Having concentrated on just the opening month of 1977 last time, in this post we will look at February, March and April of that year. Playboy had a striking cover of Swedish model Lena Kansbod modelling a diamond and platinum bunny pendant by Oscar Heyman of New York.
Lena was personally spotted as a potential model by John Casablancas, the founder of the Elite modelling agency, checking coats in a Stockholm restaurant in 1973. She moved to New York in 1976 and by early 1977 she was one of the world's top models, indeed, the month before she had been on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.
In fact, the month before that she had been the cover girl for the Penthouse owned Viva magazine. Lena's Playboy cover perfectly demonstrates the erotic power of the face alone; if it's the right face, that is.
From The Love Feast, February 1977
Inside, Playboy was persisting with its own couples pictorials although they were, by this stage, far less explicit than Penthouse's equivalent. This rather peculiarly suggestive shot demonstrates the sort of tricks they had to get up to to appear raunchy.
Playboy's Playmate for February was Star Stowe who flashed her bits as much as any Playmate before or since in multiple pictures. Star (real name Ellen Louise Stowe) was another Playmate who came to a tragic end. She went from being the girlfriend of Kiss' Gene Simmons to a life of drugs, alcoholism and prostitution. Eventually being found murdered in Fort Lauderdale, having been strangled, just short of her 41st birthday in 1997, whilst working as a streetwalker.
Penthouse had a three girl set called Class Reunion photographed by Ken Marcus in about the softest focus they ever presented (which is saying something!). This shot, in particular, manages to be very erotic despite (because of?) the diffuse light.
The Pet of the Month for February proved rather controversial. Billed as Betsy Harris the young lady flashed her rather prominent labia quite a bit in her pictorial by Earl Miller. So far, so typical. However, later it was said that Betsy Harris was really a lady called Terri Nunn who was an actress (she got down to the last two to play Princess Leia in Star Wars (1977)) and a singer who, in her group Berlin, had a major hit with Take my Breath Away, from Top Gun (1986).
Now, Terri Nunn, who is still singing with Berlin, absolutely, categorically denies that it was her posing in Penthouse. The problem being that, if she was Terri Nunn and if her birth date was correct she would have been sixteen at the time. Now Guccione had had sixteen year olds in Penthouse in the sixties but photographing a nude at sixteen wasn't illegal in Britain at that time (not until 2003, in fact) but was in America.
Now whilst some women have appeared in mens' magazines and subsequently denied it we actually believe Terri here. If you look at a picture of Betsy (left) and Terri (right, appearing in an episode of Lou Grant in 1978) they do look similar but Betsy appears to have a more upturned nose and the cleft above her top lip is more pronounced. What do you think?
Much more grown up looking was Celine Martin, who gives it plenty of pussy power, as photographed by Gajda that month in their third pictorial.
Over at Oui we had a young lady enjoying her loofah in the accurately, if unimaginatively, entitled Donna takes a shower in another successfully sensuous set by Nicholas DeSciose whose work we featured here.
Mr DeSciose contacted Triple P with some kind words after we featured his January 1977 centrefold for Oui. He said that he had done over twenty pictorials for Oui at this time and Donna here was his second centrefold in a row for them at the beginning of 1977.
Oui continued to feature the paintings of Aslan from partner Lui magazine in France. By this time, however, they came with added bits.
The February edition showcased the impressively leggy Annie who joined in the trend for arsehole displaying that was such a feature of the year.
Debra Tate by Suze Randall
Finally, Penthouse had three pictorials in April. It had a girl/girl set called Swept Away which was photographed by Patrick Barnes and featured some convincing looking kissing by the two ladies in question.
Interestingly, a picture of the girls in a hot tub, where one has her face in the groin of the other did not make it into the British edition. Obviously this was just too graphic for the UK.
Secondly, there was a pictorial called Sweet, Saucy Susan which featured a girl called...well, Susan. She was photographed in a very suggestive masturbation shot. There is no visual evidence that her finger really is in her cunt but that is certainly the implication of the picture.
Fingering fun for saucy Susan
That month's Pet Shona Lynne leaves this Pubic Wars post with another plump pussy shot and next time we will see, for the third month in a row, a Pet with large and prominent labia in the shape of Valerie Rae Clark, who would appear in Bob Guccione's Caligula. We will also see some older women, a photographer's self portrait and the inspiration for a song photographed by David Hamilton.