01 Shanghaied Sailor (Jun'60)

Royale Studio - Shanghai'd Sailor

The basic plotline of this set - namely the abduction and enslavement of a drunken sailor while on shore leave in foreign parts - bears a striking resemblance to Etienne's 'Sailor Beware', not least in the near-identical opening scene showing the Sailor reaching an advanced state of intoxication in a bar under the scheming gaze of the locals. Other similarities are described in the full Gallery article for this storyette. 

Images from Royale's storyette appeared as early as Jun 1960 in Man Alive No 10, but the earliest dated reference I can find for Etienne's original interpretation is in Mars 17 (Jan'66), so it seems like Royale's story may have inspired Etienne's work. However, his story differs in significant details (two sailors instead of one for example) and he takes it much further, detailing their lives as slaves after being sold with a steamy erotic conclusion that Royale could never have contemplated at that time in the UK.

Royale's story seems to be set in the Caribbean (the Antigua Bar) as opposed to Etienne's fanciful, Arabian location and this gives the enslavement plotline a very different edge. It stars Peter George as the sailor victim with Jack Shrimpton as the bartender and the notable West Indian body-builder Beresford Morris playing an opportunist slaver in a notable reversal of the historical roles in this region. A reversal which was then, and still is, full of illicit, erotic nuances. 

The Archive has 19 images from the set with no obvious, major gaps in continuity (see main article). The original set size is not known but Royale's customary sizes of 24 and 36 would have left room for a glimpse of Peter's life as a slave. Painful no doubt.

Read Shanghai'd Sailor


NOTE: The term 'to Shanghai someone' sounds like some wicked Oriental practice but in fact it was employed by British and American Captains to crew their vessels by abducting men and forcing them to work on their ships. See Shanghai'd blog post

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