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Hugh Hefner

In his final years, Hugh Hefner (who died last week) sometimes appeared – in photographs that his friends ought to have warned him not to sit for – as a pathetic, exhausted and even forlorn figure. 

This was a fate, as members of the feminist sisterhood would no doubt observe, entirely fitting for an ageing roué, a pornographer and procurer who spent an adult lifetime objectifying women for the entertainment of priapic adolescents and witless misogynists. 

One columnist described him as a ‘lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan’.  I’ll go along with that.  Others were even less kind.  I’ll go along with them, too. 

Hefner had his admirers, of course, but almost exclusively males of a certain age, who once regarded Playboy magazine as almost an essential a lavatory accessory as the loo-roll.  

The female exceptions in this largely male preserve were those lurid, pouting, full-breasted female creatures who in their desperate quest to become models or actresses, flocked to the Playboy Mansion, there to attend the host’s drug-fuelled orgies at which the price of the ticket to ‘fame’ was submission as ‘playmates’ to ‘Hef’ and his select band of slavering gentlemen friends and business acolytes.  Those parties, like the magazine, were staged and marketed in the name of the ‘Playboy Philosophy’, a pseudo social ‘movement’ that claimed to be working alongside other liberating causes to free society from the puritanical shackles of preceding generations.   

The magazine’s shtick was its appeal to would-be sophisticates: men-about-town who could appreciate the finer things in life, especially those pertaining to ‘hip’ clothes, ‘cool music’, Havana cigars and exotic booze.  All of these were mere accoutrements to be deployed in the seduction of eye-popping beauties in penthouse playpens.  In most cases, such readers had neither the wit nor the money to attain such a state of nirvana – but wallowing in the glossily-printed fantasy was evidently enough for most of them.  More often, though, Playboy’s ‘readers’ were not Hef’s wannabes but lug-heads in greasy overalls, whose notions of the highlife could be satisfied by pinning the  Playmate-of-the-Month to the walls of the body-shops where they worked.   

Hefner hit back at his holier-than-thou critics as socially regressive, and in doing so pointed to the high-minded ‘literary’ material that he published in the magazine between ‘artistic’ photographic features such as ‘Campus Swingers of 1990’.  The pages of Playboy were indeed graced from time to time by the great and the good of American literature – Mailer, Updike and Vidal and their ilk – but these excursions into the highbrow were little more than pretentious self-serving filler to tone down the smut.    

The early feminists despised Hefner and his works, of course, even as he claimed to be helping their cause by coming out strongly on the side of the angels for female choice and civil rights and same-sex marriage.  But in retrospect they owe him a debt of gratitude.  By presenting misogyny as respectable, Playboy magazine helped to focus the early campaigns of the Women’s Liberation Movement.  

Playboy magazine lives, or stumbles, on as I write but circulation is a tiny fraction of what it once was (one million) at the height of its popularity.  Porn no longer needs Hef’s soft-focus shoots or literary shills or glossy wrappers; it is now hard-core, brutal and free on-line.

That is this fatuous chauvinist’s lasting legacy.   

Silly man!  Awful man!

Hugh Hefner

 

In his final years, Hugh Hefner (who died last week) sometimes appeared – in photographs that his friends ought to have warned him not to sit for – as a pathetic, exhausted and even forlorn figure. 

This was a fate, as members of the feminist sisterhood would no doubt observe, entirely fitting for an ageing roué, a pornographer and procurer who spent an adult lifetime objectifying women for the entertainment of priapic adolescents and witless misogynists. 

One columnist described him as a ‘lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan’.  I’ll go along with that.  Others were even less kind.  I’ll go along with them, too. 

Hefner had his admirers, of course, but almost exclusively males of a certain age, who once regarded Playboy magazine as almost an essential a lavatory accessory as the loo-roll.  

The female exceptions in this largely male preserve were those lurid, pouting, full-breasted female creatures who in their desperate quest to become models or actresses, flocked to the Playboy Mansion, there to attend the host’s drug-fuelled orgies at which the price of the ticket to ‘fame’ was submission as ‘playmates’ to ‘Hef’ and his select band of slavering gentlemen friends and business acolytes.  Those parties, like the magazine, were staged and marketed in the name of the ‘Playboy Philosophy’, a pseudo social ‘movement’ that claimed to be working alongside other liberating causes to free society from the puritanical shackles of preceding generations.   

The magazine’s shtick was its appeal to would-be sophisticates: men-about-town who could appreciate the finer things in life, especially those pertaining to ‘hip’ clothes, ‘cool music’, Havana cigars and exotic booze.  All of these were mere accoutrements to be deployed in the seduction of eye-popping beauties in penthouse playpens.  In most cases, such readers had neither the wit nor the money to attain such a state of nirvana – but wallowing in the glossily-printed fantasy was evidently enough for most of them.  More often, though, Playboy’s ‘readers’ were not Hef’s wannabes but lug-heads in greasy overalls, whose notions of the highlife could be satisfied by pinning the  Playmate-of-the-Month to the walls of the body-shops where they worked.   

