Photo Essay

Pinball Time Machine

Pinball Series: Superman

In this day and age, there are so many game systems we have to choose from but the old pinball machines fascinate me the most. I spent the afternoon in the Manitou Springs Penny Arcade and found some wonderful hidden treasures. I guess I never really looked hard at the old graphics on the machines until I was waiting for my turn to play and it took forever. I was getting bored waiting for my ball so I took a walk with my camera and had the best time zooming in on these dinosaurs.

What intrigued me the most was the amount of subliminal imagery. The older pinball machines portraying the wholesome women with guns just seemed so odd to me. Then I found one that had the image of a woman watching a man play pinball, but the machine he was playing on had the same woman and himself playing. It was like an alternate universe. Then there was a machine that had a small graphic in the corner of a man looking at a girlie magazine titled "Fun, Fun, Fun" and behind him stood a large woman at a candy machine trying to decide what to eat. How strange of imagery to appear on a pinball machine! Of course there was the usual curvaceous semi-naked women being displayed with lights flickering on and off, but the older the machine...the more clothes the women were wearing. The pinball machines turned into recorded history for me displaying rockets pointed at the moon and women with flipped up hairdos.

Photographing these paint peeling pinball machines made me wonder how long they will survive. They have stood the test of time so far and I hope they are still around for another 50 years.

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