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From MAD Magazine Back Issues To Modern Day Video Games

[image_frame style="framed_shadow" align="right" alt="MAD Magazine" title="MAD Magazine" height="280" width="210"]http://thebackissues.com/wp-content/gallery/magazines/mad.jpg[/image_frame]MAD magazine is an American institution. Few publications, let alone comic books, have had such a cultural impact. For year, collectors have been clawing at one another to get their hands on some of the original MAD Magazine back issues. From its humble comic book beginnings to its own late night show, MAD has captured the hearts and minds of fans and contributors alike and continues to go strong.

MAD magazine was founded in 1952 by Harvey Kurtzman. The format began as a literal comic "book." It was only a few years later that they converted the publication to its now-famous magazine format. With the help of some ingenious characters and biting satire, MAD quickly began to make a name for itself.

One of the most famous faces in American pop culture, Alfred E. Neuman made his MAD debut in 1954. That very first issue featured his gap-tooth, slightly demented grin with the now-famous expression "What? Me worry?" underneath. 60 years later, after being endlessly copied and parodied, the character has hardly changed. Just goes to show that some things are best left untouched.

Another of one of MAD's most recognizable and original ideas was the MAD "Fold-In." Created in response to all of the fold-outs in magazine at the time, MAD once again went against the grain. The idea behind the fold-in is that the reader would look at the back page, see one image, then fold the page in, down the middle and a completely new image would appear. These often featured tricks with words and people and usually contained brilliant social commentary.

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How MAD Magazine Changed The Face Of American Pop Culture

Throughout the years, MAD became an mecca for contributors. The fact that it was a freelance magazine allowed it to have a revolving door of cutting edge satirists and artists. These contributors knew their their ideas could thrive at MAD, no matter how strange and anti-mainstream. Some of the more famous names featured in these pagers were Mort Drucker, George Woodbridge and Paul Coker.

In the mid-nineties, MAD magazine finally brought its humor to television with the late night sketch comedy show, MADtv. This featured many original comics and sketches, but also brought to life many famous characters from the original books. The famous duo "Spy vs Spy" sketch was one that translated quite well to this medium. Although it had a good run competing with SNL, MADtv's ended after 15 years. Reruns, however, are still aired in syndication.

Although the TV show is no more, MAD has already cemented itself as the voice of American popular culture. With its hands in fields such as video games and all sorts of online media, there will be plenty of opportunity for the franchise to grow and remain relevant.

The world today is far different than the one when the magazine first started. In a way, however, this is a world that MAD has created. From shows The Simpsons to satirical journals like The Onion, so many popular shows are children of the MAD way of thinking. There's no reason why MAD Magazine back issues are such a collectors item. When a magazine has been that influential, its followers are near religious. As this magazine has proved, the entire world might just be MAD.

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