With the laddie craze having cooled, Maxim has deemphasized the bawdy humor and spreads of sexy women that fueled its meteoric rise starting in the late 1990s. The evolution continues under Jim Kaminsky, brought in as editorial director after the magazine's sale to Alpha Media Group last summer. Kaminsky sought to declutter the magazine's look, cultivate service and humor, and fancy up its fashion pages, with a new how-to section.
The new look graces the December issue, whose cover features a La Perla-clad Sarah Michelle Gellar. "The 25- to 26-year-old is a whole lot smarter than he was 10 years ago. The magazine has to be a little more sophisticated than it was when I was here," said Kaminsky, who was executive editor of Maxim during its glory years of 1999 to 2002.