National Geographic Feb 1968 – The “Jaws” Article

On the back of my review of “An Adventurous Life” by Valerie Taylor, I’m keeping with the “Jaws” theme.

I did an Instagram post earlier in August in which I said that there was only one thing that I wanted to buy during my holiday in the USA, a “Jaws”-related ornament for my fish tank…

Technically that was true, but it wasn’t my only “Jaws” related purchase that I brought back with me. It’s just that this other one I’d bought on eBay and it was waiting for me when I got to my first hotel. The purchase in question is the February 1968 edition of National Geographic. It is this edition that Chief Brody skims through in “Jaws”.

There don’t appear to be any clips on YouTube showing the scene in “Jaws” when Brody skims through the article, or when his wife sees the picture of a boat being bitten by a shark and screams, much to Brody’s surprise given her change in tune, for Michael to get out of his boat, but I’m sure if you know the film, you are familiar with the scene.

Here are some of the iconic pages…

The larger picture is by Ron Taylor
Smile, you son of a…

Now, I know the copy that I have is not the actual copy in “Jaws”… but you can’t help but imagine the Chief flicking through the pages when the magazine is in your hands. I don’t know how much this copy is really worth, but I know that it’s worth a lot more to me than the price I paid for it.

The article itself is interesting, but feels dated in comparison to the knowledge that now exists about sharks. Interestingly it contains a reference to the 1916 shark attacks in New Jersey that inspired Benchley to write “Jaws”. And, referring back to my review of “An Adventurous Life” by Valerie Taylor, there is definitely no mention of the Nova Scotia sinking and how sharks attacked the sailors that ended up in the sea (much like the USS Indianapolis – which is hinted at, but not mentioned in the Feb 1968 aritcle as it came out before this incident really became public knowledge) in this article, so there’s at least one more shark-related edition of National Geographic dating back to the 1960s or 70s.

Here are some of my other “Jaws” related posts:

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