Appendix III

Thing-Fish '84 Hustler Pictorial

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  Below is some notes and some comments on THING-FISH Pictorial published in the April, 1984 issue of Hustler Magazine. (incl. un-authorized copy of the texts part of the said magazine issue)
  The un-authorized scans of the pictures are probaly still here at Geir' site
  Larry Flynt
From: Jim Craig <>
  Mine is autographed by Ike Willis. He was amazed that anyone had the album complete with the libretto. He also told me something that was very surprising; the Thing-Fish mask cost $7000 to make and a large portion of the money for production of this project was put up by Larry Flynt. How's that for a team-up?
From: "D.G. Porter" <>
  FZ told me (1988) that Flynt put up about $55,000 for that spread, and if it hadn't been for Flynt there wouldn't be a Thing-Fish mask or doll. Most "guests" of Hustler's sex fantasy feature would/did do something lame. FZ used the opportunity to realize a music project.
From: Patrick Neve (
  Ike told me approximately the same thing, that w/o Flynt there would not have been Thing Fish.
  Ample Annie Autobio
From: (Mike Quigley)
  Well, wonders never cease ... I found the excerpt from Ample Annie's autobiography where she tells about working with Frank... Here it is:
  Frank Zappa's group, The Mothers of Invention, was one of the major groups in the 1960s. He'd concentrated on making and producing records right through the '70s rather than going on tour. He was one of those politically outraged musicians, who was also outrageous.
  He picked me out of the Faces book that most performers are in if they have an agent. I was perfect to play a part in what was going to be his first big musical stage production. Before I went to LEA., Frank and I spent hours on the phone talking. In fact, he auditioned me on the phone, and when we talked he always wanted me in character. I was supposed to be a domineering housewife with a horrible, high-pitched voice. "Harvey, yer a worm," I repeated over and over again when we were talking.
  I went to Zappa's studio, which is in his basement, and is technically as good as any around. He showed me how he does the recording and the mixing right there. Then I met his wife and children. They all are terrific people. Zappa doesn't drink or do drugs. He proves that you can be in show business and have it all together.
  Zappa decided that he first wanted me to do publicity for his new album, "Thing-Fish." In it, he had a song about a rubber doll. He'd heard about Slutty Suzy and Sluts Are Us in my act, and thought that Suzy and I would fit right into his plans. As part of the promotion, he was producing a celebrity layout for HustIer magazine. That was fine with me as long as I didn't have to do any acrobatic shots. It took three of the wildest days of photography I'd ever gone through. I was paid $2,000 a day. The magazine got twenty-one pages out of it. As usual, I was underpaid given the results.
  My hair was white and ratted out about a foot around my head. I wore crazy-looking glasses, which had boxes with nude legs hanging out of them. They put a scar on my chest, and naturally I stripped through the pages of the magazine. I started out in a Santa Claus outfit and went slowly down to a pencil and a briefcase.
  The set, like Zappa, was bizarre. They must have spent thousands of dollars on it. There was a house with phony snow and dozens of pink flamingos in front of it. In the background, there was a huge poster of Pat Boone with his penis hanging out. Someone had found a Polaroid and sold it to Larry Flynt, Hustler's publisher. Since he couldn't use it anywhere else, he used it here. Don't ask what the significance of any of this was. I was just doing my job.
  The shoot took place just before Thanksgiving, and I was keen to get back home for the holiday. I was invited to Larry Flynt's place for dinner the night the shoot was over. I'm not impressed by much, but I have to admit that Flynt's house was beautiful. The foyer was filled with antiques. It was hard to imagine the porno king and his wife with her pink Mohawk cut in such an elegant setting.
  I was wearing black leotards and a brown dress -- very understated for me. The dining room was just as elaborate as the foyer. Around the dining room table sat an odd bunch of people. There was Tom Laughlin who starred in Billy ]ack, two Indians who were leaders of AIM (the American Indian Movement), Watergate figure John Dean, and the man who invented the Uzi machine gun. There was also a general and an evangelist.
  The butlers were all wearing Uzi machine guns. I wasn't sure if this was decoration in honor of the inventor or because of the nature of the crowd. It was bizarre to say the least. No matter how delicious the food was, I felt extremely uncomfortable. The conversation was about developing a magazine that would compete with SoIdier of Fortune, the magazine for mercenaries.
