Friday, September 9, 2011

Joe Loves James Franciscus!

My first gay crush was actor James Franciscus.

I was 11, just starting puberty, and went with my brothers and friends to see "Beneath the Planet of the Apes." 

Like them, I liked action movies and sci-fi and - so I thought - the hot cavegirl, Nova.

But boy, I was in for a big surprise! 

The hero of the movie was an astronaut played by James Franciscus. I couldn't take my eyes off him!

He was the most handsome guy I'd ever seen. He had golden blond hair, piercing blue eyes, and a deep voice. He was commanding and athletic, projecting a very manly, cool presence.

In his spacesuit, he looked and acted like the perfect All-American man, which had shifted in that era from cowboys to astronauts. But I quietly prayed for him to lose that spacesuit like Charlton Heston did in the first "Apes" movie! And I got my wish. Within a few minutes, Franciscus was stripped down to a skimpy loincloth and spent the rest of the movie looking like a blond Tarzan.

And wow, what a wardrobe change that was. He had a great body, with well defined pecs and sixpack abs. 
He didn't have the only ripped body in Hollywood then, but it wasn't that common, either. And to see such a handsome man with such a great body was really rare.

That night (and off and on for years afterward), I was confused and conflicted, since I'd thought I was into curvy cavegirls. But I had obviously discovered I preferred hard-bodied spacemen. And I got over it fast by fantasizing about my astronaut in a loincloth!

Joe - Atlanta, GA

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Vincent Desjardins said...

I throughly enjoyed your post on James Franciscus. I could also completely identify with it. James Franciscus was one of my first gay crushes as well. I was going on 15 when 'Beneath the Planet of the Apes,' was released. I remember going to see it more than once in the theater so that I could feast my eyes on the beautiful half-naked Franciscus. I also bought the paperback novelization and the soundtrack album, partially because they both contained photos of his sexy body. My crush on him continued though my high school years when he starred in the television series, 'Longstreet,' where he played a blind detective. Sadly this show only lasted one season. When ABC cancelled it, I wrote several letters to the networks and to the show's sponsors, protesting its cancellation. I still have some of the TV guide covers and magazine images of James Franciscus that I clipped out to pin up in my bedroom.

Stee-Vee said...

Plus he had those super white teeth back before we had all the crazy ultra-violet laser bleaching treatments available today. And didn't they set off his tan? Mmm mmm mmm mmm mmm! Check out WHEN TIME RAN OUT. It's an Irwin Allen disaster flick about a volcano, and he plays the bad guy. I can't remember if he takes off his shirt or not.

toycoon said...

Ha ha! I remember wanting to go 'Beneath the Body of James Franciscus' as well! What a f**kin' hunk of stuff!

Steven Benezue said...

I too had a crush on James Franciscus. My parents enjoyed his TV series, Longstreet. Even as a kid I always looked forward to seeing the show and him. He was so handsome. And I agree he was so HOT in Beneath the Planet of the Apes.