Sex Sells #30

The creator of Dilbert, Scott Adams, I think summed up the sex- sells principle best:
Males are predictable creatures. That makes it easy to craft a marketing message that appeals to them. All successful advertising campaigns that target men include one of these two messages: 
1. This product will help you get dates with bikini models.
2. This product will save you time and money, which you need if you want to date bikini models.
Of course, the ultimate ad man, Don Draper, would disagree.  When Peggy uttered the words "sex sells", Draper jumped down her throat.... but then, he was always jumping down her throat, so never mind.


Retrospace Flashback Episode

The "flashback episode" reeked bloody havoc on sitcoms in the eighties - none were immune, whether it be Family Ties or Silver Spoons.  There was simply nothing worse than sitting down to watch your favorite show and then finding it was another crummy flashback episode.  It was a cheap move on the part of the networks before they invented the cheapest move of them all - the reality show.

Anyway, Retrospace has been around now for about five years, and I think it's about time for a flashback episode of our own.  Here's some of my favorite posts - not necessarily the most popular, just personal faves for a variety of reasons.  Just click on the Polaroids and enjoy.


Vintage Business #13: More On Secretaries

Look at this joker in the picture above.  She wants so bad to tell him to f**k off, but she can't - because it's still the seventies.  The Office as Men's Club was still in full effect, harkening back to the days of Mad Men.

Most high level positions today don't even have a secretary... of any gender.  It's not exactly cost effective and with modern day technology, there's just not a lot of reason to have Jane "take a memo". I have to believe that our forefather's offices had more than their share of secretaries - not because they were so damn efficient, but because...... well, that was things were done at the Gentlemen's Club..


School Daze #10: '82 Seniors - What's Your Favorite Song?

I came across this yearbook from 1982 (the school and the names shall remain anonymous) which had a nice little time capsule among the senior photos.  By each student, they listed their favorite person, song/album, food and activity.

 I was kind of amazed at how well the songs fit the photo; and the ones that didn't fit the profile took me by surprise.  It was rather interesting, so I thought I'd share.  I'd be interested to hear if you thought any of these didn't match or were perfect matches.  Enjoy!


Mini Skirt Monday #158: Logan's Run the Series (Part 2)

As I mentioned in Part 1, Logan's Run was and is the high water mark by which all television minis should be judged.  Former Sound of Music star, Playboy model, and spouse of Robert Urich, Heather Menzies, filled out one of the scantiest miniskirts ever to grace the boob tube.  Sadly, the show only lasted for 14 episodes, but nonetheless deserves a couple Miniskirt Monday posts.  This is textbook quality over quantity.

But why didn't it last?


Pulp Pages #3

Are you ready for another round?  You thought the last post was scraping the bottom of the barrel - well. I've got news for you:  there's still plenty of dregs left.  These are stories from romance and crime magazines primarily from the 1970's.  Enjoy the gallery, and I highly recommend you take a long shower when you're done.


The Boob Tube #43: The Incredible Hulk

Once upon a time, The Incredible Hulk was my favorite TV show.  I hated the David Banner scenes - they bored my ADD raddled mind to tears.  If I'd had it my way, it would have been the Hulk for the full hour; beginning to end, wall to wall Hulk.  The reality was that the show centered around Banner, and the Hulk was only in it for a few precious minutes (mid-episode and at the end). Yet, those two scenes were so damn awesome that it was still worth it.  Perhaps, the boring Banner scenes added to the anticipation, and made Hulk's arrival all the sweeter.


Vintage Men's Mags #39: More Girlie Magazines

Does anyone even buy these things anymore? The digital avenues to see naked ladies have completely outmoded the girly magazine.  For decades these time-honored publications were the whipping posts of religious and conservative groups..... now what can they say?  The Internet is such a massive "cesspool", how could you even begin to protest its content?

Read through old newspapers, and you'll find over and over again various religious and political groups taking a stand against the plague of dirty magazines.  The government issued reports of the worst offenders in graphic detail (and this volume could actually be found in your local library, much to the delight of many a young lad). Churches would burn them, picket the "smut peddlers" and up-and-coming politicians could always count on the "anti-porn" platform to win votes in the Heartland.


Retro Film Report #30: Primitive London (1965)

Primitive London (1965) is a dirty movie disguised as a documentary - and that's what makes it so damn adorable.

