Famed feminist (and onetime undercover bunny) Gloria Steinem urges you to boycott “Playboy Club” (NBC, Monday, 10 p.m.) because she believes the show will not show how tawdry and anti-female the clubs were in their 1960s heyday. Is she right? Let’s analyze the Sept. 19 premiere:
Depiction of club as tawdry: Key holder attacks bunny, who pierces his throat with her stiletto heel.
Depiction of club as progressive: Aging bunny, promoted to “bunny mother,” institutes paid training for new bunnies, bans bunnies from dating key holders. Bunnies are well paid; one says, “My husband hates it that I work here, but I make more money than my father.”
Bunnies evincing self-worth: A bunny tells a leering male, “I am not a hooker, and I am not a waitress, either. I’m Bunny Janie.” A black bunny aims to become “the first chocolate centerfold” because — shaking her mammary glands — “you can’t discriminate against those babies.”
Bunnies evincing lack of self-worth: A bunny has trysts with a customer in the bathroom.
Verdict: Boycott! The show depicts tawdriness but adds a female self-empowerment veneer, making the bunny career path seem like a smart move.