  Larry Flynt was in a wheelchair because he'd been shot and left a paraplegic. I'd been told that his bedroom was bomb-proof because he's worried that someone will try to kill him again. I didn't get a chance to talk to him until I went to the bathroom after dinner. I happened to walk in on him by mistake. There he was with a therapist, who was massaging his body to keep his circulation going. The bathroom was huge. When I tried backing out the door, he waved me to the edge of the bathtub to have a talk.
  Unlike the standoffish Hefner, Flynt was friendly. He talked about his mother, who'd come from a small town. Because she didn't want to leave her house, he rebuilt it in his backyard out there in Hollywood so that she'd be near him.
  Flynt was starting to run for president at this time. He told me a lot of things that I didn't want to hear. About tapes that could, he said, hurt several people in high places. He said he knew who shot him, and that it had been set up by people who were high up in the government. He said he knew that the KAL jet that had been shot down really was a spy plane. He said he had films of the shooting of John F. Kennedy.
  "You're welcome to see these films. We're going to have a screening after dinner." I didn't want any part of any of it.
  Flynt invited me to be part of his presidential campaign. He gave me buttons and a T-shirt. He wanted me to go on national television, he said, as his campaign promoter -- topless. As far as his attorneys could find out, there was no law that said you couldn't do this.
  I left as soon as dinner was over. I felt ill. I'm not political, and I certainly didn't want to get mixed up with these macho politicos. I was so nervous that when Flynt offered me a ride back to Las Vegas the next day, I said no thanks. Frank Zappa drove me out to the LEA. airport, and I was still so upset that when I walked out to the airport, I had my shoes on the wrong feet.
From: (Lance Franklin)
  Frank Zappa Celebrity Photo-Fantasy from the April, 1984 issue of Hustler Magazine. All text transcribed without permission. All capitalization and punctuation is as it was printed.
  Full page of blanks, just to be sure of catching all the weak-at-mind.
  [blank page deleted ... -ed ]
  [Cover Page...Movie Poster format]
  Based on scenes from the impending Broadway musical, starring Ike Willis as the THING-FISH, Annie Ample as RHONDA, Robert Axelrod as HARRY, Phil De Carlo as THE UNKNOWN ITALIAN, with SISTER OB'DEWLLA 'X' and THE CRAB-GRASS BABY as themselves.
Book & Lyrics............. FRANK ZAPPA
Directed By............... FRANK ZAPPA
Produced By............... STEVE SAYADIAN
Photographed By........... JAMES BAES
Cover Photo............... LADI VON JANSKY
Costumes.................. ROBERT FLETCHER
Scenic Design............. ROBERT FLETCHER
Masks & Special Effects... JENE OMENS
Makeup.................... RONNIE SPECTOR
Unusual Props............. EFFIE CAREY
Crew...................... KENT TERANISHI
  Original Soundtrack Album Available On BARKING PUMPKIN RECORDS, P.O. Box 5265, North Hollywood, CA 91616-5265
  << The Pictorial >>
  Page 1-2:
  The front lawn of an UNKNOWN ITALIAN, somewhere in New Jersey, Christmas Eve 1983, 11:26 p.m.
  HARRY (in submissive leather) demands to have his way with little SISTER OB'DEWLLA "X." THING-FISH (her legal guardian), convinced that the tiny creature is rugged and durable enough to withstand such abuse, agrees. HARRY has accidently fallen in love with here and wants her to kick the shit out of him for Christmas. On bended knee he pleads: "Anything you say, Master! Take me, I'm yours!" This gives his wife, RHONDA, a terrific headache.
  Page 3:
  Disgusted with her husband's bizarre fixation, she attempts to reorient him with a shameless display of ornamental fatty tissue, shouting: "These are my tits, wonderful, wonderful tits...I'm going to pretend I'm squirting them on you! Wooosht! Pssht! Fwsssht! Almost Gotcha!"
  Page 4:
  The UNKNOWN ITALIAN worries that behavior such as this will have an adverse effect on property values in his area. Two weeks ago he received a copy of that hideous little book Pat Boone advertises (regarding HIS PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD). Believing every word of it, the UNKNOWN ITALIAN now regards himself as an expert in the field of Crisis Management...he now has HIS OWN personal relationship with God and, like the rest of the Video-Christian species, an uncontrollable urge to inflict it on the silly-looking motherfuckers who inhabit his $27 Nativity Box.
  Page 5:
  Stimulated, HARRY begs: "Hurt me! Hurt me! Oh! Pull my chain, you tiny potato-headed whatchamacallit!"
