Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Talking with the “Black Cracker” about the black artist Al Hollingsworth


The publication of Josh Alan Friedman’s new memoir Black Cracker this week reminded me of some things he recently told me about the pioneering black artist Alvin C. Hollingsworth.

In the early 1960s, Josh was the only white kid in the last segregated school in New York City.

His experiences as a “Black Cracker” are the subject of his new book. (BTW, you can buy copies signed by Josh on Amazon now.)

Josh’s father, Bruce Jay Friedman, edited Men, Man's World and other men’s adventure magazines for Martin Goodman’s Magazine Management company.

Because of his dad’s job, Josh got to meet some of the writers and artists who sold stories, artwork and cartoons to men’s pulp mags in their heyday.

One of those artists was Alvin C. Hollingsworth, a.k.a. Al or A.C. Hollingsworth. He was also sometimes known by his cartoon pen name, Alvin Holly.

Hollingsworth was one of the first African American artists to break into the comics and magazine cartoon business.

Among his markets were the men’s adventure magazines that Josh Alan Friedman’s father edited.

“I remember Al very well,” Josh told me in a recent phone call. “I was the ‘Black Cracker,’ the only white kid at my school.

When my dad brought Al on, he was the only black guy working for the men’s magazines that we knew of, at least at Magazine Management, where he mostly did cartoons.”

Al was also a very good painter, who eventually had his paintings shown in galleries and museums.

I remember that he came over for dinner a few times to our house and he would always bring my dad one of his new paintings.

I also remember Al was a bodybuilder. Huge arms. He was a heavy weightlifter. In fact, a lot of the artists who did artwork for the Magazine Management magazines were bodybuilders. Mort Kunstler, James Bama, almost all of them.

Well, not the cartoonists (said Josh with a laugh). Al was probably the only bodybuilder cartoonist.”

Unlike Kunstler and Bama, who provided painted cover art and illustrations to men’s magazines, Al Hollingsworth sold them line drawings and “Good Girl Art” cartoons.

But he is probably better known for his comic book art.

Along with Matt Baker, Hollingsworth was one of the most prominent African-American comic book artists of “Golden Age” and early “Silver Age” comics.

Starting in 1948, when he was only 20, Hollingsworth worked off and on with the legendary Joe Simon and Jack Kirby studio. In the 1950s, he penciled and provided stories for adventure and horror comics published by Avon, Key, Trojan and Comic Media.

By the late 1960s, Hollingsworth had pretty much left the comics and men’s magazine cartoon art behind to focus on painting and teaching.

He became a full professor at Hostos Community College of the City University of New York. He hosted a TV series about art for kids called You’re Part of Art and wrote the acclaimed children’s book about the Guggenheim Museum, I’d Like the Goo-Gen-Heim

Hollingsworth died in 2000, at the age of 72. But his art is still popular among collectors. You can usually find some Hollingsworth paintings, prints or original cartoon art on eBay.

And, if you’re a comic book fan, you should check out the posts about Hollingsworth on Scott's Classic Comics Corner and the Comic Book Catacombs Website.

Also be sure should also check out Josh Alan Friedman’s website, where he has posted a series of great articles about men’s adventure magazines.

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Comments? Questions? Post them on the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.


Recommend reading for fans of vintage “Good Girl Art” (GGA)…

Uncovered: The Hidden Art Of The Girlie Pulps

A great overview of the art of the Girlie Pulps. 208 full color pages and over 400 cover reproductions.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Daring to compare Norman Rockwell, Norman Saunders and Norm Eastman


Men’s adventure magazines of the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s have a special place in the history of illustration art.

The artwork they used was a more modern incarnation and evolution of the pulp art covers created for classic pulp magazines from the early 1900s until about 1950, when the classic pulps finally faded away and the men’s postwar pulp magazine genre fully emerged.

In fact, many great pulp illustration artists who created covers for pre-World War II pulp magazines went on to provide cover and interior art for the postwar men’s pulp mags.

Men’s adventure magazines also helped keep alive the tradition of painted covers and interior art after the classic pulps disappeared and the mainstream magazines, which had also featured painted covers and illustrations for decades, switched to photos.

Some people may look down on the cover art and illustrations used for men’s adventure magazines.

But they are actually very similar to — and often as good as or better than — the artwork done for mainstream magazines, the best known of which are probably the celebrated cover paintings that Norman Rockwell created for The Saturday Evening Post.

They are part of a general school of 20th Century American realism art that was used for slick and pulp magazines, hardcover book dust jackets and illustrations, pulp paperback covers, advertisements and some comic book covers.

