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Encyclopedia > Mad Magazine
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Harvey Kurtzman's cover for the first issue of the comic book Mad
Harvey Kurtzman's cover for the first issue of the comic book Mad

Mad is an American humor magazine founded by publisher William Gaines and editor Harvey Kurtzman in 1952. Offering satires on all aspects of American pop culture, the monthly publication deflates stuffed shirts and pokes fun at common foibles. It is the last surviving title from the notorious and critically acclaimed EC Comics line. Publisher Gaines had suffered greatly from censorship, which had literally driven his prior line of EC horror comics from the stands. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (694x999, 277 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (694x999, 277 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Jump to: navigation, search Humour (Commonwealth English) or humor (American English) is the ability or quality of people, objects or situations to evoke feelings of amusement in other people. ... A collection of magazines A magazine is a periodical publication containing a variety of articles. ... William Maxwell Gaines (March 1, 1922–June 3, 1992), or Bill Gaines as he was called, was the founder of MAD Magazine but he was also noted for his efforts to create comic books of sufficient artistic quality and interest to appeal to adults. ... Harvey Kurtzman (October 3, 1924 - February 21, 1993), U.S. cartoonist and magazine editor. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1952 was a leap year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... Jump to: navigation, search Satire is a literary technique of writing or art which exposes the follies of its subject (for example, individuals, organizations, or states) to ridicule, often as an intended means of provoking or preventing change. ... Popular culture, or pop culture, is the vernacular (peoples) culture that prevails in a modern society. ... Entertaining Comics was headed by William Gaines but is better known by its publishing name of EC Comics. ... Jump to: navigation, search Censorship is the control of speech and other forms of human expression, often in the context of government control. ... Entertaining Comics was headed by William Gaines but is better known by its publishing name of EC Comics. ...

Contents


History

With the first issue (October-November, 1952), Mad was a comic book, and its subtitle, "Tales Calculated To Drive You" above the title Mad, referenced radio's Suspense which each week used the opening, "Tales well calculated to keep you in... Suspense!" Written almost entirely by Harvey Kurtzman, the first issue displayed the cartoon talents of Kurtzman, Wally Wood, Will Elder, Jack Davis and John Severin. Wood, Elder, and Davis were the main three illustrators throughout the run of the comic book, along with a handful of other contributions by artists Basil Wolverton, Bernard Krigstein and Russ Heath. Severin, a mainstay of Kurtzman's EC war comics, was phased out of Mad, while Kurtzman himself only sporadically included his own cartooning. However, he was known as an exceedingly "hands-on" editor and a visual master, and thus many Mad articles were illustrated in accordance with Kurtzman's layouts. A comic book is a magazine or book containing the art form of comics. ... Wallace Wally Wood (June 17, 1927–November 2, 1981), was an imaginative American writer-illustrator who freelanced to a wide variety of markets but is best known for his work in EC Comics and Mad. ... William Elder (born 1921) is a comic book artist. ... Jack Davis (born December 2, 1924) is an American cartoonist and illustrator. ... John Severin is an American comic book artist most noted for working on the EC Comics line of comic books -- primarily on Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, the companys war comics. ... The cover of Powerhouse Pepper #3 (July 1948), by Basil Wolverton. ... Bernard Krigstein, or B. Krigstein, (1919–1990) was an American artist and illustrator best known for his groundbreaking work in comic books. ...


The first two issues spoofed only comic book genres of romance, horror, sports and science fiction without specific references. However, with the third issue, Kurtzman began to create specific parodies. These parodies soon spanned well-known radio programs ("Dragged Net!"), newspaper comic strips ("Little Orphan Melvin!"), comic books ("Superduperman!"), movies ("Ping Pong!") and television ("Howdy Dooit!").

With issue 24 June 1956, Mad switched to a magazine format. The "extremely important message" was "Please buy this magazine!"
With issue 24 June 1956, Mad switched to a magazine format. The "extremely important message" was "Please buy this magazine!"

In 1955, with issue 24, the comic book was converted into a magazine. The popular myth is that this was done to escape the strictures of the Comics Code Authority, which was imposed in 1955 following Senate hearings on juvenile delinquency. Actually, Kurtzman received a lucrative offer from another publisher, only staying when Gaines agreed to convert "Mad" to a slick magazine. The immediate practical result was that Mad acquired a broader range in both subject matter and presentation. Magazines had wider distribution than comic books and a more adult readership. Though there are antecedents to Mad's style of humor in print, radio and film, the overall package was a unique one that stood out in a staid era. Throughout the 1950s Mad featured groundbreaking parodies combining a sentimental fondness for the familiar staples of American culture—such as Archie and Superman—with a keen joy in exposing the fakery behind the image. Mad 24 This image is a book cover. ... Mad 24 This image is a book cover. ... Jump to: navigation, search June is the sixth month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with a length of 30 days The month is named after the Roman goddess Juno (mythology), wife of Jupiter and equivalent to the Greek goddess Hera. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1956 was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... A collection of magazines A magazine is a periodical publication containing a variety of articles. ... The seal of the Comics Code Authority, which appears on the covers of approved comic books. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1955 is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jump to: navigation, search Seal of the Senate The United States Senate is one of the two chambers of the Congress of the United States, the other being the House of Representatives. ... Juvenile delinquency refers to antisocial or criminal acts performed by juveniles. ... Jump to: navigation, search // Events and trends The 1950s in Western society was marked with a sharp rise in the economy for the first time in almost 30 years and return to the 1920s-type consumer society built on credit and boom-times, as well as the height of the... Jump to: navigation, search Archie Comics is an American comic book publisher known for its many series featuring the fictional teenagers Archie Andrews, Betty Cooper, Veronica Lodge, Reggie Mantle and Forsythe Jughead Jones. ... Jump to: navigation, search Superman, nicknamed The Man of Steel, is a fictional character and superhero who first appeared in Action Comics #1 in June of 1938 and eventually became the most popular and well-known comic book icon of all time. ...


After original editor Kurtzman left in 1956 following a business dispute with Gaines, he was replaced by Al Feldstein, who oversaw the magazine during its greatest heights of circulation. When Feldstein retired in 1984, he was replaced by the team of Nick Meglin and John Ficarra, who co-edited "Mad" for the next two decades. Meglin retired in 2004. Ficarra continues to edit the magazine today. Jump to: navigation, search 1956 was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Al Feldstein (born October 24, 1925) is an American painter of Western wildlife and an influential author-editor who wrote, drew and edited for EC Comics and MAD Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search This page is about the year 1984. ... Nick Meglin was on the editorial staff of MAD Magazine for almost half a century. ... John Ficarra has been on the editorial staff of MAD Magazine for almost 25 years. ...


Mad is often credited by social theorists with filling a vital gap in political satire in the 1950s to 1970s, when Cold War paranoia and a general culture of censorship prevailed in the United States, especially in literature for teens. The rise of such factors as cable television and the Internet have diminished the influence and impact of Mad, although it remains a widely distributed magazine. In a way, Mad's power has been undone by its own success; what was subversive in the 1950s and 1960s is now commonplace. However, its impact on three generations of humorists is incalculable, as can be seen in the frequent references to Mad on the animated series The Simpsons. Jump to: navigation, search The 1970s in its most obvious sense refers to the decade between 1970 and 1979. ... Jump to: navigation, search This article contains information that has not been verified. ... Jump to: navigation, search Censorship is the control of speech and other forms of human expression, often in the context of government control. ... A collection of magazines A magazine is a periodical publication containing a variety of articles. ... Jump to: navigation, search // Events and trends The 1950s in Western society was marked with a sharp rise in the economy for the first time in almost 30 years and return to the 1920s-type consumer society built on credit and boom-times, as well as the height of the... Jump to: navigation, search The 1960s in its most obvious sense refers to the decade between 1960 and 1969, but the expression has taken on a wider meaning over the past twenty years. ... Homer, a safety inspector at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, is a generally well-meaning buffoon whose short attention span often draws him into outrageous schemes and adventures. ...

MAD 30 (December 1956), the first issue to prominently feature Alfred E. Neuman. Art by Norman Mingo.
MAD 30 (December 1956), the first issue to prominently feature Alfred E. Neuman. Art by Norman Mingo.

Mad was long noted for its absence of advertising, enabling it to skewer the excesses of a materialist culture without fear of advertiser reprisal. For decades, it was by far the most successful American magazine to publish ad-free. (In its earliest days, the comic book had run some advertisements like the rest of EC's line, and the magazine later made a deal with Moxie soda that involved inserting the Moxie logo into various articles. Other than that, the only promotions were house ads for Mad's own books and specials, subscriptions, and so on.) Mad 30 This is a magazine cover. ... Mad 30 This is a magazine cover. ... Jump to: navigation, search December is the twelfth and last month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar and one of seven Gregorian months with the length of 31 days. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1956 was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Alfred E. Neuman is the fictional mascot of EC Publications Mad magazine. ... Norman Mingo (1896-1980) was a commercial artist and illustrator. ... Jump to: navigation, search Generally speaking, advertising is the promotion of goods, services, companies and ideas, usually by an identified sponsor. ... Picture of a modern Moxie can. ...


The magazine often featured numerous parodies of ongoing American advertising campaigns. During the 1960s, it satirized such burgeoning topics as hippies, the Vietnam War, and drug abuse. The magazine gave equal time, generally negative, to counterculture drugs such as cannabis as well as to mainstream drugs such as tobacco and alcohol. Although one can detect a generally liberal tone, the magazine always slammed Democrats as mercilessly as Republicans. Jump to: navigation, search The 1960s in its most obvious sense refers to the decade between 1960 and 1969, but the expression has taken on a wider meaning over the past twenty years. ... Hippies (singular hippie or sometimes hippy) were members of the 1960s counterculture movement who adopted a communal or nomadic lifestyle, renounced corporate nationalism and the Vietnam War, embraced aspects of Buddhism, Hinduism, and/or Native American religious culture, and were otherwise at odds with traditional middle class Western values. ... Jump to: navigation, search The Vietnam War or Second Indochina War was a conflict between the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRVN, or North Vietnam), allied with the National Liberation Front (NLF, or Viet Cong) against the Republic of Vietnam (RVN, or South Vietnam), and its allies—notably the United States... Jump to: navigation, search This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Jump to: navigation, search The Cannabis plant can be dried or otherwise processed to yield products containing large concentrations of compounds that have medicinal and psychoactive effects when ingested, usually by smoking or eating. ... Jump to: navigation, search Species N. glauca N. longiflora N. rustica N. sylvestris N. tabacum Ref: ITIS 30562 as of August 26, 2005 Tobacco (, L.) refers to a genus of broad-leafed plants of the nightshade family indigenous to North and South America or to the dried and cured leaves. ... Jump to: navigation, search In general usage, alcohol (from Arabic al-ghawl الغول) refers almost always to ethanol, also known as grain alcohol, and often to any beverage that contains ethanol (see alcoholic beverage). ... Liberalism is a political current embracing several historical and present-day ideologies that claim defense of individual liberty as the purpose of government. ... The Democratic Party is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ... The Republican Party, often called the GOP (for Grand Old Party, although one early citation described it as the Gallant Old Party) [1], is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ...


