WWII Advertising and the art of James Bingham

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Have to say, I don’t recall my own Marine Corps’ deployments being like this.

Bits of Memory

James Bingham was a naval officer and advertising genius in his day. His clients included The Airlines of the United States (a travel association), Association of Railroads (Travel association), Maxwell House Coffee, Gulf Oil, Cannon Towels, Caterpillar Tractor, Philadelphia Whisky, Alcoa Steamship Company, Champion Spark Plugs and U S Steel. The main purpose of advertising during this period was to build brand loyalty tied to support of our troops and the war effort with an eye towards post war consumerism.

His ads seem to be the precursor to the A&F style ad layout. Close to soft core porn as you could get in mainstream publications (Life etc.) in those days. Here are some towel ads. They could have easily been done by Tom of Finland. They ran in all the big magazines. And apparently gays in the military aren’t a new thing either.










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Matthew Montgomery, Revisited

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I love pleasant surprises in life. I never really know what’s coming. For example, a year ago I posted this quick blog entry about a performer I really enjoyed. And here I am a year later, Facebook friends with this same actor.

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Yeah. It’s pretty cool to be me.

Oh, Tom. Why?

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I realize that times are tough. And I understand that even celebrities fall on tough times. But how desperate has Tom Selleck become that he would agree to take part in an Anthony Robbins’ infomercial? I was at the bank today (shout-out to Torrey Pines!) and they were airing some awful extended commercial for The Ultimate Edge. And there on screen, looking handsome as ever, was Tom Selleck. Granted, he also looked a bit stoic, as if he didn’t trust himself to show a single true emotion lest he break down in shame right there in front of Robbins.

Here is a better (bitter?) review from infomercial-hell.com:

Probably no personality dominated TV infomercials in the 1990’s more than Anthony Robbins. But his once-ubiquitous infomercials abruptly disappeared from the air, probably because of market saturation.

Now Tony Robbins has returned to the airwaves with an infomercial for his Ultimate Edge program. This latest Tony Robbins infomercial sells a “coaching” package of his usual rah-rah motivational bullcrap. And as in his infomercials of olde, lots of Hollywood celebrities and sports stars appear to declare that Anthony Robbins caused all their success and their own talent and hard work had nothing to do with it.

Tom Selleck of Magnum P.I. fame interviews Tony Robbins here—yet another former mega-star reduced to hosting an infomercial. Selleck appears so sedate that one wonders whether Tony Robbins’ hypnotic spell has turned him catatonic

This infomercial declares that Robbins “has become famous for his big smile and larger than life energy”—which is a nice way of saying he has the physique of Lurch and the hyperactivity of Matthew Lesko.

With his Ceaser haircut and wispy goatee, Robbins looks like a haggard middle-aged man desperately trying to appear hip and youthful.

Oh, Tom. Why would you do this? What’s next, the Tom Selleck Make Your Own Aloha Shirt Machine? The Magnum PI Mustache Manager? This just makes my 80’s heart hurt.

Dream Casting – Mark Valley and Thomas Jane

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Mark Valley and Thomas Jane.

Yep. Mark Valley.

And Thomas Jane.

Mark Valley.

Thomas Jane.

Mark Valley.

Thomas Jane.

Bourne. Jason Bourne.

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I just caught up on all three of these movies on Blu-Ray, and I’m still impressed. The action is non-stop, the chase scenes are breathtaking, and the storyline holds together through all three films. If you haven’t seen them, you should. If you have, you should see them again. The trilogy is worth a second (or third) look.

Reign of Fire

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Reign of Fire? Reign of Hotties is more like it. What’s not to love about a movie with Christian Bale, Matthew McConaughey, and Gerard Butler? It’s all action, all testosterone, and all shirt-torn-fighting-sweating-rolling-about goodness. Yeah, it’s the perfect combination of guy movie (all action, no one dies of natural causes) and gay movie (hot, sweaty beefcake). And yes, it looks even better in Blu-Ray.

Oh, yeah. There’s also something about dragons and fighting and end-of-mankind stuff. But really, does the plot matter?

Olympics = Guy Candy

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Yes, sure, I realize that the Olympics are the last pure sporting event on the planet. I respect that these sports stars train all their lives for their moment on the world stage. And I agree that the competition is amazing to watch.

But honestly, how can I watch the Olympics and not think “Guy Candy”? Come on, these athletes are unbelievably sexy. So, here’s a shout-out to the hotties of the Vancouver Winter Olympic Games. Bonne chance, gentilshommes.

First up, super cutie Vaughn Chipeur.

Adam Pengilly is a cutie, too.

Aksel Lund Svindal

And of course, our drunken mess turned Olympic hero, Bode Miller.

And yes, there are so many more. I may just have to post multiple versions of this entry. Right after I stop staring at the TV and the  non-stop Olympic action, of course.

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