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414                                     Jack Fritscher, Ph.D.
               For details of our salad days together, see my A. Jay obituary, “The
            Passing of One of Drummer’s First Daddies,” in Drummer 107 (August
               In this last issue of the “Teen-Age Drummer,” Drummer 19, Steve
            Reeves caused Embry and me to debate whether camp and eros can exist
            together; actually, we were in truth arm-wrestling about the identity of
            Drummer. Was the mag merely a QQ clone in leather drag as Embry
            portrayed it with his Cycle Sluts gender-bender drag cover of Drummer 9,
            or was it to be serious male erotic entertainment readers could jerk off to
            while still getting the “Drummer Philosophy” modeled on Hugh Hefner’s
            Playboy. (Notice the Hefner-style of three photos of the interviewee at the
            bottom of the first page in interviews with Richard Locke, Drummer 24,
            and Wakefield Poole, Drummer 27.) The little tempest over camp was one
            of many of our creative differences.
               At that beginning, none of us gents wanted to be a spoilsport; so
            we three had a fun time tossing around captions satirizing Hollywood,
            because the pop culture of movies was always a huge part of Drummer.
               Citing that most of the publicity photos were from my personal
            collection, I made one request: that the jokes be printed as text under
            the photographs, where true fans and mastubators could ignore them,
            and not, as Embry’s dreaded cartoon balloons, be pasted on the pictures
            or over Steve Reeves’s body. I felt a responsibility toward Steve Reeves.
            In 1959, I came out on his Hercules; I went in “straight” and came out
            “homomasculine.” I found out about “gayism” only later.
               It was in this pictorial feature that I first printed one of my many
            satirical names for Arnold Schwarzenegger whom I have always scorned,
            not for being 260 pounds of ham in a two-ounce nylon posing brief, but
            for being unforgivably not hot. Arnold was 180-degrees of separation
            from Steve Reeves who was the bearded muscle god of my nocturnal
            emissions. He was to me what heroic Catholic martyr-saints and Catholic
            priests should look like. In the secret subtext of Joe Weider’s muscle maga-
            zines of my perfervid 1950s, Steve Reeves defined the homomasculine
            Platonic Ideal.
               Steve Reeves was thirteen years old when I was born and I don’t
            really remember his first movie appearance in Ed Woods’ rock-n-roll teen-
            movie Jailbait (1954) which I most likely saw in some double-feature; but
            that same summer when I was fifteen, he rocked my world on the big
            screen when I went to see the MGM musical Athena (1954) and watched
            the unsinkable Debbie Reynolds upstaged by the luminous screen heat of
            Steve Reeves.
               Five years later, I was twenty years old and hot to trot when producer
            Joseph E. Levine released the widescreen Italian movie Hercules (1959).

          ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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