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Friday, 4 November 2011

Around 1967, burlesque venues (go go dancers, topless bars, strip clubs, etc.) started to dry up in favor of adult movie theaters. It was, of course, a lot cheaper for a theater owner to pay for a loop of film versus a bunch of live girls.  Plus, the loosening of restrictions on adult movie theaters provided a novel allure to male audiences; whereas, burlesque seemed a thing of the past.... at least for a while.

The downside was that the whole experience took on a different tone.  Before, it was acceptable to take the wife to the Playboy club, or go to a business lunch at the local topless bar.  Now, the adult XXX theaters lent a sort of seediness to the whole affair; dapper gentlemen stayed away, while legions of trenchcoats flooded the dark and smokey theaters downtown.

By the mid-1980's, the VHS revolution completely destroyed the adult theater business - which makes these newspaper ads all the more interesting.  They come from that brief moment in time, roughly 1967 - 1984, when adult cinemas were in their heyday.  It's damn near shocking for me to look at an old newspaper and see these rather explicit ads.  Sure, they can still be found today, but the sheer number during this time period is breathtaking.  Have a look...

click images to enlarge


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