The Jack Kirby Of Porn: Celebrating The Happy Hunks Of Tom Of Finland
September 18, 2014 7:48 AM   Subscribe

ComicsAlliance explores the work and legacy of Tom of Finland (mostly SFW), the legendary homoerotic artist whose work is now available in a limited edition stamp set
posted by Think_Long (46 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
 
Related; funny and SFW.
posted by sourcequench at 7:55 AM on September 18, 2014 [5 favorites]


This is the guy who later moved to Maine and sold toothpaste, right?
posted by thelonius at 7:59 AM on September 18, 2014 [22 favorites]


Every Tom of Finland comic that I've read (and I've read several hundred of them) has the same plot: Hard-working Guy A is trying to do his job. Sexy Guy B propositions him. Guy A refuses; his job is really important. Guy B grabs Guy A's massive junk, at which point Guy A can no longer resist, and the suck-and-fuck-fest begins. This happens over and over and over.

I sometimes like to imagine what society must be like in the Tom of Finland universe. Do the people there just get used to the planes crashing all the time, the houses burning down, the construction jobs never getting completed? Are there women there at all, and do they just accept that if they want something done they'll have to do it themselves, because the men can never complete even the most routine of tasks before shoving their enormous cocks into each other? Does everyone die from lack of basic services? If they do, are they buried, or do they just rot on the surface because the gravedigger abandoned his work halfway through shoveling because a leather-clad biker grabbed his dick?
posted by Parasite Unseen at 8:03 AM on September 18, 2014 [52 favorites]


Now I am imagining the Steve Ditko of porn -- contorted poses and, later on, crazed Objectivist reanting.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:04 AM on September 18, 2014 [7 favorites]


Taschen had been putting out Tom of Finland books for years, but everyone always complained (prescient!) about how tiny they were. So, in a rare instance of a publisher listening to criticism, "This oughta shut 'em up."
posted by Sys Rq at 8:08 AM on September 18, 2014


I sometimes like to imagine what society must be like in the Tom of Finland universe.

You have to admit, however, that it is the only universe where you can eat your Kake and have him, too.

I think it's more like Tom only shows us the best moments from the universe, sort of the way that the original Star Trek series only shows us the most exciting moments on the Enterprise, not the majority of days which are spent with Kirk filling out paperwork and McCoy attending diversity traniing.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:09 AM on September 18, 2014 [22 favorites]


A fellow MeFite once mailed me a Tom of Finland art book they no longer wanted for the cost of shipping, but it was unfortunately lost in the mail (a fact I blame entirely on the post office here). I'm sad that the book was lost, but as the sender never received it back, I am delighted that someone, somewhere received an, ahem, package with a Tom of Finland book out of the blue.
posted by griphus at 8:16 AM on September 18, 2014 [11 favorites]


Well, dammit, now I'm picturing a series of Star Trek-themed Tom of Finland illustrations.


That dilithium injector is never getting recalibrated.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:27 AM on September 18, 2014 [11 favorites]


Now I am imagining the Steve Ditko of porn -- contorted poses and, later on, crazed Objectivist reanting.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:04 AM on September 18 [1 favorite +] [!]

I am imagining "reanting" as a portmanteau of "ranting" and "reaming". Which seems about right.
posted by McCoy Pauley at 8:45 AM on September 18, 2014 [3 favorites]


In my local post office in Tampere, Finland they keep running out of the Tom of Finland stamps. They're selling like hot beefcakes.
posted by Kattullus at 8:50 AM on September 18, 2014 [12 favorites]


ComicsAlliance explores the work and legacy of Tom of Finland (mostly SFW), the legendary homoerotic artist whose work is now available in a limited edition stamp set
posted by Think_Long (10 comments total) [add to favorites] 7 users marked this as a favorite [!]


Eponymisterical
posted by OmieWise at 8:58 AM on September 18, 2014


Now I am imagining the Steve Ditko of porn

You want Eric Stanton, whom Ditko is rumoured to have worked for in his studio, putting out an oeuvre of big, dominant women beating up and sexually humiliating overbearing but ultimately sissy men.
posted by MartinWisse at 8:59 AM on September 18, 2014 [4 favorites]


Heh, locals decided to test Russian "anti gay propaganda" laws by sending parcel. Nobody cared to notice ;p
posted by infini at 8:59 AM on September 18, 2014 [2 favorites]


Kattullus, Tampere's YLE station is who sent those parcels to Russia, no wonder they ran out ;p
posted by infini at 9:00 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


And dammit, if this isn't an Ditko arm on the guy on the left, I don't know what is.
posted by MartinWisse at 9:01 AM on September 18, 2014


> Are there women there at all, and do they just accept that if they want something done they'll have to do it themselves, because the men can never complete even the most routine of tasks before shoving their enormous cocks into each other?

