What do the kids these days want from a five-and-a-half-decade-old American gentleman’s institution known for picturing naked women? Apparently, a reality show. With no naked women.

Or at least that’s what certain Playboy executives thought when they dreamed up Playboy Interns, a “made-for-mobile series” about yesteryear’s dream job. Why yesteryear? Well as David Title put it, “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.” A phenomenon that’s evidenced by the magazine/entertainment company’s lackluster stock performance and a recent hanging of the guard.

For Interns, three unassuming early twentysomethings are cast into the Playboy internship program (‘Minimum wage… Maximum perks’ goes the subhead), where they will be groomed to be pinup moguls for the digital age. While a tight production, the show is still every bit a classic reality show: lame missions, ample jumpy cuts, music-paced plot soliloquies and the requisite build-ups towards anti-climactic climaxes.

For instance, Ashley, a Jersey hottie with a penchant for office-inappropriate-yet-not-unclassy fashions, is instructed to help a playmate try on racy pinup attire. Even as a fellow young woman, Ashley gets thoroughly flummoxed and worries about maintaining professional boundaries. Ah, the integrity of the reality show intern.

Ashley’s fellow dream jobbers are Jon, the pseudo-geeky/intellectual/comedic relief, and Charlie, the reserved, tall, dark kinda stud who would probably be on his way to being a Playgirl if the magazine was still around. The trio is occasionally joined by “The Boss,” Stephen (Playboy Marketing director Stephen Murray), who gives them their assignments and then assesses the pack with a fair and (very unreality-like) calm demeanor.

Episode 3 features the intern’s preparation for an in-office performance by some band named Illinois, which appears to actually be some kind of practical joke gone bad.

The episode is far from a total loss, however as intern Jon – the saving grace of the series, if in fact there is one – makes a nice go at a Henry Kissinger analogy. Whether he pulled off the analogy may be a subject of some debate, but he certainly gets big points for the effort. After all, he’s a Playboy Intern, for chrissakes.

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