Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Kuppenheimer Halloween Ad from the Saturday Evening Post (1922)

Yeah, it's the mag that became Norman Rockwell's home turf.

This was apparently the inside of the magazine's cover for a fall issue in 1922.

Measures 10" x 13.5"

"Caption/Title: Kuppenheimer Good Clothes--An investment in good appearance."

I remember Rod Serling wore Kuppenheimer suits on the old Twilight Zone.

He always looked great in those.

Are those stores even around anymore? We had one only about two miles from here, but I remember it vanished years ago. Must have gone out in the late eighties or nineties.

But then Serling was always smoking too. As he stood there setting up the premise for the episode in that well-cut suit.

And he died very prematurely (50!) of heart disease that was probably related to the smoking, shortly after his Night Gallery series ended.

I was addicted to both series as a kid (I saw the TZ's as reruns, and NG when new). Twilight Zone was often better written, but Night Gallery was often much scarier--much more dedicated to horror. The Twilight Zone episodes could often be lighthearted or whimsical, and were often fables with morals at the end. They loved irony. Night Gallery was quite content to just be creepy, quite often. And there was a clear love of a wilder surrealism with images that sometimes seem inspired by the paintings of Ernst or Dali--something that was only occasionally indulged in by the writers of TZ. Maybe this had something to do with the switch from black and white to color. Maybe Serling found himself thinking in more visual terms and favoring images that often seemed dredged from the subconscious.

Serling had such a great presence, especially on TZ! He reeked of class. There was a deserved assurance in every line he spoke. Even when he was doing that often campy closing narration for an episode of TZ.

And I would often encounter Serling's fiction in the sci-fi paperbacks I loved so much.

It was imaginative and fun.

That's why the Twilight Zones still deserves those perennial holiday marathons. I'm happy to watch quite a few of them over and over.

Serling was an ace writer, and he knew how to suss out the other ace writers (like Charles Beaumont).

I am especially fascinated by the episodes dealing with the psychological atmosphere in America during the Cold War.

Those episodes, in particular, could be profitably used in history and sociology courses.

Because they're such fascinating historical documents; I mean, aside from their value as art.

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