The Girls Next Door

The Girls Next Door, also known as The Girls of the Playboy Mansion, is a reality television series which originally aired on E! from August 7, 2005 until August 8, 2010. The series was created by executive producer Kevin Burns and Hugh Hefner, founder of Playboy magazine.

The Girls Next Door
Also known asThe Girls of the Playboy Mansion
Created byKevin Burns
Hugh Hefner
StarringHugh Hefner
Holly Madison (2005–09)
Bridget Marquardt (2005–09)
Kendra Wilkinson (2005–09)
Crystal Harris (2009)
Kristina Shannon (2009)
Karissa Shannon (2009)
Opening theme"Come On-a My House" (remix)
Ending theme"Come on-a My House" (remix)
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons6
No. of episodes91 (list of episodes)
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)Fox Television Studios
Alta Loma Entertainment
Prometheus Entertainment
Distributor20th Television
Original networkE!
Original releaseAugust 7, 2005 (2005-08-07) 
August 8, 2010 (2010-08-08)
Followed byKendra
Holly's World
The Girls Next Door: The Bunny House
Related showsKendra on Top

The show was followed by four spin-offs, Kendra, Kendra on Top, Bridget's Sexiest Beaches, and Holly's World.


The series focuses on the lives of Hefner's girlfriends who live with him at the Playboy Mansion. Hefner is often on the show along with various Playmates and other celebrities.

The series not only showcases events at the Playboy Mansion (e.g. Fight Night, Fourth of July celebration, the midsummer celebration etc.), but also sheds light on other Playboy related events such as the Playboy Jazz Festival at the Hollywood Bowl, Playmate test shoots at Playboy Studio West, Operation Playmate, party night, birthday parties, and more significantly, the personalities and real lives of each of the Girls.

Development and production

Kevin Burns approached Hefner in 2005, which resulted in a pilot called "Hef's World" being filmed. This followed "Hef, his girlfriends and friends contrasted with the staff". When presented to E!, they told him to go back and interview each of the girlfriends to "see what you can get", which resulted in the premise shifting from Hefner to life in the mansion from a female's perspective.[1]

Seasons 1–5

The first five seasons centered around then-girlfriends Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt, and Kendra Wilkinson.

In October[2] 2008, Hefner's relationships with Madison ended[3] for unconfirmed reasons (though the final episode of the fifth season discusses her unhappiness at the mansion in not being able to get married or have a family with Hefner) and Wilkinson left to continue her relationship with boyfriend Hank Baskett. Marquardt also temporarily left at the same time to film Bridget's Sexiest Beaches for The Travel Channel, but in January 2009[2] ended her relationship with Hefner and moved out of the mansion permanently.

Season 6

Despite the end of Hefner's romantic relationship with Madison, Marquardt, and Wilkinson, all three were contractually committed to a sixth season.[3] Madison indicated to Life & Style magazine, the manner in which their contractual obligations would be fulfilled was still unknown at the time, but that they were still filming material together.[4][5] However, the focus of the show shifted to Hefner's new girlfriends, 19-year-old twins Kristina and Karissa Shannon, and 23-year-old Crystal Harris.[6]

The sixth season was also originally set to feature Anna Sophia Berglund and Melissa Taylor as Hefner's second and third girlfriends, with the Shannon twins relegated to fourth and fifth position - according to a post by the company responsible for the show's opening sequence, nailgun*, that shows an incomplete rough cut of the new intro for the show.[7]

Madison did appear in the first two episodes of the season, and also appeared with Marquardt and Wilkinson in the episode "The Showering Inferno", which focused more on them than Harris and the twins.


Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 16 August 7, 2005 December 4, 2005
2 16 July 30, 2006 November 19, 2006
3 10 March 4, 2007 September 2, 2007
4 16 December 9, 2007 March 2, 2008
5 22 August 18, 2008 March 1, 2009
6 11 October 11, 2009 August 8, 2010

DVD releases

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment released the first five seasons on DVD in Region 1 between 2006-2009. These releases have been discontinued and are now out of print.

In March 2011, it was announced that MPI Home Video had acquired the rights to the series.[8] They subsequently released season 6 on DVD on July 19, 2011. They also re-released the first five seasons on the same day.

On November 29, 2011, MPI Home Video released The Girls Next Door: Complete Collection on DVD in Region 1.[9] The 17-disc set features all 91 episodes of the series as well as many bonus features.


In 2008, Kevin Burns approached Kendra and offered her a show of her own.[10] She later accepted and the show premiered on June 7, 2009.[11] The show was a hit for E!, averaging 2.6 million[12] viewers in its first season and setting many records - including being the highest-rated premiere since 2002.[13]

In 2009, Burns revealed he was in talks to create two new shows, one for Madison and one for Marquardt.[10]

Holly's World premiered on December 6, 2009[14] as a backdoor pilot and later received an 8-episode first season[15] that began airing on June 13, 2010.[16]
Just Add Bridget[17] filmed a pilot in April 2010,[18] but wasn't picked up.[19]

In 2010, a backdoor pilot[20] focusing on the Playmate House aired on August 8, 2010.[21] The show was not picked up.

