Before There Was DADT —

Speaking of guys and gays in the military, here’s a beauty of a recruitment poster from World War II (I think, but possibly World War I):

Unconscious homoerotica?

14 thoughts on “Before There Was DADT —

  1. Celibacy will make red-blooded American boys do some goofy things.

    btw, what’s the caliber on his ordnance, do you suppose?

  2. Joan,

    And, for the US. or any Navy, I’m not so sure it was at all subconscious.
    Remember that disco classic from The Village People, “In the Navy!”?

  3. I don’t think so.
    Like those “Charles Atlas” ads in the comic books when I was a kid, most guys want big arms and broad shoulders to attract you babes.
    I tried the sense of humor route; my wife says I’m the only one who thinks I’m funny. She was attracted to my big guns and thick neck (gone but not forgotten…)
    But seriously, the sexual innuendo in that poster would make a psychologist blush.
    The boy’s rammin’ it home……

  4. I am pretty clueless about identifying “gays” from straights – so I have no idea if the muscular dudes depicted in the poster are gay, straight, or whatever.
    but – the helmet on the fellow looks like the tin hats worn during WWI. That is my guess – a poster from WWI.

  5. goatherd…That link shows McCellan painting a picture of Husband E Kimmel… Does that mean that he was in a same sex marriage?

  6. erinyes …I used to sport some decent looking pecks…Now I’m ready for a manzarre. When I was coming up Steve Reeve’s and Dave Drapper( 22″ guns) where holding the lead as bodybuilders.

    Speaking of attracting a mate…I meet my wife at my mother’s funeral. You’d think that I’d be a little more solemn at such an occassion and not be checking out the babes. I was in military uniform at the time( always a plus for wooing the babes) and our introduction to one another sealed our lifetime together. It was like a magnet!

  7. Swami, lets all sing “Glory Days” by the “boss”.
    I met my wife at the A&P at W.Bay Drive and Indian Rocks Rd., gone,but not forgotten (A&P, that is) just like my big guns…….
    My “uniform” was a tank top, bellbottom jeans, and a pair of sandals; plus my 650 Triumph Bonneville.

  8. That’s funny Swami, I hadn’t noticed that, just a misplaced comma away.

    But, before rumors get started:

    “He used his wife, just 19 years old, as the model for the iconic Fisher Autobody image. She later appeared in magazine advertisements and was so well published with her languid body plastered across the country on billboards, that she was recognized wherever she went.” — Wow, it’s gettin’ kinda warm in here!

    MAH, a collector I ran into said that the “doughboy” type helmet was used up to early WWII. Barclay did do some war related poster work during WWI, but the article at Wikipedia (which see and knows ALL!) places his Navy posters in WWII.

    Erinyes– 650 Bonneville was a great bike. In ’79 I bought a ’40 Indian Chief (last year for the leaf spring front end and first year for the skirted fender) If you relaxed just the right way, the spark plug for the rear cylinder would shock you on the back of your left leg. That would get your attention very quickly.

  9. It’s a WWII poster, one of thousands designed by the Office of War Information. Which was run by the guys who would become the post-war Mad Men. The erotic suggestions are intentional. If anyone is interested, I can post that chapter of my dissertation “Reading John Ford’s December 7th:The Influence of Cultural Context on the Visual Remembering of the Pearl Harbor Attack.”
    It’s not as dull as it sounds. Has lots of pictures, too.

  10. Goatherd,
    I wrecked the Bonneville on the eve of August 6, 1974.
    A VW Bug pulled a left turn in front of me at dusk, I hit the bug just behind the passenger door, was catapulted about 50 ft, and landed on my hands and knees in the middle of Missouri Ave in Largo. Broke my big toe and tore a bit of knee tissue, not one bit of road rash or blood.(sandals and a tank top, how lucky was I?)
    I pushed the bike home, and mom freaked out, it was one day before my 18th birthday.
    The Triumph was never the same, BUT the REALLY sexy blonde at the A&P asked me if I needed a ride home, and we’re still together.
    The insurance settlement paid my dive school tuition.

  11. Aha! Thanks to goatherd and a little searching of references from Wikipedia, I give you this. Interesting collection to begin with, and plenty of fine bodies by Fisher. But scan down to near the bottom, and there at “Liberty (1942)” is a cover close enough to the poster to be convincing: it’s 1942, complete with its doughboy flat tin hat.

    One thing I notice in looking at that collection is how little I like the 20s-30s advertising art style. Ok, the antiquated snob stuff is a little bit sick-making, but so what? Maybe my problem is that when I was small, that style was just a decade or two out of date, which made it just plain wrong to my eyes. Dunno.

    Another thing that no one has commented on: he’s inserting the shell wrong-way-first. Like, the the pointy end is going left, but the guns are firing to the right. Is this symbolic for putting it in the wrong hole? Sorry, I’ll retract that. But note that the mag cover has the guns firing to the left.

  12. erinyes,
    That’s such a GREAT love story!
    Too bad the motorcycle you loved was never the same… 🙂

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