Every issue of playboy is about indulgence, but with this one we want to take it to the next level. Inside you'll find mountains of caviar, rivers of champagne, the fastest production car in the world, tips on how to buy yourself an entire wagyu cow so you can eat like a shogun and, of course, the usual celebration of beautiful women and great journalism. Let's begin with The Battle for Picasso's Mind, John Meroney's wild true story of how Cold War CIA operative Tom Braden launched a plot to combat the Soviets—using modern art. They don't make spies like Braden anymore. He left the CIA and became a star on CNN and a best-selling author. Frank Owen knows a thing or two about indulgence. The writer has been reporting from the forefront of drug culture since the 1980s. In Chasing Molly, Owen reveals surprising truths about today's drug du jour. Maverick U.S. senator Bemie Sanders sits for this month's Playboy Interview. The Vermont independent shoots from the hip on the collapse of the middle class, what's wrong with Washington and much more. "If you want to talk about nation building," Sanders
In your "Playmate Flashback" featuring Miss September 1978 Rosanne Katon (Playmate News, September), you overlook one of her best, and campiest, roles: as April Garland in the 1977 TV movie The Night They Took Miss Beautiful. It's about kidnappers who snatch beauty pageant contestants as well as the pageant host, played by Phil Silvers. Rosanne makes it worth watching.
I work as a stagehand at a stadium. Recently the Kenny Chesney tour came to town, along with Eric Church as one of the opening acts. I lent my copy of the June issue to a friend who works on Church's crew because I thought your profile of Church (The Badass) and the music industry in general was brilliant. Not surprisingly, my magazine left town with the tour.
Darn it! I was behind on my reading, so I missed Pot and Circumstance (April) until after I arrived home from tramping around New York City. Had I read it beforehand, I would have visited Eddie Huang's Baohaus Restaurant. Aargh! But it's good to know for next time.
After gagging through Joel Stein s sad-sack Men column ("Quit While You're Ahead [or Behind]," September), I started to work myself into a tizzy. How can Stein extol the virtues of quitting to piayboy's readership, his fellow men and the public at large? Cheering on petulant youths and thinking they're headed for politics is sadly true yet undeniably cynical. Anyone who has ever joined a gym knows how easy it is to slip into apathy. The quitting principle, like entropy, must be held at bay. At the other extreme, a few pages later Tony Robbins projects sunshine and rainbows out of his ass. Is this delicious juxtaposition a stroke of genius or a happy accident? On a related note, Miss September Bryiana Noelle has a body that won't quit. James Merkle Hudson, Massachusetts
The May issue has what may be your most beautiful cover ever, and the pictorial of Tamara Ecclestone (The Diamond Heiress) sparkles. The June cover and the Nude Woman Reclining pictorial are also amazing. The July/August issue? Incredible. The photos of Playmate Val Keil (A Star Is Born) are gorgeous, especially in black and white, and the shots of French model Liza in the rain (La Beaute) are spellbinding, playboy, like fine wine, keeps getting better.
Your report about servicemen and women who have been deported after serving our country is excellent (Deported Warriors, July/August). It especially hits home because I am Hispanic and on active duty in the military. The day after reading it, I was having a drink with a friend on the patio of a restaurant near the Mexican border in Tijuana. I looked over and spotted the SOS mural that deported veterans Ruben Robles and Fabian Rebolledo had painted on the wall.
Each month, as I flip through the new issue of playboy, I appreciate the many beautiful women. But the photos in Hangin' With Hef of your editor-in-chief bring the biggest smiles to my face. Keep living the life, Hef. You deserve all the happiness in the world for everything you have done.
I'm a book collector, and your report on Brewster Kahle's efforts to archive a copy of every book ever published (Brewster's Ark, July/August) captured my attention so much that I considered talking about pi.ayboy at work. Also, it was great to learn about the resurgence of the career of my favorite comic from the 1980s, Andrew Dice Clay (The Dice-man Recometh). playboy offers so much more than the vapid amusement for frat boys the other publications crowding the newsstands provide.
1 suspect most 5>EC tans take issue with Bruce Feldman's preseason ranking of Clemson (5) over South Carolina (13) in Pigskin Preview (September). Predictably, Feldman chose Alabama at number one. Beyond that I can only assume he used a trained chicken. I am obliged to note that
I participated in a survey your marketing department conducted and noticed that some of the questions focused on such monthly staples as the fiction and Party Jokes, as though their importance were being deliberated. Certain aspects of the magazine should not be messed with—the fiction, jokes, Advisor, Forum, cartoons (P.C. Vey is a genius) and the Playboy Interview. Don't think I'm some old fogey who resists information-era change. I'm in my early 30s, but I have a deep appreciation for Hef's artistic vision.
