Darva Conger Lets It All Hang Out

But After Playboy, What’s Next for Game Show Bride?

By Buck Wolf

June 30, 2000 --  Now that we can see all of Darva Conger, haven’t we seen more than enough?

Not if she has her way.

The Wolf Files followed the bride of Fox TV’s Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire Wednesday to Playboy’s New York office, where she ballyhooed her 10-page pictorial in the August edition, showing the world what her game-show groom, Rick Rockwell, missed on their wedding night.

For months she had been blasting “you people” in the media, who harassed her family, picked through her trash and caused her to lose two nursing jobs. Now she is embracing celebrity, looking at a book deal, and even contemplating a TV job.

Forced to Be a Celebrity?

With throngs of media circling at Playboy’s penthouse, Conger, 34, got serious when one reporter jokingly asked about her joining up with Regis Philbin after his daytime broadcast partner, Kathie Lee Gifford, departs.

“I don’t think anyone could replace Kathie Lee,” Conger said. “I’d like to think I could do a good job as Regis’ co-host. I think he and I would get along rather well.”

TV, once the enemy and source of her notoriety, is now a friend. And she wouldn’t mind a full-time job.

This, of course, is the same woman who, only days after her Feb. 15 televised marriage to Rockwell, was sobbing to the press, “I want to get my life back.”

But Conger now says she has little choice but to be a celebrity. “I lost my old job and then another because the press kept hounding my employers,” she says.

Playboy was simply her best alternative, as she explains it. “What was I supposed to do, wait for the bank to foreclose on my home?”

Conger reportedly is earning well into the six digits for her Playboy gig. She says other men’s magazines and adult Web sites were offering her more. But she had more than money to consider. “My family and I felt comfortable with Playboy,” she says. “I’m proud of how everything came out.”