Hey, since you're back there, tell me something. Do I look as amazing to you as I do to me?
We've arrived at what would be month five of the 1972 Reiko Ike Weekly Playboy calendar, but we already used that image a while back, so we're offering a substitute. Above, Reiko climbs atop her vanity to get visual confirmation of her own unusual beauty. We'd spend a lot of time in front of the mirror too, if we were her, but we'd be touching ourselves in every possible way. This shot came from a 1974 issue of Heibon Punch and was accompanied by other interesting photos we'll probably share down the line. We will return to your regularly scheduled calendar next month.
She doesn't actually have any super powers. But then again she doesn't need them.
In this image, Japanese action star Reiko Ike, seated before a platter of lemons, oranges, and tomatoes, has just been told tomatoes are really fruits instead of vegetables, and now nothing about the world makes sense anymore. We still struggle with that one too. The photo appeared in the 1972 Weekly Playboy calendar, which we've been documenting each month. In thirty days we'll see if Reiko has gotten past this tomato thing.
They're hungry enough for the entire room.
Above is an interesting production photo made during the filming of Gendai poruno-den: Sentensei inpu, aka Modern Porno Tale: Inherited Sex Mania, aka The Insatiable. It's a wider angle of a promo image we shared back in 2015, and if you were ever curious how many people are on set for a sex scene, in this case there are five visible, aside from the performers, plus at least one more shooting the photo. Probably there are even a few more. Here's some full disclosure for you: when PSGP worked at Playboy he was asked to help out on the set of a softcore movie titled Call Girl Wives. He saw shot two sex scenes shot, and there were at least ten people around for each. Later he was asked by a porn producer if he wanted to perform in an actual xxx film. Long story short: he declined. Just another interesting PSGP aside.
*sigh* One day I'll kill dozens of men on the silver screen. I just know it.
This shot of pinku actress Reiko Ike is from the same series that gave us the February page of her 1972 calendar, and she's shown few signs of movement since then. But she'll get up. After all, there are yakuza to slice and dice. In order for the calendar to have appeared at the beginning of 1972 it would have been shot just as Reiko's star was beginning to rise, with a mere three films to her credit. She would go on to appear in eight in 1972, nine more in 1973, and eleven in 1974-75 combined. It was a breakneck pace, not unusual for pinku actresses, but the heights of her success certainly defied the norm. She's had a very interesting post-cinema life as well, which we haven't remarked upon even once, but may get to at some point. For now, like her, we'll just picture the movie mayhem in her future. Oh, and, we altered this scan. We explain how and why at last month's Reiko post.
First comes the sex, then comes the fury.
The landmark pinky violence flick Sex & Fury premiered today in 1973, so as tribute we have its female co-stars Christina Lindberg and Reiko Ike in a rare promo image, which came from the same session that produced this photo. If you're ever going to appreciate pinky violence cinema, Sex & Fury is a film that would be your gateway. But the genre isn't for everyone. The films are easy to hate, and for legitimate reasons. We have Sex & Fury's iconic promo posters available for viewing at this link, and don't forget—you get to see Reiko in a new image the first day of every month of 2022. The previous two are here and here.
It was a very, very good year.
1972 was a leap year on the Gregorian calendar, which meant twenty-nine days of February to ponder Reiko Ike, rather than the usual twenty-eight. Above you see the second page of her Weekly Playboy 1972 calendar (the first is here). We altered it, but not in a way that matters. Originally, the second half of February ran across to an adjacent page, and the first half of March appeared as the bottom of this page. But we wanted to save March until next month so we swapped them. As we said, it's not important, but that's full disclosure for the collectible purists out there. More from Reiko in twenty-nine days.
Miki and Reiko rock and rule Osaka in 1973's Sukeban.
We already shared this rare circular poster for Sukeban, aka Girl Boss Revenge: Sukeban, in a group post years ago, but since it's so rare and interesting we're bringing it back for a solo look, and as you see below we've split it in half to allow you to have your own copy of reasonable size, if you're inclined to put the two pieces together. We might as well comment on the movie too. When we first shared the art for this, we figured why discuss the film in detail when there were already plenty of reviews online? We even linked to one back then. Little did we know that Pulp Intl. would still be going ten years later and would be a top repository for vintage Japanese poster art online. That being the case, we figure we'll tell you about the movie this time.
It stars two of the brightest stars of the Japanese grindhouse era—Miki Sugimoto and Reiko Ike. Miki plays a gang leader who calls herself Kantô Komasa, while Reiko is the girl gang leader of Namairu High School. They meet in a prison van and escape simultaneously, headed different directions but destined to cross paths again. Miki forms a new gang in Osaka called Gypsy Dance, gets into the usual delinquency, and meets a director of dirty movies who she enlists in a revenge plot. But all the fun and games take a nasty turn when she runs afoul of the North Dragon yakuza and they start dishing out pain and suffering. Only with the help of a young North Dragon footsoldier named Tatsuo is Miki able to escape her predicament.