• 7 USE COMEDY, not sexuality, to dominate," says Carly Craig of HBO's Hello Ladies. A Second City alumna, Carly has mastered being the beautiful yet bawdy object of affection on TV (.Burning Love) and in film (Role Models, Hall Pass). Her greatest asset, however, lies below the surface. "People see a pretty girl and don't expect her to be funny. But I can be witty—and raunchy," she says. "It sets me apart."
• "In the end I'm just a dirty old man," Danny Brown sneers on his new album, Old. But beneath the frizzled hair and missing teeth, there's more to Brown than that. The Detroit rapper delivers riffs about kinky sex and downing Adderall against a backdrop of Motor City life. His talent for laying his squeaky voice over off-kilter beats has led him outside the boundaries of mainstream hip-hop, a world where releasing an album on a cell phone is considered bold experimentation. Brown's hip-hop is loaded and over the
• Fonseca Bin 27 ($20): An intense and velvety ruby port with black-cherry fruit notes. Kopke Colheita 1983 ($88): An elegant tawny with notes of burnt caramel, dried apricots and spice. Graham's Six Grapes Reserve ($20): This rich ruby port drinks like a vintage with ripe fruit and chocolate flavors. Niepoort Vintage 2009 ($75): A powerhouse vintage port reminiscent of juicy blackberries. It will only gain complexity with age. Taylor Fladgate Late Bottled Vintage 2007 ($25): Matured in wood for up to six years, this mellow and smooth wine is ready to drink earlier than a regular vintage port.
• In Martin Scorsese's latest dive into the murky, deceptively seductive underworld of the morally bankrupt, Leonardo DiCaprio plays real-life con artist and $50-million-a-year stockbroker Jordan Belfort. In the 1990s, Belfort partied like a rock star and ripped off investors to the tune of
• The compelling new drama from executive producer J. J. Abrams imagines a world about 30 years hence in which flesh-and-blood cops patrol the streets alongside android partners. The focus is on one particularly troubled officer (Karl Urban, pictured) who finds himself working next to a "synthetic" (Michael Ealy) with a programming glitch: It's too human—it's even capable of emotions. We've seen this dynamic before, from Get Smart to Star Trek: The Next Generation. But in a world where our phones talk back to us, the whole idea of robocops no longer feels like fantasy. ¥¥¥
Q: On your new album, B.O.A.T.S. II: Me Time, you have a song called "Netflix," with the lyrics "Let's make a sex tape and put it on Netflix." If you made a sex tape, who would you want as your partner?
• Lost in all of Batman's face punching is the fact that he's a damn good detective. Batman: Arkham Origins (360, PC, PS3,Wii-U) beefs up the Dark Knight's crime-scene skills with a redesigned detective mode players will need to gather and analyze clues. Don't worry; the critically
As a single man who lives alone, I appreciate Deborah Schoeneman's Women column in September ("You Are Where You Live"). My place definitely has a bachelor-pad vibe, including the latest pijwboy on the nightstand. I worry potential girlfriends will take one look and run. Should I hide the playboy before bringing a date home, or should I see how open-minded she is?—P.R., Richmond, Kentucky
The Republican Party appears ready to go to any length to push its beliefs about birth control, abortion and sexual practices ("The War on Sex," September). It's hard to believe Virginia's attorney general could pursue a felony sodomy charge against a man for having oral sex with a
The Reverend Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State points out in "God vs. America" (September) that it is against IRS regulations for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations, including churches, to endorse or oppose political candidates. He also notes that the IRS rarely revokes a church's status for vio-
This is a belated response to John Gray's "Atheism Wars" (April). Humanity is more important to the survival of homo sapiens than religion or notions of God, yet Gray refers to anything human in the pejorative. He seems to be of the
GRAND GAMER-SAM HOUSER, WHO CO-FOUNDED ROCKSTAR GAMES AND THIS FALL INTRODUCED THE FIFTH INSTALLMENT OF GRAND THEFT AUTO, IS EITHER THE DEVIL OR A CREATIVE GENIUS. IN A PROFILE BY HAROLD GOLDBERG, THE FIERCELY RECLUSIVE HOUSER OPENS UP.