Playbill Milestones have been passed by our magazine with gratifying regularity during our ll-year publishing history. The latest was reached with our March issue, when over 3,000,000 copies of Playboy were sold. That figure, we might add, is all the more significant because it was achieved without high-pressure, bargain-basement subscription pitches, and represents a more-than-30-percent increase in circulation over the previous March, which we have every reason to believe is the biggest percentage ever racked up by a major national magazine.
Playboy, June, 1965, Vol. 12, No. 6. Published monthly by HMH Publishing Company, Inc., Playboy Building, 232 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: In the U.S., its possessions, the Pan American Union and Canada, $20 for three years, $15 for two years, $8 for one year. Elsewhere add $4.60 per year for Foreign Postage. Allow 30 days for new subscriptions and renewals. Change of address: Send both old and new addresses to Playboy, 232 E. Ohio St., Chicago, Illinois 60611. And allow 30 days for change. Advertising: Howard W. Lederer, Advertising Director; Jules Kase, Associate Advertising Manager, 405 Park Avenue, New York, N. Y. 10022. MU 8-3030; Joseph Fall, Advertising Manager; Sherman Keats, Chicago Manager, 155 E. Ohio Street, Chicago, ILL. 60611, MI 2-1000. Detroit, Joseph Guenther, Manager, 2990 West Grand Boulevard, TR 5-7250; Los Angeles, Stanley L. Perkins, Manager, 8721 Beverly Boulevard, OL 2-8790; San Francisco, Robert E. Stephens, Manager, 110 Sutter Street, YU 2-7994; Southeastern Representative, Pirnie & Brown, 3108 Piedmont Road, N. E., Atlanta, GA. 30305, 233-6729.
Editor-Publisher Hugh M. Hefner had better look to his laurels. From a friend in San Francisco we've just received the following hand-scrawled eassay written by a precocious nine-year-old for his fourth-grade English class: "When I grow up I would like to be the editor of Playboy magizene. I would start as being an editor of the high school paper, something else that would help me would be finding out about other playboys. I would like to be the editor because I would enjoy the money and I could be a popular playboy. I would put out someother Playboy magizenes like The Modern Playboy. I would also write a book called Playboys I Have Knoion and I Was a Playboy for the FBI."
The Odd Couple makes an even four winners for Mike Nichols. He has directed only four plays: all comedies, all hits, all currently thriving in New York. Again, as with Barefoot in the Park, Nichols, the foremost graduate of the Compass-Second City school of improvisation, has linked his comedic talents with those of Neil Simon, a former TV gagwright turned playwright—with almost equally happy results. Barefoot was more believable, but The Odd Couple boasts more laughs—for everybody except the title couple, who are blissless. They are middle-aged, decidedly heterosexual males, one divorced (Walter Matthau), the other divorcing (Art Carney). Matthau believes in letting fallen garbage lay, but Carney, his best friend, is a nervous Mr. Clean. When he moves in with Matthau, after sending his wife a suicide telegram, he brings his own pots, pans, Aerosol bomb and air purifier. "Two men living in an eight-room apartment cleaner than my mother's," Matthau moans in disbelief. Carney is also a cook and a worrier, and in one of the play's funniest scenes he stews about his London broil—burning up while Matthau is tuning up their dates for the evening, a pair of English pigeons named Pigeon. The point of all this is that the two men antagonize each other in exactly the same way their wives did. Carney's frets and Matthau's bleats are irresistibly incompatible, and Nichols paces them hilariously across furniture, in and out of doors, amid flying linguine, and through a tumultuous poker game with their Friday-night cronies. The Odd Couple is, as they say in the blurbs, a laugh riot. At the Plymouth, 236 West 45th Street.
Ever since Ride the High Country, movie buffs have been touting director Sam Peckinpah. Major Dundee proves they knew what they were touting. In color and Panavision, it's a stirrupy story of cavalry-Indian action in New and Old Mexico during the last months of the Civil War. Dundee (Charlton Heston) is in charge of a clutch of Confederate prisoners, including a former West Point pal, Captain Tyreen (Richard Harris). They have the hate-respect syndrome for each other, and when Dundee asks for Confederate volunteers to help his short-handed troops punish Apaches, Tyreen promises to lead his men along but also promises to kill Dundee when the Injun job is done. The fights are fine, the cavalry swoops have sweep, and all the minor matters are marvelous—clothes, food, props. Peckinpah piles up these small realities against large larruping movement in masterly manner. It's the script that is slightly slewed. They wanted Senta Berger in the picture (and who wouldn't want her anywhere?), so all of a sudden there's a Mexican doctor's Viennese widow in a remote little town. And out she comes in a décolleté dress to tend the wounded—and later to wound Heston's tenderness. There's also a detour of dalliance with a local dame while Heston heals a wounded leg, but it's all a lot of ballast. No complaints about keeping our eyes front and Senta, but the wanderings with women seem wacky in context. Otherwise, the film is fine fun, Heston is incredibly credible, and Harris shows that he may become one of the screen's royal romantic rogues.
