One of the top magazines of the world
Whether you agree with the content or hate that it exists, Playboy magazine is one of the top magazines in the world and one of the most recognizable brands in the world. Founded by the late Hugh Hefner in 1953, and marketed as a men’s lifestyle and entertainment magazine, the issues feature various elements of interest to men (though more recent years have seen a push towards a more neutral gender stance in its writing, especially on their website). The biggest feature of this top magazine is its nude and semi-nude photographs of female models known as Playmates. Once a month a ‘Playmate of the Month’ is chosen, and once a year the ‘Playmate of the Year’ title is given out. In the past, it was Hugh Hefner himself that chose the PMOY, but with his passing a new way of selection will have to be chosen.
Not only models!
Besides its models, Playboy has also featured quality articles, short stories, and even sections for comics (though comics are no longer used in current issues). The magazine became a platform for many famous writers and cartoonists. Some of the most notable writers include Vladamir Nabokov, Chuck Palahniuk and Haruki Murakami. The issues also include interviews with many notable celebrities, from film stars to music composers and politicians. The articles written tend to have a more liberal slant, though the people interviewed and many consumers of Playboy tend to be more conservative, making this top magazine an interesting blend of personalities and ideologies.
Playboy began with a centerfold of Marilyn Monroe, and from then on its success was nearly assured as more and more credibility and stardom came its way. Another big name associated with Playboy is Ray Bradbury, whose novel Fahrenheit 451 was serialized after its publishing in 1953 through the top magazine’s March, April, and May 1954 issues. Pamela Anderson’s claim to fame was through Playboy, and her following television and celebrity successes can be attributed to having been a top Playmate and Playmate of the Month in February 1990.
Working to stay relevant
As time passes, trends change, and technology improves, the top magazine has continued to work to keep its readership and relevancy. Competition from other magazines such as Penthouse have forced Playboy to include more culturally relevant stars to interview, such as Hip Hop idols, in an attempt to keep its ages 18-35 male readership appeal. In 2016, as a response to the widespread availability of adult content online, Playboy magazine decided to end its nude spreads and make full nude content only available at its Playboy premium website after a subscription was bought. However, this change did not last long, and the magazine reverted back to its fully naked splendor in its March/April 2017 issue, and has continued to provide nudity in its issues ever since.
When talking about top magazines, there is no doubt that Playboy will always have a place in history as one of the biggest and most well-known out there. It just reaffirms the old adage that, for the male consumer, “sex sells.”