Monsieur Mosse

A Bad Gay? Queer Celebrity in Finnish Print Media, from the 1960s to the 1980s

  • Susanna Paasonen
  • Mari Pajala
Keywords: gay celebrity, gossip, porn magazines, sexual outness, Finland


Raimo Jääskeläinen, better known as Monsieur Mosse (1932–1992), was a hairdresser, makeup artist, gossip columnist, convicted blackmailer, and Finland’s first out gay male celebrity. The topic of endless articles, befriending and falling out with beauty queens and fashion models, publishing a tell-all memoir elaborating on his taste for luxury, working for straight porn magazines and briefly editing one, Mosse was both the subject and object of popular media and, in his flamboyance, a key domestic celebrity figure of the 1970s and 1980s. Meanwhile, his relationship with the gay rights movement was frictional at best in that his brand was considered “dishonorable” vis-à-vis liberatory politics. Building on media historical inquiry and taking cue from Huw Lemmey and Ben Miller’s (2022) popular argument for studying “bad gays” – historical figures not fitting aspirational and inspirational narratives of queer activism and agency – this article examines Mosse’s trajectory as a celebrity, focusing especially on his 1980s collaborations with the sex press. We argue that Mosse’s particular brand of shameless extravagance and candid gossiping knowingly operationalized “badness” as a vehicle of distinction and visibility in a largely homophobic national context.


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How to Cite
Paasonen, S., & Pajala, M. (2024). Monsieur Mosse: A Bad Gay? Queer Celebrity in Finnish Print Media, from the 1960s to the 1980s. Lambda Nordica, 29(1), 63-88.