It's all in the numbers. During the past few years, the country music boom has made Garth Brooks hotter than a $20 pistol. This month, music reporter Steve Pond ropes the urbane cowboy for a lively, opinionated Playboy Interview. The King of Pop boasts about his Queen-size concerts, then quiets to discuss his fixation with death. He laments his infidelities on the road and talks about lost royalties from the sale of used CDs. Today's superstars know how much money they deserve--and in the NBA, some agents get them a lot more. Sportswriter Jeff Coplon takes it to the hoop in The Inside Game (artist Sandra Hendler took it to the canvas), revealing how playmakers such as lawyer David "Air" Falk score huge salaries for untried rookies. Facts and figures: The last roll in our numbers game belongs to Jenny McCarthy, the new Playmate of the Year. A gambler who favors long shots, Jenny has hit the trifecta with appearances on TV's Silk Stalkings, the Playboy Channel's Hot Rocks, and with this encore pictorial by Contributing Photographer Richard Fegley.
Playboy, (ISSN 0032-1478), June 1984, Volume 41, Number 6. Published Monthly by Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions: $29.97 for 12 issues, U. S. Canada, $43.97 for 12 issues. All Other Foreign, $45 U. S. Currency Only. For New and Renewal orders and Change of Address, send to Playboy Subscriptions, P.O. Box 2007, Harlan, Iowa 51537-4007. Please allow 6-8 Weeks for Processing, for Change of Address, Send New and Old Addresses and Allow 45 Days for change. Postmaster: Send form 3579 to Playboy, P.O Box 2007, Harlan, Iowa 51537-4007. Advertising: New York: 730 Fifth Avenue, New York 10019; Chicago: 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago 60611; West Coast: 9242 Beverly Boulevard, Beverly Hills, CA 90210; Metropolitan Publishers Representatives, Inc.; Atlanta: 3017 Piedmont Road Ne, Suite 100, Atlanta, GA 30305; Miami: 2500 South Dixie Highway, Miami, FL 33133; Tamps: 3016 Mason Place, Tampa, FL 33629.
Just below the surface of the mainstream media, where all-night photocopy shops with cheap prices flourish, lies the offbeat world of 'zines--homemade magazines produced for fun by people with day jobs. Distributed largely through mail order, 'zines cover just what you would expect from a copier counterculture--sex, music, politics, work, food--often with little concern for quality or reader response. Thousands of new titles circulate each year. 'Zines have been called many things, including public access TV for the literate and terminal term papers from the lunatic fringe. Much of the boom can be credited to Mike Gunderloy, founder of Factsheet Five, a periodical that typically lists a thousand or more titles. A few 'zines--Ben Is Dead (now practically a full-fledged magazine), the I Hate Brenda Newsletter and anything by Riot Grrrls--gained notoriety as campy examples of the genre. And lately, electronic 'zines have been appearing on Internet. Unfortunately, the menu at Bob's Big Boy is often better reading than most 'zines. As editor of Chip's Closet Cleaner, I've sorted through hundreds of overhyped and underwhelming rags in search of gems. Here are ten I love:
It's Sonny Bono, Not Bono, Department: Sonny is running for Congress from Palm Desert, California on the Republican ticket. Cher is singing duets with Beavis and Butt-Head. Bono is singing duets with Frank Sinatra. Any Questions?
The Private Eye played with boyish exuberance by Dana Carvey in Clean Slate (MGM) is an amnesia victim who wakes up every morning with no memory of anything that's happened before. Isn't that special? Carvey makes it seem so when he's improvising a speech at a birthday party where all of his old best friends look like strangers--or when he's trying to puzzle out his relationship with a sexy brunette (Valeria Golino) who appears to be right at home in his apartment. Carvey can't remember that he has also been sleeping with the wife of his best friend (Kevin Pollak). James Earl Jones, Michael Murphy and Michael Gambon help complicate matters in a high-concept comedy about crime and puzzlement that relies mainly on Carvey to keep it from drawing a blank. [rating]2-1/2 bunnies[/rating]
Ever since she portrayed a woman who pretends to be a man in last year's Ballad of Little Jo,Suzy Amis, 32, has been deluged with scripts: "People tell me the male part can be rewritten for a woman--it's really hilarious. But Little Jo changed my life. I had never received such reviews, and it made me feel more feminine than ever."
"I feel I diminish myself by mentioning only a few movies, because there are so many great films," says director John Singleton of his favorite VCR fare. "Citizen Kane and Lawrence of Arabia are two I really like. There's also a nice movie called The Red Balloon. They used to show it all the time at school when I was a kid. In terms of movies that sparked my head, Star Wars and The Godfather. And if I want to laugh, I throw on the Marx brothers' Duck Soup or Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles. I also like W. C. Fields. I love to listen to his innuendos. He was real nasty."
