Since September 11, debate has raged about the vulnerability of our nation's nuclear power plants to terrorist attack. New York's Indian Point plant has been the subject of particular concern, since 20 million people live within a 50-mile radius of the aging facility. In The China Syndrome 2003,Rene Chun reports that security at America's nuclear plants is frighteningly lax--and getting worse. While we're supposed to comfort ourselves with the knowledge that a plane may not be able to break through the thickest portion of a reactor's protective walls, Indian Point insiders have come forward to reveal shocking security lapses that make devastating terrorist attacks a real possibility. (The art is by Malcolm Tarlofsky.)
Playboy (ISSN 0032-1478), May 2003, Volume 50, Number 5, Published Monthly by Playboy, 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60611. Subscriptions, U.S. $29.97 for 12 Issues. 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 (212-261-5000); Chicago: 680 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago 60611 (312-751-8000); West Coast: SD Media, 2001 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 200, Santa Monica, CA 90403 (310-264-7575); Southeast: Bentz & Maddock Inc., 5180 Roswell Road, Suite 102, South Building, Atlanta, GA 30342 (404-256-3800); For subscription inquiries, Call 800-999-4438.
Right after the new year, a billboard with an image of the Hulk's green fist and the legend 6-20-03 went up outside Universal Studios in Los Angeles. Warner Bros. bought ad time during the Super Bowl to hawk the release of The Matrix Reloaded on May 15 and The Matrix: Revolutions on November 7. Never mind that Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle has repeatedly gone back into production to shoot additional scenes; Sony has set June 27 as the movie's opening day, and there's no turning back.
Have you been dying to watch Mena Suvari sitting on a toilet, struggling to defecate? Then have I got a movie for you: Spun. Somehow, a number of good actors--John Leguizamo, Suvari, Brittany Murphy and Patrick Fugit, plus the daunting trio of Mickey Rourke, Eric Roberts and Peter Stormare--were talked into participating in this grimy look at people living among the dregs of the drug scene. Some may find merit in its nonjudgmental portrait of this scummy milieu, or in director Jonas Äkerlund's cutting-edge presentation. I could barely get myself to watch this irredeemable piece of crap.
Hollywood Homicide: Harrison Ford and Josh Hartnett play detectives who moonlight in real estate, yoga and acting. How LA can you get? In no time flat the pair smokes out a nasty label boss who may have arranged the murders of a rap group. They couldn't be playing off such real-life legends as Tupac, Biggie or Suge Knight, could they?
Missi Pyle. Currently On-Screen: In Bringing Down the House with Steve Martin and Queen Latifah. How did you manage to shoot your cat fight with Queen Latifah in a bathroom? "Very carefully. My stuntperson actually went to the emergency room, because she got nailed by the toilet. My head was dunked in the toilet and I got a big shiner." What's next? "I'm working on a super-low-budget movie called Meet Market. I play a dominatrix, so I wear high boots with a really short skirt. But I'm so tall--about six feet and I wear size 11 shoes--my boots look like they belong to a 200-pound man." Does being height-enhanced create other challenges? "I generally don't get cast as 'the girl.' When I try to audition for normal characters, I find that I'm not as good. It's actually easier to play a character with something not quite right with her." Can women be funny and sexy at the same time? "Women are viewed as predominantly sexual creatures, so they have to jump that hurdle. I've been doing sketch comedy with beautiful women who are hilarious. My husband tells me, 'You're beautiful,' and I say, 'I don't want to hear that, I want to hear I'm funny.' Women love to be told that they're funny and smart--especially beautiful women. The best way to pick up the hottest woman is to tell her she's funny or to laugh at her jokes."
Jim Carrey is endowed with omnipotence by God himself--played by Morgan Freeman--in this month's comedy Bruce Almighty. Freeman isn't the first person to play the man upstairs, and Carrey isn't the first to be charged with heavenly powers.
Don't confuse The Ring--director Gore Verbinski's surprise 2002 horror hit about a videotape that kills its viewers-- with J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. The source for the horror film is Kôji Suzuki, known as the Japanese Stephen King. His novel was adapted in 1998 by director Hideo Nakata into the film Ringu, which has been released simultaneously with The Ring on DVD (both from Dreamworks, $30 and $27, respectively). Nakata's subtle work is a masterpiece of eerie theater, and its effect is all the more surprising when you consider that it was produced for TV. Nakata fleshed it out for a Japanese theatrical release, which was so successful it spawned two sequels and lots of Ringu merchandise. Not to take anything away from Verbinski's work, but one should not miss the original.
