Blog: Thoughts and comments on the world of the pulp magazines

A ‘pulp’ mystery continues…

Posted by at 9:00 am Thursday, May 2, 2013 in Movies/TV/Radio, Pulps, ThePulp.Net
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Betsy Drake poses at a "newsstand."Back in February, I picked up a publicity photo of actress Betsy Drake standing in front of a newsstand (at right). I’ve been intending to add it to the collection of newsstand photos over on the Pulp Photos page.

When I first got the photo, no pulps jumped out at me. The only pulp-related item seemed to be the promotional poster for The Shadow high on the wall above Drake. I noticed a Time magazine cover from November 1948, so I assumed the photo must have been taken around that time.

Last evening, I scanned the photo and was processing it for posting when something caught my eye. It was none other than the mysterious Cowboy Thrill Magazine — or so I thought.

It was the same bucking bronco artwork and similar logo type, but the title was Old Western Tales. Oh, and what looked like Flaming Western Stories, with the same artwork. What?

A movie studio "newsstand"

The more I looked at the photo, the more I noticed odd things:

• Modern Mechanics and Aviation Mechanics both feature the same artwork, as well as the same blurb: “A new plan to span the stratosphere across U.S.”

• Saddle and The Billboard both display the same photograph of a man in riding attire on their covers.

• Mayfair Life and (what may be) Mayfair also have the same cover artwork of a top hat and gloves.

Clearly this wasn’t an actual newsstand.

The photo is stamped “Warner Bros.” on the reverse. Drake made a couple of films with that studio, released in 1950 and 1952, but was previously under contract with RKO Pictures.

In my post regarding Cowboy Thrill Magazine, there was a connection with RKO. Was this publicity photo of Drake taken on the RKO lot?

Where else will Cowboy Thrill Magazine turn up?