Fox Video has released Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography, the award-winning documentary chronicling the history of cinema from behind the lens. Loaded with clips from more than 125 movies, the film explores the art of what you see in interviews with cinematography giants. In focus: the advent of Technicolor, putting the noir in film noir and how to light Marlon Brando.
The golden age of German cinema lasted from the end of World War One until the mid-Thirties. Perhaps because the expressionistic films of that era were stark and unsentimental, they've aged better than most. Kino on Video's Treasures from the Weimar Republic recaptures that perfection in a six-volume set of remastered and rescored German classics. Siegfried (1924): Part one of director Fritz Lang's pre-Metropolis Nibelungen epic of mythic betrayal seems dated today. Even so, the superb special effects (especially Siegfried's fight with the dragon) and monumental sets make this a keeper.
Birds do it. Bees do it. And so do lions and tigers and sea horses. PBS's intimate miniseries The Nature of Sex, available from Shanachie Entertainment, reveals just how basic our instincts are. (Warning: Some material may not be suitable for younger species.)
Jack Lemmon fans get a double dose of the star on Pioneer's Special Editions release of Glengarry Glen Ross--first with his high-strung delivery of David Mamet's rat-a-tat screenplay, then in mellow commentary on an alternate audio track. A copy of Mamet's script comes with the package.... Filmmaking twins Albert and Allen Hughes worked side-by-side with the Voyager Company on the Criterion release of their gritty debut flick, Menace II Society. Included: commentary, outtakes, audition bits, early Hughes shorts and loads of production documentation.
When it comes to specialty brews, wheat beers are one of the hottest coolers. If you haven't tasted a wheat beer yet, you soon will. There are more than 100 on the market right now, and while most are imported or from domestic microbreweries, industry giants such as Anheuser-Busch and Miller may soon join the party. Stroh already has joined with Augsburger Weiss.
While we may be able to normalize relations with Vietnam, what has become of the millions of Americans whose lives were shattered by the war? That is the question posed by Jim Wilson in The Sons of Bardstown: 25 Years of Vietnam in an American Town (Crown). This is a solemn report on how the wounds and deaths of the young men from a small Kentucky town during the war continue to haunt it today. It is also a study of the damage done, not in terms of bodies or dollars but in terms of the life and spirit of our country.
I try to keep it simple: a rib eye cut three inches thick, rubbed with olive oil, dosed with garlic, cooked six minutes on each side over a very hot fire. Tell your butcher you want the beef to be the whole story (he will understand and respect you). Once it's off the grill, add a baked potato, an arugula and tomato salad and perhaps a bottle of good merlot. The point is the meat, burned on the outside, blood rare on the inside. This is a meal most men love and most women find crude and monotonous, even if they like the way it tastes. This is because they don't think about it as food. They smile combatively and ask why men who never walk into a kitchen except to get ice feel so comfortable when it comes to cooking over an open fire. They smirk knowingly and say it has to do with role-playing and the kind of animals men really want to be.
Increase your mental energy, concentration and alertness. Improve your problem-solving abilities. Perform better in school, on tests or on the job. Increase your IQ by ten points or more. Improve your memory by as much as 40 percent." It is an enticing come-on, and there's more. The gentlemen making this pitch--authors of a pair of books titled Smart Drugs and Nutrients and Smart Drugs II--claim that gobbling pills from their pharmacopoeia not only will turbocharge your brain, it will also confer such fringe benefits as better sex and a "slowing [of] the aging process itself."
After you and your partner are through making love, and after she has complimented you on your sexual prowess and praised Mr. Happy for the way he has taken care of business, and after she has given your satiated wienie a final kiss and turned over and pretended to go to sleep, are you so foolish and naive as to have believed her terms of endearment?
I'm in his kitchen and I'm thinking, This is good. This is the way it should be. I like him, he likes me and I'm not nuts. I am, in fact, comfortable. A comfortable relationship? What a strange and wondrous departure.
At a party recently I noticed crème de menthe on my host's night table, but no glasses. Either he and his wife are drinking it straight from the bottle, or they've discovered a sexual trick I'm unaware of. Do you know?--A. S., Huntington, New York.
This photograph is one of ten that are part of an HIV-awareness campaign titled "Be here for the cure." The project is a collaboration of celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and those subjects brave enough to come forward and be photographed. The images with the subjects' stories are part of a public service education program and will appear around the country in magazines and bus shelters.
