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#1
Old 05-15-2009, 11:13 AM
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Did JFK have a combover?

President Kennedy was one handsome guy, and his defining feature was that boyishly full head of hair. Looking at a photo, though, I am shocked to notice that the part for it barely clears the top of his ear. Other famous men with that kind of part--Ted Koppel, Pat Buchanan, George McGovern--inevitably have a combover which obscures shocking baldness. Could that possibly be the case for JFK? Did he, in fact, have his father's hairline?

I can process the stories of recklessness, hookers and Marilyn Monroe, but this possibility tarnishes Camelot more than Chappaquiddick and the dickhead nephews combined. What's the Straight Dope on this?

Last edited by Horatio Hellpop; 05-15-2009 at 11:18 AM.
#2
Old 05-15-2009, 11:43 AM
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"Barely clears the top of his ear"? Are we looking at the same photo? If his head was a square, that part would be right at the 90 degree angle. The hair on the top does look poufy compared to the short-cropped sides, but he wasn't a Beatle, he was a politician.

StG
#3
Old 05-15-2009, 11:51 AM
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He had thick, full hair. Look at other pics.
#4
Old 05-15-2009, 11:52 AM
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What StGermain said. The part is at 1:30, pretty much exactly 45o up from the plane of his ears.
#5
Old 05-15-2009, 12:04 PM
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Here's a profile shot of Kennedy.

Here's one where you can see the back of his head (he's on the right, that's RFK on the left.)

One from above.
#6
Old 05-15-2009, 12:06 PM
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Answered.
Answered again.
#7
Old 05-15-2009, 12:55 PM
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You can have a very wide part without it being a combover, you know.
#8
Old 05-15-2009, 01:09 PM
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Handsome? I guess that's charisma for you.
#9
Old 05-15-2009, 01:55 PM
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Why would anyone in 1962 bother with a combover?

Remember, the president previous to JFK was bald, as was the Democratic presidential nominee in 1956. Men in that era were resigned to balding (there was little you could do other than wear a toupee). It was probably Kennedy himself that changed public perception that a politician should have a full head of hair.

"Combover" as a term wasn't coined until 1980 (OED), which indicates that the practice was unusual in the extreme in 1960.
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#10
Old 05-15-2009, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hilarity N. Suze View Post
Handsome? I guess that's charisma for you.
Handsome in politics is graded on a curve.
#11
Old 05-15-2009, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Krokodil View Post
Looking at a photo, though, I am shocked to notice that the part for it barely clears the top of his ear.
Have you actually looked at the photo you're linking to?
#12
Old 05-15-2009, 03:47 PM
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It'd only be a combover if he was bald under the hair that was combed over. He wasn't.
#13
Old 05-15-2009, 03:52 PM
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No man in history has ever looked good in a combover. JFK looked good. Ergo, JFK did not have a combover.
#14
Old 05-15-2009, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Hilarity N. Suze View Post
Handsome? I guess that's charisma for you.
Are you seriously contending that Kennedy wasn't handsome?
#15
Old 05-15-2009, 04:59 PM
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The autopsy photos of JFK here (not safe for weak stomachs):
photo1
photo2
both seem to show a fairly full head of hair, with no significant balding.
#16
Old 05-16-2009, 02:47 AM
Zoe Zoe is offline
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Reality Chuck: "Combover" as a term wasn't coined until 1980 (OED), which indicates that the practice was unusual in the extreme in 1960. [/b]

Oh, the practice has been around for a long time. We just didn't call it a "combover."

I didn't see JFK in person, but my very first impression of RFK was that he had an enormous amount of hair for someone who had a rather slight build. It was a lot redder than I thought it would be. That was almost exactly 41 years ago -- two or three weeks before he died.
#17
Old 05-16-2009, 03:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Captain Carrot View Post
Are you seriously contending that Kennedy wasn't handsome?
Yes. Those Kennedys all looked healthy, and I'm not saying he was ugly. But not handsome. I know people thought he was, but I always assumed that was...in comparison to Nixon. Or previous presidents. He was better looking that most of them, but missed handsome by a good bit IMO. I'm sure like all charismatic people he was much better in person.

Also, Jackie was not exactly the beauty of her family, either. She had style, she had class, she had flair out the yazoo. But her sister was the pretty one. (I did meet Jackie. She was not better in person.)
#18
Old 05-16-2009, 03:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe View Post
my very first impression of RFK was that he had an enormous amount of hair for someone who had a rather slight build. It was a lot redder than I thought it would be.
I'm not really sure how this works.

I have a thick head of red hair, and I'm not equally thickly built. How is this an enormous amount of hair?

How is hair volume related to shoulder width? (or whatever measurement is used to categorize "slight build")
#19
Old 05-17-2009, 01:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Carrot View Post
Are you seriously contending that Kennedy wasn't handsome?
JFK wasn't handsome. He was attractive, but that was his stylishness. big difference. Kind of like the girl with the ugly face, and big knockers. Hot, but not beautiful.

hh
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