As far as I know, there were never any Weinstein-like accusations about Hefner, maybe because it was a given that any young woman who entered the Playboy realm knew what to expect. How could it be otherwise when the Playboy brand was built on the showcasing of nubile young women stripped, shaved, airbrushed, and offered up for the male gaze? As someone who really did read Playboy for the articles, I always wondered what these women— girls , really—had to contend with when the photo shoots were over. It would only be shocking to learn that sexual exploitation was not the norm within the walls of the storied Playboy Mansion.
Phyllis Diller was among the first to show us all that women could, indeed, be funny—but they'd have to give up their looks, smarts, and accomplishments first. But there's one superlative Diller earned that's only been hinted at in the days since she passed: She may be the only woman ever deemed too sexy for Playboy. Yes, that's right. The comedienne posed for the lad mag--as a gag, she would later explain --in the late s. Playboy 's editors thought it would be funny, she said, and what better way to get a laugh than by sending out seductive centerfold photos of a hilariously tacky, impressively unsexy woman? It seemed like a foolproof plan. To everyone's bewilderment except maybe Phyllis Diller's , Phyllis Diller was a bombshell.
La Seance De Massage. Single page, original, from the French magazine Le Sourire. Minor scuff mark at top right corner. Suitable for framing.
Fifty years after the fact, she earned pop-cultural icon status. There are a dozen books about her, and a half-dozen movies, including the biopic, The Notorious Bettie Page , starring Gretchen Mol. Not to mention a bunch of tribute songs, countless websites and, almost always, more than a thousand products for sale on eBay.