The International Erotic Collection ($110; Wellspring Media) boxes six tasteful (honest!) NC-17 and unrated discs about sex by filmmakers from around the world: Pola X (1999; kissing your sister can be fun, Deneuve nude!), Erotique (1994; trilogy of sex-obsessed stories. Chinese love-making techniques), Lies (1999; S&M in a May-December romance), L'Ennui (1998; obsessive sex raises important questions--really!), A Real Young Girl (2000; worms on vaginas, banned in France) and In the Realm of the Senses (1976; you've heard about the ending, now see it). That's a lot of porn, artful enough for your top shelf. Fittingly, it comes in a "peakaboo" box.
Although he is best known for such international projects as A Room With a View, Indian-born producer and director Ismail Merchant finds he spends time watching films that explore the American experience. "My favorite is still Gone With the Wind. Then there's Billy Wilder's Sunset Boulevard and Some Like It Hot. And I'm quite fond of Hal Ashby's film about Woody Guthrie, Bound for Glory. More recently I've enjoyed Steven Soderbergh's work, particularly Sex, Lies and Videotape and Traffic. Of the European directors, I love the films of François Truffaut--they are just magical. I can always watch The 400 Blows and Jules and Jim with Jeanne Moreau."
Cobra Verde has been making deceptively contrary rock for years. There's more to CV's latest, Easy Listening (Muscle Tone), than is suggested by the surface pastiche of Iggy, Ziggy and Roxy (and Jimmy Webb). Dig past the artifice and glam affectation, and you'll find plenty of hard-driving nihilism and sarcasm.
Viral Avril Department: The Avril Lavigne computer virus, which promises photos of the singer, is the cyberworld's way of saying she has arrived. Her first major headlining tour of North America will be going strong into mid-May. Reeling and Rocking: Along with his PBS series on the blues, director Martin Scorsese will produce a blues concert film with Aaron Neville, Dr. John, Mavis Staples, Robert Cray and Keb' Mo', among others. . . . Jennifer Lopez will play a woman down on her luck in Lasse Hallström'sAn Unfinished Life. . . . Newsbreaks: Crown is publishing an unauthorized bio of Eminem titled Whatever You Say I Am. . . . Metallica's T-shirt designer has launched a line of baby clothes that parody those sold at concerts. Instead of Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath, parents can buy Nappeth, Baby Nappeth. Go to metalbabies.com for more. . . . Thirteen half hours of The Electric Lounge, a TV show with profiles of disc jockeys and musicians, debuted this year at a programming convention. . . . Monkee business: Micky Dolenz is starring in a touring performance of Elton'sAida.
Post Mortem (PC): Private eye Gus MacPherson comes out of retirement in Twenties Paris to help a dark and mysterious woman solve the gruesome murders of her sister and brother-in-law. As MacPherson, players dig up evidence and clues, solve puzzles and interrogate snooty French suspects (who provide a decent whodunit despite some cheesy voice-acting). As it turns out, the ritualistic executions and beheadings are serial killings rooted in ancestral mystic beliefs. It confirms what we already know: Goth girls are into some scary stuff.
Robert Stone's Bay of Souls (Houghton Mifflin) shows the author in a stylistic languor as narcotic as the Caribbean island on which the story takes place. A college professor is content with his sedate family life until a kinky co-worker arrives on campus. They decide to meet on her native island for a week of S&M, but before he can unpack the whips, she reveals the real reason for the trip: She intends to reclaim her soul from a voodoo priestess. Oh, she needs a small favor, too. Before he arrived, she unwittingly became involved in drug smuggling. To save her from some dealers, he dives into the ocean to retrieve a stash from a crashed plane. The plot is unlikely, even preposterous, but it's still more fun than vacationing with your family.
Since Playboy TV's 1995 debut in Japan, other international versions of it have been launched in 50 countries. Now the planet is bursting with sexed-up couch potatoes. We talked with Douglas Lindquist, networks executive vice president at Playboy TV International, to find out what kinds of programs are being screened--and banned--overseas. "We have to select the material that works best in each country," Lindquist reports. Here's the lowdown:
It was an arduous task, but in the end, after evaluating hundreds of beautiful nude women, members of the Playboy Cyber Club selected Merritt Cabal to be our 2003 Cyber Girl of the Year. Merritt, a native of New Orleans whose family tree goes back as far as Louis XIV, likes the notion of descending from royalty. You probably wouldn't recognize the princess at her day job, though--running her own construction firm. We watched Merritt shed her hard hat (and everything else) at Las Alamandas, a 1500-acre resort in Jalisco, Mexico. During the photo shoot we learned one thing: Our Cyber Club members made the right decision--Merritt is as gregarious as she is gorgeous.