Considering that one of his scenes features a woman who is left to content herself, rather indignantly, with the policeman's baton (er, the plastic one) after he shows up to bust her lover and the inevitable happens... yes. The answer is yes.
posted by Westringia F. at 9:08 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


You want Eric Stanton,

But does he invoke the Invisible (but Stinging) Hand of the Market?
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:15 AM on September 18, 2014


Whoever's writing the English language news of YLE, the Finnish state broadcaster, is having an absolute blast writing these stories.

"The homoerotic stamps officially went on sale Monday, but even before then they had been in stiff demand"

"But the stamps are now also arousing stiff opposition within Finland"

"However, the gay imagery of the stamps has also met with stiff opposition within Finland, with some finding the celebration of homosexuality particularly hard to swallow."
posted by Kattullus at 9:25 AM on September 18, 2014 [18 favorites]


"Many are complaining that these stamps were simply thrust upon the market, with little consideration for the desires of consumers and their willingness or ability to receive packages of this nature.



Turgid."
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:33 AM on September 18, 2014 [6 favorites]


I remember reading some essay on how the uniformity and sameness of Tom's characters reflected or influenced the "clone" look of the 70s and how the stylistic conformity was some kind of utopian ideal, once everyone is stylized alike everyone can be equal and equally attractive or something.
posted by The Whelk at 9:39 AM on September 18, 2014


It's interesting that the Comics Alliance piece covers all of Tom of Finland's artwork attributes in some detail, except one that is never mentioned - the ubiquitous giant cock.

There are many fine things about the Tom of Finland story, and many nuances, but not to cover this particular aspect seems... well, the elephant in the room.

As it were.
posted by Devonian at 9:42 AM on September 18, 2014


8====D (.)(.)

I am the Rob Liefeld of porn.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 9:45 AM on September 18, 2014


This is the guy who later moved to Maine and sold toothpaste, right?
posted by thelonius

YES
posted by orme at 9:46 AM on September 18, 2014 [4 favorites]


I am so happy you all noticed YLE's English language news stream's particular flavour of underlying amusement.

Over the years, some favourites include "Bear scares jogger" and "Feral bunnies loose in city" ... can't find the link, its from some years ago but the number of puns was ...uh... unbearable
posted by infini at 9:49 AM on September 18, 2014 [2 favorites]


orme: YES

See also.
posted by Kattullus at 10:15 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


That dilithium injector is never getting recalibrated.

This dilithium injector ain't gonna recalibrate itself, knowhatimean?

FTFY
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:15 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]




"But you're in Security, not Engineering..."
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 10:20 AM on September 18, 2014 [2 favorites]


Yeah, and my phaser is set to sexxxxxxxxxxxxxy.

A chicka chicka bow wow.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:25 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


accurate
posted by likeatoaster at 10:33 AM on September 18, 2014 [5 favorites]


One of my ex's best friends was a gay fellow in NOLA who always had a 4" thick Tom of Finland collection book on his coffee table (to scare the normals, he later said). I apparently got huge bonus points first time I met him when I flipped through it, chuckled and said "that would have to hurt".
posted by kjs3 at 10:38 AM on September 18, 2014 [2 favorites]


What If... Tom of Finland Worked for Marvel Comics? (Seen on Tumblr, in the context of illustrating what Marvel would be like if male characters were put to the same sort of fanservice as female ones, although as you'd expect some people didn't really have a problem with that.)
posted by Halloween Jack at 11:03 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


Officially, Kyrgyzstan has never released any Eric Stanton stamps.

Officially.
posted by ckape at 11:12 AM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]



8====D (.)(.)

I am the Rob Liefeld of porn.



Something about sad foot fetishists here.
posted by louche mustachio at 3:14 PM on September 18, 2014


If I lived in the Tom of Finland universe I would have to become some sort of researcher. The peculiarities of the male anatomy, and how it all...uh, fits together, would just way too fascinating.
posted by louche mustachio at 3:21 PM on September 18, 2014


Even some utter size queens I've known have looked at ToF drawings and said "Hell the fuck no."

