This shows Hollywood stars Clark Gable and Joan Crawford indulging in a cigarette in the 1934 film Chained.
Despite the many health risks associated with smoking tobacco, in the Golden Era, cigarette smoking was a fashion statement that showed the smoker to be a classy person. Indeed, many a student bedroom is adorned with the iconic photograph of Audrey Hepburn with cigarette holder clinched betwixted gloved fingers.
Continue reading “Tobacco’s Golden Era”
Art Fitzpatrick is one of those forgotten heroes of the Golden Era whose romantic advertisements for period automakers as Lincoln, Pontiac and Studebaker continue to enchant up to this very day.
Continue reading “The Art of Art Fitzpatrick”
This old photograph of the Viceregal Lodge in Simla, India comes from the 1909 book Trans-Himalaya: Discoveries and Adventurers in Tibet by the Swedish explorer and topographer Sven Hedin, which can be read in full at Project Gutenberg. Continue reading “Viceregal Lodge, Simla”
Whenever a new technology is introduced, whether on the battlefield or at home, there is always a brief period when inventors, unfamiliar with the new concepts, begin experimenting with designs and plans, trying to push innovation to the limit. While these experiments occasionally produce useful results, the great majority end up on the scrap heap of history.
One such forgotten experiment was the A7V Sturmpanzerwagen, an early German attempt at creating a battle-ready tank. Continue reading “A7V Sturmpanzerwagen”
With a collection of historical photographs of the city of Palm Springs, Architectural Digest celebrates “the innovative style and legacy of legendary architects and designers who left their mark on this California desert oasis.”
Continue reading “Desert Modernism in Palm Springs”
George Chetwynd Griffith-Jones is one of the forgotten luminaries of the classic British Scientific Romance. A best-selling author and sometime rival of H.G. Wells’ at the beginning of the twentieth century, his work has been mostly forgotten by later generations. While much of them are steeped in the opinions and prejudices of his day, Griffith’s tales contain many elements that would lay the basis for the first great boom of science-fiction.
The Astronef series is a good case in point.
Continue reading “George Griffith’s Astronef Series”
With the gaming marketplace dominated by a glut of World War II-themed shooters, it is always refreshing to see titles experiment with depictions of obscure or allohistorical conflicts.
While Iron Storm, created by defunct French developer 4x Studio and released in 2002, takes the First World War as its starting point, it borrows and combines elements from the long history of twentieth-century warfare to create a darkly surreal experience that should surely appeal to particularly the dieselpunk enthusiast.
Rather appropriately, Iron Storm is set in an odd little history that would warm the heart of a 1920s pulp novelist.
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The adventurer is crucial to steampunk, for he explores the boundaries of empires and brings back new and exiting things from his journeys into the previously unknown. Adventurers are brave, daring and, most importantly, looking the part, no matter where they go — be they the brave explorers of lost civilizations in deep jungles or underneath the mighty oceans, the gallant aviators that soar the skies or anything in between.
Continue reading “The Adventurer Style”
This book is dedicated to everyone who ever thought evil was just a dream. Rejoice, would-be miscreants, your time has come!
With these words begins one of the most amusing how-to-books in literary history.
Author Neil Zawacki and illustrator James Dignan take inquiring minds on an extremely hilarious and comprehensive five- step program on becoming the perfect villain.
With a lot of humor involved, they explain you how to get started with the forces of evil, covering all the basics from what kind of villain to chose from, evil overlord-type names, appearances and let’s not forget a very important aspect: the evil laugh!
Continue reading “How to Be a Villain”
Throughout World War II, Allied policymakers pondered how to rearrange the world once victory was achieved. Oftentimes their thinking confined itself to the outlines of postwar Europe, but some schemes were more ambitious. Continue reading “New World Order”