Whistle-Blowers have been in the news lately, especially the brave people who risked their careers to expose corruption at Enron and Worldcom. Many of their stories are public knowledge, proof that capitalism can sometimes regenerate and correct itself under the glare of unwanted publicity.
Plans for mutant-mobiles that meld the features of SUVs, station wagons and sports coupes are on the drawing boards of several automakers looking for the next big score. Infiniti has crafted a concept vehicle, the gull-winged Triant, and if the decision were up to us, we'd have this baby zooming down roads this fall. Its power plant is a stock 280 hp V6 coupled to a five-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive with variable height adjustment. The remote-control doors feature alarm sensors to help avoid scrapes. (That should impress the hell out of parking attendants.) Triple headlights turn with the car, and the audio and navigation systems, as well as the in-car phone, are voice activated. Best of all, you can take it off-road comfortably, as the bucket seats contain individual shock absorbers. We don't want to dream, we want to drive.
I had a dream in which I was eating bananas. Wherever I went I always had a banana. I told my boyfriend about it and he said I must have wanted to suck his cock. Is there anything to that?--P.L., Las Vegas, Nevada
Mark Stepnoski spent 13 years as an offensive lineman in the National Football League, during which time he earned two Super Bowl rings. The five-time Pro Bowl center for the Dallas Cowboys and Houston/Tennessee Oilers retired in 2002, anticipating a life out of the limelight. Then he accepted the presidency of the Texas chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. We asked sportswriter Curt Sampson to pay Stepnoski a visit in Plano, Texas.
The California penal code defines rape as "an act of sexual intercourse accomplished against a person's will by means of force, violence, duress, menace or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury." That statute now has a footnote: A person who consents to sex may claim "post-penetration rape" if she changes her mind midstroke, even if she fails to communicate the change of heart.
In March the U.S. Supreme Court planned to hold hearings to decide on the constitutionality of the Children's Internet Protection Act, a controversial federal law that requires public libraries to install website-blocking filters.
Spring 1998: Billy Bob and Angelina Jolie meet on the set of Pushing Tin. Jolie says, "I remember leaning against the wall thinking, What happened? Why can't I breathe?" Thornton's version: "It was like touching the door after rubbing your feet on the carpet. Like--whoa!"
Foster Zeh has a problem. Like many whistle-blowers before him, he knew the risks of his actions. But now, as he sits in his modest kitchen in Red Hook, New York, he worries. He holds himself straight-backed and stoic in military fashion, hands palms-down on the table. He worries, he says, because a spokesman for his employer felt free to disparage him in the local paper. He worries because he's been on administrative leave for months and his company is affering him a paltry $18,000 to go away and shut up.
When Cindy Crawford, supermodel of all supermodels, appeared in Playboy in July 1988, renowned celebrity photographer Herb Ritts had to be behind the lens. That's because Ritts was the rare talent who could not just capture Crawford's sensuality but elevate it to perfection.
"May I mix you a cocktail, sir?" the bartender asks. "Ah, an excellent choice. Now, if you will just fill out this credit application." That scenario isn't too far-fetched, considering the latest watering-hole trend: luxury libations that max out your credit card before they give you a buzz. Whether you're blowing a few hundred on specialty liqueur or $12,000 on a gem-infused martini, you don't want to spill a single drop.
Like a thousand other cocktail parties that Saturday night, this one kicked off with polite introductions, chitchat and enough liquor to help guests loosen up. By three in the morning, however, the invitation-only gathering in a Manhattan loft had evolved into something else entirely.
Speak the lingo: Even group-sex greenhorns need to learn the basics. Full swap: Trading partners with another couple for intercourse. Soft swing: Engaging in foreplay with another couple, then returning to your original partner. Same-room play: Trading partners and messing around in one room. Usually play implies everything but intercourse. V/E: Voyeurism and exhibitionism: no swapping, just watching and being watched. Different-room play: Swapping with another couple, then heading to separate rooms for sex. Girl play: The girls do it while the guys watch. Eat-in party: A private party where sex occurs on the premises. Take-out party: A party for meeting people and making arrangements to play later.
This was a Friday in April, one of the last days of the term, and the undergrads were all worked up. You could see it in the way they touched themselves, those lewd, innocent little caresses of the self, the way they lingered over their cigarettes out on the steps, a thousand bright sucking lips.
