It's just a theory, but it's quite possible that the social upheaval among youth in the swingin' '60s can be directly traced to one source: MAD magazine, that slick devil's advocate of comic books, which fed a whole generation of Cold War kids a constant diet of satire delivered on a wickedly wacky and artfully twisted spoon. Though he didn't pioneer the magazine, the true man behind the MAD phenomenon was Al Feldstein, who took over editorship in the mid-'50s after cutting his teeth with the MAD mothership, E.C. Comics. He ushered in the Feldstein era with a new logo the infamous imp, Alfred E. Neuman and a whole new staff that included the zany Don Martin, master caricaturist Mort Drucker, Cold War satirist Antonio Prohias ("Spy vs. Spy") and self-deprecating humorist Dave Berg.
"We were orienting young people about what was going on, teaching them how they were being lied to by the Madison Avenue executives, the politicians, the police and even by their own mothers and fathers," says Feldstein of MAD's popular and indoctrinating heyday. But the time for magazines like MAD might be over. Kids, he says, lack that old social consciousness and don't seem to heed comic-book wisdom anymore: "Now I go around singing 'Where have all the flower children gone?'"
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
He stuck with MAD for nearly thirty years, retiring in 1984; now a painter, Feldstein lives on a Montana Ranch and occasionally re-creates his old E.C. comics covers for avid collectors. Many of those fans will be in the house when the MAD mastermind pays a visit to the Collectors Supershow/Majesticon Comics Supershow today from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Ramada Plaza Convention Center, 10 East 120th Avenue in Northglenn.
Admission is $4 at the door (children under twelve admitted free); call 303-347-8252 or go to www.danacain.com.
Sun., April 1, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.