Astrology research is endlessly fascinating mainly because the results are often so extraordinary.
The work itself of inputting thousands of birth details and analysing the results is fairly mundane but the thing that sustains the researcher is the findings at the end of it.
Having said that there are some subject groups that are more compelling and entertaining than others.
Capricorn Research has just completed a study of the members of Congress. The fascinating aspect of this research is that there is a marked difference between the astrological make up of the typical Democrat and Republican.
But the actual research was pretty boring, attempting to find out why these people feel compelled to stand for high office so that they can spend their lives telling everybody else what to do.
In order to offset the tedium of this congressional project Capricorn Research decided to have another one running alongside it.
The question behind this piece of research is what motivates certain young ladies to get their kit off in glossy magazines for the entertainment of all and sundry ?
The answer would most likely be fame and money. But what would be the astrological factors ?
There are obviously a lot of top shelf magazines whose main selling point is the naked female form, but there is one that perhaps started it all and has the biggest reputation. Playboy has been using the centrefold idea for over 60 years and hence a sample of 706 models gives us a large enough range to identify some astrological traits that they might have in common.
It’s a fair guess that most men reading this article will already have speculated on the most common Sun sign for our sample. And they are almost certainly wrong.
The assumption is that Libra and Scorpio would be the two signs most likely to feature, with possibly an appearance of their polar opposites Aries and Taurus.
Libra and Scorpio do appear more than average at 109 and 105 % respectively but these figures are not high enough to have any significance. Aries is at 99 % and Taurus is the lowest scoring sign with 73 %.
By some distance the highest scoring Sun sign is Virgo with 129 %. This seems to go against the conventional view that Virgoans are rather restrained and even prudish. Most people would feel that this sign perhaps together with Capricorn would score lowest in a survey of centerfold models.
Sexual expression is ruled by Mars and the red planet also scores highest in Virgo, in this case at 136 %. Libra is the 2nd highest Mars placing with 122 % and Aquarius the lowest with 61 %.
This Mars distribution does have serious statistical significance with a ” p ” figure of 0.000372.
Virgo is the definitely not the sign of the exhibitionist, but it is that of the perfectionist. The Playboy idea is to display the perfect ( in their terms ) female form, so perhaps it makes sense for there to be so many Virgos
But in a sense, the displaying of all one’s natural wares in a magazine for all to see is not really a Mars activity, it belongs to the arena of Venus.
Venus does score 3rd highest in Virgo with 119 % although this is fairly likely given the Sun’s frequency in the sign.
The finding that will have most followers of astrology nodding their heads in agreement is the strongest planetary placing by sign in this sample. Venus top scores in Scorpio with 148 %.
The Venus distribution has a ” p ” figure of 0.00729, again clearly beating the 0.01 required for statistical significance, but perhaps even more interesting is that Scorpio is way out on its own, over 24 percentage points above Aquarius which finishes 2nd.
Venus is all about attraction and its placing in the intensely sexual sign Scorpio is what we would expect. The combination with the Sun and Mars in the perfectionist Virgo says a lot about the Playboy narrative.
As this is a study based on birthdays without times, house positions and Ascending signs are not applicable.
It is interesting to look at the most common aspects however.
All of the Sun, Moon and Mercury aspects fall within a range where there is nothing of significance to see.
The aspects that do stand out however belong to Venus and Mars.
Very appropriately, Venus is conjunct Jupiter 150 % of the expected number of times.
Mars also scores highly with Jupiter, the conjunction is 127 % but the biggest single score for any aspect is the sextile with a whopping 166 %.
The very sexually oriented Mars / Pluto conjunction scores 137 %, but perhaps another surprise is the fact that the Mars / Saturn conjunction scores 156 %.
The Mars / Saturn score is intriguing not least because it also scores highly in the survey of 166 Prostitutes, where both the conjunction and the opposition have 176 %. This proliferation of Mars / Saturn here is not surprising as its pretty certain that these individual’s choice of career will inevitably bring a whole series of problems and difficulties along with it.
Perhaps we can infer from this finding that displaying your assets in Playboy can have a similar impact.
There is a common notion that there is a Playboy Centerfold Curse, owing to an apparently large number of models who have suffered a tragic death of some sort or other.
This idea of a curse really comes from the very first Playboy Centerfold in December 1953, Marilyn Monroe who died in mysterious circumstances as the result of a drug overdose in 1962. It is still unknown whether Marilyn’s death was an accident, a suicide or even a murder, with many conspiracy theories attached to the Kennedy family.
At first it was assumed that this tragedy was Marilyn’s alone, but the deaths of two centrefolds from the first 18 months of Playboy doing them started the idea of a curse. Jayne Mansfield was killed in a horrific car crash and Eve Meyer died in a plane crash.
The fact that 3 out of the first 16 centrefolds died in tragic circumstances is strange and gave the idea of the curse.