It just so happens that Tatsuo is Reiko's boyfriend. Reiko has been missing since her escape from the prison van, but arrives on the scene just in time to find Miki in bed with her man. That puts Reiko and Miki at odds in the worst way, but Reiko has no idea Tatsuo is working for the North Dragon. She'll find out, though, via a stunning betrayal. We'll end the synopsis there, but add the warning that the North Dragonare mean as hell and the tortures they administer are hard to watch. But gangsters gonna gangster—if they spent their time at garden parties and poetry readings there'd be a different word for them.
Sukeban, which was directed by Norifumi Suzuki, is a prime example of Toei Company's pinky violence genre—wild, colorful, gritty, and bloody, with moments of humor to leaven the hard tone. Movies of this style influenced many later directors, but apart from Quentin Tarantino and maybe a couple of other mavericks such operatic exploitation is a relic of the past. The film is basically Miki's show, and whether rolling fabulously down a hill in her fur coat and platforms or getting dirty in an alley fight, she delivers a freewheeling performance in a production that isn't for the faint of heart. It's worth watching for its historical value as well as for entertainment, but in either case, hold onto your hat.
As a bonus, below we have some production photos, including a rare image of Miki striking the topless pose used to create the promo poster. We always thought her head looked a little warped on that poster. Turns out it's a defect in the original photograph—someone either shot her off-kilter or introduced the flaw during the developing process, and she stayed that way. We're guessing, but we're pretty sure because normally her head is very symmetrical. As is the rest of her. You'll see what we mean below about the photo. Sukeban premiered in Japan today in 1973. You can see our other write-up on it here.
So far so good. Only 364 days to go.
Well, here we are in 2022, and karate kicking, sword swinging, yakuza slicing, mushroom cloud laying action movie icon Reiko Ike is here to welcome you to another spin round the sun. We think this image has gotten things off to an excellent start, even if Ike looks sort of like she's made a New Year's resolution to smack anyone who utters an unkind word in her direction. But that's just Reiko being Reiko. The shot is from the magazine Weekly Playboy, for which she starred in an entire 1972 calendar. For the fun of it, every first of the month or so, we'll share a new Ike calendar shot. We say “or so” because we used one a while back, and because she doubled up a couple of months in the calendar, but you get the gist—nine or ten new Ike images are coming. If she doesn't get you looking forward to the new year nothing will.
She has terrible manners but a terrific flair for the dramatic.
Above is another rare promo image of Japanese actress Reiko Ike, someone we've documented extensively through the years, and here, the big hair, bare skin, and brilliant pose make this one of her best shots. We have other Ike images in a stack of Japanese magazines, and if we can figure out how to keep our scanner from putting electronic streaks on the scans we hope to get those posted at some point. This one came from an issue of the magazine Weekly Playboy and dates from 1974.
Reiko and Miki chew over a very tough problem.
Reiko Ike (front) and Miki Sugimoto pose together in a rope gnawing b/w promo made for their pinky violence actioner Zenka onna: koroshi-bushi, aka Criminal Woman: Killing Melody, which premiered today in 1973. We found this on Reddit, so thanks to whoever originally uploaded this slightly bizarre item. We have plenty on the movie in our website, including some amazing posters. We recommend clicking its keywords below and scrolling.
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
1942—Ted Williams Enlists
Baseball player Ted Williams of the Boston Red Sox enlists in the United States Marine Corps, where he undergoes flight training and eventually serves as a flight instructor in Pensacola, Florida. The years he lost to World War II (and later another year to the Korean War) considerably diminished his career baseball statistics, but even so, he is indisputably one of greatest players in the history of the sport.
1924—Leopold and Loeb Murder Bobby Franks
Two wealthy University of Chicago students named Richard Loeb and Nathan Leopold, Jr. murder 14-year-old Bobby Franks, motivated by no other reason than to prove their intellectual superiority by committing a perfect crime. But the duo are caught and sentenced to life in prison. Their crime becomes known as a "thrill killing", and their story later inspires various works of art, including the 1929 play Rope by Patrick Hamilton, and Alfred Hitchcock's 1948 film of the same name.
1916—Rockwell's First Post Cover Appears
The Saturday Evening Post publishes Norman Rockwell's painting "Boy with Baby Carriage", marking the first time his work appears on the cover of that magazine. Rockwell would go to paint many covers for the Post, becoming indelibly linked with the publication. During his long career Rockwell would eventually paint more than four thousand pieces, the vast majority of which are not on public display due to private ownership and destruction by fire.
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