Sunday Mailbag

January 18th, 2009 | Posted in Mailbag

Q: MAD’s big 500th issue is coming up up in March… can you spill the beans on any plans MAD might have for the milestone? Will you have anything in it?

A: The guys at MAD are being pretty tight lipped about the plans for No. 500. I actually don’t know much at all about what to expect, and that includes what little I know that I cannot tell you. Rumor has it that the issue will be bigger than a normal issue (more pages anyway), but that is not confirmed officially.

MAD‘s Maddest Writer Dick Debartolo has posted the following in several MAD Message boards and on Alfred’s MySpace page:

For MAD 500 we’re compiling a list of all the movies, songs, books, famous pictures, etc., that included a reference to, or showed MAD Magazine. We know some of the most popular ones like the TV show Murphy Brown, where her office was decorated with many MAD covers..But we figured MAD fans might be a good source to find other MAD “placements”.

We didn’t know exactly where to find MAD fans to ask, and then someone said; “I know! How about the MAD website!” It’s a crazy thought, but it just might work! You can post your sightings right in this thread or email us at

Dick De

Dick DeBartolo
MAD‘s Maddest Writer

That is confirmation of one feature in issue #500. Incidentally if you have any suggestions for Dick e-mail him at the address in the quote.

Will I have anything in 500? I sure hope so. The first issue I ever had work in for MAD was #399 (Oct. 2000), so MAD will have published 101 issues since I started working for them when 500 hits the stands… 75 of which I had work in. That is actually a drop in the bucket compared to most major MAD contributors. I am sure the guys at MAD would love to have something for everyone who has ever done a significant amount of work for the magazine to do for issue #500… but that is nearly impossible. I’m hoping we will see work by some of the MAD legends that have not contributed in some time, like Jack Davis, Harry North, Angelo Torres and Bob Clarke as well as those mainstays who still occasionally appear in the magazine like Mort Drucker, Paul Coker Jr., etc. You know there will be work by Sergio Aragon?¬©s and Al Jaffee as always. Maybe they will come up with some big feature that needs tons of spot illustrations like their “50 Worst Things about…” articles and then have spots by a lot of the artists that defined MAD. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Hopefully they’ll find something for me to do for #500, but I know they won’t if I blow the deadline on my piece for #499!!! Gotta go!

Thanks to Grant Jonen for the question. If you have a question you want answered for the mailbag about cartooning, illustration, MAD Magazine, caricature or similar, e-mail me and I’ll try and answer it here!


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