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MAD: To Be or Not To Be

Above is the last issue of MAD. (Or not.) #9 is dated October 2019 and on the shelves of bookstores, grocery stores, and newsstands now. Somehow I find it fitting that the last issue of MAD has a television satire of a fake series. This is the big Tarantino issue with my cover and a […]

Posted on: Aug 8, 2019,  Section: Caricature, Comic history, Magazines, Comments: Comments Off on MAD: To Be or Not To Be

Newly Discovered – Davis’ Pre-Garfield Garfield

  It is pretty well-known, though seldom seen, that Gnorm Gnat was the strip Jim Davis created before Garfield. Gnorm Gnat ran in the Pendleton (Ind.) Times from around Spring 1973 to Christmas Day 1975.   We know he was assisting Tom K. Ryan on Tumbleweeds until 1978, now we know he was prepping Garfield […]

Posted on: Jul 28, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: 2 Comments

CSotD: The Comic Weekly Man

Start your Sunday, (Well, if “your” Sunday is August 6, 1950) with some donuts, orange juice and Puck, The Comic Weekly, a pre-printed selection of Sunday funnies distributed to papers across the country. Can’t read them to yourself? No problem! Just tune in your radio to “The Comic Weekly Man” and let him read them […]

Posted on: Jul 14, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: Comments Off on CSotD: The Comic Weekly Man

CSotD: Loved You Madly

My father brought this magazine back from a business trip. I was on the verge of turning 8, which was a little young for it, though I liked the parts I could figure out. But my brother was 12 and right in the sweet spot. He got himself a subscription and so I was able […]

Posted on: Jul 4, 2019,  Section: Books, Comic history, Comic strips, Editorial cartooning, Comments: 6 Comments

53 from ’53

  Here’s a selection of 53 comics from the funny pages of June 20, 1953. (Click on the strips to get a bigger, better look.)   Adventures of Patsy   Alley Oop   All In A Lifetime   Bo   Bobby Sox   Boots And Her Buddies   Brick Bradford   Bringing Up Father   […]

Posted on: Jun 20, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: 6 Comments

What Might Have Been – Tarzan

  Today’s Sunday Tarzan comic strip was the last by Gray Morrow (originally dated August 19, 2001). A bit over 18 years on the Sunday strip, at the end Morrow had to increasingly rely on assistants due to a progressive affliction with Parkinson’s Disease. If ERB Inc./Andrews McMeel continue with the original run, we will […]

Posted on: Jun 16, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: Comments Off on What Might Have Been – Tarzan

Donald Duck is 85

  Donald Duck was introduced to the public when Walt Disney and company adapted The Little Red Hen fable as the Silly Symphony short The Wise Little Hen premiered on June 9, 1934. above: via gfycat   At the same time Donald Duck debuted in print as part of a Walt Disney partnership […]

Posted on: Jun 9, 2019,  Section: Animation, Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: Comments Off on Donald Duck is 85

CSotD: D-Day Plus One

  Peter Brookes holds up the mirror with a cartoon so simple that I almost passed it by as obvious. But sometimes “obvious” is  the best message, the clearest possible image, and Trump makes it obvious himself, and not only by adopting the “America First” slogan that our bund leaders and isolationists used when they […]

Posted on: Jun 6, 2019,  Section: Cartoons, Comic history, Editorial cartooning, Comments: 8 Comments

CSotD: D-Day the Sixth of June

One of the keys to looking up contemporary coverage of historic moments is that you really have to look at the newspapers of the next day, though if you look at June 6, 1944, the time difference between France and even the East Coast of the United States meant that morning papers who were on […]

Posted on: Jun 5, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Editorial cartooning, Comments: 5 Comments

Frank Jacobs Joins the Senior Strippers Club

Let me begin by apologizing to Mr. Jacobs for being a day late.   above: birthday greeting from MAD Magazine   From 1957 to 2007 (and occasionally since) Frank Jacobs was a major contributor to MAD Magazine; and he didn’t just ease in, he jumped in with five articles in his first issue.     […]

Posted on: May 31, 2019,  Section: Comic Books, Comic history, Comic strips, Magazine cartoons, Comments: Comments Off on Frank Jacobs Joins the Senior Strippers Club

It’s Complicated

  He was so good at imagining overly complicated and outlandish contraptions that his name became part of the English dictionary in the early 20th century to describe anything with an unnecessarily elaborate design. “That’s a real Heath-Robinson!” That’s right. Before those Rube Goldberg Contraptions there were Heath Robinson Contraptions. Messy Nessy gives background and […]

Posted on: May 25, 2019,  Section: Cartoons, Comic history, Illustration, Comments: 1 Comment

Jack Davis as Sports Cartoonist

    If you happened to grow up in America in the 1960s, 70s or 80s, you’ve no doubt seen the work of artist Jack Davis. Best known for his work on MAD Magazine, Davis’ art permeated American pop culture in so many ways, it’s arguable that he was at one point the country’s most […]

Posted on: May 20, 2019,  Section: Cartoonist's Cartoonists, Comic history, sports cartoons, Comments: Comments Off on Jack Davis as Sports Cartoonist

Happy National Cartoonists Day!

  above: the famous B. Kliban cartoon, below: W. C. Morris from circa 1908 Both the above and many more cartoonist related cartoons at Larry Rippee and Molly Rea‘s site.   Here is a Cartoonists Day celebration from Richard Thompson.   A couple cartoonist self-portraits:   Unbelievably, not everyone loves cartoonists.   Of course, when […]

Posted on: May 5, 2019,  Section: Cartooning, Cartoonist, Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: Comments Off on Happy National Cartoonists Day!

100 Years Ago Today – Harold Teen

  above: The Love Life of Harold Teen debuts in the Chicago Tribune May 4, 1919   As Michael Vassallo says: The strip made its debut 100 years ago today, May 4, 1919 in the pages of the Patterson family owned Chicago Tribune (run by News publisher Joseph Medill Patterson’s cousin, Robert R. McCormick) and […]

Posted on: May 4, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Comic strips, Comments: 1 Comment

CSotD: Mister, we could use some men like Herblock again

Matt Davies was, for a second time, awarded the Herblock Prize, and much as I dislike awards in general, I like this one for two reasons: One is that it’s kind of an inside job that consistently honors people who live up to Herblock’s traditions and standards. I mean, they don’t require Nobel laureates to […]

Posted on: May 4, 2019,  Section: Comic history, Contests, Editorial cartooning, Comments: 4 Comments