It’s a type of painted art that looks realistic in its depictions of people and settings, whether the scenes involved are based on reality or fantasy.

To help make their art look realistic, many of the best illustrators of that era worked from photographs they staged and shot themselves. This technique was used by both mainstream artists like Norman Rockwell and by pulp art masters like Norman Saunders.

At right are photos Norman Saunders took of himself and used for two characters in his cover painting for the November 1962 issue of Man’s Story (shown at the top of this post).

These photos come from a chapter written for the book It’s a Man's World by Norman’s son David Saunders, who is himself an acclaimed artist.

In that chapter, David notes:

“Dad preferred to paint from observation of actual objects, so he would arrange elaborately staged setups for his models and shoot Polaroid snapshots to refer to while he painted. He always used dramatic theatrical lighting, with colored filters for their illusive effects. Many paintings featured a ‘hot light’ (red, orange or yellow ) glowing on one side of the object and a ‘cold light’ (purple, blue or green) shining on the other side. This ‘hot-to-cold’ color scheme was a traditional technique for adding dimensional depth to a painting. ‘Cool’ colors seem to move away from the viewer, while ‘hot’ colors appear to confront the viewer’s eye, but Norm intensified this principle to make his illustrations more eye-catching.”

I was reminded of Norm Saunders’ use of photos recently when I saw Norman Rockwell: Behind the Camera. This new book, written and compiled by Ron Schick, focuses on the carefully staged photographs that Norman Rockwell created for his magazine cover paintings.

Norman Rockwell had a much bigger budget for the photos he created for his artwork than Norm Saunders. And, of course, their topics were light years apart. But their use of photography was similar. And, although Rockwell’s topics were generally mild and Saunders’ were generally wild, they were both American realists.

There are some other examples of Saunders’ use of photos in the great book about his art, titled simply Norman Saunders. (An example used for See magazine in 1960 is shown below.)

In this awesomely beautiful book, David Saunders provides a retrospective of his father’s work, from the paintings he created for the pre-war pulps and postwar men’s adventure magazines to his famed Mars Attacks trading cards. It’s a must-have book for fans of illustration or pulp art in general and for Norman Saunders fans in particular.

By the way, another vintage illustration artist named Norm — Norm Eastman — also used photos of models and himself. As noted in previous posts on this blog, Eastman was the master of the Nazi bondage and torture subgenre of men’s pulp magazine cover art.

Here’s an example showing a photo that Eastman took of one of his favorite female models, Eva Lynd. He used this to paint the tortured damsel on the cover of the February 1958 issue of Man’s Story. (The photo is from the out-of-print 2004 edition of Men’s Adventure Magazines In Postwar America, which has a chapter about Eastman that is unfortunately omitted in the new 2008 edition.)

Dare I compare Norm Eastman and Norman Saunders to Norman Rockwell?

Well, yeah. I do and just did.

And, personally, I like the wild artwork created by Saunders and Eastman better than the mild stuff created by that other, more famous Norm.

Comments? Questions? Join the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.



Highly recommended by MensPulpMags.com:

Norman Saunders, by David Saunders

A spectacular, 368-page, lushly-illustrated overview of the career of legendary pulp artist Norman Saunders.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

When cocaine grew on trees (in men’s pulp magazines)…


By the early ‘70s, the men’s adventure magazine genre was dying out, largely due to competition from more sexually explicit men’s magazines.

“The market slid ever crotchward,” as Josh Alan Friedman aptly put it in a chapter of the book It's a Man's World. (That chapter, plus other great material Josh has compiled about men’s pulp mags, is now posted on his Black Cracker blog.)

In the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, the publishers and editors of men’s adventure magazines tried a number of things to stave off their demise.

Many moved from using the rather tame cheesecake photos they had featured for years to Playboy-style nude photos.

Increasingly, the editors also sexed-up and tabloidized stories with steamy headlines, subheads, photos and captions that often went far beyond what was actually in the stories themselves.

One of the funniest examples of this is the photo spread created for the “INNER SECRETS OF THE INTERNATIONAL COCAINE COMBINE,” a story in the July 1971 issue of Bluebook magazine that was written by Robert F. Dorr. (You can download and read the entire story by clicking on this link.)

Bob Dorr wrote hundreds of stories and articles for men’s adventure magazines in the 1960s and early 1970s. The majority were war and adventure stories. I’ve featured some of them in previous posts on this blog.

