Comedian and late-night talk show host Chelsea Handler is in the December issue of Playboy, and Jay Leno wanted the world to see. Leno got an advanced copy of the cover, with Handler in a bikini, and made a giant print of it to surprise his guest. (Watch Leno and Handler spar over the photo) Why did Playboy pick Handler—and why did she say yes?

Maybe Playboy is on a comedian kick: First Marge Simpson, now Chelsea Handler? ask the editors of The Vancouver Sun. “Hugh Hefner and his Playboy magazine empire seem to be taking to comedians of late.” Hefner’s also trying to “increase interest for Playboy’s aging readers,” though, so featuring the 34-year-old Handler in a bikini makes sense. Besides, she “ranked #91 on the 2009 Maxim Hot 100.”
“Comedian Chelsea Handler gets naked for Playboy”

Her father encouraged it?:
“Chelsea Handler’s dad must be so proud,” says Natalie Finn in E! Online. OK, we think she was joking when she said her dad is going to love her Playboy spread “because he thinks I’m very sexual.” But we’re not so sure about her training program for the revealing photo shoot: She told “a slightly worked-up Jay” that she’d quit drinking for “like a day and a half” to get in shape.
“Chelsea Handler: Playboy’s Biggest Issue Ever?”

’Tis the season: Hey, “she’s better looking than she is funny,” says The Hollywood Gossip. So even though some of her jokes pushed the bounds of good taste, people will be more interested in the visual of her “standing in some faux snow, clad in a white bikini.” Needless to say, “the holiday-themed issue should make for quite a nice stocking stuffer.”
“Chelsea Handler Playboy Photos: Coming Soon!”