The makers of the 16 documentary films that competed at the Sundance Film Festival in January had plenty to say on such subjects as gays in the military (Coming Out Under Fire), ghetto kids recruited as basketball stars (Hoop Dreams) and Sixties civil rights activists (Freedom on My Mind). In a field of worthy contenders, women filmmakers were much in evidence, and the Playboy Foundation's Freedom of Expression Award was split between two exceptional entries: Heart of the Matter, a sensitive study of women with AIDS, by Amber Hollibaugh and Gini Reticker, and Dialogues with Madwomen, directed by Allie Light, a compelling set of interviews with seven women who have suffered mental illness.
<p>High overhead, lights flash. Smoke blankets the stage. A deep rumble shakes the walls of the cavernous old auditorium. A lighting rig descends toward the stage, separating into 19 banks of multicolored, computerized lights. A chunky beat begins, punctuated by roars and explosions. Intense white lights blind the audience as a hydraulically powered elevator slowly rises out of the stage, with half a dozen musicians visible through its tinted sides. A door slides open. The musicians take the stage, the music gathers momentum, the elevator sinks back into the floor--and there, revealed at the back of the stage to roof-rattling screams, stands the king of pop.</p>
These women really do like it hot. They like it so much, in fact, that they helicopter into mountain blazes, rappel down burning buildings and crash through flaming floors. They do it for the adventure, the camaraderie and the pure thrill of saving lives. Off the job, they bungee jump, scuba dive, rock climb, hunt sharks or hone karate moves. They are the kind of women you wouldn't mind sharing a foxhole with or having at your back in a tough bar. They are the best possible outcome of dialing 911.
Let me try to describe Oliver North in a few fast bursts. He's a jackass. He is so preposterous that there is a temptation to laugh at him. He's smarmy, a flatterer, a brownnoser. He's also a twisted impostor, a drugstore Marine with an apparent compulsion to bullshit just about all the time. But while he tries to fool people with his fantasies, he is also very easy to fool. He boasts that he was a can-do guy when he was in the White House, but the record spells no-can-do. North did terrible damage to the U.S. until he was caught. One thread runs through his performance--getting conned. The Iranians conned him, the contras conned him, the crooked arms dealers conned him and even Manuel Antonio Noriega conned him.
Talk about perks. As winter temperatures hit subzero levels in Chicago and New York, we headed to the golden beaches of Guadeloupe and Club Med Caravelle to shoot the summer's most exciting men's swimwear. Full cut and extending just below mid-thigh, these new styles--which can do double duty as shorts--are a bit longer than last year's volleyball looks yet much shorter than the below-the-knee, hip-hop variations of seasons past. Many trunks also combine lace-up fronts, two-toned panels and other retro-surfer details with functional innovations such as Velcro flys and welt-stitching. An oversized dive watch, which works with both swimwear and sportswear, and a multipocketed fisherman's vest (for toting sunblock, a minidisc player or other toys to the beach) will round out your summer shoreside wardrobe quite nicely.
Yeah, I was Beat. We were all Beat. Hell, I'm Beat now--is, was and always will be. I mean, how do you stop? But this isn't about me--I'm nobody, really, just window dressing on the whole mother of bop freight-train-hopping holy higher-than-Tokay Beat trip into the heart of the American night. No, what I wanted to tell you about is Jack. And Neal and Allen and Bill and all the rest too, and how it all went down, because I was there, I was on the scene, and there was nobody Beater than me.
Julia paddled left, I pushed right and our double kayak jolted to a halt. We were impaled on a submerged log. Our boat was staying dry inside, but somehow I did not expect the same for our undershorts.
When Mother Nature paid an unexpected visit, Elan Carter's life became a ball of confusion. January's earthquake in Los Angeles shook Elan out of bed, then tossed her against a painting on the wall. The painting is still crooked, and Miss June is thinking of moving to solid ground. "Maybe living in a house on stilts is asking for trouble," she says. Not that Elan has lost her élan. She's still as poised and self-assured as a second-generation celeb ought to be. It's just that she's not yet finished making Daddy proud of her. Her dad is Otis Williams, a founding member of the Temptations. Despite her own success in the music business, Elan's not as famous as she would like to be. But look out--this month's centerfold is Elan's wake-up call to the world.
The telephone is an extension of David Falk's arm, the circuit breaker bridging hand and ear. He sits on a beige couch in a softly lighted hotel suite in exurban Detroit, a power center unto himself, at the junction where gossip and commerce meet.