Bob went on to become a top military and aviation historian. He has has written dozens of critically-acclaimed history books, the latest of which is his aerial Band of Brothers saga Hell Hawks!.

His 1971 Bluebook article about cocaine is a pretty straightforward account of what was emerging at the time as a new front in America’s “War on Drugs.”

It provides an interesting glimpse of the early coke smuggling business, years before it mushroomed into a huge, multi-billion dollar industry in the late 1970s and 1980s, when “Cocaine Cowboys” and Columbian cartels brought in coke by the tons.

But what Bob Dorr reported about coke in his article wasn’t sexy enough for the editors of Bluebook. So, they “enhanced” it.

Most notably, they added a big two-page photo spread, dominated by a shot of what looks like a Swingers’ party, with an intertwined pile of semi-nude men and women going at it.

Some of them have small black rectangular bands overlaid on their eyes. These eye-masking graphic elements were common in racy vintage magazine photos.

Ostensibly, they were used because the photos were “real” and people in them didn’t want their identities known. Of course, in truth, most were staged shots.

Bluebook’s caption writer added a "Reefer Madness" style comment about this photo in the caption, which helpfully explains:

“Above, cokies take part in ‘jam’ session, addicts’ word for bash in which cocaine users engage in wild sex orgy.”

There’s nothing in Bob Dorr’s article about wild sex orgies.

But the Bluebook guys in charge of photos and photo captions didn’t care about that.

They were focused on having photos and captions that would increase Bluebook’s quotient of sex-related pics and references.

No sexy bits or orgies in the story? Hey, no problem. We’ll just add ‘em!

Equally funny is the small photo to the left of the headline that shows some young black men and a pile of large plant pods. The caption explains: “Coca farmers break pods with bolos.”

Yes, that’s right. The pods in that photo are actually pods from cocoa trees, which are used to make chocolate — not cocaine.

Cocaine, of course, is made from the leaves of the coca plant

Bob Dorr knew this and says it in the article. However, it’s not clear from what he wrote that even he was fully cognizant of the rather complicated coke-making process.

Of course, we’re talking about 1971 — long before most people became at least vaguely familiar with that process by seeing it in TV shows like Miami Vice and countless cop movies made during and since the 1980s.

Back in 1971, few people would have known that the coca pod photo and caption were hilariously off base.

Although Dorr’s cocaine article had to be amped up to fit Bluebook’s need for sexy Seventies-style content, the same issue included a number of stories were directly sex-related.

One actually did have orgies in it. It was titled “SINGLES ONLY CRUISES — 10 DAY FLOATING ORGIES.”

Another “sexposé” story took us South of the Border to go “INSIDE THE MEXICAN PASSION HOUSES WHERE U.S. CHICKS TAKE ADVANCE COURSES IN SEX.”

But stories like those and more nude photo spreads weren’t enough to save men’s adventure magazines from extinction. By 1975, Bluebook and most other men’s pulp mags were out of business.

By the way, the cover painting for this issue of Bluebook, with the great portrait of the cigar-chomping GI, is not credited in the magazine. But Rich Oberg, the top expert on men’s adventure magazine art, took a look and told me it was done by Mel Crair. (Thanks, Rich.)

Comments? Questions? Join the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.



New in the Men’s Pulp Bookstore:

TEEN-REBEL DOPEFIENDS

Drug Mayhem and Juvenile Delinquents from the Pulp Classics (Pulp Postcards)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Norm Eastman cover art: from sadistic Nazis to Harlequin Romance


Men’s adventure art collector Rich Oberg recently told me about a trip he made in 2004 to visit artist Norm Eastman at his home in Lompoc, California, a few years before Eastman died.

Rich noted that Eastman “was as nice a guy and as perfect a gentleman as you’d ever meet — kind, polite, a little shy.”

Rich’s observation highlights one of the many ironies about Norm Eastman.

He was a nice guy, born into a God-fearing Canadian family in 1931, who got his Fine Arts degree at Mount Allison University, a Christian college with an art school. But his wild, politically-incorrect Nazi bondage and torture cover paintings are among the most famous (and infamous) ever done for men’s adventure magazines of the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s.

They are also among the most highly sought after by collectors.

Indeed, Eastman’s sadistic Nazi covers are what many people think is representative of the entire men’s pulp magazine genre. They also played a role in the creation of the somewhat derogatory term “men’s sweat mags” as a nickname for men’s adventure magazines.

The truth is (as you know if you read this blog), evil Nazi covers are just one of the many subgenres of men’s adventure magazine cover art.