In 2011, Holly's World was initially given a third season that was due to begin filming in September,[22] however it was later confirmed the season had been canceled before the production had begun and that the series would not be returning.[23] The cancellation came about in July when then-new E! president Bonnie Hammer vowed to "get rid of the more Playboy trashy element" from the network[24] - a goal that was ultimately achieved as Kendra was also canceled in 2012.

In 2012, a new show titled Kendra on Top that would premiere on WE tv in the summer of 2012 was announced as a follow-up to Kendra.[25] As with all other spin-offs, this show is also produced by Kevin Burns and his company Prometheus Entertainment.


The show was an instant hit for E! and quickly had its first season expanded from eight to fifteen episodes. The second-season premiere was watched by 1.6 million viewers (which set a 3-year record) and then topped itself by having 2.16 million viewers for the third-season premiere - the second highest season premiere ever on the E! network.[26]

The initial success of the show was so great that Playboy published a nude pictorial of Madison, Marquardt, and Wilkinson in the November 2005 issue. This later led to two more pictorials in September 2006 (to celebrate the premiere of the second season) and March 2008 (celebrating them being voted fourth in Playboy's annual "Sexiest Celebrities" online poll).

The final episode starring Madison, Marquardt, and Wilkinson was watched by 2.535 million[27] viewers.

Despite starting with the highest rating season premiere in the show's history,[28] the sixth season saw ratings drop from 2.4 million[28] watching the premiere, to only 960,000[29] watching the fourth episode only three weeks later. Ratings then dropped even further to 919,000 viewers only five weeks after the premiere.[30]


  1. The E! True Hollywood Story: Kendra
  2. Archived January 21, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  3. Lang, Derrik J. (October 9, 2008). "Hugh Hefner opens up about Holly Madison breakup". Associated Press. Archived from the original on October 12, 2008. Retrieved October 9, 2008.
  4. Life & Style Magazine December 1, p.49,
  5. (October 7, 2008). "Holly to Hugh: Hef Off". Retrieved October 7, 2008.
  6. Korn Miller (January 5, 2009). "Meet Playboy founder Hugh Hefner's other girlfriend, Crystal Harris". New York: NY Daily News. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  8. The Girls Next Door DVD news: Announcement for The Girls Next Door - Season 6 | Archived 2013-03-12 at the Wayback Machine
  9. The Girls Next Door: Complete Collection - MPI Home Video
  10. "Ask an E.P.: The Girls Next Door's Kevin Burns". Retrieved August 3, 2010.
  11. "Shows A-Z - kendra on e". the Futon Critic. Retrieved May 29, 2010.
  12. "'Kendra' Scores Highest-Rated First Season Finale Since 'Anna Nicole'". Retrieved July 7, 2010.
  13. Wiser, Paige (June 9, 2009). "'Kendra' ratings: Highest series debut since 'The Anna Nicole Show'". Archived from the original on August 26, 2009. Retrieved July 7, 2010.
  14. "Shows A-Z". Retrieved July 21, 2010.
  15. "Who Wants More Holly Madison? We Do! We Do! - E! Online". Retrieved June 17, 2010.
  16. "Holly's World Episodes - Holly's World Full Episode Guides on E!". Retrieved July 20, 2010.
  17. "Twitter / Hugh Hefner: @kristinwarner10 "Just Add ..." Retrieved September 22, 2010.
  18. "Bridget Marquardt and Boyfriend Get Their Own Reality Show". Retrieved August 3, 2010.
  19. "Twitter / @Hugh Hefner: @GoTeamBridget GND spinoff ..." Retrieved January 27, 2011.
  20. "Twitter / Hugh Hefner: @GNDpastNpresent Yes, if t". Retrieved August 5, 2010.
  21. "Shows A-Z - girls next door, the on e". Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  22. Photos: Holly Madison chats about 'Peepshow,' 'Holly’s World' at 'Hangover 2' party - Las Vegas Sun News
  23. @hollymadison (April 22, 2012). "@pinkpurple2011 no, working on a new project! :)" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  24. Rose, Lacey (December 7, 2011). "Bonnie Hammer Reveals E! Rebranding Plans; Wants Up to Four New Kardashian Spinoffs". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 28, 2017.
  25. "Kendra lands new WE reality show, 'Kendra On Top'". USA Today. March 21, 2012.
  26. "The Girls Next Door: Preview of Tonight's Episode". December 9, 2007. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  27. "WWE RAW, The Closer and President Obama lead cable viewing". Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  28. "Cable Ratings: 'Knocked Up', New 'Girls Next Door,' Propel E! - 2009-10-12 18:33:31 | Broadcasting & Cable". Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  29. "Dexter sets another series high, beats Mad Men". November 3, 2009. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
  30. "Sunday cable finals: World War II in HD beats Curbed, Dexter, Prisoner and Californication". November 18, 2009. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
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