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A Look at the ‘Playboy Progress’ Map From Our May 1954 Issue

Alldayeveryday is exploring Playboy Magazine’s impact on design culture by revisiting ‘The Playboy’s Progress,’ the original map of seduction published in the May 1954 issue that revealed interesting connections between design and desire. In a series of interviews by Alldayeveryday, relevant artists and designers comment on and disect the Playboy Progress Map. Below is an original scan of the map from the 1954 issue of Playboy.

playboy progress map
  1. Playboy enters with friend after an evening at theatre.
  2. Playboy removes friend’s wrap—confidently assures self she didn’t come to his apartment to eat.
  3. Friend asks about food.
  4. Playboy puts romantic Glenn Miller records on phonograph—selects only LPs.
  5. Friend wanders off towards kitchen.
  6. Playboy mixes cocktails with spiked olives.
  7. Friend returns munching chicken leg, accepts cocktail and downs it single swallow, olive and all.
  8. Playboy pours another round, begins aloud from This Is My Beloved.
  9. Playboy pours a drink; passionate embrace on couch.
  10. Playboy reads selected passages aloud from Kinsey Report: “50% of females indulge in premarital intercourse,” “females who have relations make better adjustments after marriage”: pours another round.
  11. Passionate embrace in corner.
  12. Passionate embrace on balcony.
  13. Friend is still hungry: passionate embrace in kitchen.
  14. Playboy excuses self in order to change into something more comfortable—puts on lounging robe—checks to make sure he’s wearing clean underwear.
  15. Playboy mixes more drinks—puts two spiked olives in friend’s. Passionate embrace near phonograph.
  16. Friend excuses herself to go to john: refuses passionate embrace there.
  17. Playboy pours another round, friend is still hungry—staggers into kitchen.
  18. Another passionate embrace on balcony. Playboy suggests they adjourn to bedroom. Friend slaps playboy’s face, says she’s not that kind of girl.
  19. Playboy considers tossing her off the balcony. Decides against it—returns to living room in search of address book and suitable after-midnight phone number.
  20. Friend returns to living room with comment that it has started to rain. Picks up Kinsey Report; wants to know where it says about the 50% of females.
  21. Playboy wisely decides to play it cool—ignores question, makes vague observation about the day’s stock market instead.
  22. Friend wants to know where it says that about females making a better adjustment after marriages.
  23. Playboy feigns disinterest, remarks that the Yankees had an excellent afternoon, wanders off to the general direction of the bedroom.
  24. Few moments indecision as friend considers returning to kitchen for more food—follows playboy instead.
  25. Playboy tosses address book into corner. Curtain.

To read the interviews from Alldayeveryday, check them out here.

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