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Al Jaffee wins Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist

The National Cartoonist Society has awarded this year’s Reuben Award for the Outstanding Cartoonist of the year to Al Jaffee. Al is a legendary cartoonist who is best known for his MAD Magazine’s Fold-in. He joined Mad Magazine in 1964.

Community Comments

#1 Krishna Sadasivam
May/25/2008
@ 8:09 am

Congrats to Al! One of my first encounters with his book is buying his “Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions” at a middle school book fair back in the ’80s. Brilliant stuff – and the MAD fold-outs have always been funny and amazing in conceptualization.

#2 Dawn Douglass
May/25/2008
@ 9:19 am

Hey, I loved those fold-ins! That was my favorite! Good pick.

#3 Ian Marsden
May/25/2008
@ 10:21 am

Congratulations to Mr. Jaffee. What would MAD have been without him? He was one of my greatest inspirations to become a cartoonist when I was a kid and I think it is fantastic that he is still going strong.

#4 Larry Levine
May/25/2008
@ 11:00 am

Congrats to Mr. Jaffe!

#5 John Lotshaw
May/25/2008
@ 4:05 pm

“Snappy Answers To Stupid Questions… at the Airport after the Reubens…”

TSA Screener to Al Jaffee: “Is that your Reuben Award in your carry-on bag?”

Al Jaffee: “No… I stole it from Coverly, and I’m trying to get out of town before he finds out…”

#6 Dave Brown
May/25/2008
@ 7:00 pm

Note that “Jaffee” is the correct spelling of Al Jaffee’s name.

#7 Alex Hallatt
May/26/2008
@ 4:07 pm

And Wiley got it right: nice homage.

#8 Chris Evans
May/27/2008
@ 7:16 am

I admire Mr. Jaffee’s work too — he’s a giant in the world of cartooning. But does the Reuben really stand for something now, with the NCS being essentially a private invitation only supper club, with a majority of the membership being retired/ semi-retired syndicated cartoonists?

#9 Rick Stromoski
May/27/2008
@ 9:09 am

>>> But does the Reuben really stand for something now, with the NCS being essentially a private invitation only supper club, with a majority of the membership being retired/ semi-retired syndicated cartoonists?

Go to http://www.reuben.org to get a better idea of what the NCS membership is comprised of.

#10 Wiley Miller
May/27/2008
@ 9:41 am

It never ceases to amaze me how people will make such sweeping and absolute statements, as though their assumptions are fact, on things they obviously have no knowledge or experience.

Learn first, opine later.

#11 Chris Evans
May/27/2008
@ 11:41 am

Hello Wiley, I do have some knowledge, or personal experience with the NCS. Prospective new members are accepted or rejected by a secret vote by a membership committee of persons that are not named, I hear that approval must be by all the members of the committee, and if you are not accepted, you don’t know how close or far away you are from being accepted. I’ve heard informally from members of the NCS that much of the weight on whether you are accepted or not, provided you meet the criteria professionally, is if the membership committee feels like they would want to socialize with you. That is pretty exclusive, and private, if you ask me. And they can be that way, it is their club. I just wonder how many up and coming talented cartoonists feed into the NCS, based off this exclusivity.

#12 Rick Stromoski
May/27/2008
@ 12:20 pm

>>> Iâ??ve heard informally from members of the NCS that much of the weight on whether you are accepted or not, provided you meet the criteria professionally, is if the membership committee feels like they would want to socialize with you.

It’s unfortunate that you’ve heard this from NCS members because nothing is further from the truth and is a preposterous notion when you give it a little thought. NCS membership is based on whether you are a professional or not. How would a membership chairman know anything about any given applicant’s personality, unless they were constantly going on bulletin boards calling other people’s work cr@p or creating websites that trash other cartoonists work like the Family Circus sites out there? I was membership chairman for 6 years and Dave Coverly has been reviewing applications for NCS for the last 6 …nothing secret about that. When an application came in, the submission must include samples of published work, a brief bio and 2 recommendations from existing NCS members. I’d never heard of 75% of the applicants but that was never a factor because the work speaks for itself. If they were working cartoonists for at least the past 3 years and haven’t murdered anybody, they got in simple as that. Since two NCS members in good standing are already vouching for you Where does the socialization aspect you speak of come in? And how would one even begin to make such an assessment? Please explain how that could ever be a factor since in pretty much every application, you’re “meeting” the person for the very first time.

#13 Chris Evans
May/27/2008
@ 12:39 pm

Dear Rick — I only speak from my personal experience with the NCS. I have no reason to make things up. I also do not dwell on bulletin boards “..calling other people’s work cr@p…”. When I applied to the NCS, and was rejected, I respectfully asked why I didn’t meet the criteria, and no explanation was forthcoming, nor who I could contact. With no input from the NCS, I then asked around, to try and figure out why I was rejected. I heard what I heard. I am member in good standing with the SCCS for over 6 years. My work has appeared over the last 25 years in numerous publication online and offline, I also edit cartoons for several magazines, and I also mentor up and coming cartoonists. I am sharing this information because you asked me to explain myself. If my case is the absolute exception to the rule in who is accepted and encouraged to be in the NCS, then it is truly unfortunate for me. But kudos to Mr. Jaffee — he is an icon, I have admired his work my whole life, and he does deserve the Reuben, as do many other distinguished members of the NCS that have not gotten this award.

#14 Rick Stromoski
May/27/2008
@ 1:09 pm

â?¥â?¥â?¥ I only speak from my personal experience with the NCS. I have no reason to make things up. I also do not dwell on bulletin boards â??..calling other peopleâ??s work cr@pâ?¦â?.

I never stated that you made things up, . I stated that it was unfortunate that an NCS member made a statement that
membership acceptance was predicated on whether or not we’d like to socialize with you.

Nor did I insinuate that you dwell on bulletin boards attacking cartoonists work …I was giving an example of why a cartoonist would be rejected for membership based on reputation, I certainly did not mean to give the impression you did such things.

#15 Chris Evans
May/27/2008
@ 1:18 pm

Dear Rick — Thanks for the clarification. If I misconstrued any part of your post, I apologize. And again, well done for Al Jaffee and the Reuben.

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