Sunday, June 28, 2020

Crescent Moon Jokers

I have a charming set of jokers with ladies sitting on the crescent moon.  It's inside the sitting section of the collection more specifically, inside the "sitting sideways" section.

Let's start with the Moon Fairy Joker, a venerable piece of American card and joker history. This Moon Fairy joker was the joker on one of the first Congress decks that the USPC published, in 1895 (I'm not sure that this is an original Moon Fairy although it does seem to match the example from Hoffman' Card Encyclopedia on page 87.)

 The World of Playing Cards cites an 1899 Congress Number 606 Deck that looks a lot like this. How do I tell what era mine is from? Per the Congress Guy aka Kevan Seaney, there was an era when jokers tended to match the back of the cards which is the case with this one. Here's the back of myMoon Fairy joker.

Betty Boop has her own  Betty Boop article on this blog.

I call this one Witchie.

This NuVue crescent moon joker was one that I encountered a lot when I started collecting back in the 1970s. I think it was because it was the standard joker on most airline playing card decks (which were free back then) and so I collected them often. BTW, if you want a cheap thrill, next time you are on a plane and the attendant is of a certain age and asks you want you want (what she really wants to know if you want water or a coke), tell her you'd like a deck of playing cards.  It seems to transport them back to a different era and it takes them awhile to recover and smile and perhaps ask "And has it really been 40 years since you've flown?"

 Confused Am I, isn't this unnatural?!?  This joker troubles me since the crescent moon is facing opposite all the others.  Does that happen?
More about the joker above. This joker was  featured by Joop Muller as the Joker of the Month, June 2020. Since his research and knowledge is so deep and thorough, I'll quote: 

So here she is, sitting on the moon holding up a drink, surrounded by stars and some light brown nebula's. No, she's not in the best condition. The back shows a goose in flight and advertises Miller High Life, "the champagne of bottle beer". So that's probably in the glass she's holding. Google brought some more information. Apparently this logo is called "Girl on the Moon" and there have been at least 5 versions of her. This version would have been in use in the 1950's. I think it's safe to say that the joker was made in the US, but couldn't put a maker to it. Nevertheless...... cheers!”

Here are the ensemble shots of 63 jokers updated 10/2023. (Up 26% from 50 in 2/21).

The top left and top right joker below deserve a comment. They are the jokers from the 52 Plus Joker 2023 Club deck. I bought three decks, kept two unopened, and am greatly enjoying the open deck which is gorgeous with sweet foil applied all over the packaging and cards.

Plus there are four more topsy turvy crescent moon jokers. There are two where they have musical instruments and are drinking. (Only one is shown).
And there two (only one shown) in which they just have an instrument but nothing to drink.

What to look at next, I suggest the:

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Pin Up Joker Playing Cards - Harder Core

It is with mixed feelings that I share my racier jokers. Of course, if this offends you, move on. There are lots of other joker pages to look at which don't raise hackles or questions (and there are some others that do that deal with race).  I sort of agree with you on these being in poor taste but I'm an equal opportunity joker collector.

My Pin Up Girlie Glamour Jokers (ie erotica and porn) is now (as of last 2020) split into bikini girls (the essentials covered), illustrations,  old fashioned,  Asian, and harder core. You are now entering the harder core section. 

This item is from the  girlie joker illustrations:  it's classy, subtle, a little hot, and funny.  It's probably all reproductions of the original deck, it's something to research.

Heh, if this section is really not your thing but you like jokers, here's some ideas of where you might go next.
 Standing jokers - All FULLY Clothed.
Jokers who are dancing
Jokers doing tricks or performing.
Jokers who are juggling.
Jokers who are simply a head or head and torso.

And then back to the modern world and a series of girls-gone-wild, bourdoir photography, These is one from  the  bikini girls  section(the essentials covered)

Annother example is from the  illustrations girlie section. 
Vargas Girl Jokers
Vargas Girl Jokers

This next one feels very 1980s to me.  It's in the old fashioned  section.

This hottie illustrates the  old fashioned joker erotica ,
If you've made it this far, I'm assuming you are not too offended by pornographic jokers.  So, lets get a little more explicit. Ready for some B&B? (buttocks and boobs?)



So those are my pin-up jokers, the naughty jokers, the girlie jokers, the erotic jokers, the porn jokers, the glamour shot joker playing card jokers. As mentioned, These girlie jokers come in many different levels of artsy-ness, explicit-ness, or porn-ness. And there are some boys too!  
Here is a quick overview of the harder core erotic joker section  (updated Feb 2018).

I wonder if Google treats blogs with "explicit" images in some ways that might trigger a series of reactions that might hurt my site.

I'd be surprised if any of the images that I have left up trigger problems with the rating of the site by the search engines and other arbitrators of websites.  But then, what do I know?

Ironically, this section is kept in the same album with the Christmas jokers (complete with angels and cherubs!)

One famous pin up type girl who is not in this section is Betty Boop. I have two Betty Boop jokers but I'm not sure where they should be classified, take a look at Betty Boop jokers and read about here role as a feminist icon.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Joker Nicknames from Dan's Childhood

In the summer of 2018, I had an extended business trip to Chicago. I remembered that there was a joker collector on the Facebook group in Chicago. I contacted him and we met. So far, Dan Nordquist is the only other joker collector that I've met face to face.

Dan Nordquist

Dan is charming, very knowledgeable about the history of jokers especially the early American jokers, and has a wonderful collection particularly of early American jokers.  But what struck me most was his story that he had started collecting jokers as small kid along with all the other kids in the neighborhood. And since they talked about jokers and started seeing the same designs over and over again, they gave them nicknames.  

I asked him if he could remember the nicknames and whether he minded if I shared. Here they are:

He called this joker: Head. 

Comedy Head Joker
Comedy Head Joker

Another anecdote that I found interesting that he shared was about his "little gang of 5th and 6th grade joker collectors" and I quote:

We decided to canvas the entire neighborhood for decks that had interesting jokers.  We told everyone whose doorbell that we rang that we were gathering old and maybe "stale" decks for an old folks home.  We discovered a few new Jokers this way ( such as "Livingston" ) and although we initially were just using the old folks thing as a pretext, we ultimately did give almost everything we found ( lacking a  few Jokers ) to a real old folks' home.  Now we are all "old folks" ourselves!

Candy Joker
Shovel Player
Donkey Clown
Mardi Gras
S Rider

Pinwheel Joker by Western Publishing

And Old Pinwheel.

I like the idea of a bunch of neighborhood kids ringing bells, asking for decks for an "old folks home", and then opening the deck and saying: "Durn, just another Old Pinwheel."  It somehow reminds me of my childhood where I collected cards and coins with my brothers and we would go to local banks to get an entire pound as a bag of either copper, threpences, or sixpences. But that's another story.