For tax reasons, Gaines sold his company in the early 1960s to the Kinney National Company, which also acquired Warner Bros by the end of that decade. Though technically an employee for 30 years, the fiercely independent Gaines was largely permitted to run Mad without corporate interference. Following Gaines' death in 1992, though, Mad became more ingrained within the Time Warner conglomerate. Kinney National Company was formed in 1966 when the Kinney Parking Company and the National Cleaning Company merged. ... Jump to: navigation, search The WB Shield used from 1998 to present day Warner Bros. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday. ... Time Warner Inc. ...


In 2001, the magazine broke its long-standing taboo and began running advertising. Today, the magazine is published by a branch of DC Comics and in recent years has used its advertising revenue to increase the use of color. The Mad logo has remained virtually unchanged since 1955, save for the decision to italicize the lettering beginning in 1997. The title is sometimes seen in all uppercase letters, but the magazine's official historian, Maria Reidelbach, in her comprehensive, authorized study, Completely Mad: A History of the Comic Book and Magazine (Little, Brown, 1991), makes it clear that the title is correct in upper and lowercase. Jump to: navigation, search 2001: A Space Odyssey. ... Jump to: navigation, search The current DC Comics logo, adopted in May 2005. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1955 is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Italic can refer to: Italic languages Italic scripts Italic means Of or from Italy; the usage is most commonly restricted to talking about the people and languages of what is now Italy from the historic period before the Roman Empire. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1997 (MCMXCVII) is a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jump to: navigation, search Maria Reidelbach is a Manhattan-based installation artist and an authority on various aspects of popular culture and fine arts, evident in her art projects, books and exhibitions. ...


Recurring Features

In a parody of Playboy's "foldout" cheesecake pictures, each issue of Mad from 1964 on featured a "fold-in" on its inside back cover, designed by artist Al Jaffee. A question would be asked, which apparently was illustrated by a picture taking up the bulk of the page. When the page was folded inwards, the inner and outer fourths of the picture combined to give a surprising answer in both picture and words. With over 350 Fold-Ins to date, Jaffee has appeared in more issues of Mad than any other artist. Jump to: navigation, search In contemporary usage, parody is a form of satire that imitates another work of art in order to ridicule it. ... Classic Playboy logo. ... A pin-up girl is a woman whose physical attractiveness would entice one to place a picture of her on a wall. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1964 was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ... Al Jaffee (born March 13, 1921) is a cartoonist, best known for his work in MAD Magazine. ...


Dave Berg produced "The Lighter Side of..." which often satirized the suburban lifestyle, capitalism and the generation gap. Although this feature eventually became notorious for its corny gags and garishly outdated fashion choices, the Mad editors, over decades, claimed it was the magazine's most popular feature. It was quite sharp in its early years, providing the sort of Americana-based humor that standups like Shelley Berman and Alan King performed successfully onstage. "The Lighter Side" feature was retired with Berg's death. Dave Berg (Brooklyn, June 12, 1920 – May 17, 2002) was a cartoonist, most noted for his work in MAD Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search In common usage capitalism refers to an economic system in which all or most of the means of production are privately owned and operated and where the investment of capital, and the production, distribution and prices of commodities (goods and services) are determined mainly in a... Jump to: navigation, search A generation gap describes a vast difference in cultural norms between a younger generation and their elders. ... Shelley Berman was born in Chicago, Illinois on February 3, 1926. ... Alan King Alan King (December 26, 1927 – May 9, 2004), born Irwin Alan Kniberg, was an American comedian known for his biting wit and often angry humorous rants. ...


Antonio Prohias' wordless "Spy vs. Spy," the never-ending battle between the iconic Black Spy and White Spy, has lasted longer than the Cold War which inspired it. The strip was a silent parable about the futility of mutually-assured destruction, with various elaborate deathtraps designed in Prohias' thick line. Almost always, these traps would boomerang back on whichever Spy had originally concocted it; there was no pattern or order to which Spy would be killed in which episode. A female "Gray Spy" occasionally appeared, the difference being that she never lost. Although Prohias eventually retired from doing the strip, "Spy vs. Spy" continues in newer hands. Antonio Prohias (January 17, 1921 - February 24, 1998) was a cartoonist most famous for creating the Spy vs. ... Spy vs. ... Jump to: navigation, search For the generic term for a high-tension struggle between countries, see cold war (war). ...


Don Martin, billed as "Mad's Maddest Artist," drew regular gag cartoons, generally one page but sometimes longer, featuring lumpen characters with apparently hinged feet. The grotesque sight gags were frequently punctuated by an array of bizarre sound effects such as GLORK, PATWANG-FWEEE, or GAZOWNT-GAZIKKA, coined by Martin himself (or ghost writer Don Edwing). When Martin first joined Mad, he employed a nervous, scratchy art style, but this developed into a rounder, more cartoony look. Martin's wild physical comedy would eventually make him the signature artist of the magazine. Many of his cartoons used similar titles (i.e. "One Exceedingly Fine Day at the Beach"), and as this became a trademark, the titles sometimes became increasingly elaborate. Mad has occasionally used the conceit for other cartoonists' one-page gags. However, Martin's long 31-year association with Mad ended in some rancor over the ownership of his work. Not long after leaving Mad, Martin ended up working at Mad's competitor Cracked, who, unlike Mad, allowed creators to keep the copyright on their work. After a few years, Martin also left Cracked, and published a handful of issues of his own humorous magazine. Don Martin (May 18, 1931–January 6, 2000) was a popular American satirical comic artist and cartoon artist who contributed to MAD magazine from 1955 to 1987. ... Don Edwing is a gag cartoonist whose work has appeared for years in MAD Magazine. ... Cracked Magazine issue 31 - September 1963 CRACKED Magazine is one of Americas oldest national humor magazines, and the most successful imitator of the popular MAD Magazine. ... Cracked Magazine issue 31 - September 1963 CRACKED Magazine is one of Americas oldest national humor magazines, and the most successful imitator of the popular MAD Magazine. ...


Sergio Aragones, has written and drawn his "A MAD Look At..." feature for over 40 years. He is known for his remarkable speed and cartooning facility. In addition to his regular slot, Aragones also provides the "Mad Marginals": tiny gag images that appear throughout the magazine in the corners, margins or spaces between panels. Aragones debuted in Mad #76 (January 1963), and has appeared in every issue of the magazine but one since. Aragones' Mad cartooning is notable for its silence. He uses virtually no words; speech balloons, when they occur at all, will merely feature a drawing of whatever is being discussed. Aragones will occasionally bend this rule for a store window sign, or a stray "Gesundheit," or some other item necessary to the punchline. Sergio Aragonés (born 1937) is a cartoonist and writer. ...


"Monroe" is an ongoing storyline about a prototypical, angst-filled, teenaged loser. It depicts his travails in school, his dysfunctional home and his unending troubles elsewhere. It is written by Anthony Barbieri and illustrated by Bill Wray, and passed its 100th episode in 2005. Anthony Barbieri is a comedy writer whose work has appeared on such television programs as Crank Yankers and The Jimmy Kimmel Show. ... Bill Wray is a cartoonist who has worked on animated TV series. ... Jump to: navigation, search 2005 (MMV) is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


A typical issue will include at least one full parody of a popular movie or television show. The titles are changed to create a play on words; for instance, "The Addams Family" became "The Adnauseum Family." The character names are generally switched in the same fashion. These articles typically run 5 pages or more, and are presented as a sequential storyline with caricatures and word balloons. The opening page or two-page splash usually consists of the cast of the show introducing themselves directly to the reader; in some parodies, the writers sometimes attempt to circumvent this convention by presenting the characters without such direct exposition. Many parodies end with the abrupt deus ex machina appearance of outside characters or pop culture figures who are similar in nature to the movie or TV series being parodied, or who comment satirically on the theme. For example, Dr. Phil arrives to counsel the "Desperate Housewives," or the cast of "Sex and the City" show up as the new hookers on "Deadwood." Several show business stars have been quoted to the effect that the moment when they knew they'd finally "made it" was when they saw themselves thus depicted in the pages of Mad. Jump to: navigation, search The Addams Family, as illustratred by Charles Addams in the New Yorker magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Dr. Phil can refer to the person as well as the titular self-help television show. ... Jump to: navigation, search Desperate Housewives is an American television series, created by Marc Cherry, that began airing on ABC in 2004, in HDTV. Set on Wisteria Lane in the fictional town of Fairview, the series tracks the lives of six housewives, following their domestic struggles while several mysteries unfold... Jump to: navigation, search Sex and the City is an American cable television program based on the book of the same name. ... Deadwood is a weekly HBO television drama that premiered in March 2004. ...