Since then there have been 5 probable suicides and 5 others who have died as a result of overdoses although its not known whether they were intentional or not. There have also been two murders and three car accidents.
Overall out of a sample of 706 people, 4 deaths in car accidents and one plane crash is probably not that strong an indication of a curse, but 11 potential suicides and 2 murders certainly is significantly more than average expectation.
Of the 11 suicide / overdose cases, Capricorn Research has full charts for 2 and noon charts for 8 of them. Saturn plays a major role in every single one and in many cases the Mars / Saturn conjunction is present.
The most famous of all and the one that started it all off is Marilyn Monroe
Although she was the very first Playboy centrefold, Marilyn cannot be seen as typical of the breed. Her fame took her to much greater heights and her appearance in the magazine was just a staging post on the way.
This is not meant as a full analysis of Marilyn’s chart as that would take a whole article on its own. Suffice to say that her fame, glamour and ultimate tragedy was indicated by her T Square, based on an opposition from the Moon in Aquarius in the 7th house to Neptune in the 1st. This opposition focuses onto an apex Saturn in Scorpio in the 4th.
This placing of Saturn, particularly with its square to the Moon pointed to Marilyn’s difficult childhood with a mentally unstable mother who was not able to care for her, the foster family experiences and the sexual abuse that she suffered from people that were supposed to care for her. It also indicates the tragic end to her life.
The years 1952 – 3 were Marilyn’s breakthrough years when she landed her first lead role and then made ” Gentlemen Prefer Blondes “, finishing the year with the Playboy spread. This was the turning point of her life as Pluto was transiting through the T Square opposite the Moon, conjunct Neptune and square Saturn at the time.
The other major turning point of her life was Pluto’s only transit to her Sun, the square in 1962 when she tragically died.
The other chart Capricorn Research has a birth time for is Anna Nicole Smith, another centrefold whose life had a certain notoriety also in part to do with her relationships with powerful men and her tragic early death.
Anna’s chart is the type of thing you would expect from a model. An extremely close Moon / Venus conjunction in Libra conjunct the Ascendant clearly depicted her charms.
She was a Playboy centerfold in May 1992, but she also owed her fame to her relationship with elderly oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall, who she met in October 1991. During their two-year affair, he asked her to marry him several times. In June 1994, twenty-six-year-old Smith and eighty-nine-year-old Marshall were married in Houston. This resulted in a great deal of gossip about her marrying him for his money. Smith maintained that she loved her husband, and age did not matter to her. A year after the wedding, Marshall died in August 1995.
Neptune often has a big role to play in the charts of glamorous people, there is something about it that has an indefinably seductive quality. It’s often present in illusory, fantasy situations or where a person’s relationships bring them enhanced publicity both positive and negative.
From 1991 – 4 Neptune was square to Anna Nicole Smith’s Ascendant / Moon / Venus conjunction. In 1992 – 3 Uranus was in exactly the same position.
The great benefic Jupiter was exactly conjunct Smith’s Sun when Marshall died. This is obviously not the transit that would normally go with the death of a husband, but she claimed half of Marshall’s 1.6 billion dollar estate.
Anna Nicole Smith died of an overdose of prescription drugs in 2007. It is not believed to have been intentional.
She does not have the typically classic Saturn tragic aspects in her birth chart. She does have an exact Sun / Saturn trine, however.
Neptune is often involved when there is a death as a result of drug taking and both Saturn and Neptune were square her Mercury / Neptune conjunction when she died.
Capricorn Research does have a collection of charts of 345 suicides and the Mars / Saturn conjunction scores very highly in this sample at 157 % of the expected figure.
The other playmates who suffered from suicides or overdose are as follows :
1 Ashlyn Martin had an exact Mars / Saturn conjunction with an orb of only one minute.
2. Sue Williams – Mars / Saturn conjunction
3. Paige Young – Mars / Saturn conjunction
4. Willy Rey – Sun / Saturn conjunction
5. Debbie Boostrom – Mars / Uranus conjunction, Mars / Saturn trine
6. Jennifer Jackson – Venus / Saturn conjunction
7. Tiffany Sloan – Venus / Saturn conjunction, Mars / Saturn square
8. Elisa Bridges – Venus / Saturn conjunction, Mars / Saturn square
Also amongst those who died in car accidents were Claudia Jennings and Tonya Crews who both had the Mars / Saturn conjunction.
Many years ago there was a famous single by the J Geils Band with the refrain
” My blood runs cold
Have just been sold
My angel is a centerfold
My angel is a centerfold “
It is a testimony to fallen innocence which brings us back to the odd combination of Sun in Virgo / Venus in Scorpio that appears in so many of the centrefolds’ charts.
The Venus / Jupiter conjunctions attracted so many admirers but the Mars / Saturn conjunctions put a tragic end to a lot of fallen angels.