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The Playboy

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  865 ratings  ·  35 reviews
Paperback, 172 pages
Published December 1st 1992 by Drawn and Quarterly
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Community Reviews

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This was sort of fun in a titillating kind of way, and I like its unvarnished honesty, but I didn't find the author's experiences to be interesting or unusual enough to be noteworthy.
Michael Scott
In The Playboy, Chester Brown explores the world of incipient sexuality. We see the young Chester discovering, confused in the beginning, increasingly more explosive afterwards, the mystery of the woman. It just happens that young Chester is a nervous, skinny, a bit social boy and that Playboy, the men's magazine with sexy photographs, is available regardless of age. Overall, I found this work less interesting and mature than Paying for It, and rated it accordingly.

The Playboy has the premise of
Sam Quixote
"The Playboy" tells the story of Chester Brown's introduction to women via Playboy magazine. He buys an issue, then another, then another. He becomes something of a connoisseur then gets over it when he becomes an adult and gets a girlfriend. It still fascinates him but not in the obsessive way it did when he a teen. And that's it really. There's one scene where hes disappointed to find the playmate is black and realises he's a bit racist and throughout we get scenes showing Brown's guilt over m ...more
Jay Daze
We sure are confused. Brown perfectly captures a young teens' experience of pornography. The way he shows the waves of desire and shame, how his alter-ego collects, then discards, collects, then discards the magazines; how he clips favourite pictures; and even his discovery of the adult comic 'Little Anny Fanny' is eerily similar to my own experience with porn as a boy.

What probably distinguishes Brown from many of his auto-biographical comic imitators is how masterful he is at treating such a
One of the first cartoonists to present autobiographical stories in comics, Chester Brown here depicts his teenage anxieties regarding his lust for Playboy models and the subsequent shame he experiences after masturbation. Brown also chronicles the efforts he made to conceal his copies of Playboy, and his inability to completely relinquish an obsession with the magazine. This is certainly a tale that will be familiar to many men of a certain age who grew up before the era of the internet. Brown ...more
This is an unvarnished take Chester Brown's teenage sexuality and his obsession with Playboy. I finished this book in one sitting and in less 30 minutes, and I must say that I have mixed thoughts. The book is rather short, even though it is more than 200 pages, with just two (sometimes one) panels per page. For this alone, I think it's unfair to pay 800 bucks for it. Secondly, there isn't much to this book. We only learn that Chester buys one Playboy after another and masturbates everytime he do ...more
Josephus FromPlacitas
A lot more accessible and emotionally engaging than Paying For It. Much more human and humane, extremely vulnerable, and not so obsessed with cold argumentation. The art was also a lot more fun to look at, much bigger and prettier. There's almost a robotic Randroidiness to the Paying For It panels where the Yummy Fur comics collected in this book are much more about reaching out to the reader, getting a laugh, and getting an emotional reaction.
Okay, I found this less enraging than the last one by him, but I am all the more convinced this guy is a deeply emotionally dissociated individual. Not because he looks at or likes pornography - if the internet's taught us one thing it's that almost everyone likes pornography - but because of his attitude towards pornography, and masturbation, and actual relationships with women. He feels shame and self-loathing about masturbation, and the pornography that facilitates it. Yet he comes to depend ...more
Long before Joe Matt cornered the market on confessional autobio comics about obsessing over porn, Chester Brown drew and illustrated this candid, affecting series on his love/hate relationship with Playboy Magazine as a teen and young man. Some of his shame and embarassment seems almost quaint in 2009, since porn is much more mainstream now that it is readily available to almost anyone with an Internet connection. Brown has a much more deft touch than Matt, however, both in terms of style and s ...more
David Schaafsma
It's hard to say why I would give this odd little book four stars but it has the neatly drawn, somehow fastidious approach he (and Seth, and Joe Matt, his friends) seems to bring to most of what they do, and they sometimes explore stuff that they don't care if anyone else cares about, that is taboo, maybe embarrassing.. like in this book, which is about his encounters with Playboy magazine over the years, starting when he was 15, when he first guiltily bought his first issue. In a way, he and Jo ...more
Eric T. Voigt Voigt
I stopped reading a few pages from the end, in the notes section, around 2AM after having planned to only read til about the middle of the actual comic, and then woke up with a low blood sugar around 8AM, after dreaming in Chester Brown's voice a bunch of non-factual 'autobiography' about him and Joe Matt and Sook-Yin Lee, and decided I had to just bite the bullet and finish, because obviously that's what my body was telling me, right? Nuts. Not my favorite of his, but come on, everything he doe ...more
Kinda superficial memoir about his teenage obsession with playboy. I'd be interested in seeing his more recent work though (this was from 1990). I like his style.
Matt Gallant
Ehn..It was clever, but kind of disturbing at the same time. The whole premise of his obsession with dirty magazines got kind of old.
Braden A.
I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Chester Brown's "The Playboy".

