First England fell, victim of a million girlish screams. Then, last week, Paris surrendered. Now the U.S. must brace itself. The Beatles are coming and already teen-age Americans are as keyed up as the days, only a dim decade ago, when Elvis first came twisting on. The Beatles? They are the four shrewdly goofy-looking lads. Fifteen months ago they were singing their songs in a smoky Liverpool jazz cellar. A talent scout took them and their haircuts to London. Today their records have sold five million copics in England and they are a national institution, seemingly as solid as Big Ben and a lot louder. Their musical style embellished standard rock 'n' roll with a jackhammer beat and high screams that would do a steam calliope proud...Read the rest of this article.
Las Vegas, Nev. has the reputation of being the most “wide-open" town in the U. S., and revels in it. The big boom which the town enjoyed during the construction of Boulder Dam seems like high jinks at a church bingo party compared to the preposterous prosperity of today. The average paycheck cashed in Las Vegas is better than $85 a week. Truck drivers are earning up to $150. Nearby the world's largest magnesium plant paid out during construction over $900,000 every week to its 11,000 workers. Within easy hitch-hiking distance are two Army camps, which disgorge restless men into Las Vegas' whirlpool on weekends. Add to this a heavy tourist trade plus the stream of customers drifting through the town's quick marriage and divorce mills, and the reasons for Las Vegas' wide-open reputation become as obvious as the lights on fabulous Fremont Street (upper left). Moneyed people move hopefully to Las Vegas because Nevada is the only State in the Union with no income, sales, inheritance or corporation taxes. But for a town of 20,000 population (recently increased from 14,000). Las Vegas does a meat and gaudy job of shaking down dough as fast as people save it. Even drugstores resound with the clink and whirr of “one-armed bandits,” slot machines which swallow coins, ranging in size from the rare Las Vegas copper penny to the common silver dollar with equal unfairness. On this and the following pages LIFE Photographer Peter Stackpole has pictured some of the many interesting ways to lose, and sometimes win, in Las Vegas, and some of the people who spend their time and money desperately locking horns with luck.
The important thing about the movie The Seven Year Itch is that it answers the burning question, can Marilyn Monroe also act? It is also true, of course, that the Fox film version of the stage hit establishes carp-faced Tom Ewell firmly as one of Hollywood's top comics. It is further true that the original George Axelrod plot about a summertime New Yorker who sends his family to the country and then discovers the pretty girl upstairs —is immeasurably helped by some cool Cinemascopic dreams (pp. 88, 90) that let the plot take wing from the hot Manhattan apartment of the Broadway version (Life, Dec. 8, 1952). It is, finally, true that Director Billy Wilder's Itch is an adult, uproarious farce—though it might be even funnier with a little judicious cutting. But to get back to the important matter: has Marilyn, in a slapstick but sophisticated role, really arrived as a comedienne? Well, she has.
One burning September day in Korea, during the fighting along the Naktong River, Cpl. Robert R. Hale, of B Company, 5th Marine Regiment, led his men up the razorbacks and over the bodies of North Koreans that lay in the brittle field grass. Later that day, after LIFE Photographer David Duncan had taken his picture (upper left), Hale was shot in the hand. Then, in the attack on Seoul, he was hit again by a bullet and a searing fragment. Last week, on a gray Naval transport, Hale came into San Francisco harbor along with 1,166 other Marines from Korea. He was a sergeant now and recovered from his wounds. But at the Changjin Reservoir, where his nose ran from the cold, the mustache he had cherished all through Korea had frozen. So when it thawed he had shaved it off. Like Sergeant Hale, many Marines aboard the transport were back because they had been wounded twice. But 690 of them were the first troops to return under the new Marine rotation plan which will bring veterans of Korea home for leaves and then assign most of them to training cadres. The Marines were neither bored nor excited by the Welcoming ceremonies arranged for them-the Marine band, the speeches from officials who stood near a World War II sign of welcome painted on the dock shed, the motorcade through the city streets. Only a few of them waved at the girls from the cars, and even on liberty that night, prowling through the nightspots, they were on their reserved behavior. It was only during those first precious moment at the foot of the gangplank on the dock that the emotions of the returning Marines came to the surface. Met by friends and relatives, they dropped their seabags and were suddenly swept up in the wonderful feeling of relief and utter joy at being home and in the arms of their people.
The melody is nursery-song simple and the word "sugar” recurs 28 times in the song's 2 1/2 minutes. But as sung by the McGuire sisters, Sugartime has sold more than a million copies and was the country’s best-selling record last week. The girls sing it in breathless close harmony with the energetic enthusiasm and expert rhythmic twists that have made them the country's top girl vocal group. But a crusty patron who heard them do Sugartime at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York concluded that when a hit song is that silly it sounds best when as many people as possible sing it. Unlike most sister acts in show business, the McGuires, Christine, 30, Phyllis, 27, and Dorothy, 29 are in fact sisters. They were born in Middletown, Ohio and when Phyllis was 10 started intoning three-part hymns in a nearby church where their mother was minister. During the week they sang for cake and ice cream at weddings until they won an amateur contest for getting through Three Little Sisters. Ten years after that triumph they turned professional. Since then they have sung in many of the best nightclubs between appearances with Arthur Godfrey, who did a monumental meddling job in Dorothy's romantic life. Close behind Sugartime in sales this week are the records of other vocal groups whose work has suddenly jumped into new popularity. Their success has brought out a rash of vocal combinations with odd names like The Four Ekkos, The Brother Sisters, Dickey Doo and The Don’ts, and a satirically tagged quintet billed as The Monotones.