Several Mad premises have been successful enough to warrant additional installments, though not with the regularity of the above. Other recurring features which have appeared in Mad include:

  • Advertising parodies-- too numerous to catalog, though many have been written by Dick DeBartolo; these have ranged from TV ad spoofs to national print campaigns to home marketing, and have long provided one of the most durable sources of Mad's humor. A separate paperback of original material titled Madvertising was published;
  • Alfred's Poor Almanac-- this text-heavy page featured quick one-liners, faux anniversaries, and other arcana, supposedly matched to each day of that month;
  • Badly-Needed Warning Labels for Rock Albums-- written by Desmond Devlin, this series of articles mocks both the ongoing Parental Advisory labelling controversy, as well as the musicians of the day, with specifically-written warning labels for particular recordings;
  • Behind the Scenes at ____ -- written and illustrated by various, these frequently take an "eye in the sky" approach as various vignettes and conversations are played out simultaneously, showing the reader how the participants "really" think and behave;
  • Believe It Or Nuts!-- written and illustrated by various (though most often drawn by Wally Wood or Bob Clarke), this parody of the print version of Ripley's Believe It Or Not would depict alleged marvels and mundanities of the world;
  • Celebrity Cause-of-Death Betting Odds-- written by Mike Snider, this long-running feature lists and "ranks" possible methods of future death for one well-known person at a time;
  • Celebrity Wallets-- written by Arnie Kogen, this was a series of peeks at the notes, photographs and other memorabilia being carried around in the pockets of the famous;
  • Cents-less Coupons-- written by Scott Maiko, these imitate the giveaway coupon packets found in Sunday newspapers but promote ludicrous products such as "Inbred Valley Imitation Squirrel Meat";
  • Chilling Thoughts-- written by Desmond Devlin and illustrated by Rick Tulka, these featured observations or predictions about both the culture and everyday life that had supposedly dire implications;
  • Mad Deconstructs Talk Shows-- written by Desmond Devlin, these take on one show at a time and purport to reveal the minute-by-minute format breakdown of America's not too spontaneous chat programs;
  • Disposable Camera Photos That Didn't Make the Album-- written by Butch D'Ambrosio and illustrated by Drew Friedman, these show "candid" photographs from events like proms, bar mitzvahs or weddings, with descriptive commentary;
  • Do-It-Yourself Newspaper Story-- written by Frank Jacobs, these are short text news items containing a number of blank spaces. Each space has a corresponding list of numbered fill-in-the-blank options, which grow increasingly absurd. The premise is that with appropriate mixing and matching, the article can be read in a gigantic number of permutations;
  • Duke Bissell's Tales of Undisputed Interest-- written and illustrated by P.C. Vey, these absurdist one-pagers present a series of non sequiturs and bizarre references in the guise of a linear storyline;
  • Ecchbay Item of the Month-- laid out to mimic a computer screen linked to eBay, these purport to sell weird and often topical collectables;
  • 15 Minutes of Fame-- written by Frank Jacobs, it consists of short poems about lesser celebrities and news figures;
  • The 50 Worst Things About ____-- written and illustrated by various, this is an annual article format which has thus far dealt with large catch-all topics such as "TV," "comedy," or "sports";
  • The Mad Hate File-- written and illustrated by Al Jaffee, these contained a series of observational one-liners about common irritations;
  • Hawks & Doves-- written and illustrated by Al Jaffee, this was a shortlived series of cartoons in which a major is exasperated by a rebellious private who keeps finding ways to create the peace symbol on his military base;
  • Horrifying Cliches-- illustrated by Paul Coker Jr. and often written by Phil Hahn, these articles visually depict florid turns of phraseology such as "tripping the light fantastic" or "racking one's thoughts"; the verbs are taken literally, and all the nouns are characterized as bizarre horned, scaled or otherwise unusual creatures; Mad also published a separate paperback of these;
  • How Many Mistakes Can You Find In This Picture?-- these articles would show a widespread area such as a rock concert or a fast food outlet, and then reveal 20 visual "mistakes," which would typically be people behaving in moral or competent ways;
  • Mad's ____ of the Year-- written and illustrated by various, these 4-to-6-page articles would enact an interview with a fictional representative of a particular practice or element of society (i.e. "MAD's Summer Camp Owner of the Year"; "MAD's Movie Producer of the Year");
  • The Mad Nasty File-- typically written by Tom Koch and illustrated by Harry North or Gerry Gersten, this series of insult articles would caricature a variety of public figures and proceed to abuse them verbally;
  • Melvin and Jenkins' Guide to _____-- written by Desmond Devlin and illustrated by Kevin Pope, these "guides" present the behavioral or attitudinal "do's and don'ts" on a variety of topics, as demonstrated by the titular pair. This is meant to be a parody of Goofus & Gallant.
  • Movie Outtakes-- these are screen captures of upcoming films (generally taken from the movie trailer, given new word balloons; MAD typically times these pieces to coincide with the movie's general release, either in advance of the full parody or in lieu of it;
  • Obituaries for ____ Characters-- generally written by Frank Jacobs, these alleged newspaper clippings detail the appropriate demises for fictional characters from a genre such as comic strips, advertising, or television;
  • People Watcher's Guide to ____-- often written by Mike Snider and illustrated by Tom Bunk, these articles use a scenario such as "the mall" or "a cemetery" to mock specific observed behaviors;
  • Planet Tad!!!!!-- written by Tim Carvell, this purports to be the webpage of a teenaged loser's blog, which inadvertantly reveals his various personal traumas;
  • Pop-Off Videos-- written by Desmond Devlin and illustrated with actual music video screen captures, these one-page articles mimicked the VH1 series "Pop-Up Video," which enhanced music videos with small bits of information; MAD also published a separate standalone special issue of these;
  • The Mad _____ Primer-- written and illustrated by various, Mad Primers aped the singsong writing style of Dick and Jane and dealt with a wide variety of subjects from bigotry to hockey to religion; Mad also published a "Cradle to Grave Primer" as a separate paperback, showing the complete misery-filled life of one man;
  • Scenes We'd Like to See-- written and illustrated by various, these were generally one page vignettes which inverted the common conventions of moviemaking, advertising, or the culture at large, ending with a cliched character in a cliched setting, acting cowardly or saying something atypically honest;
  • Six Degrees of Separation Between Anyone and Anything-- written by Mike Snider and illustrated by Rick Tulka, this feature exploits the Kevin Bacon-based game of links to humorously connect various items or people in thematic or painstakingly phrased ways rather than proximity;
  • Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions-- written and illustrated by Al Jaffee, this long-running series reproduces the inane, unnecessary questions we hear every day (i.e. "Hot enough for you?" "Did that hurt?") and supplies three obnoxious responses for each; Mad has also published several separate, standalone paperbacks of these;
  • When ____ Go Bad-- written and illustrated by John Caldwell, each article depicts the outrageous behavior allegedly found within the worst element of a certain culture or profession (i.e. "When Nuns Go Bad"; "When Clowns Go Bad"; "When Veterinarians Go Bad");
  • William Shakespeare, Commentator-- written by Frank Jacobs, these articles take Shakespeare quotations out of context and apply them to such areas as movies or sports;
  • The Year in Film-- written by Desmond Devlin, these ironically juxtapose movie titles of the past calendar year with news or celebrity photographs;
  • You Know You're Really ___ When...-- written and illustrated by various, these would take a common condition ("You're Really Overweight When..." "You're Really a Parent When...") and present several one-liners on the theme;

Besides the above, Mad has returned to certain themes and areas again and again, such as fullblown imaginary magazines, greeting cards, nursery rhymes, Christmas carols, song parodies and other poetry (updating "Casey at the Bat" being a perennial favorite), comic strip takeoffs, and others. Dick DeBartolo is one of MAD Magazines most prolific writers. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search The Parental Advisory sticker is found on many records. ... Wallace Wally Wood (June 17, 1927–November 2, 1981), was an imaginative American writer-illustrator who freelanced to a wide variety of markets but is best known for his work in EC Comics and Mad. ... Bob Clarke was an illustrator whose elegant line appeared in innumerable advertisements as well as MAD Magazine. ... Ripleys Believe It or Not! deals in the bizarre—events and items so strange and unusual that it is often hard to believe that they actually exist--but they do: believe it. ... Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Arnie Kogen is a longtime writer for MAD Magazine and has also done extensive work for television series such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Newhart, and Empty Nest. ... A comedy writer, contributer to MAD MAGAZINE. Did a brilliant parody of THE ONION called THE BUNION. Has also contributed to ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Rick Tulka is an illustrator and caricaturist who has appeared in MAD Magazine since the mid-1980s. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Butch DArtagnan Mbrosio is a writer whose work has appeared in such venues as MAD Magazine and Nonsense Humor Magazine out of Hofstra University. ... Drew Friedman is a cartoonist known for his stippling-like style of caricature. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Pine Cone Vey is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in such venues as The New Yorker, National Lampoon, and MAD Magazine. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Al Jaffee (born March 13, 1921) is a cartoonist, best known for his work in MAD Magazine. ... Al Jaffee (born March 13, 1921) is a cartoonist, best known for his work in MAD Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search A peace symbol is a representation or object that has come to symbolize peace. ... Paul Coker Jr. ... Phil Hahn is a writer whose work has appeared in various venues, including MAD Magazine. ... Tom Koch was one of MAD Magazines mainstay writers from the 1950s through the 1980s. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Kevin Pope is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in MAD Magazine. ... Goofus & Gallant is a cartoon in the childrens magazine Highlights for Kids depicting good and bad behavior. ... Theatrical trailers are 2-3 minute advertisements for movies that play in cinemas before another movie. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Tom Bunk is a cartoonist known for adding multiple extraneous details in his art. ... Tim Carvell is a writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, where he won an Emmy in 2004 and again in 2005. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search VH1 (which originally stood for Video Hits 1) is an American cable television channel that was created in 1985 by Warner-Amex Satellite Entertainment (then a division of Warner Communications). ... A Pop-Up Video bubble pops during Lisa Loebs Stay (I Missed You) video Pop-Up Video was a VH1 show that popped up bubbles (officially called info nuggets) containing trivia and spry witticisms throughout music videos. ... Dick and Jane were the main characters in popular basal readers written by Zerna Sharp that were used to teach children to read during the 1930s through the 1960s. ... Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Rick Tulka is an illustrator and caricaturist who has appeared in MAD Magazine since the mid-1980s. ... Jump to: navigation, search Kevin Bacon (born July 8, 1958 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American film actor who has starred in Stir of Echoes, Wild Things, JFK, and Apollo 13, among others. ... Al Jaffee (born March 13, 1921) is a cartoonist, best known for his work in MAD Magazine. ... John Caldwell is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in many places including the National Lampoon and MAD Magazine. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ...


Alfred E. Neuman

Decades before Mad gave him a name, many different images of the "Me Worry?" kid circulated.
Decades before Mad gave him a name, many different images of the "Me Worry?" kid circulated.