In 1950 Alvah Bessie, a scenario writer and one of the famous "Hollywood Ten," went to prison for refusing to answer questions put to him by the House Un-American Activities Committee. Now, 14 years after his release, he has written Inquisition in Eden (Macmillan), which purports to tell the inside story of his martyrdom—his miserable career in Hollywood, his defiance (along with Dalton Trumbo, Ring Lardner, Jr., et al.) of HUAC, and his ultimate ruination at the hands of black-listers. It is an irksome book. Bessie writes in a pretentious, hard-boiled style that seems to be the trademark of third-rate Hollywood scripters. He is incapable of sustaining a scene beyond 200 words, so the book breaks up into hundreds of short, unsatisfactory vignettes: Bessie talking to a pimp in prison, Bessie being chewed out by Jack Warner, Bessie buttering up, Bette Davis. We see the world through Bessie's peevish myopia—that is, as an irritating blur. Charlie Chaplin becomes a man who will not buy Bessie's story idea; Lee J. Cobb is a man who won't lend Bessie money; and the prison warden is a man who won't let Bessie write dirty poems. Wherever Bessie goes, it appears, there are powerful people waiting to deny him innocent pleasures. This childlike view of things slops over into Bessie's political attitudes. The "good guys" read The New Masses, join the Lincoln Brigade (as did Bessie) and cheer Russia. The "band guys" are just as conveniently stereotyped. T.S. Eliot, according to Bessie, "stank on ice," because of "his basically reactionary attitude toward people." That is the median level of Bessie's critical thinking, and of his prose. Ultimately, though, the book is irksome because of our own disappointed expectations. Bessie was a political prisoner, and such martyrs are expected to display strong spirits and deathless prose. But not every victim can be a Socrates, a Debs or a Martin Luther King, and Bessie gives us more of a whimper than a bang. His ordeal has earned him a better biographer than himself.
The Greatness of Joe Mooney (Columbia) reaffirms a unique vocal talent (remember way back to Just a Gigolo?) that has been too long out of earshot. And we're very happy to welcome him back to the recording scene. Joe has Mundell Lowe's impeccable arrangements—played by a reeds-plus-rhythm group—behind him as he delivers his vocal message soft and clear. We especially like his Wait Till You See Her, Call Me Irresponsible and This Is All I Ask.
I am terribly handicapped when making love to a girl because I am extremely ticklish. A light touch (or even a firm touch, for that matter) will send me into fits of laughter. I am susceptible on just about every part of my body. As you can imagine, this throws quite a wet blanket on my little fires. I would appreciate your help.—D. W., Syracuse, New York.
In August, it's customary for Europeans to take their vacations en masse. Thus, an American motoring on the Continent's crowded turnpikes will quickly avow that pikes pique; but shunning the trans-European routes in favor of the uncluttered byways, he'll find driving an unalloyed pleasure. An excellent start can be made with a series of loops around Paris, each distinguished by historically rich landmarks and superb dining. One of our favorites goes through Fontainebleau and on to the Grand Veneur restaurant, where the eye is rewarded with a view of Europe's most regal hunting forest and the palate is delighted with unsurpassable cuisine. Another short run from Paris goes through St.-Cloud to the Empress Josephine's country home at Malmaison, past the medieval châteaux of Louveciennes (where Renoir, Degas and Monet lived) and on, for lunch, to the Auberge du Fruit Défendu, set at water level beside the Seine, or the Coq Hardi (Bougival), where the meals are served in a magnificent garden. The last leg of the journey is St.-Germain-en-Laye, where you'll enjoy the weekend at Le Pavillon Henri IV, a luxurious resort favored as a teatime rendezvous by the Paris haut monde.
"The mad genius of the San Francisco bar" ... "a court jester" ... "a publicity-mad pettifogger" ... "the S. Hurok of the legal profession"—these are among the kinder things said about San Francisco attorney Melvin Mouron Belli (Pronounced "bell-eye"). That he is unquestionably among the greatest living trial lawyers, however, is conceded even by Belli's legion of enemies, including no few as formidable in stature as the American Bar Association, the American Medical Association, most major insurance firms, J. Edgar Hoover, Robert Kennedy, Richard Nixon and, perhaps most recently, the city of Dallas, Texas, ever since Jack Ruby—with Belli as his counsel—was sentenced to death there for the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald.