Baseball is the only business in America where the owners keep telling the consumers their product is lousy, all in the hope of paying their best workers $15 million a year instead of $18 million. In the middle of last summer's labor strife, Commissioner Bud Selig whined about how teams needed to be contracted, how various franchises were on the verge of defaulting on their payrolls and how the national pastime was on its last legs.
Midwesterners pride themselves on being grounded, but Chicago native Laurie Fetter threw her friends for a loop when she suddenly packed up and drove out to Los Angeles a year ago. "The move was totally impulsive," she says. "Now that I'm in Hollywood, I find that I spend my life in my car because everything is so spread out. But I love the weather and the laid-back vibe."
Over the past several years, more money has been spent on breast implants and Viagra than has been spent on Alzheimer's research. Scientists predict that by 2030, there will be a large number of people wandering around with huge breasts and erections who can't remember what to do with them.
Last fall, as I wandered the hangar-size pavilions at Munich's Intermot show, I saw motorcycles for every subculture. There were naked streetfighters, grand prix racers, superbikes, custom choppers, full-dress tourers, scooters galore. And there, somehow apart from the rest, were the sport touring bikes, the most elite category, the one suddenly taking off. Power, stability, looks--these machines have it all. For decades BMW has dominated this niche, but now the Japanese have developed their own long-distance runners. The sport tourers shown here share certain qualities: maintenance-free shaft drives, powerful four-cylinder engines (125 to 145 horsepower), state-of-the-art braking systems, aerodynamic fairings, elegant storage systems and, oh yes, speedometers that work all the way up to 150 mph. You can scrape pegs on the Passo dello Stelvio or take your significant other on a leisurely tour of wine country. These flagships are as stately as Stealth bombers, agile, amazing, able to reach escape velocity with the twist of a wrist.
See that orange jacket? The one with the side slash pockets and mesh lining? That's ours. It's a Cole-Haan ($145). But when she asked, we just had to give it to her. And along with it, we gave her our brown umbrella with leather trim and wooden handle by Ghurka ($195). We were happy to be of service--spring can be cruel. We all need gear to beat back the wind and fight off the rain. And these days, we need gear that's tailored for the situation--every weather condition and social setting must be met and conquered. We've field-tested tons of clothing--for water resistance, comfort and utility--and found the best outfits and accessories for the most common situations. (Her bikini is by Poko Pano, $64, and her sandals are by Stuart Weitzman, $190.)
How I warmed up to oral sex I had my first boyfriend when I was 16. We had sex, but when it came to oral sex--that took forever. I just couldn't do it. It was probably nine months after we started sleeping together before I would try. I'd put my head by it, I would look at it, play with it. There were days and days when I'd just stare at it, thinking, Let's just be friends. Then one day I decided to go ahead and throw caution to the wind. And now I'm a master at it.
What is it about women? Some of the greatest dramas involve beautiful but troublesome ones. The Old Testament had Delilah. JFK's Camelot had Marilyn Monroe. And the same is true for pro wrestling--the mother of all modern mythology. Consider Torrie Wilson of World Wrestling Entertainment. There she is, flaunting her drop-dead beauty, setting up feuds between hapless wrestlers. So how does a girl become a smackdown siren?
This "Tittie's" Restaurant is one hell of a scan, weevil... Buy a ton of onion rings and a Jumbotron, Then hire a lot of budding co-eds to waitress in scanty outfits for minimum wage. Oh, Well, it beats ogling the rough trade at the Lap-Dance parlor by a country mile.
Below is 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 32, 33, 43-44, 108-110, 112-117, 118-119 and 163, check the listings below to find the stores nearest you.
