Vintage Men's Mags #36: The Couch

I'm sure these photographers started with a creative concept; but when that didn't work out, it was, "Screw it.  Go sit on the couch and look sexy."

Playboy had the money, so they could afford to get imaginative.  Their covers featured some pretty interesting concepts that were obviously not shot by amateurs.  Meanwhile, the rags with a tighter budget often ended up opting for the couch. "Aw, to hell with it. Just go sit on the couch and play with your hair or something."

As with most things on Retrospace, I'm not as interested in the high dollar photo shoots. (i.e. most fashion posts on this site are from crummy needlework pamphlets rather than the likes of Vogue or Cosmo).  The "skin mag on a budget" is what I like - they're a more genuine, less manicured, slice of the past.  So, today I'm honoring the "Screw it.  Go sit on the couch, put your leg in the air or something, and let's go get a sandwich." photography method.  Enjoy.

Showcase carved their own niche in the nudie magazine market by featuring strictly unpleasant drunk women.

Does this look a little familiar to you? Mayhaps we've seen a similar cover before?

And the winner is...



  1. Very nice. Looking forward to more.

  2. I wonder how often the phrase "Get on the couch...screw it" was heard during these photo shoots?

  3. The girl in the top and Bachelor's Apartment photos is absolutely gorgeous. Those eyes. That perky nose. Those supple lips. Much easier to look at than The Mrs. Good lord, was Mama Cass busy that day and that was all they could find?

  4. Ouch!
    Theses are some seriously trashy magazine covers.
    Seriously, I enjoy a good cover as much as you fellas, but THESE are really low rent. "How to Decorate a Bachelor's Apartment" is about as good as it got here.

    I know that these things were put out for pennies, but really. Most of the other magazines you have posted have had SOME class. These look like those 1960s B&W "documentaries" on "Don't let this happen to your daughter!"

  5. Wow! Elmer Batters was a famous leg photographer who put out his own magazines (maybe "Tip-Top" was one of them, he would say he was interested in everything "from the TIP of the toes to the TOP of the hose"). Plus a piece by Herb Caen and an anti sneaker article? I'm sold! Here's my $1.25 sir! I love all the different typefaces too-I wish I could make out the "High Heels" one better; are those tiny contortionist go-go girls inside each letter? "Oh honey, I just read these for the typefaces!"

  6. Is that the same model in the first Nylon Jungle and how to decorate a bachelors appartment? BTW she is the hottest of this rather skanky bunch

  7. I though the Showcase mag with the lady in the sweater could be a new feature. Call it knits and knudes.

  8. J. Bevington TaliaferroMarch 05, 2013

    The thing I first noticed about Playboy and Penthouse as an inquisitive young fellow was that their entire concept was to reassure the "reader" that he was not just a sweaty, furtive wanker. No, he was a man of the world; a man with a taste for the finer things; a man who doesn't have to ask "how much?"; a man who sees into a woman's soul and effortlessly causes her to float through the air, giggling, and into his bed. We were reassured that suave-ass, Double-Nought Spies were most certainly the kind Men Who Read Playboy.

    The covers above say, "Deviants-R-Us!!!"

    1. I remember sneaking looks at my dad's copies of "Playboy" and seeing those ads that asked "What Kind Of Man Reads Playboy?"and the "guidance" there about what wines to order, what clothes a man should buy, the music he should be listening to, etc. I remember always feeling inadequate afterwards, lol.

  9. spinetinglerMarch 26, 2013

    She is welcome to decorate my apartment any time. Via time machine, of course.

    The others, not so much.

  10. A lot happened in a short time in the mid to late 60's. With the arrival of the miniskirt came the downward spiral of stockings. Tights/pantyhose made stockings passe with the "in crowd."

    Oddly enough, if you take a look at 50s and 60s Playboy mags, few women are wearing stockings as it was all about anatomy. The low budget mags were the ones still giving praise to the lowly stocking and the fabulous woman who was brave enough to wear them in an increasingly pantyhose world.

    Mini skirts followed into the 70's, but long dresses also made quite a comeback. By the mid 70's miniskirts had gone the way of the stocking. It would be bittersweet for the stocking lover as even though the miniskirt was dead, in it's wake so was the stocking. It had become a pantyhose world.

    Another odd irony was that golden era porn, late 70's - late 80's, featured many women wearing stockings. This was about as close as a single man could get to seeing women actually wearing stockings. Albeit, for sexual circumstances and objectification.

    There was a revival of stockings in the 80's with the 50's retro revival, Madonna and later the "cherry bomb" look. Once the 90's were ushered in, fashion designers were telling women "Don't wear those toe covering nylons, show off your toes." It was the nail in the coffin for even pantyhose wearers. No longer could you get a glimpse of a woman showing her potentially nylon wrapped legs, you got bare skin. YUCK!!! Can see that at the beach anytime. Booooring!!!

    Fashion these days has become a free for all. Lazy, frumpy style has taken over the masses. Birkenstocks and UGG Boots have done their damage!!!

    I raise a glass to the women who still wear stockings today, whatever you reason, thank you.