Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Non-centrefold Venus of the Month 14: Gayle Mason October 1975

For October's post we make only our second non-centrefold visit to the pages of Paul Raymond's Club International.  This was Raymond's second magazine (if you discount the short lived King in the sixties) after Men Only.   Men Only, however was a pre-existing magazine which he bought for £10,000 whereas Club International was a new magazine launched by Raymond in July 1972.

So, this is the October 1975 issue which featured on the cover this poor girl obviously suffering from stomach cramps.  However, we are going to concentrate on the lady they called Gayle Mason, which almost certainly wasn't her real name.  Her opening pose (top) is extraordinarily assertive but her modesty is (just about) protected by some very Penthouse style out of focus foreground material.

Gayle was one of six girls in that issue.  Club International and Men Only always had more pictorials than their rival Penthouse.  The accompanying text claims she was Australian but the descriptions of the models were all complete fiction, so she may or may not have been.

This issue, in one way, was very much a groundbreaking issue for Club International.   One thing Penthouse had been doing in their US issue, since the previous year, was showing increasing glimpses of their models labia.  Their UK edition, which had been a bit more coy about this had published such a shot in their March 1975 issue.  The Paul Raymond magazines had continued to pose their models' in such a way that this part of their anatomy didn't show or they retouched them so the offending bits were, at the very least, blurred. 

 Looking a bit like Girls Aloud's Nicola Roberts in this one

Up until this issue there had only been a very few examples of visible labia in Club International and most of those had been in the previous two month's issues (August and September 1975).  With this issue, however, an editorial decision must have been made to unleash the wild pussies as no less than five of the six girls in that issue were flashing their bits.

Of these girls it was Gayle's pictorial that included the most labia flashing and, in fact her bits are visible in nearly every one of her pictures.

From this issue on, labia would become more and more common in the magazine until the publishers had a change of heart in late 1977 and backed off from their depiction in the assertive way that would become common in 1976.

Here, however, we think that they have the balance right.  No clumsy retouching but not the spread legs displays of the following year either.  So, Gayle has to go down as something of a pioneer.

Her final shot in the pictorial also includes, for only the second time in the magazine, a shot of her anus which, as we have seen in our Pubic Wars series, would become the big battleground of 1977, as the magazines sought to push the boundaries of more explicit pictures ever further.

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