Hefner hit back at his holier-than-thou critics as socially regressive, and in doing so pointed to the high-minded ‘literary’ material that he published in the magazine between ‘artistic’ photographic features such as ‘Campus Swingers of 1990’.  The pages of Playboy were indeed graced from time to time by the great and the good of American literature – Mailer, Updike and Vidal and their ilk – but these excursions into the highbrow were little more than pretentious self-serving filler to tone down the smut.    

The early feminists despised Hefner and his works, of course, even as he claimed to be helping their cause by coming out strongly on the side of the angels for female choice and civil rights and same-sex marriage.  But in retrospect they owe him a debt of gratitude.  By presenting misogyny as respectable, Playboy magazine helped to focus the early campaigns of the Women’s Liberation Movement.  

Playboy magazine lives, or stumbles, on as I write but circulation is a tiny fraction of what it once was (one million) at the height of its popularity.  Porn no longer needs Hef’s soft-focus shoots or literary shills or glossy wrappers; it is now hard-core, brutal and free on-line.

That is this fatuous chauvinist’s lasting legacy.   

Silly man!  Awful man!

Hugh Hefner

In his final years, Hugh Hefner (who died last week) sometimes appeared – in photographs that his friends ought to have warned him not to sit for – as a pathetic, exhausted and even forlorn figure.
This was a fate, as members of the feminist sisterhood would no doubt observe, entirely fitting for an ageing roué, a pornographer and procurer who spent an adult lifetime objectifying women for the entertainment of priapic adolescents and witless misogynists.
One columnist described him as a ‘lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan’. I’ll go along with that. Others were even less kind. I’ll go along with them, too.
Hefner had his admirers, of course, but almost exclusively males of a certain age, who once regarded Playboy magazine as almost an essential a lavatory accessory as the loo-roll.
The female exceptions in this largely male preserve were those lurid, pouting, full-breasted female creatures who in their desperate quest to become models or actresses, flocked to the Playboy Mansion, there to attend the host’s drug-fuelled orgies at which the price of the ticket to ‘fame’ was submission as ‘playmates’ to ‘Hef’ and his select band of slavering gentlemen friends and business acolytes. Those parties, like the magazine, were staged and marketed in the name of the ‘Playboy Philosophy’, a pseudo social ‘movement’ that claimed to be working alongside other liberating causes to free society from the puritanical shackles of preceding generations.
The magazine’s shtick was its appeal to would-be sophisticates: men-about-town who could appreciate the finer things in life, especially those pertaining to ‘hip’ clothes, ‘cool music’, Havana cigars and exotic booze. All of these were mere accoutrements to be deployed in the seduction of eye-popping beauties in penthouse playpens. In most cases, such readers had neither the wit nor the money to attain such a state of nirvana – but wallowing in the glossily-printed fantasy was evidently enough for most of them. More often, though, Playboy’s ‘readers’ were not Hef’s wannabes but lug-heads in greasy overalls, whose notions of the highlife could be satisfied by pinning the Playmate-of-the-Month to the walls of the body-shops where they worked.
Hefner hit back at his holier-than-thou critics as socially regressive, and in doing so pointed to the high-minded ‘literary’ material that he published in the magazine between ‘artistic’ photographic features such as ‘Campus Swingers of 1990’. The pages of Playboy were indeed graced from time to time by the great and the good of American literature – Mailer, Updike and Vidal and their ilk – but these excursions into the highbrow were little more than pretentious self-serving filler to tone down the smut.
The early feminists despised Hefner and his works, of course, even as he claimed to be helping their cause by coming out strongly on the side of the angels for female choice and civil rights and same-sex marriage. But in retrospect they owe him a debt of gratitude. By presenting misogyny as respectable, Playboy magazine helped to focus the early campaigns of the Women’s Liberation Movement.
Playboy magazine lives, or stumbles, on as I write but circulation is a tiny fraction of what it once was (one million) at the height of its popularity. Porn no longer needs Hef’s soft-focus shoots or literary shills or glossy wrappers; it is now hard-core, brutal and free on-line.
That is this fatuous chauvinist’s lasting legacy.
Silly man! Awful man!

Hugh Hefner

 

In his final years, Hugh Hefner (who died last week) sometimes appeared – in photographs that his friends ought to have warned him not to sit for – as a pathetic, exhausted and even forlorn figure. 

This was a fate, as members of the feminist sisterhood would no doubt observe, entirely fitting for an ageing roué, a pornographer and procurer who spent an adult lifetime objectifying women for the entertainment of priapic adolescents and witless misogynists. 

One columnist described him as a ‘lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan’.  I’ll go along with that.  Others were even less kind.  I’ll go along with them, too. 

Hefner had his admirers, of course, but almost exclusively males of a certain age, who once regarded Playboy magazine as almost an essential a lavatory accessory as the loo-roll.  

The female exceptions in this largely male preserve were those lurid, pouting, full-breasted female creatures who in their desperate quest to become models or actresses, flocked to the Playboy Mansion, there to attend the host’s drug-fuelled orgies at which the price of the ticket to ‘fame’ was submission as ‘playmates’ to ‘Hef’ and his select band of slavering gentlemen friends and business acolytes.  Those parties, like the magazine, were staged and marketed in the name of the ‘Playboy Philosophy’, a pseudo social ‘movement’ that claimed to be working alongside other liberating causes to free society from the puritanical shackles of preceding generations.   