The image most closely associated with the magazine is that of Alfred E. Neuman, the curly-haired boy with misaligned eyes, a gap-toothed smile and the question "What? Me worry?" Alfred's image first appeared on the cover of the magazine within the first few years of its existence. Before that he had appeared inside a small portion of an issue. The original image of an unnamed boy with a goofy gap-toothed grin was a popular humorous graphic many years before Mad adopted it. It had been used for all manner of purposes, from U.S. political campaigns to Nazi racial propaganda to advertisements for painless dentistry. Decades ago, the magazine was sued over the copyright to the image, but prevailed by producing similar ones predating the claimant, back to the late 19th Century. The face is now permanently associated with Mad, and with the "What? Me worry?" motto, often appears in political cartoons as a shorthand for unquestioning stupidity. For many years, Mad sold prints of the "official portrait" of Alfred E. Neuman in a small ad at the front of the magazine. A female version of Alfred appeared for a very brief time in the late 1950s. The name "Alfred E. Neuman" derived from the 1940s radio show of comedian Henry Morgan which sometimes featured a running gag about Hollywood composer Alfred Newman. Later, Morgan was a contributor to Mad. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (920x1200, 215 KB)Alfred E. Neumann, Mad Magazine Icon Rare uncopyrighted image on a postcard from the late 50s to around 1960. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (920x1200, 215 KB)Alfred E. Neumann, Mad Magazine Icon Rare uncopyrighted image on a postcard from the late 50s to around 1960. ... Alfred E. Neuman is the fictional mascot of EC Publications Mad magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Nazism. ... Henry Morgan (March 31, 1915 - May 19, 1994), born in New York City, was a comedian best remembered for having been a regular panelist on the game show Ive Got a Secret. ... Jump to: navigation, search A composer is a person who writes music. ... Alfred Newman (March 17, 1900 – February 17, 1970) was a major American composer of music for films. ...


Recurring Images and References

Regular Mad readers have been treated to a large number of recurring in-jokes, including Neuman's catch phrase "What? Me worry?", as well as such words as potrzebie, axolotl and Cowznofski. In the 1950s, the magazine received a fee to promote the soft drink Moxie, and that product's logo would occasionally appear in illustrations. This experiment was an attempt by Feldstein to convince Gaines that the magazine could profit by carrying legitimate advertising. An in joke is a joke whose humour is clear only to those people who are in a group that has some prior knowledge (not known by the whole population) that makes the joke humorous. ... A catch phrase is a phrase or expression that is popularized, usually through repeated use, by a real person or fictional character. ... What? Me worry? is the catch phrase of Alfred E. Newman, the mascot of MAD magazine, and has become an in-joke among those familiar with the magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search An inherently funny word is a word which native speakers often find to be funny, for reasons ranging from onomatopoeia to sexual innuendo. ... Potrzebie is a seemingly nonsensical word (actually Polish), popularized by its use as a running gag in the early issues of Mad not long after the comic book began in 1952. ... Jump to: navigation, search Binomial name Ambystoma mexicanum (Shaw, 1789) The Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) is an aquatic salamander native to Mexico. ... Cowznofski is a running gag in-joke heavily used in the early years of MAD Magazine, usually as a characters last name, often with the first name Melvin. Its Eastern European feel was a perfect fit for the New York Jewish style of the magazine. ... Picture of a modern Moxie can. ...

Pages from the Mad Style Guide (1994) show George Woodbridge's definitive drawings of the Mad Zeppelin.
Pages from the Mad Style Guide (1994) show George Woodbridge's definitive drawings of the Mad Zeppelin.
The Mad Poiuyt, Harvey Kurtzman's hand with six fingers and additional angles on the Zeppelin
The Mad Poiuyt, Harvey Kurtzman's hand with six fingers and additional angles on the Zeppelin

Other visual elements are sheer whimsy and frequently appear in the artwork without context or explanation. Among these are a potted plant labelled Arthur (rumored to be based on art director John Putnam's marijuana plant); a domed trashcan wearing an overcoat, the Mad Zeppelin (which more closely resembles an elongated hot air balloon); and an emaciated long-beaked creature who went unidentified for decades before being dubbed "Flip the Bird." The mysterious name "Max Korn" has popped up for years; reader requests to clarify the reference have been greeted with increasingly outlandish "explanations." In late 1964, Mad was tricked into purchasing the "rights" to an optical illusion in the public domain, featuring a sort of three-pronged tuning fork whose appearance defies physics. The magazine dubbed it the Mad poiuyt after the six rightmost letter keys on a QWERTY keyboard in reverse order, not realizing that the existing image was already known to engineers and usually called a blivet. Jump to: navigation, search Image File history File links Download high resolution version (697x903, 168 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Jump to: navigation, search Image File history File links Download high resolution version (697x903, 168 KB) File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Jump to: navigation, search Image File history File links Download high resolution version (697x904, 155 KB)Template:Fairusein/Mad Magazine File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Jump to: navigation, search Image File history File links Download high resolution version (697x904, 155 KB)Template:Fairusein/Mad Magazine File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Arthur was a running gag in-joke in MAD magazine; a potted plant approximately a yard (one meter) tall, with only two leaves, right at the tip, who showed up in various scenes. ... Jump to: navigation, search LZ127 Graf Zeppelin, the most travelled airship in history A Zeppelin is a type of rigid airship (or dirigible) pioneered by Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin in the early 20th century based on an earlier design by David Schwarz. ... This blivet is reminiscent of an M.C. Escher print—it portrays two impossible perspectives at once, creating a lost layer between the top two rods, and an impossible extra, vanishing rod in between the bottom two. ... Jump to: navigation, search The QWERTY Layout QWERTY (pronounced kwerty or Q-werty) is the most common modern-day layout of letters on most English language computer and typewriter keyboards. ... This blivet is reminiscent of an M.C. Escher print—it portrays two impossible perspectives at once, creating a lost layer between the top two rods, and an impossible extra, vanishing rod in between the bottom two. ...


The word "hoohah" was a running gag in-joke in the early years of Mad, often exclaimed by characters in the comic book issues written and edited by Harvey Kurtzman. Its somewhat Eastern European feel was a perfect fit for the New York Jewish style of the magazine. Kurtzman liked to use Yiddish expressions and nonsense words for a humorous effect, and the very first story in the first issue of Mad was "Hoohah!", illustrated by Jack Davis. According to some sources, the word "hoohah" has been traced to the early 20th Century, although the actual origin is unknown. Jump to: navigation, search This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... An in joke is a joke whose humour is clear only to those people who are in a group that has some prior knowledge (not known by the whole population) that makes the joke humorous. ... Harvey Kurtzman (October 3, 1924 - February 21, 1993), U.S. cartoonist and magazine editor. ... Jump to: navigation, search State nickname: The Empire State Other U.S. States Capital Albany Largest city New York City Governor George Pataki (R) Senators Charles Schumer (D) Hillary Rodham Clinton (D) Official languages None (English is de facto) Area 141,205 km² or 54,556 square miles (27th)  - Land... The word Jew ( Hebrew: יהודי) is used in a wide number of ways, but generally refers to a follower of the Jewish faith, a child of a Jewish mother, or someone of Jewish descent with a connection to Jewish culture or ethnicity and often a combination of these attributes. ... There are several notable people called Jack Davis. ...


"It's crackers to slip a rozzer the dropsy in snide" was a non sequitur-ish phrase that found its way into Mad on several occasions, though it has been suggested that this is slang meaning "it is foolhardy to bribe a policeman with counterfeit money." This article is about the logical fallacy. ...


Mad cartoonists have often drawn caricatures of themselves, other contributors and the editors into the articles, most famously the character Roger Kaputnik in "The Lighter Side Of...", who is the spitting image of Dave Berg. Meanwhile, the magazine's photos have typically featured the same Mad staffers.


Contributors and Controversy

Mad provided an ongoing showcase for many of the best satirical writers and artists. The magazine fostered an unusual group loyalty. Even though several of the contributors were earning far more than their Mad pay in such fields as television and advertising, they steadily continued to provide material for the publication. Among the notable artists were the aforementioned Davis, Elder and Wood, as well as Mort Drucker, George Woodbridge and Paul Coker. Writers such as Dick DeBartolo, Stan Hart, Frank Jacobs, Tom Koch and Arnie Kogen appeared regularly in the magazine's pages. Mort Drucker is a cartoonist and caricaturist from Brooklyn, New York. ... George Woodbridge was an American illustrator known for his exhaustive research and historical accuracy. ... Paul Coker, Jr. ... Dick DeBartolo is one of MAD Magazines most prolific writers. ... Stan Hart is an Emmy-winning comedy writer with many television credits. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Tom Koch was one of MAD Magazines mainstay writers from the 1950s through the 1980s. ... Arnie Kogen is a longtime writer for MAD Magazine and has also done extensive work for television series such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Newhart, and Empty Nest. ...


Although Mad was an exclusively freelance publication, it achieved a remarkable stability, with numerous contributors remaining prominent for decades. Critics of the magazine felt that this lack of turnover eventually led to a formulaic sameness, although there is little agreement on when the magazine peaked or plunged. It appears to be largely a function of when the reader first encountered Mad. Like Saturday Night Live or The Simpsons, proclaiming the precise moment that kicked off the irreversible decline has long been sport. Jump to: navigation, search Saturday Night Live (SNL) is a weekly late-night 90-minute comedy-variety show from NBC which has been broadcast virtually every Saturday night since its debut on October 11, 1975. ... Homer, a safety inspector at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, is a generally well-meaning buffoon whose short attention span often draws him into outrageous schemes and adventures. ...


Mad poked fun at this dynamic in its "Untold History of Mad Magazine," a self-referential faux history in the 400th issue. According to the Untold History:

"The second issue of Mad goes on sale on December 9, 1952. On December 11, the first-ever letter complaining that Mad 'just isn't as funny and original like it used to be' arrives."

Among the most frequently-cited "downward turning points" are creator/editor Harvey Kurtzman's departure in 1957, the magazine's mainstream success and/or adoption of recurring features starting in the early 1960s, the magazine's absorption into a more corporate structure in 1968 (or the mid-90's), founder Gaines' death in 1992, the magazine's publicized "revamp" in 1997, or the arrival of paid advertising in 2001. Mad has been criticized for its overreliance on a core group of aging regulars throughout the 1970s and 1980s, and then criticized again for an alleged downturn as those same creators began to leave, die, retire, or contribute less frequently.


It has been proposed that Mad is more susceptible to this criticism than many media because a sizeable percentage of its readership turns over regularly. Also, Mad focuses greatly on current events and a changing popular culture. A reader born in 1980, who takes to Mad in 1995, might look back ten years from 2005 and, comparing an issue from each year, decide that the magazine isn't as good as it once was. However, that same reader might very well fail to appreciate the humor or references in a 1985 or 1975 issue, even though the magazine would logically have been even further ahead of its later "slump."