What If... Tom of Finland Worked for Marvel Comics?

I think ToF drawings are exactly what comics would look like if men were drawn the same as women.

What's weird to me is that if you look at any leather event, the men are dressed the exact same as in the drawings. Plus they play into or maybe helped seed the current obsession with 'straight-acting' men. I mean just ugh. I think Whelk maybe wrote something a ways back about how very sad that desire is, and frankly: acting straight means having sex with women. Not men.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 3:46 PM on September 18, 2014


Well the thing with ToF drawings is that, unlike so many of that super butch leather stuff - they actually seem to be having fun and are making eye contact and smiling, so much of that scene is just fucking grim.
posted by The Whelk at 4:05 PM on September 18, 2014 [3 favorites]


Hope those stamps are gummed ... they look good enough to lick.
posted by Twang at 4:21 PM on September 18, 2014


so much of that scene is just fucking grim.

Oh dear God yes.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 4:32 PM on September 18, 2014


What's weird to me is that if you look at any leather event, the men are dressed the exact same as in the drawings. Plus they play into or maybe helped seed the current obsession with 'straight-acting' men. I mean just ugh.

Huh? Maybe in 1958 (or maybe not), but now? A studded leather cap gets a pretty loud ping on even the weakest gaydar. Hypermasculinity is about as "straight-acting" as a drag ball.

(Also, "straight-acting" is just a shitty, stereotype-enforcing way of saying "not obviously gay," which many genuinely gay guys genuinely are. It's a term generally only used in personals ads by closeted guys looking for discreet hookups, and is best left there.)
posted by Sys Rq at 5:01 PM on September 18, 2014


Straight-Acting is also a coded way of saying "professional white protestant. "
posted by The Whelk at 5:10 PM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


I am well aware of Anil Dash's preferences.

(The preceding inside joke is intended as lighthearted ribbing and is not intended as a statement of fact. The author has no actual knowledge of the position of Anil Dash with regard to Protestants.)
posted by Sys Rq at 5:30 PM on September 18, 2014


Huh? Maybe in 1958 (or maybe not yt ), but now? A studded leather cap gets a pretty loud ping on even the weakest gaydar. Hypermasculinity is about as "straight-acting" as a drag ball.

Been to any leather events, like, ever? The majority of men there are dressed like they fell out of a ToF drawing this morning.

It's a term generally only used in personals ads by closeted guys looking for discreet hookups, and is best left there.

Trust me when I say it is not a term reserved for the headless torsos on Craigslist and Grindr. Nor is it reserved for people in the closet. It's a pretty pervasive thing throughout the contemporary gay world.

I don't deny that it's shitty, but it's shitty for more reasons than the ones you enumerate, and it's not confined to closet cases seeking 'discreet' (read: I pretend to have a girlfriend) hookups. It's a sneer at people who genuinely just DGAF about buying into gender essentialism, and it's unspeakably sad, because men who describe themselves as 'str8-acting' are often a) incredibly deluded about fitting in and what it takes; you will never truly fit in with the straight boys because at the end of the day you suck cock and they don't. Lots and lots of straight boys don't care, hooray, but you will always have a little wall between you and the guys you're watching football with, and b) as is so true (in gay personals at least), someone who describes themselves as ____ (FITB with str8-acting, hot, hung, VGL, etc) usually isn't.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:28 PM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


Once you see the Tom of Finland influences in Frank Quitely's artwork you can't unsee them - his Superman especially.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:47 PM on September 18, 2014


Been to any leather events, like, ever? The majority of men there are dressed like they fell out of a ToF drawing this morning.

Yeah, but I think Sys Rq's point is that this is a gay man's look, not a straight man's. No straight man I've ever seen dresses like that. Lots of gay men do. We own that look.
posted by me & my monkey at 9:23 PM on September 18, 2014 [1 favorite]


Perhaps that's my fault for not being clear; the look and the 'str8-acting' thing are different outcomes that I can see Tom of Finland having had a(n indavertent?) hand in perpetuating. The look, from the drawings, is everywhere. The attitude is only in the gay male (and maybe only gay male and urban?) scene.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:37 PM on September 18, 2014


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