Here’s another Norm Eastman irony: two Jewish guys were the masterminds behind the magazines that featured most of Eastman’s Nazi bondage and torture paintings.

I found this ironic fact in the original, now out-of-print edition of the Men's Adventure Magazines book that features Rich Oberg’s art and magazine collection. The comics and pulp art expert George Hagenauer contributed a great interview with Eastman in that first edition, which is sadly omitted from the newer 2008 edition (as are many examples of Eastman’s art that were in the original edition of the book).

In the interview, Eastman explained that, in the 1950s, he started out in the men’s adventure realm by providing artwork to magazines that were part of Martin Goodman’s Magazine Management empire, like For Men Only, Men and Male.

Then, around 1960, Eastman began a long term relationship with the owners of the Reese and Emtee publishing companies, B. R. “Bud” Ampolsk and Maurice Rosenfield (spelled Rosenfeld by Hagenauer and some other sources). They were the publishers of some of the most outré men’s adventure magazines, such as Man's Book, Man’s Epic, Man’s Story, Men Today, New Man and World of Men.

Eastman told Hagenauer:

“They both lived in a Jewish neighborhood in midtown Manhattan…Ampolsk was a very relaxed guy. Rosenfeld was also a nice guy. They gave me the feeling that you weren’t really doing these dirty little books.

Ampolsk and I would meet over the covers and talk about what we were going to do. Over time, I made a whole list of torture methods. Starting with fire, water, stretching, ice, and electricity, we’d go through the list and come up with something that we hadn’t done before.

Ampolsk once told me in all seriousness that we had never done anything that the Nazis hadn’t actually done. They were all detailed in files in Washington somewhere. I don’t know if he was fibbing to make me continue doing the covers or what, but it did make me feel a little better about doing them.

I never saw the story before I illustrated it. Ampolsk was the idea man on the covers, so he looked after getting the stories written after we had settled on a cover image.”

Like many illustration artists, Eastman used posed photographs of male and female models to create his cover paintings.

Which brings up another little irony Rich Oberg told me about Norm Eastman: he often used his own face as the model for the evil torturers in his cover paintings.

For example, see the deranged Nazi with the beard, glasses and hacksaw in the cover painting on the September 1964 issue of Man’s Story at the top of this post? That’s Norm Eastman.

And, there’s bearded Norm again in the cover below, playing an evil Satanist on the May 1974 issue of Men Today.

By the time Rich Oberg visited Norm in 2004, his hair and beard were white, as shown in the photo of Norm, his wife Jane and Rich. (This photo and the two covers featuring Norm’s own bearded visage are from Rich Oberg’s collection and are posted here with his permission. Thanks, Rich!).

Rich told me that he hadn’t noticed that Norm often used self portraits in his cover paintings until Norm mentioned it to him during that 2004 visit.

“Sure enough,” Rich said, “when I got home and went through my magazines and the original paintings I bought from Norm, there he was again and again, usually playing the bad guy.”

I’ll end tonight’s post with one final Eastman irony. Starting in the 1970s, after providing over 200 wild cover paintings and illustrations for men’s adventure magazines, Norm Eastman began doing cover paintings for romance paperbacks — including the famed Harlequin Romance series.

For example, below is the cover for Bethany Campbell’s romance novel The Lost Moon Flower, published by Harlequin Books in 1989. Next to it is the original Norm Eastman painting used for that cover (with a small inset image of the book, as shown in a Heritage Auction Galleries catalog for an auction that included this painting).

By the way, although men’s adventure magazines are often tagged as sexist, the covers of the romance novels written for women also feature lots of hunky he-men and damsels in distress. So, are they sexist, too?

I don’t know. But I do know I think Norm Eastman’s cover paintings are terrific — from his sadistic Nazi phase to his Harlequin Romance phase.

Comments? Questions? Join the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.

 

Newly recommended in the Men’s Pulp Bookstore…

The new Taschen book True Crime: Detective Magazines 1924-1969 by Eric Gotland.

A lushly illustrated overview of the vintage true crime and true detective magazine genre.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Basil Gogos “Good Girl Art” – and a shout out to artist and author Kerry Gammill


Recently, I was pleased to see that artist and author Kerry Gammill dropped by the Men’s Adventure Magazines Facebook group.

Kerry is a multi-talented Texan who has provided artwork for Marvel and DC Comics, special effects and storyboard art for movies such as Phantoms and Virus, and concept and storyboard art for many animated features and TV shows. (Check out his page on IMDb.com.)