Mad's sales peak was in the 1970s, but its critical heyday is in the eyes of its beholders. The magazine's art director Sam Viviano has suggested that historically, Mad was at its best "whenever you first started reading it." Jump to: navigation, search The 1970s in its most obvious sense refers to the decade between 1970 and 1979. ...


The loudest among those who insist the magazine is no longer funny are typically supporters of Harvey Kurtzman, who had the good critical fortune to leave Mad after just 28 issues, before his own formulaic tendencies became oppressive. This also meant Kurtzman suffered the bad financial timing of departing before the magazine became a runaway success. However, just how much of that success was due to the original Kurtzman template he left for his successor, and how much can be credited to the Al Feldstein system and the depth of the post-Kurtzman talent pool, can be argued without result. Harvey Kurtzman (October 3, 1924 - February 21, 1993), U.S. cartoonist and magazine editor. ... Al Feldstein (born October 24, 1925) is an American painter of Western wildlife and an influential author-editor who wrote, drew and edited for EC Comics and MAD Magazine. ...


Judging from Kurtzman's final two-plus years at EC, during which Mad appeared erratically (10 issues appeared in 1954, followed by eight issues in 1955 and four issues in 1956), it seems clear that he was ill-suited to the job of producing the magazine on a regular schedule. It seems equally clear that Feldstein's abilities were more workmanlike and reliable than the inimitable genius of Kurtzman. Kurtzman and Will Elder returned to Mad for a short time in the mid-1980s as an illustrating team. William Elder (born 1921) is a comic book artist. ...


Many of the magazine's mainstays began slowing, retiring or dying in the 1980s; though the magazine was always open to new talent, the influx increased from this stage onwards. Newer contributors include Anthony Barbieri, Tom Bunk, John Caldwell, Desmond Devlin, Drew Friedman, Barry Liebmann, Hermann Mejia, Tom Richmond, Andrew J. Schwartzberg, Mike Snider, Rick Tulka and Bill Wray. Jump to: navigation, search // Events and trends The 1980s marked an abrupt shift towards more conservative lifestyles after the momentous cultural revolutions which took place in the 1960s and 1970s and the definition of the AIDS virus in 1981. ... Anthony Barbieri is a comedy writer whose work has appeared on such television programs as Crank Yankers and The Jimmy Kimmel Show. ... Tom Bunk is a cartoonist known for adding multiple extraneous details in his art. ... John Caldwell is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in many places including the National Lampoon and MAD Magazine. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Drew Friedman is a cartoonist known for his stippling-like style of caricature. ... Barry Liebmann is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Hermann Mejia is a Venezuelan illustrator, living in New York City, whose caricature-driven work frequently appears in MAD Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search Tom Richmond (born 1966) is a freelance humorous illustrator, cartoonist and caricaturist whos work has appeared in many national and international publications since 1990. ... Andrew Jawbreaker Schwartzberg is one of MAD Magazines writers. ... Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Rick Tulka is an illustrator and caricaturist who has appeared in MAD Magazine since the mid-1980s. ... Bill Wray is a cartoonist who has worked on animated TV series. ...


In recent years, Mad has continued to receive complaints from fans and foes alike, sometimes over its perceived failings or because of controversial content, but generally over its decision to accept advertising. These accusers sometimes invoke the late publisher Bill Gaines, asserting that the late publisher would "turn over in his grave" if he knew of the magazine's sellout. The editors have a ready answer, pointing out that such protests are completely invalid because Gaines was cremated. William Maxwell Gaines (March 1, 1922–June 3, 1992), or Bill Gaines as he was called, was the founder of MAD Magazine but he was also noted for his efforts to create comic books of sufficient artistic quality and interest to appeal to adults. ...


Mad Merchandising

Mad has stepped gingerly into other media. Three albums of novelty songs were released in the early 1960s. A successful off-Broadway production, "The Mad Show," was staged in 1966, featuring sketches written by Mad personnel (as well as an uncredited assist by Stephen Sondheim). An early 1970s television pilot was not picked up. Jump to: navigation, search The 1960s in its most obvious sense refers to the decade between 1960 and 1969, but the expression has taken on a wider meaning over the past twenty years. ... Jump to: navigation, search Off-Broadway plays or musicals are performed in New York City in smaller theatres than Broadway, but larger than Off-Off-Broadway, productions. ... 1966 was a common year starting on Saturday (link goes to calendar) // Events January January 1 - In a coup, Colonel Jean-Bédel Bokassa ousts president David Dacko and takes over the Central African Republic. ... Jump to: navigation, search Stephen Sondheim Stephen Joshua Sondheim (born March 22, 1930) is an American musical theater lyricist and composer. ...


In 1979, a very successful board game was released. "The MAD Magazine Game" was an absurdist version of Monopoly in which the first player to lose all their money and go bankrupt was the winner. Profusely illustrated with artwork by the magazine's contributors, the game included a $1,329,063-dollar bill which could not be won unless one's name was "Alfred E. Neuman." It also featured a deck of cards (called "Card cards") with bizarre instructions. Among them: Jump to: navigation, search This page refers to the year 1979. ... Jump to: navigation, search In economics, a monopoly (from the Greek monos, one + polein, to sell) is defined as a persistent market situation where there is only one provider of a kind of product or service. ...

  • "Change chairs with anyone."
  • "If you can jump up and stay airborne for 37 seconds, you can lose $5,000. If not, jump up and lose $500."
  • "Stand up and boo the person on your left. Also, lose $1,000."
  • "Put this card on top of your head and walk around the table backwards. If it doesn't fall off before you sit down, you lose $1,000."
  • "This card can only be played on Friday."

In 1980 another game was released, this time it was a card game, MAD Magazine Card Game, by Parker Brothers. The player who first loses all their cards is declared the winner. The game is actually pretty similar to UNO by Mattel. Jump to: navigation, search 1980 (MCMLXXX) is a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... Jump to: navigation, search The Parker Brothers logo is recognized throughout the world. ... The game of UNO (click image for description of whats shown) UNO (Spanish and Italian one) is a card game played with a specially printed deck (see Mau Mau for an almost identical game played with normal playing cards). ... Jump to: navigation, search Mattel Inc. ...


Also in 1980, following the success of the National Lampoon-backed Animal House, Mad lent its name to a similar risque comedy entitled Up the Academy. It was such a commercial and critical failure that Mad successfully arranged for all references to the magazine (including a cameo by Alfred E. Neuman) to be removed from future TV and video releases of the film. Jump to: navigation, search 1980 (MCMLXXX) is a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... Jump to: navigation, search The National Lampoon is a humor magazine that began in 1970 as an offshoot of the Harvard Lampoon. ... The Deltas in front of their house Movie poster of Animal House National Lampoons Animal House (also called Animal House) is a 1978 comedy film in which a misfit group of Delta fraternity boys takes on the system at their college. ... Up the Academy (1980) is a bawdy comedy about a military school. ...


A TV show was introduced in 1995 based on the magazine: MADtv, which aired comedy segments in a fashion similar to Saturday Night Live and SCTV. However, there is no editorial connection between the sketch comedy series and the magazine. The characters from "Spy vs. Spy" have featured in animated vignettes on MADtv, and more recently, TV ads for Mountain Dew soda. Jump to: navigation, search 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jump to: navigation, search The MADtv logo, in a bumper for the show. ... Jump to: navigation, search Saturday Night Live (SNL) is a weekly late-night 90-minute comedy-variety show from NBC which has been broadcast virtually every Saturday night since its debut on October 11, 1975. ... Second City Television, or SCTV, was a Canadian television sketch comedy show offshoot from the Toronto troupe of The Second City. ...


While Mad frequently repackaged its material in a long series of "Super Special"-format magazines and paperbacks, Mad-related merchandise was once scarce. During the Gaines years, the publisher had an aversion to milking his fanbase and expressed the fear that substandard Mad products would offend them. He was known to personally issue refunds to anyone who wrote to the magazine with a complaint. Among the few outside Mad items available in its first 40 years were cufflinks, a T-shirt designed like a straitjacket, complete with lock, and a small ceramic Alfred E. Neuman bust. After Gaines' death came an overt absorption into the Time-Warner publishing umbrella, with the result that Mad merchandise began to appear more frequently.


One steady form of revenue has come from foreign editions of the magazine. Mad has been published in local versions in many countries, beginning with Britain in 1959, and Sweden in 1960. Each new market receives access to the publication's back catalog of articles and is also encouraged to produce its own localized material in the Mad vein. However, the sensibility of the American Mad has not always translated to other cultures, and many of the foreign editions have had short lives or interrupted publications. The Swedish, Danish, Italian and Mexican Mads were each published on three separate occasions; Norway has had four runs cancelled. United Kingdom (35 years), the Netherlands (32 years) and Brazil (31 years and counting) have produced the longest uninterrupted Mad variants. Jump to: navigation, search 1959 (MCMLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1960 was a leap year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Current foreign editions:

  • Germany, 1968-1993, 1998-present;
  • Brazil, 1974-present;
  • Finland, 1970-1971, 1981-present;
  • Australia, 1980-present;
  • South Africa, 1991-present;
  • Hungary, 1997-present;
  • India, 1999-present.

Foreign editions of the past:

  • United Kingdom, 1959-1994;
  • Sweden, 1960-1992, 1996-2002;
  • Denmark, 1962-1971, 1979-1997, 1998-2002;
  • The Netherlands, 1964-1996;
  • France, 1965, 1992;
  • Argentina, 1970-1975;
  • Norway, 1971-1972, 1981-1993, 1995, 2002-2003;
  • Italy, 1971, 1984, 1992;
  • Mexico, 1977-1983, 1984-1986, 1993-1998;
  • Carribean, 1977-1983;
  • Greece, 1978-1985, 1995-1999;
  • Iceland, 1985;
  • Taiwan, 1990;
  • Israel, 1994-1995;
  • Turkey, 2000-2003.

Some of the foreign editions have spoofed material that is completely unfamiliar to American audiences, or which is not in keeping with Mad's general avoidance of obscenity (for an example of both, see the Swedish Mad parody of Fucking Åmål [1]). Fucking Ã…mÃ¥l (distributed in many countries under toned-down titles such as Show Me Love, Raus Aus Ã…mÃ¥l, Descubriendo el Amor, Amigas de Colegio etc. ...


