From the book LINKED, numbers of sexual partners is not a bell curve but a power law distribution. Swedish and American data.
Female strategy: to mate with one exceptional male and then trick one or more inferior but reliable males into helping with the resultant offspring. Ideal siring male is by definition not one of the assisters since exceptional males are, again, by definition, impregnating multiple females, since that is the definition of "successful".
This suggests a percolation phenomenon, that is, the pressure from females on males is to be "loyal" until a male "graduates" to the state of being "desirable by everyone" in which case total lack of loyalty is forgiven, even expected.
This can be seen to resemble nodes in a scale-free network. There may be nodes at all levels, for example the "Magic" Johnsons with 20,000 sexual encounters (which is apparently not unheard of) to others with only a few hundred or even much less. A male who is a Don Juan at a local level may be a minor node as we move toward the "Magic" Johnson level.
Nonetheless, at every level we expect the same sort of phase transition from schlub to suave, from boner to debonair. It's the female sexual strategy that seems to drive this phase transition morphology, if indeed it exist. I wonder if there's some preëxisting set of data or experiment that could be done to test this stuff.
I'm not sure if anything similar could be said about the male mating strategy. Women are trying to trick men as the primary focus of their strategy, but it seems men are also trying to trick women. But how, and is there a phase transition, power law, or scale-free network process going on?
Paternity is probabilistic, for one. However, it's a fact that women tend to for whatever reason have sex with their lovers during their most fertile times, so there may be a skewing from mere number of couplings.
Maybe there's a reproductive payoff, that is, go big or go home, or, unless one exceeds a certain threshold of lovers, being a Don Juan doesn't pay.
Memetics may have something to do with this, by the way. The thought I just had may have little influence on female sexual strategy, but in a memetic world it could have a drastic impact on the male strategy and on the position of the percolation point.
Biology, including tribe size, "culture", and available resources, govern the female choices that basically determine how easy or difficult it is to be a "dupe" or a Don Juan. For example, if the females demand lots of support from the males and do nothing but direct care of young children themselves, then all men will be schlubs and it will be very difficult to get many children, or indeed many copulations, as a Don Juan. By contrast, if females are very self-sufficient and get most or all of their livings independently, in theory all females will try to copulate with the most desirable males whom they will only expect to be around for impregnation purposes and make do with inferior males the rest of the time. In the latter case, a schlub male would sire offspring only by dint of persistence and effectively by dumb luck.
This may return us to the idea that whatever drives the expression of female reproductive strategy, sometimes described as the "choosy girl" versus "easy girl", or perhaps more cynically, whether females try to trick males more openly or more sneakily, is the thing that governs this phase change phenomenon.