Sheila. Alec Barr sighed. He had nearly forgotten Sheila. Sheila what? Audrey? No. Aubrey, that was it. With the short-cropped black curls, the milky Irish skin to go with the blue-purple Irish eyes, the good breasts showing firm under the simple sweater. Lovely Sheila.
In one prodigal hop, the boundaries of Bunnydom advanced to both the Pacific and Caribbean, with the back-to-back openings of the long-awaited Playboy Club on Los Angeles' Sunset Strip, and the Edenesque Playboy Club-Hotel on Bunny Bay, in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. The memorable week of inaugural activities—at both Clubs—was personally supervised by Big Bunny Hugh M. Hefner, Editor-Publisher of Playboy and President of Playboy Clubs International. The festivities began amid the dazzling spotlights of Hollywood with three days of celebrations, celebrities and celebrants, Bunnies and bubbly, and just plain good times; reached a high point—quite literally—in a transcontinental chartered jet flight, which whisked Hefner, special guests, Club executives and a bevy of Bunny beauties the 2950 miles from L.A. to Jamaica; and ended, with a background of coconut palms and the haunting calypso refrain of Yellow Bird, among the tropical wonders of the West Indies.
It's Natural that I should be proud of being fat. A few months ago in California I found myself on a surfboard—not, I must admit, without a certain amount of effort, not the least part of which I had expended simply in getting us both into the water. I can't pretend I succeeded in staying on the board for very long, but I floated around it for a time and at length felt sufficiently rested to start the exhausting journey back over the rocks and across the hot sands to the spot from which I had hired it. I hadn't got very far when I met one of my children crying quietly by the water's edge. My family cry very easily, and normally it doesn't do to inquire into the cause of their grief. But on this occasion I was glad of an excuse for a breather and, sitting down beside my daughter, I asked what could be the matter on such a lovely day. Was it that she was homesick, or in love, or had not properly digested the frozen pizza we had shared at lunch? It turned out to be none of these things, but simply that as I had made my heroic way across the beach she had heard me being discussed by a pack of teenage were-wolves who had escaped from the Malibu Forest Reserves. They had apparently not only failed to recognize me from the Late Late Late Show, but had thought me, of all things, too fat, and had said so—rather loudly. I never could persuade my daughter to tell me what their exact description had been, but I was touched that she should have cared so much, and I was reminded of how many many years ago it was since I last felt badly about my figure.
Throughout History great trenchermen have taken the whole world for their salad bowl. As early as 1631, the English cookbook author John Murre described a "Grand Sallet" fashioned not with run-of-the-garden greens from his British Isles, but with sun-drenched fruits from Mediterranean groves, livened with French capers. Goethe, in a burst of lyricism to the anchovy, once struck off a poem beginning, "Die Welt ist ein Sardellensalat." Even Alexander Dumas the younger, who never failed to pay homage to his native land as the very heart of the comestible universe, turned to the Orient when he dreamed up his now-classic Japanese salad of mussels, potatoes and truffles in a vinaigrette dressing.
The academy lay in the center of a valley, its red-brick buildings arranged in a square. Beyond the surrounding athletic and drill fields were thick woods that rose gradually on all sides, forming a shield of privacy that made the Academy seem in fact to be, in the words of the school brochure, "a little world of its own."
If That Adage about travel softening one's prejudices has any validity, then June Playmate Hedy Scott couldn't possibly have a biased bone left in her attractive frame. The daughter of an American professional soldier and a Belgian actress, 19-year-old Hedy ("I'm actually twenty, if you use the European system of figuring a person's age") was born in Jodoigne, Belgium, and spent a typical Armybrat childhood wandering from base to base with her family. As she recalls it: "We changed mailing addresses the way most people trade cars. By the time I was seven, I'd lived in Paris, New York, St. Louis and Los Angeles, with plenty of stopovers in between. Living out of a suitcase like that is supposed to be bad for most kids, but I found it exciting. Seeing so many new places at such an early age only made a confirmed travel bug out of me." Our peripatetic Playmate's youthful wanderlust was sadly curtailed in 1953, when her father was killed in Korea and she returned to Belgium with her mother. "We lived in Brussels for the next seven years," Hedy told us, "and Mom managed to eke out a pretty good living, taking small parts in local theatrical productions and making occasional European television commercials. Living in Europe was exhilarating at first, but I couldn't have been happier when we packed up the old trunk and moved back to California in 1960."
Two Reproductions of prints by Harunobu hang on the right wall of my office. I know what I think of these. On the left I have reproductions of paintings by Ingres and David. I know what I think of these, too. When I look at the wall opposite my desk, I am a little puzzled. There I see a buff painting, five feet long and ten and a half inches wide. I understand the inscription in the lower left; it reads: Pour John Pierce, amicalement, Jean Tinguely, Avril 1962.
