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Pictured: (l-r) Laura Benanti as Carol-Lynne, David Krumholtz as Billy, Eddie Cibrian as Nick, Amber Heard as Maureen, Leah Renee as Alice, Naturi Naughton as Brenda, Wes Ramsey as Max - Provided courtesy of NBC / John Russo

Eddie Cibrian's new NBC show 'The Playboy Club' already under fire

Get more: Eddie Cibrian, TV
07/29/2011 by Olivia Allin

Eddie Cibrian's new NBC series "The Playboy Club" hasn't even aired on television and the Parents Television Council is already criticizing the series for being "too racy."

Parents Television Council president Timothy Winter sent a letter to the network accusing the series of glamorizing pornography and listing statistics about porn addicts. Brian Grazer ("24," "Arrested Development") serves as Executive Producer for "The Playboy Club," which promises to illustrate the sometimes gritty underbelly of the world's first Playboy Club.

The show is set in the early 1960s, at the legendary Playboy Club in Chicago. Cibrian plays Nick Dalton, a playboy attorney who comes to the aid of new Playboy Bunny Maureen (Amber Heard) after she accidentally kills the patriarch of the Bianchi crime family.

In the letter, the Parents Television Council told NBC that they will be "carefully reviewing every episode" and will file complaints with the Federal Communications Commission should the series violate broadcast decency laws.

"About 200,000 Americans are "porn addicts" - meaning they spend 11 hours or more per week looking at pornography," the letter read. "I call these statistics to your attention because I assume you must be unaware of how damaging the pornography industry is to our society, to our families, and to individuals. Otherwise, how on earth could you, in good conscience, agree to broadcast in your community a program that glorifies and glamorizes this insidious industry?"

The PTC urged NBC to preempt "The Playboy Club" and to stop airing promos for the series during family-friendly programs and before 10 p.m. They also noted that Utah NBC affiliate KLS already decided not to air the show, stating that their values are "completely inconsistent with the Playboy brand."

"Putting a veneer of sophistication on an industry that exploits women and destroys families is not laudable, it is disgraceful. In what manner does such the airing of such material reconcile with your public interest obligations as a broadcast licensee?" he wrote.

The conservative advocacy group has frequently criticized programs on Comedy Central, E!, FX, MTV, BET and VHI because they claim that some of their content is inappropriate for younger viewers. The popular CW series "Gossip Girl" and the now-canceled MTV show "Skins" have both been targeted by the PTC.

The network and Cibrian had no immediate comment on the PTC's accusations.

Cibrian recently posed shirtless in the latest campaign for Charisma bath and bedding products. The ads are slated to appear in magazines in October and feature the actor in various states of undress, but Cibrian told Us magazine that "being half-naked is incredibly uncomfortable."

The company previously featured "Sex and the City" actor Jason Lewis and Halle Berry's ex-boyfriend Gabriel Aubry in their campaigns.

Cibrian married country singer LeAnn Rimes in a private ceremony on April 22. The two received criticism over their relationship be because the two began dating while they were married to other people. They went public with their romance in 2009 after falling in love on the set of the Lifetime movie, "Northern Lights."

Do you think that "The Playboy Club" is too racy for primetime television? Watch the preview and vote in our poll.

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