It was sunny again. It was always sunny there. And hot. He stood without moving wondering where the action was, and gazing at the blonde stretched out casually in the dirt. She got up and slithered toward him. He knew what she wanted. He embraced her first gently, then violently, Her lips glistened in the sunlight-reflecting joy, pain, sorrow, beauty misery-manhood. He knew he couldn't trust her. He broke away and turned to the brunette lounging languidly on the steps. "You drinkin' again" he muttered disgustedly, she sighed. Suddenly the whole-place erupted. Out of nowhere came two guys, several dogs, cats, kittens and a white duck, “Okay, Mike." Yelled one guy, “let’s go!" The brunette dropped the drink, the blonde screamed. The guys took after the duck, the duck attacked the dogs, the cats shrieked. There it was the action. And he never avoided action. But before he moved, he spotted it out of the corner of his eye-the thing they'd been after for weeks. He yelled triumphantly: “The missing scrabble!" He grabbed it and rushed into the house. It was another afternoon in Mickey-Spillaneville. The action was all there but the scene was all wrong. The blonde, for one thing, was 4 years old and nobody shot her. The brunette who was drinking was 12, and it was Pepsi and ice cream. Mike was 6 and the other guy was 10. Mickey spillane wasn't even armed. It was worlds away from the rainy streets,
At 4 a.m. one morning last November at Boeing's Seattle plant a huge tarpaulin-covered shape was rolled out to the test areas under armed guard. The shape under the canvas was that of the Air Force's newest and world's biggest jet bomber, the XB-52, a 350,000-pound plane built on lines of a jet fighter. In the drawing above, Artist John T. McCoy shows the power and beauty of the plane which is the culmination of 35 years of progress in U.S. military aviation. In the drawings on the following pages, McCoy traces the ancestry of the XB-52 back to the wood-and fabric biplanes of World War I, then shows the developments of the fighter from the Spads bought from France in 1918 to today's 700-mph jets and illustrates how far the Navy has come from its 85-mph flying boats. The untested XB-52, still far from the production line, will be of no immediate help to the Air Force. It will do nothing to alleviate the frightening shortage of every type of combat plane, which the lagging rearmament program has brought about. But when, in three or four years, it is in mass production, the XB-52 should be an extraordinary weapon. Into it will go the top secret devices of the Air Force. In its nose will be a radar bomb sight designed to hit targets with visibility zero from altitudes higher than 10 miles. Under its wings are slung eight newly developed J-57 turbojets whose thrust, equivalent to about 80,000 hp, will drive the XB-52 at around 550 mph. In its fuselage are immense fuel tanks which, fed by flying tankers, will make the XB-52 an intercontinental bomber. Click Link Below to Read Full Article.
For years Americans driving their big-slick gas gulpers have been perennially teased with rumors of new, small, efficient cars that would serve for normal driving and still cost less than a matched string of pearls. Most of these have turned out to be pipe dreams or, like Nash's N.X.I. projects for the future. But this week, at the Chicago Automobile Show, drivers will at last get... Read the rest of this article
The pictures on these pages, showing the resurrection of wrecked American warships at Pearl Harbor, represent one of the most remarkable feats of marine engineering ever attempted. They also give evidence that many U. S. battleships, shattered by bomb and torpedo on Dec. 7, 1941 and subsequently refloated and rebuilt, have been sent back to the war as better fighting ships than they were when sunk. Of the 19 ships damaged on that fateful day, 14 have already been repaired and sent to sea under their own power. Three of the remaining five, the Arizona, Oklahoma and Utah, are at present undergoing salvage operations. The remaining two, the destroyers Cassin and Downes, were damaged beyond economical repair but more than 50% of their equipment has been utilized in new ship construction. This record has bettered anything the Navy dared hope when it made a preliminary survey of the smoking ruins a few hours after the attack. The record was achieved by the use of imagination and a good deal of hard work. The Oklahoma, for example, lay with about a third of her bottom exposed and sloping at a 30° angle. First a scale model was built and mounted in exactly the same position as the capsized ship. Divers studied this model before going down into the oily muck below-decks to close compartments. When this was done, steel cables anchored to the ship's hull and powered by electric motors set up on nearby Ford Island, slowly drew the 29,000-ton ship over until she was upright (see opposite page). Next, salvage men will go to work on her as they have on the already completed Nevada, West Virginia and California—first removing as much weight as possible, then sealing breaches, refloating the ship and removing it to drydock to be cleaned, rewired and rebuilt with the latest equipment.
Though it has the most famous artist in the world for a relative, the family of Pablo Picasso in Spain has managed to remain surprisingly obscure. But an enterprising young American named Rosamond Bernier, who publishes with her French husband the art magazine L'Oeil, recently paid a call on Picasso's sister, Doña Lola de Vilato, in Barcelona and found not only a houseful of lively Latins but a trove of undiscovered Picasso paintings. Some—done in a somber, realistic style were painted by Picasso in his early teens before he left home. Others, in bright colors with curious designs, were done in 1917 when the artist was 36. During the summer of that year Picasso arrived in Barcelona with the Diaghilev Ballet Russe, for which he had designed some sets. He settled down with one of the ballerinas, whom he later married, and launched into an outburst of painting. After three weeks Picasso returned to France leaving his canvases in his sister's home. There they repose today, stacked in a dust-laden clutter or hung askew on the walls. But they are highly esteemed by the spontaneous, bohemian Vilatos who would never dream of selling them and who like to wander through the shadowy rooms of their apartment, holding matches up to get a better look at ''Uncle Pablo’s” work.