Thursday, 25 October 2012
Royale Studio No 18 - The Scout - Part 3
The dreaded hand on hip pose is never far away in male beefcake shots but this one provides another opportunity to study the revealing contours of that impressive bulge and the model's meaty legs. His head seems curiously oversize in these frontal shots making for a very strange effect.
It's hard to know what to make of this imagery across a space of 50 years. Despite the boyish subject matter, there's no sense of anything under-age here. Royale commonly depicted spanking situations and used uniforms to invoke ideas of obedience and control, but discipline was virtually non-existent in the Scout movement, it was a voluntary, leisure pursuit - so I doubt that connection is being made here. The air of authority in this picture makes me wonder if we are looking here not at a Scout, but at a Scout Leader. In those, unreconstructed days, Scouts and Scout Leaders were often the butt of jokes about unsavoury activities around the camp fire - along the same lines as boarding school dorm jokes. I suspect these images were intended to appeal to men who relished that fantasy - of being seduced by the handsome Scout Master - over that handy bale of hay, no doubt.
This model appears in other Royale sets where he looks a good deal less intimidating than this. I've not yet been able to name him. Any info from readers would be welcome.