The magazine’s shtick was its appeal to would-be sophisticates: men-about-town who could appreciate the finer things in life, especially those pertaining to ‘hip’ clothes, ‘cool music’, Havana cigars and exotic booze.  All of these were mere accoutrements to be deployed in the seduction of eye-popping beauties in penthouse playpens.  In most cases, such readers had neither the wit nor the money to attain such a state of nirvana – but wallowing in the glossily-printed fantasy was evidently enough for most of them.  More often, though, Playboy’s ‘readers’ were not Hef’s wannabes but lug-heads in greasy overalls, whose notions of the highlife could be satisfied by pinning the  Playmate-of-the-Month to the walls of the body-shops where they worked.   

Hefner hit back at his holier-than-thou critics as socially regressive, and in doing so pointed to the high-minded ‘literary’ material that he published in the magazine between ‘artistic’ photographic features such as ‘Campus Swingers of 1990’.  The pages of Playboy were indeed graced from time to time by the great and the good of American literature – Mailer, Updike and Vidal and their ilk – but these excursions into the highbrow were little more than pretentious self-serving filler to tone down the smut.    

The early feminists despised Hefner and his works, of course, even as he claimed to be helping their cause by coming out strongly on the side of the angels for female choice and civil rights and same-sex marriage.  But in retrospect they owe him a debt of gratitude.  By presenting misogyny as respectable, Playboy magazine helped to focus the early campaigns of the Women’s Liberation Movement.  

Playboy magazine lives, or stumbles, on as I write but circulation is a tiny fraction of what it once was (one million) at the height of its popularity.  Porn no longer needs Hef’s soft-focus shoots or literary shills or glossy wrappers; it is now hard-core, brutal and free on-line.

That is this fatuous chauvinist’s lasting legacy.   

Silly man!  Awful man!

Hugh Hefner

 

In his final years, Hugh Hefner (who died last week) sometimes appeared – in photographs that his friends ought to have warned him not to sit for – as a pathetic, exhausted and even forlorn figure. 

This was a fate, as members of the feminist sisterhood would no doubt observe, entirely fitting for an ageing roué, a pornographer and procurer who spent an adult lifetime objectifying women for the entertainment of priapic adolescents and witless misogynists. 

One columnist described him as a ‘lecherous, low-brow Peter Pan’.  I’ll go along with that.  Others were even less kind.  I’ll go along with them, too. 

Hefner had his admirers, of course, but almost exclusively males of a certain age, who once regarded Playboy magazine as almost an essential a lavatory accessory as the loo-roll.  

The female exceptions in this largely male preserve were those lurid, pouting, full-breasted female creatures who in their desperate quest to become models or actresses, flocked to the Playboy Mansion, there to attend the host’s drug-fuelled orgies at which the price of the ticket to ‘fame’ was submission as ‘playmates’ to ‘Hef’ and his select band of slavering gentlemen friends and business acolytes.  Those parties, like the magazine, were staged and marketed in the name of the ‘Playboy Philosophy’, a pseudo social ‘movement’ that claimed to be working alongside other liberating causes to free society from the puritanical shackles of preceding generations.   

The magazine’s shtick was its appeal to would-be sophisticates: men-about-town who could appreciate the finer things in life, especially those pertaining to ‘hip’ clothes, ‘cool music’, Havana cigars and exotic booze.  All of these were mere accoutrements to be deployed in the seduction of eye-popping beauties in penthouse playpens.  In most cases, such readers had neither the wit nor the money to attain such a state of nirvana – but wallowing in the glossily-printed fantasy was evidently enough for most of them.  More often, though, Playboy’s ‘readers’ were not Hef’s wannabes but lug-heads in greasy overalls, whose notions of the highlife could be satisfied by pinning the  Playmate-of-the-Month to the walls of the body-shops where they worked.   

Hefner hit back at his holier-than-thou critics as socially regressive, and in doing so pointed to the high-minded ‘literary’ material that he published in the magazine between ‘artistic’ photographic features such as ‘Campus Swingers of 1990’.  The pages of Playboy were indeed graced from time to time by the great and the good of American literature – Mailer, Updike and Vidal and their ilk – but these excursions into the highbrow were little more than pretentious self-serving filler to tone down the smut.    

The early feminists despised Hefner and his works, of course, even as he claimed to be helping their cause by coming out strongly on the side of the angels for female choice and civil rights and same-sex marriage.  But in retrospect they owe him a debt of gratitude.  By presenting misogyny as respectable, Playboy magazine helped to focus the early campaigns of the Women’s Liberation Movement.  

Playboy magazine lives, or stumbles, on as I write but circulation is a tiny fraction of what it once was (one million) at the height of its popularity.  Porn no longer needs Hef’s soft-focus shoots or literary shills or glossy wrappers; it is now hard-core, brutal and free on-line.

That is this fatuous chauvinist’s lasting legacy.   

Silly man!  Awful man!

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