The first copy of an iconic magazine (1953)

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Friday, 1 December 2017

1953 -

'If you're somebody's sister, wife or mother-in-law and picked us up by mistake, please pass us along to the man in your life and get back to your Ladies Home Companion.' Playboy made sure everybody that got their hands on the first Playboy-edition knew it wasn’t a family magazine. ‘If you’re a man between the ages of 18 and 80, Playboy is meant for you.’ Today in 1953 the first copy was printed. Featuring Marilyn Monroe. She graced the cover and the centrefold. Beside the first Playboy pin-up, it was also the premiere of the Playboy Bunny. The animated bunny appeared in smoking jacket and a pipe in his mouth.

1 million subscribers
Founder Hugh Hefner decided to print only 54000 copies of the first Playboy, not being sure it would be a success. He was also not certain if there would be a second edition. But all copies were sold out soon, probably mostly due to Marilyn Monroe’s popularity. Hefner borrowed $600,- from the bank for this magazine and another $8000,- from family and friends. But he had no trouble paying it back. Only five years after the first-ever copy, Playboy already had 1 million subscribers. After that a brand was born.

360 trivial fact
Hugh Hefner never met Marilyn Monroe in real life, but he clearly stated she was his dream woman. That’s the reason why in 1992 he purchased the crypt next to Marilyn’s grave, where he lies buried now.


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