The early sixties were chock full of so-called documentaries on nudist colonies pretending to be edifying, when in fact they were just looking for a loophole to show bobbies. I understand it.  They simply couldn't get away with this level of epidermal exposure without pretending to be some sort of scholarly work.  Plus, men could rationalize going to see a documentary, and would feel like hopeless perverts without the academic veneer.

On the other hand, it's all so damn hypocritical.  The narrator in Primitive London is pompous and judgmental, looking at everything through Limbaugh tinted glasses.  We all know this a ruse so male audiences can see some T&A. So, can we skip the virtuous jibba-jabba?

And for God's sake, "primitive"? Really? We're not talking about New Guinea.  I mean, London in 1965 may have been swingin', but it wasn't anything close to primitive.  "Moderately Debased on Occasion" maybe... but Moderately Debased London on Occasion doesn't have the same ring to it.


Just for Laughs #6: Another Monster Party

Retrospace continues to carry the torch of the long standing tradition of monster-loving silliness wherein a speech bubble is added to a movie frame.  It's cheesy, it's lame, and #$%@ dammit, I love it! Will your blog be bold enough to also wear the mantle? I'll be happy to link to you, if you are.  The world needs more monster movie tomfoolery.  I'm convinced.


Mini Skirt Monday #157: Logan's Run TV Series (Part 1)

I admit I'm prone to exaggeration and hyperbole to get my points across, but this time I tell it objectively and factually - Heather Menzies' miniskirt on Logan's Run is the high water mark in the history of miniskirts on television.  No skirt was shorter, more center-stage, or more prone to flying upwards.

Of course, the original movie was no slouch when it came to to miniskirts either.  It falls in line with the grand tradition of the 1950s-70s to depict futuristic women's clothing as miniskirts.  We could postulate all day as to who filled out the costume better: Jennifer Agutter or Heather Menzies.  However, when compared to the television landscape of miniskirts from On the Buses (1969) to The Nanny (1993), Logan's Run reigns supreme.

Indeed, it was the topic of much discussion at the time.  Even smack in the middle of the "jiggle TV" phenomenon, it still raised eyebrows.
"They have to be careful with the camera with this costume... When I bend over they're in trouble"
              - Heather Menzies (from a 1977 article shown below)


Ads #70: Japanese Advertising (Part 2)

Remember back in the late seventies and into the eighties, the space shuttle was 'the big thing"?  It wasn't just Moonraker that jumped on the "shuttle is cool" bandwagon - it popped up in Airplane II, on toy shelves, McDonald's Happy Meals, and evidently in Japanese beer.

I would love to have a bottle of this.  Why is everything from Japan so damnably cool?  Here's some more Japanese vintage ads for your viewing pleasure...


Artful Conception #22: Carried Again!

Okay, we've done two posts already on this well worn theme.  The last one featured only images from Famous Monsters of Filmland which actually had the "monsters carrying chicks" theme featured in several issues.

In 2010, I did an Artful Conception post on the subject and became so overwhelmed with the sheer volume of images that I planted them all in a series of mosaics.  It was a great way to unload hundreds of "carrying" examples, but a bad way to present a post - each images was tiny, too small to appreciate.

In all seriousness, I could devote an entire blog to the subject, the image is repeated so many times in vintage pop culture.  So, where does that leave us? With thousands of examples without a home.  Maybe someday I'll put them all in a PDF (but my file sharing site has banned me for overloading their bandwidth); until then, here's the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Enjoy.


Tech #27: How A Computer System Works (1975)

I thought it might be fun to take a quick tour through a book on computing from 1975.  There's just something about those gigantic whirring boxes that makes my heart beat faster.  How A Computer System Works is fully illustrated and a wonder to behold.  Let's take a walk through the pages of antiquated technology, shall we?


Music Lists #18: Nineteen Songs I Love

Here's 19 songs that should be on everyone's playlists.  I'd share them with you myself, but I've been burned too many times with the music sharing biz.  Instead, here's a list of what I'm listening to.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on this selection and maybe learn song recommendations that you have to offer as well.  I prefer tracks a bit off the beaten path..... but don't stray too far.  Things get scary in the far corners of the music landscape.

Foxy Ladies #24: Hotties and Heating Units

Spic and Span was an old UK girlie magazine from the 1960s.  Pretty innocent cheesecake - mostly swingin' Brits showing a bit of leg here and there.  As I was paging through a few of these old rags, I kept noticing heating units in the background - mainly wall radiators.

This shouldn't be a shock.  It's damn cold in England.  However, I still found it a little strange that these heaters were lurking in the background of so many photo shoots.  I mean, was it that cold they had to pose by a radiator every time?