Through about the first third, I got the feeling it was a very simplistic look at male guilt over sexual feelings, but what was simplistic quickly became complex and honest.

While the exact situations presented by Brown are nothing I can identify with, the feelings of guilt, shame and isolation I can certainly empathize with. And I thought his use of a little devil-winged "conscience" type of creature as a narrator was appropri
A compelling account of Brown's early interactions with porn. The story hones in on intriguing details without going overboard with text or exposition. Brown seemed to find a balance between text and illustrations in his earlier work that isn't quite there in his more recent works, like Paying for It.

On a side note, I had a hard time imagining teens today having the same experiences given the abundance of material online changing accessibility and one's ability to be discreet. Hopefully that me
If I were to compare this to Chester's "I Never Liked You" or "Paying for It," I'd give this book maybe three stars--it isn't nearly as deep nor as compelling as the other two; it felt like an excerpt from a larger piece. But on the grand scale of things, it was funny and really enjoyable, so I'm giving it four stars.

But don't get me wrong, it's totally worth the read! There are some seriously funny moments in it, and his honesty is always admirable. It's an entertaining glimpse into the master
Chester Brown's first longform autobiographical work (he'd done a few shorts prior, collected in The Little Man is a stunning, innovative study of copulsion and guilt. Brown presents a fourth wall breaking narrator in the form of a mini demon-self, talking to the audience and tempting Chester to indulge in Playboy. This one concession ot fantasy gives the book a remarkable depth and texture. Carefully conceived, beautifully drawn, this is a great graphic novel.
Chester Brown has become one of my favorite comic artists very, very quickly. Each thing he writes has such immense personal charm, no matter what direction he takes it in. This is another autobiographical comic along the lines of I Never Liked You: The New Definitive Edition, and is just as good.
Anne Baker
Goddamn, I love Chester Brown. Read this, I Never Liked You, and Paying for It. Go, now!
Nicholas Gourlay
May 09, 2009 Nicholas Gourlay rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Any fan of Chester Brown.
I've fallen in love with Chester Brown and not in a romantic way. I love how this basic story of adolescent desire, guilt, remorse, and ackwardness flows with the color scheme and box locations. So simple and yet so powerful to me.
Sasha Boersma
Slowly working my way through Cheater Brown's body of. This is very raw compared to his later stuff, so 3/5 might not be a fair reflection. Thoughtful book, but you can tell he was less experienced here compared to his newer collections.
My hats off to Brown. He brings a lot of raw honesty to what must be a very uncomfortable topic to talk about. Its interesting to get an inside look into the conservative world of a teenage boy in the 70's.
Anthony Lacroix
Dommage. J'ai beaucoup aimé le travail de Chester Brown pour un autre roman graphique, mais celui là n'apporte rien dans sa part autofictionnelle. La narration est même complètement bâclée.
I was a little disappointed with this after Ed the Happy Clown. But I've come to realize that it's just a different side of Brown, one that I can appreciate more now than when I was 21.
Alexander Weber
3.5 stars: honestly portrays the author's experience with guilt and shame at looking at pictures of Playboy model's and masturbating, and with having to hide this from everyone.
Chester Brown's wiry art has a piercing quality. Compared to most comics, huge amount of emotional content/information is embedded in the images. Comix acupuncture.
Tom Fuchs
After this and Jeffrey Brown over the past couple of weeks, I think it's time for a break from searingly honest graphic novel memoirs. But this is still good stuff.
Stephanie Baker
An interesting addition to the works about Brown's life. I didn't like it as much as the others, but I like having this knowledge.
This was okay. A story of a teen sneaking Playboys. Not a lot of depth, but there was some pleasant nostalgia involved.
I wasn't overly impressed by this graphic novel about a boy's relationship with Playboy magazines.
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Chester Brown was born in Montreal, Canada on May 16, 1960 and grew up in the nearby suburb of Chateauquay. His career path was set at the age of 12 when the local newspaper, The St. Lawrence Sun, published one of his comic strips.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

At 19, he moved to Toronto and got a day job while he worked on his skills as a ca
More about Chester Brown...
I Never Liked You Louis Riel Paying for It Ed the Happy Clown (A Yummy Fur Book) The Little Man: Short Strips, 1980-1995

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