Stiffed

Stiffed

New York City, 1973. Bob Guccione, the founder of the men’s magazine Penthouse, is about to drop his latest project, and it’s not quite what anyone is expecting. Enter Viva, an erotic magazine for women published by a porn king but staffed by – drumroll – a bunch of feminist writers and editors. Viva features groundbreaking full-frontal male nudes, writing by feminist icons like Betty Friedan, and profiles of literary legends like Maya Angelou. Its cover stars include Bianca Jagger and Shelley Duvall. Anna Wintour is even Viva’s fashion editor at one point. But what is originally conceived as a high-end, progressive, sexual utopia for women… doesn't quite turn out that way. Stiffed is an Original Series from Crooked Media and iHeartPodcasts. You can listen to all 8 episodes out now, wherever you get your podcasts.

Episodes

June 7, 2023 2 mins

What happens when a city on the verge of collapse tries to reinvent itself? How much will it cost? Who will pay the price? Reporter David Weinberg spent years following one city in California’s Mojave desert as it tried to transform itself from a city of prisons to a city of pot. And it worked…for a while. Until it, spectacularly, didn’t. From Crooked Media, this is Dreamtown: The Story of Adelanto. Listen to Dreamtown: The Story o...

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As the 1970s come to a close, so does Viva’s run as one of America’s first feminist porn magazines. We explore what the legacy of Viva magazine tells us about issues of female sexuality and sexual autonomy, and how many of these battles are still being fought today.

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May 4, 2023 28 mins

As a last Hail Mary to save Viva, Bob and Kathy hire a young, up-and-coming fashion director — none other than a fresh-faced, pre-Vogue Anna Wintour. But will she be enough to save the floundering publication?

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April 27, 2023 29 mins

As Viva reaches the third of its six-year run, it’s having its own version of a midlife crisis, and the editors have to make some tough decisions about what kind of magazine Viva needs to be to survive.

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April 20, 2023 30 mins

As Viva continues to stumble along and figure itself out, so does seemingly everyone else in the 1970s. In the midst of the sexual revolution and the rise of “Porno Chic,” there’s a chorus of anti-porn feminists attacking Bob Guccione’s publishing empire, and Viva’s caught in the middle.

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April 13, 2023 26 mins

The Viva staff have hit their stride and are finally publishing smart, progressive, feminist content alongside the magazine’s male nudes, and their latest issue is about to be their most revolutionary – and controversial – one to date.

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April 6, 2023 26 mins

On the one-year anniversary of Viva’s publication, there’s a big, exciting change — a woman is now at the top of the masthead: Bob’s wife and business partner Kathy Keeton. And she’s about to push the magazine in a much more “revealing” direction.

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March 30, 2023 29 mins

After critics skewer Viva’s first issue, Bob Guccione decides to double down on his flawed vision for the magazine. Meanwhile, his feminist editorial staff finds a secret window into making the content they actually desire. 

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March 30, 2023 33 mins

Coming off the massive success of his men's sex magazine Penthouse, porn publishing king Bob Guccione has a new project… but for women this time. Enter Viva, one of the first erotic magazines for women.

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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March 23, 2023 2 mins

What happens when a group of scrappy feminist journalists teams up with a porn king? The true story of Bob Guccione, VIVA magazine, and 1970s feminist porn.

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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