Sunday, April 13, 2008

Mae West: Sexpot or Sex-bomb?

The Florida Times-Union did an article on "The Evolution of Sex Symbols" — — and MAE WEST was accorded her due as a bombshell and a sexpot. Encompassing both male and female sexpot types, the writers' categories included: Bombshells and Sexpots, The sex bomb, Bikini Babes, Flappers, The red-hot lover, The femme fatale, The girl next door, The gamine, Heroin chic chick, The bimbo, et cetera.
• • What's the difference between screen queens who are "bombshells and sexpots" versus "sex bombs"? Indeed we wondered, too. Read on.
• • Sex symbol surveyors David Bauer and Laura Capitano began by taking "stock of the bodies and souls that have seduced our imaginations over the years."
• • Bauer and Capitano wrote: Fads and fashions have always played roles in determining sex symbols. While physical attractiveness is about the only timeless quality, remnants of the categories from the early part of the 20th century are with us today. Instead of fading away and being replaced by a new genre, many of them continued and new ones were added, so many of today's sex symbols are amalgamations of one or more of the categories from the past.
• • Here's how they define "Bombshells and sexpots" — —
• • Little did the advertising people behind Jean Harlow's 1933 film Bombshell know their words would be ageless when they called her the "blond bombshell of filmdom." Harlow ushered in a new category of sexy starlet: Usually buxom, often blond, and frequently full-figured. Others
— — like Mae West — — and, to a degree, Harlow, established a genre of sexual, defiant characters.
• • Examples: Mae West, Jean Harlow, Fay Wray, Joan Blondell, Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo.
• • Notice how their definition of "The sex bomb" — —
• • Although breathy, sensual, and screaming of sexuality, the Sex Bomb also had a clearly naive side. Although she would flaunt her beauty, she sometimes didn't even recognize her own sexuality.
• • Examples: Marilyn Monroe, Mamie Van Doren, Brigitte Bardot, Sophia Loren, Gina Lollobrigida.
• • Bauer and Capitano include Theda Bara and Clara Bow under their label "Vamps" — — and Norma Talmadge and Louise Brooks as "Flappers."
— — Source: — —
• • Article: "The Evolution of Sex Symbols"
• • Published in: The Florida Times-Union — —
• • Published on: 13 April 2008

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

• • Photo:
• • Mae West • •
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Mae West.

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