Credits: Photography By: P. 3 Patty Beaudet-Frances, Ted Betz, Scott Curtis, Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, Robin Holland, Nate Huber, Jill Matheson, Michael Matlach, Rob Rich, Stephen Sette-Ducati; P. 5 Istvan Banyai, George Georgiou; P. 8 Arny Freytag, Herb Ritts, Malcolm Tarlofsky; P. 13 David Klein, Elayne Lodge (5), Scott Windus; P. 14 Lodge (10), Windus (6); P. 17 Stephen Wayda; P. 18 David Rose; P. 19 O Doru Amariucai; P. 22 O Ron Galella, Ric Moore; P. 23 O Ap Photo/Chiaki Tsukumo, Todd Frankel Photography, O Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Ltd. 2002; P. 24 O Prnewsphoto; P. 25 O AP Photo/Jeff Mcintosh, O James White/Corbis Outline; P. 28 Sidney Baldwin O 2003 Revolution Studios/Columbia Pictures. All Rights Reserved., Jasin Boland O 2003 Warner Bros.-U.S., Canada, Bahamas & Bermuda, O 2003 Village Roadshow Films (BVI) Ltd.; P. 30 Gregg deguire/wireimage.com, Spun, Inc.; P. 33 David Goodman; P. 36 Steve Colby, Yann Parsy, Anna Williams; P. 43 James Imbrogno; P. 44 Gus Filgate, Imbrogno (2), O Rick Mackler/Rangefinder/Globe Photos, Inc. O 2003; P. 49 O Jonathan Daniel/Allsport; P. 58 Rose; P. 59 Eika Aoshima/Visages, Chris Ashford/Camera Press/Retna Ltd., London entertainment/splashnews.com, splashnews.com; P. 64 guest/auroraphotos.com; P. 65 Corbis; P. 66 Corbis, Rose; P. 68 Black Star, O Copyright 2001 Geoffrey Orth, Corbis (2), Everett Collection, Inc.; P. 88 Sue Ogrocki/Reuters/Landov; P. 89 Rob Tringali/Sportschrome; P. 90 Adrees Latif/Reuters/Landov; P. 91 Rob Tringali/Sportschrome; P. 92 Everett Collection, Inc., Rob Tringali/Sportschrome; P. 96 Mark Edward Harris (3); P. 121 Richard Fegley (2); P. 122 Corbis Outline; P. 126 O 2003 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved (3); P. 159 O 2002 Illustrated Man Inc. USA, Wayda, wireimage.com (5); P. 160 Lodge, Wayda, wireimage.com (4); P. 163 Fegley, Freytag, Harris, Wayda; P. 166 Rudi Ayasse, Georgiou; P. 167 O Bettmann/Corbis, Georgiou (2); P. 168 Davis Factor, Karin Kohlberg, Wayda, Kent Williams. Illustration By: P. 43 Bill Benway, P. 67 Scott Anderson, P. 92 Charlie Powell. Stamp Art By: P. 17 Tony Crnkovich, P. 58 Makeup By Lynne Eagan, P. 112 Hair and Makeup By Alberto Luengo for Bernstein & Andriulli, Women's Styling by Meriem Orlet, P. 118 Hair and Makeup by Dale Johnson for Bernstein & Andriulli, Women's Styling by Meriem Orlet, P. 126 Styling by Lane W., Makeup by Heather Currie, Hair by Bertrand W. Cover; Model; Torrie Wilson, Photographer: Arny Freytag, Styling; Lane W., Makeup: Heather Currie, Hair: Karen Lynn.
Don't be fooled by Chicago native Serria Tawan's sexpot image. "I'm the most non-sexual person in my group of friends," she says. . . . Look for Heidi Mark as John Ritter's wife in the flick Man of the Year. . . .Shae Marks has appeared in the movie Love Stinks and on the TV series Black Scorpion, but has she ever worked with someone she refuses to work with again? "Oh, yes," she says. "But I will not be airing any of my dirty laundry here. To talk about her would only feed her enormous ego. Maybe then it would match her enormous ass." Meow!. . . Danelle Folta (see story on page 159) was profiled in Sports Illustrated and took part in the Aspen X Games with Cara Wakelin and Deanna Brooks. . . . From the booze babes department: Cara lobbies for Molson beer, Charis Boyle shills for Miller Lite and Irina Voronina (pictured, in white) puts the sexy in Skyy vodka ads. . . . It's getting hot in here: Jennifer Walcott, Neferteri Shepherd and Nicole Narain appear in a video for Nelly and Justin Timberlake that was shot at the Mansion. The guys wear PJs and Hef makes a cameo. Jennifer interviews Shaggy on sexn rocknroll.com. . . . What (besides corny jokes) revs up Jay Leno's engine? The Dahm triplets, who hung out with Jay at the Love Ride 19 in Los Angeles.
The hot trend in cell phones is built-in or attachable cameras that snap and send photos to another phone or an e-mail address. Is this a way to make cell phone use even more obnoxious? You bet, but no more so than your theme from Titanic ring tone. While these cell phone-camera combos can't compete with your multimegapixel digital camera (since most offer a mediocre 640x480 resolution), the shots are suitable for taunting a friend with an image of the woman you just met at a club while he puts in overtime. Also, most models can assign pictures to pop up with a corresponding name as a visual caller ID, which is a great feature if you have trouble remembering the names of your various girlfriends.
Playmate of The Year--We Kicked Off 2002 With Tattooed Looker Nicole Narain and Ended with Lanitodd, A Blonde Bombshell. There Were 10 Gorgeous Ladies In Between. Who Will be The Pmoy 2003? One Hint: The Chosen One Looks Great Naked