Vintage Pulp Jan 12 2016
ROADSIDE INSISTENCE
The rest stop is one mile ahead! Can’t you freaking hold it?

From its founding in 1924 as True Detective Mysteries, through its second iteration and renaming in 1939, True Detective featured painted covers by top artists in the pulp/post-pulp field. The magazine experimented with photographed covers in 1962, releasing two issues of that style. The next year saw photographed covers become the norm and, sadly, another great forum for fine art disappeared forever. That said, some of the new photocovers were good, such as this one from January 1964 showing a kidnap victim fleeing her captor. As you can see, it sought to replicate the style of the painters by using careful staging, and in this case was particularly successful. But soon enough the covers turned into this—i.e., little more than snapshots. 

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Vintage Pulp Oct 7 2009
BAD GIRL!
It’s probably more humane to just rub her nose in it.

We had to smile at this True Detective from October 1975 featuring a man armed with what looks like a rolled up magazine chasing a terrified woman. Perhaps his behavior seems harsh, but hey, you’d be mad too if someone went potty on your new carpet. Despite the silly cover, True Detective was actually a venerable publication that launched back in 1924 as True Detective Mysteries. But after decades of success its audience shrank throughout the ’50s and ’60s as paperbacks and television grew in popularity. This caused both a decline in budget (bye-bye handpainted cover art) and an increase in gimmickry (hello sexualized cover photos). Once True Detective made this shift to photographs, its aesthetics became seriously hit-and-miss. The above cover is a whiff, but you can see an example of a home run here. True Detective finally ceased operations in 1995, by which time it was a shell of its former self. But even at its nadir, it’s worth examining if only for the laugh factor, which means we’ll be sharing more of these ridiculous ’70s covers in the future. 

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History Rewind
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
November 21
1959—Max Baer Dies
Former heavyweight boxing champ Max Baer dies of a heart attack in Hollywood, California. Baer had a turbulent career. He lost to Joe Louis in 1935, but two years earlier, in his prime, he defeated German champ and Nazi hero Max Schmeling while wearing a Star of David on his trunks. The victory was his legacy, making him a symbol to Jews, and also to all who hated Nazis.
November 20
1945—Nuremberg Trials Begin
In Nuremberg, Germany, in the Palace of Justice, the trials of prominent members of the political, military, and economic leadership of Nazi Germany begin. Among the men tried were Martin Bormann (in absentia), Hermann Göring, Rudolph Hess, and Ernst Kaltenbrunner.
1984—SETI Institute Founded
The SETI Institute, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence, the discovery of extrasolar planets, and the habitability of the galaxy, is founded in California by Thomas Pierson and Dr. Jill Tarter.
November 19
1916—Goldwyn Pictures Formed
In the U.S.A., Samuel Goldfish and Edgar Selwyn establish Goldwyn Pictures, which becomes one of the most successful independent film studios in Hollywood. Goldfish also takes the opportunity to legally change his last name to Goldwyn.
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