Was there any woman quite as hot in the 1990s as Jenny McCarthy? Certainly, there were other beautiful women who were enjoying their fair share of attention, but Jenny McCarthy was a smokin’ force to reckon with. She exploded in the 1990s due to her popularity in Playboy and her perfectly placed co-host role on MTV’s Singled Out. McCarthy’s personality always seemed to shine along with her incredibly hot figure. This 1-2 punch is often the reason why she was so popular and landed so many jobs in the entertainment field.
Very rare has a former beauty who took off all her clothes enjoyed such success. But McCarthy wasn’t simply a one-trick pony. Sure, she is a busty blonde with blue eyes who has an incredible figure and deathly beauty, but she also has been able to broaden out into so many different roles. She has worn many different hats: model, actress, writer, photographer, television personality, radio host, complete hottie (okay, I added the last one). There seems there is nothing McCarthy can’t do and she has also been a dedicated mother who has fought valiantly to bring attention to Autism. Many Playmates have attracted their 15 minutes of fame and moved on, but Jenny McCarthy has lasted and then some. Let’s dig into some of Jenny McCarthy’s hottest photos and see if there are a few things you don’t know about her. This is Bunnies Undressed: 15 Things You Didn’t Know About Jenny McCarthy.
15. Tough Teenage Years
It seems almost no one is free of the difficulties of high school. Certainly, no one is born a Playboy model and the challenges of growing up are experiences nearly every adolescent seems to share. Jenny McCarthy is also a victim of life’s natural order, the torment that is high school. McCarthy attended Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School, St. Laurence High School and Brother Rich High School. While attending the later two schools, she joined their cheer squads. Despite being a cheerleader, McCarthy would state later on in interviews that she was bullied while in high school and considered herself more of a loner or an “outcast.” She chose to wear a high school sweater in her Playboy shoots, that being from Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School (that’s a Catholic School if you are keeping score and a fact that didn’t fall lightly).
14. Sister with Sweet Moves
As Jenny was pushing toward her career, another McCarthy daughter was balling it up. Jenny’s younger sister, Joanne, was quite the basketball player. At 5 feet 7 inches in height, she was a deadly point guard with tremendous handles. In fact, she was so good that in 1997, Joanne set scoring records in both scoring and assists at the University of Illinois-Chicago. Her records stood at the college for 10 years. Joanne was a tremendous basketball player. She was one of the best in her state and got drafted by the Chicago Condors in 1998. Her professional basketball career would be short-lived, but her skills were undeniable.
13. College and Playboy
Like with so many other Playboy models, the college years seem to be the perfect landing spot for opportunity calling. Jenny McCarthy headed off to college. She attended Southern Illinois University. But college just didn’t seem right for McCarthy and she took a chance at her dream of landing a Playboy spread. She submitted some photos to Playboy in hopes of getting a shot but had low expectations. She was one of 10,000 applicants that the Playboy heads sifted through. Hugh Hefner would later state that it was Jenny’s “wholesome Catholic girl” persona that lead to him and his Playboy staff selecting McCarthy (and who says Hef is a dirty old man…). Getting selected for the Playboy shoot was a dream come true for McCarthy and offered her a new path in life.
12. McCarthy Takes it Off and the Nuns Revolt
Naturally, the dirty old man, Hugh Hefner, decided to play things out with McCarthy’s Catholic girl appeal. Sure, the spread seems a bit pedophile in nature. But has that ever stopped Hef before? Nah. So Jenny McCarthy went all sexy Catholic girl for her October 1993 Playmate of the Month appearance and her hometown went nutty. Her neighborhood growing up was staunchly Catholic, and back then, anything edgy was a sin. Her family home was pelted with eggs and her youngers sisters were teased and taunted at school. Nuns even lectured Jenny herself along with her family about the ensuing damnation headed toward them. Oh, she also got $100,000 and it launched a multi-million dollar career of success. I think McCarthy won this round. McCarthy 1, Catholic Church 0.