<p>If you enjoyed Jack Kerouac's book "On the Road," you'll love Fred Ward's life. Before turning to acting full-time, he was a nomad and a laborer. Since then, he's made a habit of adapting challenging roles to his idiosyncratic style and has gained critical success. He has shaved his head to play writer Henry Miller in "Henry and June," brought his expressive boxer's face to Robert Altman's "The Player" and "Short Cuts" and memorably portrayed astronaut Gus Grissom in "The Right Stuff." This spring he appeared as the villain in "Naked Gun 33-1/3: The Final Insult." Next up is Alain Robbe-Grillet's French-language "Un Bruit Qui Rend Fou." "And for very little money," says Ward, not minding at all. We sent Contributing Editor David Rensin to meet with Ward at the actor's home in Venice, California.</p>
It began with the Twinkies Defense. Dan White admitted he had killed San Francisco supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone in 1978 but contended that those creamy golden logs had driven his blood sugar to insane levels. Although the jurors convicted White of manslaughter, they were polite enough to consider his excuse. That marked a change. No longer was this simple homicide: It was killing with a qualifier, murder with a note from Mom. Since then, the change has accelerated. Defense arguments these days start with extenuating circumstances before spiraling wildly out from there. We are at the point where the harshest verdict we can expect from juries swayed by this onslaught of emotional evidence is the sentence of a hug and the offer of 12 shoulders to cry on. While some of us are concerned that such victimhood has become the ambient excuse for irresponsible--and sometimes criminal--behavior, Hollywood sees a gold mine. It recognizes the Twinkie Defense as one of those moments around which commercial breaks are built. Who needs L.A. Law when we have Court TV, Tonya Harding and Michael Jackson? The trials of the moment have become the movies of the week. Don't touch that dial.
More than 40 years ago, Hugh Hefner pounded out the first issue of Playboy on a manual typewriter with a memory capacity of one. (Hef used carbon paper.) Today, Playboy is created on 30 networked Macintosh computers constantly transmitting 30-megabyte graphics files. In the next 40 years--or will it be ten?--what seems modern today will seem just as archaic as Hef's typewriter. To bring the future into focus, we've gone to more than two dozen serious future-thinkers in major industries--from aviation to theme parks--and asked them to predict the developments in their fields by the year 2034. Buckle your seat belt. It's quite a ride.
Madame Vanessa, if you're reading this, Jenny McCarthy would like to thank you. Remember Jenny? You read her palm early last year, and this is what you predicted: "She told me I would hear news at the end of the year that would change my life," Jenny says. "She also said I would be moving, and that my career would be nothing but successful." Bing, bang, boom. During the last week of 1993, Miss October was given her life-altering news--she had been named Playmate of the Year. (Her reaction? "I was so happy, I thought I was going to blow up!") As for the second prediction: Last fall this 21-year-old Chicagoan loaded a U-Haul and drove to Los Angeles. There she is busy affirming prognostication number three. A popular hostess on Hot Rocks, the Playboy Channel's music-video show, Jenny also made her acting debut on the syndicated TV program Silk Stalkings, playing--what else?--a centerfold. "I'm such a workaholic--I want to do more, more, more," she says. "Coming from a blue-collar family, you learn to work hard." Jenny no longer needs a palm reader to predict her future. "Last year was a phenomenal one for me," she says, beaming. "But this year is going to be even better."
Playboy expands your purchasing power by providing a list of retailers and manufacturers you can contact for information on where to find this month's merchandise. To buy the apparel and equipment shown on pages 20, 22, 94-99 and 173, check the listings below to find the stores nearest you.
Sea kayaking--the aquatic version of backpacking--has much to recommend it. The boat itself, with covered deck, low profile, foot-controlled rudder and sealed bulkheads, is one of the safest craft afloat. What's more, you need only about a foot of water to operate in, so a sea kayak can get you practically anywhere. It's a great way to visit remote beaches and untamed areas. There is ample storage fore and aft, and because water does all the heavy lifting, you can have your wilderness adventure and still take along the comforts of home. Best of all, the basic skills require only a few hours to grasp.
Introduced less than two years ago as a digital alternative to the analog cassette, Sony's 2.5-inch recordable minidisc is gaining a following. In addition to the new pocket-size MD players from Sony (which are smaller in their second generation than the cassette Walkman is in its tenth), several electronics giants are introducing their own MD gear. Sharp, Sanyo, Aiwa and RCA, for example, all offer MD personal stereos. Kenwood has come out with a compact bookshelf stereo with a built-in minidisc player-recorder. You can also add a Sony MD unit to your existing home system or take your minidiscs on the road, listening to them on a three-disc changer by Sanyo or a four-disc one by Sony that also controls a trunk-based CD changer. How's that for covering all the bases?