  RHONDA removes the rest of her holiday outfit. After a deft tuck and moisten maneuver she attempts to entice HARRY with her steaming bush. HARRY ignores it, still begging: "Hurt me, OB'DEWLLA! Make me wimper and beg for your tiny rubber love!"
  Page 6:
  When HARRY was a boy, he used to fuck the flamingos near the steps. Knowing this, RHONDA, attempting theoretical proxy-lust, forces one of them to eat her shorts. THING-FISH remarks: "You's a sick, white muthafucker, ain'tcha? 'DEWLLA! Don't be pullin' de boy's chain too hard dere! He gots anothuh show t'do t'morrow! I knows y'caint hep y'seff wit dat crazy muthafucker 'busin' ya like dat! Jes hold on a lil' while longuh...he be droppin' de wad putty soon now!"
  Page 7:
  Page 8:
  "JESUS! That was terrific! I've never experienced anything quite like that in a theatre before, RHONDA!" "You're a worm, HARRY. Drop dead. God, you're disgusting! Don't touch me! YUCK!"
  Page 9:
  After dropping his imaginary load, HARRY and his beloved enjoy a couple of Marlboros. The UNKNOWN ITALIAN displays a traditional Sicilian home remedy for HARRY's rare mental disorder. RHONDA has decided that the only thing left for her to do is fuck her briefcase.
  Page 10:
  While assisting with the lubrication of the enormous vinyl salami, he suggests that, out of respect for the clean-living, wholesome, all-American fellow who urged him to call for THE BOOK, any hint of "hair that smells like shrimp" must be concealed behind a small cardboard box.
  Page 11:
  Page 12:
  RHONDA thinks it's a good idea and announces: "I have my briefcase, HARRY... it's right over there...see it? It's's's full of business papers from MY CAREER! I'm going to put my glasses on! I'm going to put my hair up in a bun...and then I'm going to FUCK, FUCK, FUCK!
  Page 13:
  As if she had uttered THE MAGIC WORD, a discarded aluminum billboard refused by Elmer Valentine materializes behind her big, brown briefcase, showing Pat at the exact moment he discovered HIS OWN "personal relationship with God."
  Page 14:
  While THING-FISH pretends that RHONDA's fountain pen tastes like corn-on-the-cob, Pat's airbrushed replica attempts a rare form of one- dimensional sodomy as practiced by retentive savages in Virginia.
  Page 15:
  Relieving THING-FISH of his burden, RHONDA exclaims: "I'm sucking the handle now! Look! Mmmmmm! It tastes good! I've got a fountain pen, HARRY! I'm going to stuff it up my asshole and ride the briefcase again, you disgusting, perverted bastard worm! Goddammit, watch me, HARRY! This is for your own good!"
  Page 16-18:
  Page 19-20:
  HARRY replies: "For chrissake, RHONDA! Have you no shame? Keep your briefcase closed...all your documents are falling out! Those are the Warner Brothers files, aren't they, dear? Don't you think there'll be some questions about the condition of the blue paper?" RHONDA gives the zany Christian a ten-second combination mercy-jerk/nano-whiffette while inquiring: "Where are your real clothes, HARRY? Are you going back to Long Island like that?" "I have nothing to be ashamed of! I have a LOVELY body! Everyone will understand! I've ACCOMPLISHED something tonight! I really believe that! I've found a sort of fulfillment other men only DREAM about!"
  THING-FISH is beyond a doubt the most bizarre pictorial ever to appear in HUSTLER. Who else could be responsible for this outrageous celebrity photo-fantasy but Mr. Weird himself, FRANK ZAPPA? There's a story behind the masks used in the Zappa feature. Two Halloweens ago HUSTLER photographer LADI VON JANSKY was at a party where he met artist JENE OMENS, who happened to be wearing a very impressive homemade mask. When von Jansky was assisting Zappa with preparations for the photo- shoot and needed to find an artist to fabricate the masks, von Jansky immediately thought of Omens and tracked him down. Omens drew concept sketches, then proceeded to make miniature clay sculptures. Next came full-size sculptures; then plaster molds into which he poured latex rubber to make the masks. The project took more than six weeks to complete.
  We asked Omens how he felt about working with the notorious Zappa. "It was a real pleasure," he says. "Frank had a very clear idea of what he wanted, unlike other show-business people I've worked with. It made my job a whole lot easier." Jene's credits include working as makeup artist on the TV series Wizards and Warriors and as assistant cameraman for the "Jews in Space" sequence of Mel Brook's History of the World Part I.

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