Way back in the summer/fall of 2000, MAD spent several months posting original content on its website, then called madmag.com. Called the “MADness of the Week”, these were specially written and drawn features that were sometimes “rollover” images or illustrations that had pop up gags, sometimes static images with text and later included flash-based shorts with limited animation. MAD had their freelancers produce the work, both writing and art, and then would produce the features and post them weekly. This led to a lot of quick turnaround jobs for freelancers. My first “published” work for MAD was actually on their website.
This piece featured caricatures of presidential hopefuls Pat Buchannan, George W. Bush, Al Gore, and Ralph Nader as contestants on “Presidential Survivor”. “Survivor” was a brand new show around then and quite a phenomenon. Nader being naked was in reference to “Survivor” contestant Richard Hatch, who often played naked. On the MAD website when you rolled your cursor over one of the figures, there was a pop-up that had some gags in it about that candidate. This was the first call I got from MAD to do something for them after I did this test piece that ended up in the evergreen file, and I thought I’d blown my big chance with the Usual Gang of Idiots . I did one other small piece for the website before I was assigned an actual job destined for print. MAD has been regretting giving me a second chance ever since.
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