Jul 25, 2014

Bobby Hull: Hockey's Beefcake Boy

When I was a kid, I hated sports, but that didn't stop my parents and Santa Claus from loading me down with sports equipment and sports-themed toys.

Well, the action figures were ok -- you could pretend that they were rescuing each other, or tied up face-to-face by the bad guy.  And sometimes they had muscular chests under their clothes.

And the Bobby Hull Hockey Game that I got for Christmas in 1970 was actually kind of fun.

I didn't know who Bobby Hull was, but my cousins quickly informed me: a hockey player for the Chicago Black Hawks, who scored lots of goals and made lots of slapshots, whatever those were.  In 1972 he moved to the Winnipeg Jets, where he stayed until he retired in 1979.

I wasn't impressed by goals and slapshots, but I was impressed by Bobby's physique.  He was one of the few sports figures to be photographed semi-nude often, in the locker room, while exercising, on the beach.  He was even displayed naked in Life magazine!

Here he's polishing his stick, but the phallic symbolism is obvious.

During his career, and after, Bobby also appeared semi- nude in ads.  Here he and his bulge are selling shorts in front of a striped surfboard.

I can't find any particular gay connection in his life, which has been rather controversial due to allegations of domestic abuse and pro-Hitler comments.  But sometimes beefcake is enough.