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Katherine von Drachenberg,
They're often blond, very ambitious and always beautiful. They're the young women who travel from towns and cities across America in hopes of sharing one man's incredible dream: life at the Playboy Mansion. This unique eight episode reality series takes viewers beyond the gates and behind closed doors to reveal the world of Hugh Hefner's mansion as it has never been seen before: through the eyes of the women who live, play - and, of course, party - with him. It's the secret side of an American legend and the fabled home that has captivated the imagination of millions. Written by
I have seen this program advertised, but had never watched even a second of it until today. I hit the "E" channel's number by mistake, intending to tune into the Navy-Army pre-game program.
They had just begun a program celebrating Hefner's 80th birthday, apparently ready to participate in the traditional, annual, "Hef's birthday," viewing of "Casablanca." He was reading some notes about the movie - the man is an unexpectedly dull, and rather inarticulate speaker. Everyone was grinning like apes, and his young girlfriends were in dresses so damn tight, they looked like Martin Short's morbidly-obese "Jiminy Glick" trying to seat themselves.
I watched a few minutes, fascinated as his charges in the other room scurried to convert a large area into a precise replica of "Rick's," the Bogart bistro in the flick - for champagne and caviar afterward.
The show is amusing, but I suspect (at least for me) in some ways other than intended. Hefner reminds me of Phil Donahue and the late Howard Cossell. He has morphed into a persona which looks like an exaggeration of the satirical imitations of him done by impersonators, stand-up comics, and talk-show hosts. Hugh, like Phil and Howard, is a classic self-parody. And there's something fascinatingly grotesque in viewing this octogenarian old fart creep around in pajamas and smoking jacket, amidst these vacuous nymphets, who seem incapable of wearing any apparel which isn't overly-tight, overly-skimpy, or both. Nothing actually wrong with this per se, except these bimbos are as void of taste as they are intelligence.
I've seen his old films/tapes of the long-ago Playboy t.v. program. There he was a 30- or 40-something man, pretentious, and a rather smarmy/unctuous presence. The guy today is a pretentious, smarmy, unctuous 80-year-old.
I'd love to see a show devoted to a tour of Hef's private bathroom, and have him display his undoubtedly major supply of herbs, vitamins, and ED pills, creams. etc.
When the girlfriends eventually "deliver," Hef can be an honorary Great Great Grandfather to the kids. He's just the right age.
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