Imitators and variants

Mad has had many imitators through the years. The three most durable of these were CRACKED, Sick, and Crazy. Most others were short-lived exercises, such as Zany (4 issues), Frantic (2 issues), Ratfink (1 issue), Nuts! (2 issues), Get Lost (3 issues), Whack (3 issues), Wild (5 issues), Madhouse (8 issues), Riot (6 issues), Flip (2 issues), Eh! (7 issues), and Gag! (1 issue). Even EC Comics joined the parade with a sister humor magazine, Panic, produced by future Mad editor Al Feldstein. Most of these productions aped the format of Mad right down to choosing a synonym for the word mad as their title. Many featured a cover mascot along the lines of Alfred E. Neuman. Cracked Magazine issue 31 - September 1963 CRACKED Magazine is one of Americas oldest national humor magazines, and the most successful imitator of the popular MAD Magazine. ... Look up Sick in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Sick is a humor magazine, an imitator of the popular MAD Magazine. ... Crazy is a humor magazine, an imitator of the popular MAD Magazine. ... Entertaining Comics was headed by William Gaines but is better known by its publishing name of EC Comics. ... Alfred E. Neuman is the fictional mascot of EC Publications Mad magazine. ...


In 1967, Marvel Comics produced the first of 13 issues of Not Brand Echh, which parodied their own superhero titles, and owed its entire inspiration and format to the original "Mad" comic books of a decade earlier. From 1973-1976, DC Comics published Plop! which was much the same but relied more on one-page gags and horror-based comedy. Jump to: navigation, search 1967 (MCMLXVII) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Jump to: navigation, search Marvel Comics, NYSE: MVL (AKA Marvel Entertainment Group, Marvel Characters, Inc. ... Jump to: navigation, search Not Brand Echh was a Marvel Comics comic book published in the 1960s. ... Jump to: navigation, search The current DC Comics logo, adopted in May 2005. ... Plop! - The New Magazine of Weird Humor! was a comic book published by DC Comics in the mid 1970s. ...


But as it carries on past its 50th year, Mad has outlasted them all, save Cracked, which has appeared infrequently for years but still bobs in and out of production.


Other humor magazines of note include former Mad editor Harvey Kurtzman's Humbug, Trump and Help!, the National Lampoon, and Spy Magazine, but these cannot be considered direct ripoffs of Mad in the same way as the others mentioned here. Of all the competition, only the National Lampoon ever threatened its hegemony as America's top humor magazine, in the early-to-mid-1970s. However, this was also the period of Mad's greatest sales figures. Both magazines peaked in sales about the same time. The Lampoon topped one million sales once, for a single issue in 1974. Mad crossed the two-million mark with an average 1973 circulation of 2,059,236, then improved to 2,132,655 in 1974. Humbug was a humor magazine edited by Harvey Kurtzman. ... Trump was a glossy magazine of satire and erotic humor, mostly in the forms of comic-strip features and short stories. ... Help! Harvey Kurtzmans longest-running magazine project after leaving Mad Magazine and EC Publications, Help! (1960-1965) was a chronically underfunded but innovative magazine published by James Warren, who was also publishing successful monster-movie and horror comics magazines simultaneously. ... Jump to: navigation, search The National Lampoon is a humor magazine that began in 1970 as an offshoot of the Harvard Lampoon. ... Spy magazine was founded in 1986 by Kurt Andersen and E. Graydon Carter. ...


Gaines reportedly kept a voodoo doll in his business office, into which he would stick pins labelled with each imitation of his magazine. He would only remove a pin when the copycat had ceased publishing. At the time of Gaines' death in 1992, only the pin for Cracked remained. Jump to: navigation, search 1992 (MCMXCII) was a leap year starting on Wednesday. ...


Some of the Usual Gang of Idiots

Each of the following has created over 150 articles for the magazine:


Writers:

Writer-Artists: Dick DeBartolo is one of MAD Magazines most prolific writers. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Stan Hart is an Emmy-winning comedy writer with many television credits. ... Frank Jacobs is MAD Magazines longest-tenured writer, having appeared in its pages for 50 years. ... Tom Koch was one of MAD Magazines mainstay writers from the 1950s through the 1980s. ... Arnie Kogen is a longtime writer for MAD Magazine and has also done extensive work for television series such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Newhart, and Empty Nest. ... Jump to: navigation, search Larry Siegel is an Emmy-winning comedy writer whose work also appeared for years in MAD Magazine. ... Lou Silverstone is a comedy writer whose articles appeared for many years in MAD Magazine. ... Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ...

Artists: Sergio Aragonés (born 1937) is a cartoonist and writer. ... Dave Berg (Brooklyn, June 12, 1920 – May 17, 2002) was a cartoonist, most noted for his work in MAD Magazine. ... John Caldwell is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in many places including the National Lampoon and MAD Magazine. ... Don Edwing is a gag cartoonist whose work has appeared for years in MAD Magazine. ... Al Jaffee (born March 13, 1921) is a cartoonist, best known for his work in MAD Magazine. ... Don Martin (May 18, 1931–January 6, 2000) was a popular American satirical comic artist and cartoon artist who contributed to MAD magazine from 1955 to 1987. ... Paul Peter Porges is a cartoonist who has appeared in many places, including The New Yorker and MAD Magazine. ... Antonio Prohias (January 17, 1921 - February 24, 1998) was a cartoonist most famous for creating the Spy vs. ...

Photographer: Bob Clarke was an illustrator whose elegant line appeared in innumerable advertisements as well as MAD Magazine. ... Paul Coker, Jr. ... Jack Davis (born December 2, 1924) is an American cartoonist and illustrator. ... Mort Drucker is a cartoonist and caricaturist from Brooklyn, New York. ... Jack Rickard was an illustrator who worked in many media, including a lengthy stint at MAD Magazine. ... Angelo Torres is a cartoonist and caricaturist who appeared in many comic books, as well as a long-running regular slot at MAD Magazine. ... Wallace Wally Wood (June 17, 1927–November 2, 1981), was an imaginative American writer-illustrator who freelanced to a wide variety of markets but is best known for his work in EC Comics and Mad. ... George Woodbridge was an American illustrator known for his exhaustive research and historical accuracy. ...

The editorial staff, notably Charlie Kadau, John Ficarra and Joe Raiola, also have dozens of articles under their own bylines, as well as substantial creative input into many, many others. Irving Schild is a commercial photographer who has worked extensively for agencies and clients. ... Charlie Kadau is a comedy writer, and longtime associate editor for MAD Magazine. ... John Ficarra has been on the editorial staff of MAD Magazine for almost 25 years. ... Joe Raiola is a comedy writer, and longtime associate editor for MAD Magazine. ...


Some of the Unusual Gang of Idiots

Mad is known for the stability and longevity of its talent roster, with several creators enjoying 30-, 40-, and even 50-year careers in the magazine's pages. However, about 600 people have received bylines in at least one issue. Among the contributors to be credited but a single time are Charles Schulz, Richard Nixon, Chevy Chase, "Weird Al" Yankovic, Donald E. Knuth, Will Eisner, Kevin Smith, J. Fred Muggs, Boris Vallejo, Sir John Tenniel, Jean Shepherd, Winona Ryder, Thomas Nast, Jimmy Kimmel, Jason Alexander, Walt Kelly, Barney Frank, Steve Allen, Jim Lee, Jules Feiffer, and Leonardo da Vinci. Mr. da Vinci's check is still waiting in the Mad offices for him to pick it up. Charles Monroe Schulz (November 26, 1922 - February 12, 2000) was a 20th-century American cartoonist best known for his Peanuts comic strip. ... Jump to: navigation, search Richard Milhous Nixon (January 9, 1913 – April 22, 1994) was the thirty-seventh President of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974. ... Jump to: navigation, search Chevy Chase Cornelius Crane Chase, better known as Chevy Chase (born October 8, 1943) is an American comedian, writer and television and film actor from Woodstock, New York. ... Jump to: navigation, search Alfred Matthew Weird Al Yankovic (born October 23, 1959) is a Grammy award winning American musician, satirist, parodist, accordionist, and television producer. ... Donald Knuth Donald Ervin Knuth (born January 10, 1938) is a renowned computer scientist and Professor Emeritus at Stanford University. ... Jump to: navigation, search Will Eisner (March 3, 1917 – January 3, 2005, Lauderdale Lakes, Florida) was an acclaimed American comics writer and artist who is considered one of the most important contributors to the development of the medium. ... Jump to: navigation, search Kevin Smith at a comics convention in 2005 Kevin Patrick Smith (born August 2, 1970) is an American screenwriter, film director, comic book writer, and creator of View Askew. ... J. Fred Muggs (b. ... Jump to: navigation, search Vallejo work from the box art of the video game Ecco the Dolphin. ... Sir John Tenniel (February 28, 1820 - February 25, 1914) was an English illustrator. ... Jean Parker Shepherd (July 26, 1921 - October 16, 1999) was a raconteur, radio and TV personality, writer, and actor. ... Jump to: navigation, search Winona Ryder Winona Ryder (born Winona Laura Horowitz) is an American actress born on October 29, 1971 in Winona, Minnesota to Michael and Cindy Horowitz. ... Thomas Nast (September 27, 1840–December 7, 1902) was a famous caricaturist and editorial cartoonist in the 19th century and is considered to be the father of American political cartooning. ... Jump to: navigation, search Jimmy Kimmel James Christian Kimmel (born November 13, 1967 in Brooklyn, New York), known simply as Jimmy Kimmel, is an American television talk-show host and comedian. ... Jason Alexander Jason Alexander (born Jason Scott Greenspan, September 23, 1959, in Newark, New Jersey), television, cinema and musical theatre actor, was one of the stars of the award-winning television sitcom Seinfeld in which he played the neurotic neer-do-well George Costanza, Jerry Seinfelds best friend. ... Walter Crawford Kelly, Jr (August 25, 1913 - October 18, 1973), known simply as Walt Kelly, was a cartoonist notable for his comic strip Pogo featuring characters that inhabited a portion of the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia. ... Barney Frank Barney Frank (born March 31, 1940) is an American politician, and a member of the United States House of Representatives. ... Jump to: navigation, search Steve Allen on the cover of Steve Allen on the Bible, Religion, and Morality Stephen Valentine Patrick William Allen (December 26, 1921 – October 30, 2000) was a musician, comedian and writer, who was instrumental in innovating the concept of the television talk show. ... Jump to: navigation, search Lees depiction of DC Comics Batman. ... Jules Feiffer (born January 26, 1929) is a syndicated comic-strip cartoonist and author. ... Jump to: navigation, search Leonardo da Vinci (April 15, 1452 – May 2, 1519) was an Italian Renaissance architect, musician, anatomist, inventor, engineer, sculptor, geometer, and painter. ...