11. Jenny Takes Off
Jenny McCarthy was a BIG hit for Playboy. Her Catholic schoolgirl fantasy spread not only garnered her extra public attention because the Catholic Church got pissed, but she was now a common household name who had gravitas. She was named Playmate of the Year for 1994 due to her incredible and successful 1993 debut and McCarthy moved out to Los Angeles so she could have a shot at the “big time.” While there, she hosted a Playboy TV show, Hot Rocks, which got her into TV. But it would be a different television show that came calling in early 1995 that would send McCarthy’s reputation through the roof and make her a household name worth remembering (although I’m quite certain the Catholic schoolgirl spread left a lasting impression on many a man).
10. Singled Out
What many people don’t understand is the challenge it can be going from stripping down to nothing and rebounding to have a career. McCarthy needed people to think of her as a talent and not just that sexy Catholic girl. Many, many Playmates have faded after their 15 minutes of sexy fame were up. There isn’t much of a career beyond a few modeling gigs for these beauties, but Jenny McCarthy was different. She had street sense and a witty personality. That combination landed a big time score for the MTV show, Singled Out. Getting in touch with the exploding network and its young fans laid the groundwork for McCarthy to have lasting success. She was a HUGE hit on the show and became the pretty girl everyone wanted. Even the WWF.
9. WWF and More TV
The World Wrestling Federation (WWF) came knocking on McCarthy’s door and had her as a guest valet for WrestleMania XI. She stood by villain Shawn Michaels upon entry, but hilariously walked out the door with the victor, Diesel. The appearance further expanded and cemented McCarthy with multiple generations of men and was a stepping stone for a big year to come. McCarthy marked 1997 by launching two new shows. MTV was so impressed with her as a co-host, they handed McCarthy her own show, The Jenny McCarthy Show. That led NBC to sign McCarthy on to do a sitcom called Jenny. Both shows were ultimately cancelled and only lasted one year, showing that McCarthy’s stardom and personality wasn’t quite enough to make her a leading lady, but she was still in demand.
8. Chicago on my Mind
Jenny McCarthy has enjoyed tremendous success in in Hollywood, but she was born clear across the country, many miles away from the glitz and glamour. In a little suburb just outside of Chicago, Illinois, McCarthy was born in Evergreen Park. Her parents were “working-class” people. McCarthy is one of four daughters who came from this Catholic family which is a blend of Polish, Irish and German ancestry. McCarthy’s mother and father were hardworking hourly employees. Her father was a steel mill foreman and her mother was a courtroom custodian. McCarthy’s modest upbringing would treat her well and teach her how to get a leg up in the world and work hard to garner lasting success.
7. Hot Girl Movie Roles
For some actresses, it is difficult to swallow the role of “hot girl” in some of the spoof films. You have to have a strong character and confidence in yourself as an artist and as a beautiful woman to be made a fool of on the big screen. Jenny McCarthy had some trouble getting her television shows to roll as a leading lady, so she took on smaller parts in bigger projects and successfully managed to get attention and remain relevant. The string of films started in 1998 with Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s comedy BASEketball. Then came Diamonds, Scream 3 and Scary Movie 3. The “hot girl” roles kept people laughing, but more importantly, it kept McCarthy relevant and that’s all she needed.
6. John Asher and Dirty Love
In 1999, Jenny McCarthy met an up-and-coming actor/director, John Asher. He was actually the director on the film Diamonds, a film McCarthy had a small role in. Asher appeared to be on the rise and Jenny McCarthy was a gorgeous Playmate who seemed to be making waves all over Hollywood. The two fell in love quickly and married. Asher directed what seemed to push the couple to the end of their rope. The release of the film Dirty Love in 2005 would be a personal and professional catastrophic failure for McCarthy and her then husband, Asher. The film “won” four Razzie Awards for “Worst Picture,” “Worst Director,” “Worst Actress” and “Worst Screenplay.” In addition to grossing just under $40,000 in the box office (yes, only 40 grand!) the film ended Asher and McCarthy’s marriage.