He is also the co-author of an excellent, lushly-illustrated book about Basil Gogos.

Gogos is a legendary artist best known for his movie monster portraits. But he also provided artwork for vintage men’s magazines in the 1950s and 1960s.

Kerry Gammill’s book — Famous Monster Movie Art of Basil Gogos— focuses on the popular cover paintings Gogos did for Famous Monsters of Filmland, Creepy and Eerie. Those magazines featured portraits of monsters from classic horror films.

As I noted in a previous post on this blog, some of the covers paintings Gogos created for men’s adventure magazines also had a horror film feel.

However, Gogos also did some great “Good Girl Art” for men’s pulp mags, such as the painting on the cover of the August 1966 issue of True Adventures magazine shown above. 

The term “Good Girl Art” was coined in the early 1970s by David T. Alexander, a renowned comic book and magazine collector and dealer.

It’s now commonly used by fans of men’s magazines, pulp magazines, comics and cartoon art.

Many call it “GGA” for short and apply this acronym broadly to vintage artwork featuring scantily-clad babes in various types of scenes and situations.

By the way, David T. Alexander also helped create the Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide and the more recent Old Magazinesprice guide.

And, if you are a collector of either old comics or magazines, you really must check out the D.T. Alexander "”Culture and Thrills” website. It’s one of the best sources of both on the Internet.

If you search for in the Men’s Adventure section of that site, you may be lucky enough to find some old men’s pulp mags with great “Good Girl Art” by Basil Gogos — like the examples shown below.

One more BTW: if you’re into illustration and cartoons, you should also check out Kerry Gammill’s other book — Kerry Gammill's Drawing Monsters & Heroes for Film & Comics.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Rich Oberg’s gives us the first online glimpse of his awesome men’s adventure art collection


One of the must-have books for fans and collectors of men’s pulp mags is Men's Adventure Magazines, published by Taschen.

It features hundreds of men’s adventure magazine covers from the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s.

It also shows some examples of what the original cover paintings and interior art looked like and has interesting background text written by the prolific novelist Max Allan Collins, the pulp and comic art expert George Hagenauer and the illustration art expert Steven Heller.

The images in this lushly illustrated book come from the Rich Oberg Collection — the world’s largest collection of men’s adventure magazines and the original artwork created for them.

The collection’s owner, Rich Oberg, is justly proud of the Taschen book, which was reprinted in 2008 as part of Taschen’s special 25th anniversary series. (If you’re a true fan of the genre, you’ll also want to seek out and buy a copy of the original 2004 edition of the book, with the scorpion menace cover, shown at left. It’s now out of print, but you can still find used copies on eBay or AbeBooks.com.)

The original edition is larger in size than new edition. It also has more cover art and more chapters, including a whole chapter about the Nazi torture and bondage subgenre that’s missing from the current edition, plus an interview with artist Norm Eastman, the master of evil Nazi cover art.

Amazingly, what’s shown in both the original and current editions of the Taschen book is only a small part of Rich Oberg’s collection.

Last December, when I talked to Rich for an interview that I posted on this blog, he told me he was thinking about creating a “virtual museum” online to showcase more of the great original artwork that he owns.

Recently, Rich let me know that he’d put up the initial framework for that virtual museum on the website MensAdventure.com.

So, I called him at his home in Tennessee to talk with him about it.

He said it’s “a work in progress” that currently has just a taste of what he ultimately plans to show after he finishes digitizing his collection and works with a web designer to flesh out the site.

To me, what Rich has already posted there is very cool. It’s the first online glimpse into a unique collection of art that few people have ever seen.

In the “Original Artwork” section, you’ll find some examples of what is to come on Rich’s site — beautiful, high resolution scans of original cover paintings side-by-side with the covers they were used for.

Viewing the original artwork, without all the titles, headlines and photo insets used on the magazine covers, is extremely interesting.

It makes it easier to see just how dramatic and well-executed the cover paintings were.

Below are a few examples from Rich’s website, shown here with his permission, including: a great “snake menace” painting by Vic Prezio for Battle Cry; a classic Nazi bondage and torture painting by Norm Eastman for Man’s Epic; and, a gonzo teen gang cover done by Norman Saunders for New Man magazine.

“Over time, I’ll add more and more images,” Rich told me. “I’ll also post comments and anecdotes about the artists. I’m pretty familiar with their work now and I’ve met many of the artists who are still alive or were living when I started my collection in the 1990s. I’d like their phenomenal art to be seen by more people and I want to pass on some of the knowledge I’ve gained about it. Most of this artwork is an embodiment of certain aspects of American popular culture from the 1950s through the mid-1970s. And, even though the subjects are often wild, the artwork represents a fascinating style of ‘realism.’”

