Playboy TV (originally The Playboy Channel) is an American, adults-only premium cable and satellite television network that is owned by MindGeek under license from Playboy Enterprises. Its programming focuses on premium adult programming, including motion pictures, first-run television series and specials. The channel is available internationally in countries such as Sweden, Canada, Japan, Latin America, New Zealand, Greece, Israel, Iberia (Spain and Portugal) and Norway.
The channel launched on November 1, 1982 as The Playboy Channel. The original programming and style of the Playboy Channel was developed by Hugh Hefner, and producer Michael Trikilis. Playboy hired its own sales and marketing staff and launched the channel on several major multiple system operators. At the time of its launch, programming featured on the channel consisted of R-rated films. It was broadcast for only ten hours each day, from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. ET, during its first eleven years of existence. The channel re-launched as Playboy TV and adopted its current name on November 1, 1989. The network expanded its programming with the adoption of a 24-hour schedule in 1994.
Playboy TV was originally developed as a video version of Playboy Magazine. Programming featured music reviews, celebrity interviews, men’s fashion and segments on cars. It was a video extension of the magazine - an established lifestyle brand. Slowly the programming on the channel evolved to feature more attractive women and eventually soft core features. This then evolved to what would become more standard television programming with a focus primarily on a male demographic.
In 2010, Playboy TV unveiled a new slate of TV For 2 programming, which featured premium series tailored to both male and female viewers. Original, couples-focused series on Playboy TV designed specifically for co-viewing included reality shows such as Swing, Sextreme Makeover and Celebrity Sex Tales, which features animated reenactments of outrageous hookup stories from such celebrities as NBA star John Salley, supermodel Janice Dickinson and comedy legends Cheech & Chong. Additional content included original documentary series (Brooklyn Kinda Love) produced by Joe and Harry Gantz, the Emmy-winning creators of HBO’s Taxicab Confessions. Playboy TV also airs original comedic programs such as The Stash, The Truth About Sex, Foursome: Walk of Shame and The Arcade. The channel features popular adult movie parodies, new adult releases and profiles of game-changing classic adult films in the popular series Groundbreakers hosted by legendary filmmaker John Waters. In December, Playboy TV presents Mr. Skin’s Year In Nudes, a look back at the year’s top female nude scenes in television and film hosted by the venerable Mr. Skin.
Fans of classic Playboy TV shows no longer in production, such as Night Calls, 69 Sexy Things and 7 Lives Xposed, or current programming can find their favorite shows on subscription video on demand services and on the TV Everywhere service Playboy.TV.