5. McCarthy Bounces Around
During the 2000s, an interesting thing happened with McCarthy. She seemed to be everywhere and nowhere all at once. She appeared in a bunch of big television shows having small recurring roles and a few one-offs. She did some voiceover work and continued to model, in particular, for Playboy. She got together with actor Jim Carrey and the two seemed madly in love and crazy together. McCarthy was known for her “toilet humor” and strange comedic tone that seemed to attract her and the outlandish Carrey together. The beauty and the oddball lasted over 5 years, finally separating in 2010. She did a photoshoot for the Playboy Cyber Club in which she was the actual photographer, not the model. And in 2007, she appeared with Chelsea Handler and Leah Remini in a 5-episode online show called In the Motherhood.
4. The Author
Make no mistake about it, Jenny McCarthy is a very successful author. No, you won’t find her in the fiction aisles, but she is a non-fiction queen who has built quite the following. Some people with a claim to fame write a single autobiography in which a ghostwriter does most of the work. Jenny McCarthy is a true author, publishing books about herself, pregnancy and childbirth, autism, motherhood, religion and sex. Her books have done quite well, from the first book she ever published back in 1997 entitled Jen-X: Jenny McCarthy’s Open Book to her scandalous Love, Lust & Faking It: The Naked Truth About Sex, Lies and True Romance (2010). With numerous books tours under her belt and a continued career of success, expect more publications in the future from McCarthy with 9 already under her belt.
3. Family Ties
Jenny McCarthy’s sister, Joanne, played some pretty impressive basketball. Another one of her sisters, Amy, posed for Playboy and was Cybergirl of the Week for September 27, 2004 and captured Cyber Girl of the Month for January 2005. Jenny McCarthy’s cousin, Melissa, is currently a comedy giant on top of her game. Melissa also grew up in Illinois, a strong Catholic upbringing right beside her cousin, Jenny. Melissa’s first television appearance came courtesy of her cousin, Jenny, who had her appear on the show of the same name, Jenny. From there, Melissa has pretty much taken off, her comedic talent shining as she has become an incredible force in the industry. In 2014, Jenny married Donnie Wahlberg. She is now sister-in-law to Mark Wahlberg. The two families have merged and wouldn’t it be quite the gathering during holidays to have Jenny, Mark, Donnie and Melissa in one room! Good stuff.
Jenny McCarthy’s son, Evan, was diagnosed with Autism long ago. One of the hardest things has been for McCarthy to personally delve into the issue and figure out the best ways of parenting and finding as many healthy choices for him. McCarthy has been a huge celebrity advocate for Autism Awareness and has written books and done speaking engagements on the topic. She publicly spoke of an incident when her son was 12 and off at summer camp getting bullied and made fun of. When McCarthy was co-hosting The View, she spoke of another incident in which her son was being made fun of by kids around him. He smiled and laughed with them because he had no idea he was the butt of their joke. His inability to process that he was being made fun of due to the social issues surrounding Autism, made it another heartbreaking moment for a mother searching for help and safety for her son. McCarthy has served as spokeswoman for Talk About Curing Autism (TACA) and has been a spokeswoman for Generation Rescue. McCarthy has had strong opinions about vaccinations and its affect on children. The awareness garnered awards for McCarthy and sparked difficult conversations about vaccinations and children.
1. Radio Girl
These days, Jenny McCarthy owns a microphone, the host of her own radio shows on satellite radio giant, Sirus XM. She is the daytime host from 10am-12pm on weekdays on the Stars Channel. Her arrival on the show came about due to her many successful publications and her explosive personality. McCarthy is an empowered woman with many views on many topics that directly effect people, in particular, women, on a daily basis. The show is just another avenue for McCarthy to broaden her appeal and remain relevant. McCarthy has a long list of celebrity friends who have appeared on the show to talk about a wide variety of subjects. The show also allows her, and new husband, Donnie, to share much needed time together as he continues his career as an actor. The two appear to be grounded together and although there is no telling what McCarthy will do next, having a microphone in front of her will allow her to speak to her audience.