Playboy TV offers “female-friendly” porn to appeal to couples

The New York Times reports that Playboy TV is looking to turn on the ladies now—or at least the straight ladies…with boyfriends.

The subscription channel has decided it can’t compete with the plethora of hard-core porn readily available on the internet and, come January, is looking to appeal to women by offering higher-quality porn, featuring “real chemistry, non-enhanced body parts, varied body shapes and ‘contextualized’ sex.”

Because that’s what women want. Yes, Playboy TV has finally answered that long-vexing question. Researcher Sharon Lee explains, “They want the romance to flow organically from the story and not pop up in a forced fashion as is the case in so many adult movies.” Apparently, they also just want porn to be better. Lee says, “Most sex-related programming looks fake, cheesy or cheap — or all three.” To attract women, they need to “invest in higher-quality content.” I’m not really sure why men put up with cheap, gross, low-quality porn with no real chemistry—you’d think that given the billions and billions of dollars they pour into the industry every year, they’d have some power to demand a better product. But hey—I guess women are just more “sophisticated consumers.”

Playboy TV’s new programming is called “TV for 2” and actually seems to be female-friendly in order to attract couples. The possibility that women might want to watch something different with their boyfriends than they would by themselves goes unexplored. In fact, it seems to be assumed that women wouldn’t be interested in watching porn alone. Which is strange since porn-watching is usually a solitary activity for men. The idea that women’s sexual desire could exist outside of a (heterosexual) relationship is apparently too much for the folks at Playboy to wrap their heads around.

Look, I think it’s sweet that Playboy’s VP says, “I’m pretty sure a lot of guys would rather be watching with their partner by their side.” And let’s be real—I will probably check out the docu-reality show “Brooklyn Kinda Love.” But I’m skeptical that Playboy TV really know what I want if they think my idea of porn is watching “monogamous couples receiving advice on how to achieve greater intimacy” with a boyfriend I don’t have.

Atlanta, GA

Maya Dusenbery is an Executive Director in charge of Editorial at Feministing. Maya has previously worked at NARAL Pro-Choice New York and the National Institute for Reproductive Health and was a fellow at Mother Jones magazine. She graduated with a B.A. from Carleton College in 2008. A Minnesota native, she currently lives, writes, edits, and bakes bread in Atlanta, Georgia.

Maya Dusenbery is an Executive Director of Feministing in charge of Editorial.

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