I wish I had more to show you beyond the handful in this post. Nonetheless, it's curious enough that I had to share.


Food & Drink #19: Gastro-Abominations

This just looks so unspeakably wrong.  Spam Spread on toast draped with a generous dollop of lumpy mustard lying awkwardly on a bed of lettuce - deeeelish.  Yet, despite its obvious issues, I'd still rather eat this than just about any of the fancy shmancy stuff they dish up on The Food Network.  Am I crazy?

Foxy Ladies #23: Agnetha and Frida

Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad - the babes of ABBA.  What's to say that's not already been said? They could sing, they were super hot, and they were from Sweden!  That's all you really need to know. Their glam outfits made them super-heroines of sorts, and their sound was like a Twinkie sprinkled with pixie dust (that's the only way I can describe it).

Indeed, the seventies were littered with stone cold foxes with microphones, but Agnetha and Frida take the cake - (followed closely by Debbie Harry). And, please, no arguing as to who's hotter.  Agnetha and Frida are a package deal.  Sure, Agnetha has more of the traditional good looks you'd expect out of Scandinavia; but Frida was nothing to sneeze at either.  She had that sort of twinkle in her eye - she seemed to be having more fun than anyone on stage, and I'm sure was the wild child of the bunch..... at least that's the fantasy I've created in my head over the past thirty-odd years.

Anyway, I hesitated to do an ABBA related post considering the interwebs are cluttered with enough ABBA pics to wallpaper the planet. Finally, I relented, but tried to throw in some that maybe aren't quite as ubiquitous. So, enjoy.


Retro Film Report #29: Best Friends (1975)

The movie posters for Best Friends are among the most misleading I've ever seen.  The standard poster art and lobby cards feature a line of hostile looking Native Americans with the tagline "She became the ravaged victim of a century of revenge!"  If they wanted a story like that, they should have made that movie - but this ain't it.  And the irony is, this a pretty damn good movie in its own right, without the need to add the exploitative element.


Pancakes #12: Catalog Pancakes

What if the world literally had gone to pancakes.... where even the Montgomery Wards catalog was steeped in creepy sexual undertones.  Imagine if the Sexual Revolution wasn't extinguished during the Reagan years and, instead, it simply kept going towards its inevitable crescendo.  Instead of fizzling after the cocaine fueled sex party that was the Disco Years, it kept going full steam ahead.  In this alternate universe, the Montgomery Ward's Catalog would look something like this...


Artful Conception #21: Movie Poster Montage

It's time for another walk through the Retrospace Museum of B-Movie Art. The museum is free to the public, and the beer's only a buck fitty (I hope you like Pabst Blue Ribbon in a paper cup).   Feel free to sign up for the guided tour - the price includes a Foghat record and admission to the 7:30 wet t-shirt contest.  Rock on!

Our special collection today is the montage.  You gotsta love the montage, where the philosophy of "less is more" is jettisoned in favor of the more straightforward "more is more" approach.


The Boob Tube #42 : Celebrity Specials

You remember specials, right? I'm not talking about TV Movies - I mean, singing, dancing, and cheesiness abounding.  I mean the type brimming with Love Boat regulars and Hollywood Squares veterans. They don't exist anymore, but in the seventies and early eighties there was lots of fanfare around even the dumbest variety special.... and we lapped them up and begged for more.

The shame of it is hardly any of them are available to watch.  They're not the sort of thing to get transferred to DVD or offered via streaming.  Some have been uploaded to YouTube, but they're typically grainy VHS transfers, hardly watchable.

Mini Skirt Monday #156: Couples

It's been about a year since we last featured "couples" on Miniskirt Monday. Couples are a fun brand of post in that you get your requisite miniskirt, but you also get the interesting (for lack of a better word) fashions of her partner.  Plus, there's that sociological element too, where you try and analyze and dissect the couple.  More often than not, the chick is swingin' and the guy is as goofy as the day is long.

This time around, we'll focus on young adults and teenagers. So, sit back and enjoy.


Ads #69: Japanese Advertising

Asian advertising often has me scratching my head in abject confusion; however, you have to admit they have an amazing stylistic sensibility.  Not only is the lettering more appealing but the whole composition/layout upon the page is so clean and well placed.  It's hard to explain, but if I had to use an analogy - in advertising they are the Felix Unger and we are the Oscar Madison. (Get it? Madison Avenue?..... I'll see myself out.)