Contributing just twice are such luminaries as Tom Lehrer, Stan Freberg, Mort Walker and Gustave Dore. Frank Frazetta (3), Ernie Kovacs (11), Bob and Ray (12), and Sid Caesar (4) are among those to have appeared slightly more frequently. The magazine more commonly used outside name talent in its earliest years as a magazine, before amassing its own staff of regulars. More recently, Mad has run occasional guest articles in which celebrities from show business or comic books have participated. Introductions to the paperback reprints are by such notables as Trey Parker, Adam West, Siskel and Ebert and, again, "Weird Al" Yankovic. Tom Lehrer in 1960. ... Jump to: navigation, search Stanley Victor Freberg (born August 7, 1926 in Los Angeles) is a voice actor, comedian, and advertising creative. ... Mort Walker (Addison Morton Walker) (born September 3, 1923) is a U.S. comic artist, best known for creating the newspaper comic strips Beetle Bailey in 1950 and Hi and Lois in 1954. ... Jacob Wrestling with the Angel (1855) Paul Gustave Doré (January 6, 1832 - January 23, 1883), a French artist, was born in Strasbourg. ... Frank Frazetta (born February 9, 1928) is one of the worlds most influential fantasy and science fiction artists. ... Ernie Kovacs (1919-1962) Ernie Kovacs (January 23, 1919 - January 13, 1962) was a creative and innovative entertainer from the early days of television. ... Jump to: navigation, search Bob and Ray Bob Elliott and Ray Goulding were an American comedy duo that began in radio in 1946 with a daily 15-minute show titled Matinee With Bob and Ray. ... Sid Caesar (born Isaac Sidney Caesar on September 8, 1922) is an Emmy-winning comic actor and writer, best known as the leading man on the 1950s television sketch comedy series Your Show of Shows. ... Jump to: navigation, search Trey Parker Randolph Severn Trey Parker III (born October 19, 1969 in Conifer, Colorado) is one of the creators of the television series South Park. ... Jump to: navigation, search Adam West as Batman Adam West (born William West Anderson on September 19, 1928 in Walla Walla, Washington) is best known as the actor who played the role of Batman on the original television program that ran from 1966 to 1968. ... Ebert & Roeper (Originally titled as Siskel & Ebert) is a popular movie-review television program starring film critic Roger Ebert and columnist Richard Roeper, both of the Chicago Sun-Times. ... Jump to: navigation, search Alfred Matthew Weird Al Yankovic (born October 23, 1959) is a Grammy award winning American musician, satirist, parodist, accordionist, and television producer. ...


Recurring Subsections

Most magazines include ongoing, internal segments or domains, and Mad is no exception. An issue of Mad includes these "cluster" departments.


Table of Contents

The first page of each issue lists all the articles to follow, including their "Department" headings, which are plays on words. For example, a parody of a pizza chain's menu appeared under "The Passion of the Crust Department," and an article entitled "William Shakespeare, Sports Commentator" was part of the "The Play-By-Play's the Thing Department." Jump to: navigation, search Literary technique; puns: word play Rock and Roll Band (1980s) : Play on Words (rock band) This is a disambiguation page, a list of pages that otherwise might share the same title. ...


For several years, the Table of Contents has listed one article which does not actually exist. Some of these imaginary listings have included "Santa Claus, Porn Star"; "When Goats Go Bad"; "What if Cap'n Crunch Was Brought Before a Military Tribunal?"; "If the Amish Used Zombies to Do Their Chores"; "The MAD Urinary Tract Infection Primer"; "Dick Cheney Electrocardiograms We'd Like to See"; "If Bobby Knight Coached the Special Olympics"; "Only the Assistant Undersecretary of Transportation Would Possibly Believe..."; and "Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions During the Bombing of Belgrade."


Letters and Tomatoes Dept.

An esoteric version of the standard "Letters to the Editors," this commonly runs three pages and includes correspondence from readers, reader drawings or craft projects, celebrity photos, references to Mad in other media, and so forth. All letters are typically answered in a snide and insulting manner. There are also a few (very small) sub-departments that sometimes live within its pages:

  • "Antiques Freakshow with Hans Brickface" - in which readers send in photographs of their bizarre household items to have their values appraised by the slightly psychotic Hans.
  • "MAD Mumblings" - absurd one-sentence observations, typically non sequiturs, posted online by the readers.
  • "The Make a Dumb Wish Foundation" - in which the magazine promises to make readers' stupid requests come true, but usually doesn't.
  • "The Nifty Fifty" & "Mad Celebrity Snaps" - a reader who sends in a photo of a famous person posing with a copy of Mad gets a free three-year subscription (if the celebrity is touching the issue). Once a year, Mad puts out a kind of hit list called The Nifty Fifty: fifty famous people they'd like to see in Celebrity Snaps. The magazine was delighted to publish a photo of Dan Quayle unwittingly holding the "PROOFREADER WANTED" cover of Mad #355, on which the magazine's logo appeared as "MAAD."
  • "The Two-Question Interview" - celebrity interviews which are essentially over before they begin, accomplishing nothing.

This article is about the logical fallacy. ... Jump to: navigation, search James Danforth Quayle (born February 4, 1947) was the 44th Vice President of the United States under George H. W. Bush (1989-1993). ...

The Fundalini Pages

Beginning with its February 2004 edition, Mad has begun its issues with this catch-all section of various bits, which are far shorter or smaller than normal Mad articles. They often appear at as many as 3 to 6 per page. Some of these pieces are produced in-house; others are the work of freelancers. All contributors for each month are credited en masse, as "Friends of Fundalini." For this reason, it is not always apparent which contributor is responsible for which item, particularly the writers. Most Fundalini features are one shot gags that never appear again, some have appeared multiple times, and a few appear in nearly every issue. Among the recurring elements in the Fundalini section are: 2004 : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December- → // February 29, 2004 Jean-Bertrand Aristide resigns as president of Haiti and flees the country for the Central African Republic. ...


Created for Fundalini

  • Bitterman, a short comic strip by Garth Gerhart about a hateful slacker;
  • Classified ads; these frequently deal in absurdity and non sequiturs;
  • The Cover We DIDN'T Use, purporting to be the second choice for each issue's front cover;
  • The Fast 5, which is essentially half of a Letterman "Top 10 List";
  • Foto News, in which topical photographs are given word balloons (similar to fumetti, though usually without the storyline aspect);
  • The Godfrey Report, a small 3x 3 grid showing three classes of objects and their current cultural status (arbitrarily rated as "In," "Five Minutes Ago," or "Out.");
  • Graphic Novel Review, written by Desmond Devlin, which analyzes fictional comic collections and graphic novels such as "The Anally Complete Peanuts" or "Tintin in Fallujah";
  • The Kitchen Sink, a lengthy barrage of spoof titles for topics such as "Reality Shows Currently Under Development" or "Proposed Star Wars Sequel Titles";
  • Magazine Corrections You May Have Missed, providing editorial commentary on other publications;
  • Monkeys Are Always Funny, by Evan Dorkin, showing famous news photographs with the image of a monkey Photoshopped in;
  • Pull My Cheney!, a one-panel gag by cartoonist Tom Cheney;
  • The President's Dog, a short comic strip by Peter Kuper, in which George W. Bush converses with Barney the Terrier;
  • The Puzzle Nook, a multiple choice fill-in-the-blank phrase;
  • Vey to Go!, a one-panel gag by cartoonist P.C. Vey.

Bitterman is a comic strip appearing in MAD Magazine. ... Garth Gerhart is a cartoonist who may be best known for his Bitterman strip, which appears in MAD Magazine. ... In general terms, a Top Ten List is an ordered ranking of ten items in order of preference. ... Fumetti is a form of comics illustrated with photographs rather than drawings. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ... Jump to: navigation, search Vintage Peanuts strips continue to be sold in book form. ... Tintin and Snowy (Tintin et Milou) are world travellers and inseparable friends in The Adventures of Tintin. ... Star Wars began with a 13-page treatment for a space adventure movie which George Lucas drafted in 1973, inspired from multiple myths and classic stories. ... Jump to: navigation, search Evan Dorkin is an American comics artist. ... Tom Cheney is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in over 500 U.S. and foreign publications since 1977. ... Peter Kuper (b. ... Pine Cone Vey is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in such venues as The New Yorker, National Lampoon, and MAD Magazine. ...

Preexisting; moved into Fundalini

  • Celebrity Cause of Death Betting Odds, written by Mike Snider, which ranks the hypothetical future demises of the famous by decreasing likelihood;
  • Melvin and Jenkins' Guide to..., drawn by Kevin Pope and written by Desmond Devlin, in which the upstanding Jenkins and the derelict Melvin illustrate good and improper behavior in various situations. However, it now consists of only two panels, instead of the two or three page article it was before.

Of these, the most regular features have been Bitterman, The Godfrey Report, Celebrity Cause of Death Betting Odds, and The Puzzle Nook. Mike Snider is a comedy writer whose work has frequently appeared in the pages of MAD Magazine. ... Kevin Pope is a cartoonist whose work has appeared in MAD Magazine. ... Desmond Devlin is a comedy writer who has worked in such publications as Mad Magazine. ...


Newer Additions

  • The Strip Club

First appearing in the July 2005 issue, it is a 3- to 4-page assortment of short gag comic strips drawn by various artists. Judging from its early installments, there may be a high turnover of contributors.

  • Go Fetch!

Further blurring the line between advertising and content is Go Fetch!, a list of newly-released media products such as videogames, DVD releases, music albums and books. Each product listing has The Hype and The Snipe, in which its good and bad qualities are expounded. Each Go Fetch! also promotes "the Must Have", an idiosyncratic (but real) product which no Mad reader should be without, such as cold galvanizing spray, or a pneumatic jackhammer.