The pin-stripe suit, that essential ingredient in the young executive's fall and winter wardrobe, has now made a happy switch to summer. These sartorially elegant suits—whose tailoring, fabric and fit belie their airy lightness—are completely correct for office or evening wear and yet keep you coolly comfortable in the warmest of climes. Playboy predicts that these summer sensibles, particularly in the darker shades of blue and gray, will be the outstanding new suitings of the season. The young exec on the left is appropriately turned out in a two-button silk and wool sharkskin, black with a muted blue stripe, side-vent coat and adjustable-tab trousers, by Raleigh, $80. His outfit is complemented by a cotton oxford buttondown shirt, by Hathaway, $9, and a patterned silk tie, by Wembley, $2.50. His associate on the right is wearing a gray hairline-stripe Dacron and wool three-button center-vent suit with tapered trousers, by Worsted-Tex, $75, offset with a cotton oxford snap-tab-collar shirt, by Sero of New Haven, $7.50, a silk rep striped tie, by Resilio, $3.50, and a hand-rolled Italian paisley-pattern silk foulard pocket square, by. Handcraft, $3.
The Summer of 1928 my swimming pal, Fred, and I decided on a two-week vacation. From newspaper ads I picked a "Camp-Do-Not-Worry" in the Berkshires. We arrived by bus in the evening, and then found out it was a Socialist camp. Fred was 19, I, 17. What counted was that the rates were cheap, the menu good, the tent nice, and there was a splendid lake for swimming.
She is a creature of classic grace and sensual allure, the quintessence of all that is female and, with virtually no effort on her part, the acknowledged high priestess of that cinematic clan of heavenly bodies: the Sex Goddesses. Her deification began with her first major filmic role opposite Sean Connery in Dr. No, and the critics' praises have ranged from "the most awesome piece of natural Swiss architecture since the Alps" to "the most sensuous and spectacular beauty to grace the screen in years." But despite the fact that such blanket encomiums smack of modern press-agentry, this 12-page photographic premiere of the unadorned Ursula—the most extensive pictorial takeout Playboy has ever devoted to any member of the fair gender—clearly proves that all the hyperbole of Hollywood's professional star makers pales in the bright dimensions (37-22-35) of her own natural appeal.
Beer is the original and authentic booze. The name boozah was given to the merry malt beverage by the ancient Egyptians over 5000 years ago, when a superior brand of suds was brewed in the delta city of Busiris. Tomb paintings, papyri and hieroglyphs all attest to the fact that beer was the Egyptian national drink. Two gallons was the minimum daily quota quaffed by even the lowliest sons and daughters of the Nile, and temple priests made light work of religiously chugalugging the daily beer offerings made to Egyptian deities by Pharaoh and his followers. On a typical feast day in old Memphis, over 900 jugs of beer were offered to the god Ptah alone, and Ramses III is credited with picking up the tab for 466,303 jugs used to slake the eternal thirst of the holy guzzlers.
"Hey, look at that stud walking over there, on the other side of the street. Let's check him out," Frank, the burly cop, says to Charley, the slender one who is driving. From my seat in the rear of the police car, I look over at the sidewalk and see a middle-aged Negro man walking slowly down the street.
There once lived in Italy a jovial friar who took pity on the wife and ass of a man who did beat both for no other reason than that he was of a stupid and nasty nature. But although the friar, named Timothy, took pity on both, from the wife he would have taken more, for she was as comely as her husband was nasty—and as Timothy was lusty. Accordingly, the roguish man of God put into motion a plan by which he hoped to taste those delights of which he had heretofore only been informed, for he had never seen, nor been observed by, husband, wife or ass.
Early in the twenties, the entire nation was rocked by a series of ugly, well-publicized Hollywood scandals, Sex orgies and suicides, dope addiction and murder—these seemed the very warp and woof of the movie colony's new looom of life. The newspapers, ever mindful of the salubrious effects of scandal on circulation, headlined the lurid details; nor were they averse to promoting extras and bit players to full stardom if it made a better story. The fan magazines, which by the Twenties had become a major link between the studios and their audiences, frequently ran editorials and open letters purporting to warn either the industry at large or certain of its stars against "the evil of their ways." Through innuendo and veiled reference, these pious admonitions helped fan the flames of public indignation to a white heat. By the time the sordid Fatty Arbuckle scandal broke in the fall of 1921, the popular image of Hollywood was a Gomorrah with modern plumbing. All over the country, voices were calling out for the movies to repent and reform.