We know Carole Lombard was a champion athlete in her youth; was archery among her skills? Maybe, but no matter how good she was at it, chances are she wasn't quite as good a shot as the being she'll be shown conversing with. In fact, chances are he successfully targeted her a number of times.
We're referring to Cupid, whose skills with an arrow have figuratively touched all of us at one time or another. And the symbol of romance apparently had a conversation with Carole in the spring of 1934...one that happened to be transcribed to the makers of Lux soap. How do we know? We have proof!
(And we know it's from the spring of '34 -- about the time she was settling into her new home on Hollywood Boulevard -- because Lombard is listed as the "charming star of Paramount's 'We're Not Dressing.' ")
I've seen this ad before, but the two pages were always shown separated, not connected; I've been told by the seller the pages here are actually separate as well. (The ad was also made in a one-page version.) Here, you truly sense the impact it must have made in fan magazines of the time. Here's their "conversation":
Cupid: "Hello, angel face, you look as if you'd just washed in morning dew."
Carole: "I've just washed in something much nicer -- and it's your own prescription, too."
Cupid: "When did I prescribe for you? You've turned men's hearts and heads so often that I can't remember when you needed my advice."
Carole: "Well, once upon a time you told me to always use Lux Toilet Soap -- and I agree that 'it's a girl's best friend' -- those were your words, Dan."
Cupid: "You're not the only girl I've seen surrounded with admirers after taking that advice of mine. It's my favorite ally, that soap."
Carole: "Men certainly do fall for a lovely complexion, don't they, Dan? And I'm certainly much obliged for that tip you gave me years ago."
Below the copy, Cupid is shown pointing to a bar of Lux, calling it "my greatest ally"...and the National Recovery Administration's famed "blue eagle" logo is next to the angel of love. (Was Cupid endorsed by the New Deal?)
It's interesting that Lux chose Lombard for this ad, as it had been less than a year since her divorce from William Powell was granted. Hey, even Cupid doesn't bat 1.000.
This ad is being offered at eBay for $9.99 -- and believe it or not, no one has bid on it as of this writing. Hard to believe, because as a bonus, the seller is offering this Lombard page from Photoplay:
I'm not certain what specific issue it's from, but it looks to be from 1933 because there's a reference to her film "The Eagle And The Hawk." It's a beauty trick, and the caption for the top photo reads:
"The extreme sophistication of Carole Lombard's latest coiffure created for 'The Eagle And The Hawk' convinces us that one need not be bobbed to look very chic. That engaging bang contrasts charmingly with the braid at the neck. Significant, these long screen coiffures."
And for the bottom:
"Perhaps an attic or forgotten drawer may yield a braid with which to disguise your short locks in this regal manner for evening. Perfect with a sheer dance frock. That bang, which lengthens the head, shortens the face, is suggested only if your eyes are large, features delicate."
Both the Lux ad and the Photoplay page can be yours...but you better hurry. Bids close at 3:38 p.m. (Eastern) today. If you want to bid, or simply learn more about it, go to http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-2-page-Lux-Ad-Carole-Lombard-HTF-Must-See-/160492730446?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item255e1cb84e.
Lombard was featured with a bow and arrow in at least two other photos, probably done to promote the 1932 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. And it looks as if, to borrow a line from Elvis Costello for the second day in a row, her aim is true.