Go Fetch! is an odd cross between the wiseass Mad mentality and the sort of product ratings generally associated with Rolling Stone. It is an overtly commercial feature, with some one-liners thrown in in the apparent hope of making it more palatable. As such, Go Fetch! has been heavily criticized by many of the magazine's loyal readers as a betrayal of the magazine's original satiric mission. Jump to: navigation, search Rolling Stone is an American magazine devoted to music and popular culture. ...


"The MAD 20"

Since 1998, Mad has done an annual issue commemorating the "20 Dumbest People, Events and Things" of the year. These emphasize the visual motif above all else, parodying such things as movie posters, famous paintings, or fake magazine covers, though one or two text-heavier takeoffs are usually sprinkled into each year's assortment. The feature is reminiscent of the defunct Spy Magazine's "Spy 100" list, which purported to catalogue "Our Annual Census of the 100 Most Annoying, Alarming, and Appalling People, Places and Things." Jump to: navigation, search 1998(MCMXCVIII) is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ... Spy magazine was founded in 1986 by Kurt Andersen and E. Graydon Carter. ...


Mad named the Reverend Jerry Falwell as one of the dumbest people of 2001 for blaming the 9/11 attacks on feminists, gays, and lesbians. (Though Falwell appeared in the #1 slot in Mad's annual "20 Dumbest People, Events and Things" issue, and the examples are numbered 1-20, the "rankings" are completely random. The "20th dumbest" slot of 2001 was awarded to Mad itself for its "slide down the slippery slope of greedy commercialism" in finally permitting advertising in its pages.) Jump to: navigation, search Jerry Lamon Falwell (born on August 11, 1933) is an American Baptist pastor, televangelist, founder of the Moral Majority & Liberty University, and a prominent Conservative activist. ... The World Trade Center on fire The September 11, 2001 attacks were a series of coordinated terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001. ... Feminism is a social theory and political movement primarily informed and motivated by the experience of women. ... Jump to: navigation, search This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Jump to: navigation, search Lesbian describes a homosexual woman. ...


Keeping in mind the indiscriminate positioning, these were the "#1" selections for the various years:

  • 1998: "Starr Wars," a movie poster parody of the partisan Kenneth Starr investigation, depicting Starr as Darth Vader, and Bill Clinton holding a cigar instead of a light saber;
  • 1999: "Y2K Panic," a chaotic cartoon showing a crashing airplane displacing the Times Square New Year's Ball, sending it careening into a terror-stricken crowd;
  • 2000: A rewritten Presidential oath of office. The issue went to press one week after the disputed 2000 election; MAD's editors had thought they could plug in the winner, but were obliged to publish two versions of the image, one with Al Gore being sworn in, the other depicting George W. Bush.
  • 2001: "A.I. Asinine Ideology," a movie poster parody of the Steven Spielberg film "A.I." highlighting Jerry Falwell's placing blame on the 9/11 attacks on gays, feminists, abortionists and the ACLU;
  • 2002: "Martha Stewart Lying," a magazine spoof of Martha Stewart's insider trading scandal;
  • 2003: "Term Eliminator," a movie poster parody of the third "Terminator" film mocking Arnold Schwarzenegger's victory in the California recall election;
  • 2004: "Donny Rumsfeld and the Prisoners of Abu Ghraib," a book cover in the style of the third Harry Potter jacket.

Jump to: navigation, search Kenneth Winston Starr (born July 21, 1946 in Vernon, Texas) is an American lawyer and former judge who was appointed to the Office of the Independent Counsel to investigate the Whitewater land transactions by President Bill Clinton. ... Jump to: navigation, search Darth Vader (41 BBY–4 ABY) is a fictional character in the Star Wars films and ultimately the main character of the series. ... Jump to: navigation, search William Jefferson Bill Clinton (born William Jefferson Blythe, III on August 19, 1946) was the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. ... Jump to: navigation, search Times Square Times Square is also the name of a station on the Detroit People Mover, a shopping mall in Hong Kong, and a 1980 movie. ... (Redirected from 2000 election) List of elections that happened in 2000: Canadian federal election, 2000 - Jean Chrétiens Liberals win third consecutive majority government Greek legislative election, 2000 Taiwan presidential election, 2000 U.S. presidential election, 2000 - George W. Bush becomes president in disputed vote 2000 Toronto election - Mel... Jump to: navigation, search Albert Arnold Gore Jr. ... Jump to: navigation, search George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the 43rd and current President of the United States and a former Governor of the State of Texas. ... Jump to: navigation, search Steven Spielberg Steven Allan Spielberg KBE (born on December 18, 1946 in Cincinnati, Ohio but raised in the suburbs of Haddonfield, New Jersey and Scottsdale, Arizona) is an Oscar winning Jewish American film director and producer. ... Jump to: navigation, search Jerry Lamon Falwell (born on August 11, 1933) is an American Baptist pastor, televangelist, founder of the Moral Majority & Liberty University, and a prominent Conservative activist. ... The World Trade Center on fire The September 11, 2001 attacks were a series of coordinated terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001. ... The American Civil Liberties Union, or ACLU, is a non_governmental organization devoted to defending civil rights and civil liberties in the United States. ... Jump to: navigation, search Martha Stewart Martha Stewart (born August 3, 1941) is a television and magazine personality known for her cooking, gardening, etiquette, and arts and crafts projects, and as a general lifestyle guide and homemaker. ... The word terminator is from Latin and means roughly the finisher. ... Jump to: navigation, search Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger (born July 30, 1947 in Thal, Styria, Austria) is an Austrian-American actor, Republican politician, bodybuilder, and actor, currently serving as the 38th Governor of California. ... Jump to: navigation, search Cover of the original novel in the series, Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone. ...

MAD v. Supreme Court

The magazine has been involved in various legal actions over the decades, but none were bigger than Irving Berlin et al. v. E.C. Publications, Inc., a case which was eventually brought before the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1961, a group of music publishers representing such songwriters as Irving Berlin, Richard Rodgers and Cole Porter filed a $25 million lawsuit against MAD for copyright infringement following "Sing Along With MAD," a collection of parody lyrics "sung to the tune of" many popular songs. The publishing group hoped to establish a legal precedent that only a song's composers retained the right to parody that same song. The U.S. District Court ruled largely in favor of MAD in 1963, affirming its right to print 23 of the 25 song parodies under dispute. An exception was found in the cases of two parodies, "Always" (sung to the tune of "Always"), and "There's No Business Like No Business" (sung to the tune of "There's No Business Like Show Business"). Relying on the same verbal hooks ("always" and "business"), these were found to be overly similar to the originals. The music publishers appealed the ruling, and the U.S. Court of Appeals not only upheld the pro-MAD decision, but stripped the publishers of their limited victory regarding the two songs. The publishers again appealed, and the Supreme Court upheld the decision and refused the appeal. Jump to: navigation, search Irving Berlin et al. ... The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C., (large image) The Supreme Court of the United States, located in Washington, D.C., is the highest court (see supreme court) in the United States; that is, it has ultimate judicial authority within the United States... Jump to: navigation, search 1961 (MCMLXI) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Jump to: navigation, search Irving Berlin (May 11, 1888 – September 22, 1989), born Israel Isidore Baline, in Tyumen, Siberia (or Mahilyow (Mogilev), Belarus), was an American composer and lyricist, one of the most prodigious and famous American songwriters in history. ... Jump to: navigation, search An autographed photo of Richard Rodgers Richard Rodgers (June 18, 1902 – December 30, 1979) was one of the great composers of musical theater, best known for his song writing partnerships with Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II. He wrote more than 900 published songs, and forty... Jump to: navigation, search Cole Porter Cole Albert Porter (June 9, 1891 – October 15, 1964) was an American composer and songwriter. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1963 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ...


This precedent-setting case established the rights of parodists and satirists to mimic the meter of popular songs. However, the "Sing Along With MAD" songbook was not the magazine's first flight into musical parody. In 1960, MAD had published "My Fair Ad-Man," a full advertising-based spoof of the hit Broadway musical "My Fair Lady." And 1959's "If Famous Authors Wrote the Comics" had speculated on such pairings as "If Paddy Chayefsky wrote Donald Duck" and "If Mickey Spillane wrote Nancy." The segment "If Gilbert & Sullivan wrote Dick Tracy" used the Pirates of Penzance as its iambic inspiration, as shown here: Jump to: navigation, search 1960 was a leap year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar). ... The original poster for the Broadway production of the show designed by Al Hirschfeld My Fair Lady is a 1956 musical theater production with lyrics and book by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederic Loewe, adapted from George Bernard Shaws Pygmalion. ... Jump to: navigation, search 1959 (MCMLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Sidney Paddy Chayefsky (January 29, 1923 - August 1, 1981) was an acclaimed dramatist who transitioned from the golden age of American live television in the 1950s to have a successful career as a playwright and screenwriter for Hollywood. ... Jump to: navigation, search Donald Duck Donald Duck is an animated cartoon and comic-book character best known for his cartoons from Walt Disney Productions. ... Jump to: navigation, search Frank Morrison Spillane (born March 9, 1918), better known as Mickey Spillane, is an American author of crime novels. ... Jump to: navigation, search Place Stanislas - Fountain of Amphitrite Nancy (pronounced in French) is a city and commune which is the préfecture (capital) of the Meurthe-et-Moselle département, in the Lorraine région of northeastern France. ... Playwright/lyricist William S. Gilbert (1836-1911) and composer Arthur S. Sullivan (1842-1900) defined operetta in Victorian England with a series of their internationally successful and timeless works. ... Jump to: navigation, search Dick Tracy USPS stamp Dick Tracy is a popular character in American pop culture. ... The Pirates of Penzance, or The Slave of Duty, is a Gilbert and Sullivan comic operetta in two acts. ...

 Crooks : Before we kill you, Tracy, how did you get to be a cop ? Dick Tracy : When I was a rookie I walked a beat as a highway patrolman on a one-way street. I was meek as a kitten and timid as a mouse and I polished up the apple at the station house. Crooks : He polished up the apple at the station house! Dick Tracy : I polished up the apple at such a clip that now I am a flatfoot in a comic strip! 
 Dick Tracy : Though I am trapped and I have no gun you still can't kill me 'cos it can't be done. The whole darn force is waiting down below I summoned all the boys on my wrist radio! Crooks : He summoned all them cops on his wrist radio! Dick Tracy : So even if I'm helpless in your evil grip you cannot kill a flatfoot in a comic strip! 

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