Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
January 27, 2016

Trump the Playboy

photo: John Minchillo/AP. caption: Donald Trump, shown Monday in Farmington, N.H., held a copy of a 1990 Playboy magazine where he is depicted on the cover.

It seems Trump, in his attitudes, behavior and history, continues to fancy himself the playboy in the more traditional sense. Oink, oink.

Being concrete that way, the 1990 cover boy actually flaunted the genuine article in New Hampshire on Monday. (As a not dissimilar point, the photo exemplifies, also, how much Trump likes to wave more suggestive parts of himself around.)  The way he’s captured looking our way, it’s like he’s happy to have the whole country register the persona. I also admire the phalanx of muscleman. Is this the he-man chorus? Or perhaps, they’re there to add enough buffer so DT doesn’t swat an evangelical in the head.

Here’s the cover, by the way. The woman’s name is Brandi Brandt, Playboy’s Playmate of the Month, October 1987. Beside the position of her hand and his lower body in a slight right twist, you notice she’s already gotten inside his tuxedo. Even more so, though, notice how the cover presents Trump as potentially the biggest Playboy of all, even greater than Heffner, framed as a potential owner of the brand.

Donald Trump Playboy magazine cover 1990

…One note about the New Hampshire photo, in spite of our post title. Even if some fan showed up at the rally with his prized get from e-Bay, the fact The Donald chose to brandish it makes that a distinction without a difference.

Really though, it’s a legitimate question why there’s been so little heard of Trump’s personal history, his lifestyle and his moral character. Except when Trump, himself, goes there and momentarily stokes the fire, he has largely had a free ride when it comes to his misogyny, his infidelity and his Don Juan mindset, as in bragging in his book about his conquests with married women or accusing Hillary of being “schlonged.” (It’s especially interesting when, in a major reversal, he’s been going all out in attacking Bill Clinton’s character and infidelity.) And how fascinating is it that Trump, on CNN, would be the one to issue permission to dig around.

Certainly though, those are fresh and ever more evident paw prints in Trump’s bloody hate campaign against FOX’s Megyn Kelly. And if Trump’s war with Kelly costs him a FOX debate appearance on the threshold of the Iowa caucus — well, he’s probably that narcissistic to believe his absence will be felt more than his presence (even if it pans out).

What’s more damning about Trump’s past, however, and “his New York ways” it is what it says about those fundamentalist Christians and moral majority types supporting his unholy White House bid. The fact he actually flaunts his past, as you see at the rally in New Hampshire — just like he legitimized the substance of Nebraska Sen. Sasse’s skeleton-rattling tweet campaign about his un-Christian nature — raises serious questions about what some people’s definitions of “adulterer” or “conservative” even mean.

(photo: John Minchillo/AP. caption: Donald Trump, shown Monday in Farmington, N.H., held a copy of a 1990 Playboy magazine where he is depicted on the cover. magazine cover: Playboy Enterprises.)

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