Playboy UK goes retro and makes the best magazine for the internet to date.02.24.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Tech   |   By: Kellis Landrum
Tags: Magazines, Playboy
Porn just isn’t what it used to be. If you go by your local swap meet chances are you can find a few vintage copies of Playboy from it’s heyday in the 1960-70′s when it was still run by Hugh Hefner. At the time Playboy defined the luxury lifestyle in a way Jay-Z could only dream about. This was a time before the Girls Gone Wild crew had taken over the industry, and Hefner made swinging seem like something for the lifestyles of the rich and famous crowd rather than something for lonely guys sitting at home on a Saturday night.
Playboy was a magazine that touted the female form as art (or at least something beautiful) rather than something dirty. The phrase “I just get it read it for the articles” was jokingly tossed around only because Playboy made a habit of seeking up and coming new writers who routinley went on to publish best sellers. Through out the 60′s, 70′s, and even into the late 80′s, being published in Playboy was undeiable proof you’d made it as a writer.
In recent years the magazine has declined considerably due to both the retirement of Hefner himself and the over all decline in publishing. Playboy.com continues to be a lackluster product considered rather tame for it’s industry. But something very interesting seems to be happening with the UK edition of the site.
When we visited Playboy.com.uk we found a site that seemed to be a return to form both visually and content wise to the Hugh Hefner golden era. We felt an interesting quality about this site that seemed reference past greatness and move it forward at the same time. We’re a little hesitant to say this is exactly what the internet has been waiting for, but we’ll go out on a limb and say maybe. Just maybe.
It feels a little strange to say this, but this site is (probably) safe for work. For the sake of (ahem) research we had a look around and from what we can tell there’s no access to nudity until you become a member (there is some girls in bras and underwear, this is Playboy after all). What we did find however was a very good interview with pop diva Lily Allen, a review of the new BMW Z4, and an article on Hugh Jackman that will give both print and web publishers a run for their money. And of course there’s the usual lovely eye candy that makes Playboy special, lovely women who look sexy and fun rather than cheap and dirty.
While the success of the site still remains to be seen, Playboy.co.uk seems to have found an answer that everyone else is seeking. For every other magazine, the gauntlet has officially been thrown down.