines banned by Canada Customs in the 1920s and 1930s, let me know how to contact you and I can share a list. And I'd love to hear more about your investigations. Why did the Postmaster General crack down on Film Fun and other "salacious" magazines in 1942? Seems awfully late. Why then and not earlier?
Cheers,
Bruce

Jack R said...

Hi Bruce,
Absolutely I'd be interested, and would like to know more about your own research too. Do you by chance know Will Straw at McGill? He's long had an academic interest in Canadian "smoosh" mags.

The Postmaster General got after Film Fun and other magazines at the behest of the Bishop of his parish, who was involved in a magazine decency program. He'd send the Postmaster General the list of magazines they deemed salacious and the PM would dutifully go after them. But the press got wind of it and there was a bit of a scandal. I think the PM may have been forced out but I'll have to go back and check my notes to be sure.
Jack