Playboy has definitely faced some challenges over the past few decades, not the least of which is that now, thanks to the internet, getting a chance to see a pair of naked breasts just isn’t that big of a deal and certainly not worthy of payment.
Sure, some will claim Playboy has always been more than boobs, and while it is true that they have had some incredibly good people write for them in the past they have never been a business built on literary laurels.
With Hef on his last legs and his daughter stepping down as head of Playboy Industries, it is a big moment for the company. Will they be able to reinvent themselves for a new generation or will they suffer a fate similar to that of newspapers made irrelevant in today’s webby world?
If Playboy’s first original webseries is any sign of things to come I can’t say that things look good for their future.
“Interns” follows three 20-s0methings who are taking part in a seemingly fabricated internship at Playboy. Instead of taking a tongue-in-cheek approach like, say, ESPN has done with “Mayne Street,” “Interns” plays it straight, hoping that somehow young people will be excited to see just how dull and tedious it really is to work for a magazine publisher, even with all the bunnies hopping around.
Since this is an attempt to get more mainstream there isn’t even any nudity in the series. In fact, it is clean enough that MySpace hosts their dedicated channel.
Every webseries faces a similar challenge: how to break through all the noise and distraction and get a dedicated audience to follow along over a number of episodes. So far, “Interns” is getting just over 100,000 views/episode over on MySpace. Considering the name recognition and potential these numbers seem pretty low. Check out the most recent episode and you’ll understand why…
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