“It’s a style of pulp art that’s different from, though influenced by, the earlier pulp magazines published in the decades before World War Two,” Rich noted. “It extends into the cover art for paperback books and comics from the Fifties and Sixties. Indeed, many paperback and comic covers from that time period were done by the same illustrators who did the best covers and interior artwork for men’s adventure magazines — artists like James Bama, Gil Cohen, Charles Copeland, Mel Crair, Raphael DeSoto, Clarence Doore, Mort Kunstler, Bruce Minney, Earl Norem, Vic Prezio and Norman Saunders.”

“My collection includes hundreds of original cover and interior art paintings by all of those artists and many others. Most of the artwork they created for the men’s adventure magazines has never been shown in any books or online. And, as far as I know, I have more of it than anyone. So, I want to make it available on my website and increase public awareness and appreciation of these great artists and their work.”

Rich added: “My special thanks to you and your terrific blog, Bob, for helping motivate me to share more of this fantastic imagery — and have some fun doing it.”

You’re very welcome, Rich, and thank you! It’s going to be great fun for me and other men’s pulp mag fans to see more of your incredible collection as you post it on your new website.

Comments? Questions? Join the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Girl-crazy gorillas, men’s adventure magazine style...


In the first half of the 20th Century, tales and scenes of gorillas who carried away white women were fairly common in magazines, books and movies from various genres — including adventure, horror and comedy.

Well known examples include the Tarzan stories by Edgar Rice Burroughs and the film with the biggest girl-crazy ape of all time, King Kong.

Beyond these, there’s a long list of vintage adventure, horror and comedy films with guys dressed in gorilla suits trying to carry off some screaming damsel. (Check out the eBay Guide to Ape and Gorilla Movies of the 1930s, ‘40 and ‘50s.)

After writing my recent post about “Monkey Madness,” I decided to climb out on another branch of the simian family tree and feature some men’s adventure magazine covers in the girl-crazy gorilla subgenre.

Two of them are Will Hulsey animal attack masterpieces (and I use that word seriously). Hulsey painted the one at left on the cover of the October 1956 issue of True Men Stories.

It features a fierce-looking ape menacing a manly man and a gorgeous babe. He is trying to save her by fighting the huge beast with a knife. She is looking distressed, as damsels did, and wearing one of Hulsey’s trademark red blouses. (Conveniently unbuttoned to show some damsel cleavage.)

At right is another Hulsey gorilla attack cover painting.

It’s on the March 1958 issue of Man’s Life, the men’s adventure magazine that probably featured more Hulsey animal attack covers than any other from the early-1950s to the late 1960s.

The scene on the Man’s Life cover almost seems like a continuation of what’s happening on the True Men’s Stories cover.

It shows a menacing gorilla holding a similar-looking babe in a red blouse, while a similar-looking manly hero plunges a knife into the ape’s neck.

True Men Stories was published from 1956 to 1965 by Feature Publications, an affiliate of Crestwood Publishing, which also published Man’s Life.

In 1966, True Men Stories was bought by Stanley Publications and stayed in print until 1973. Stanley, and it’s affiliate Normandy Associates, were second only to Martin Goodman’s Magazine Management in the publication of men’s pulp magazines in the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s.

In addition to True Men Stories, Stanley and Normandy published All Man, Battle Cry, Champion for Men, Man’s Adventure, Man’s Best, Man’s Look, Man’s Prime, Men in Combat, Men in Conflict, Real Action, Real Men, Real War, Rugged, Rugged Men, Spur, True Battles of World War II, War Criminals and Women in War.

Below are two more of my other favorite girl-crazy gorilla covers, both of which have classic images of apes toting away busty babes. (To satiate their brutish, animal lust, no doubt!.)

The artist who did the wild gorilla cover on the March 1961 issue of Stanley Publications’ Man’s Adventure is uncredited.

The cover art on the April 1957 issue of Rage for Men was painted by Clarence Doore, one of the greatest American pulp artists. (Rage for Men was a short-lived title published by Arnold Magazines in 1956 and 1957.)

Ah yes, those were the days. When we assumed that gorillas were more dangerous than humans.

Today, of course, most of us humans — and the remaining gorillas that are left in the wild — know it’s the other way around.

Comments? Questions? Join the Men’s Adventure Magazine Facebook Group.