So Mad magazine, it seems, is going out of business, except for reprints and end-of-the-year issues [“End of an era for iconic Mad magazine,” Style, July 5]. I’m sorry, but not as much as I should be.
As the original “gang of idiots” retired or passed on, the new gang pretty well trashed the place. In recent years, Mad fans have been treated to such masterpieces as Alfred E. Neuman picking his nose, sitting on the toilet and vomiting. Inside the covers, exploding internal organs seemed to be a recurring joke. Yuk, yuk. No wonder Mad’s circulation collapsed.
This is a real cry of the heart. I discovered Mad in the late 1950s as a little kid. It was always terrific news when the latest issue came out. And Mad was much more than solely a satire or message magazine. If it had only been giving us messages, I wouldn’t have loved it so much. For instance, what if Edgar Allan Poe had written “Casey at the Bat”? “Quoth the umpire, ‘Strike three!’ ” No message there.
Sometime in the 1970s, while in New York City, I even visited Mad, both its current address — alas, Don Martin wasn’t in — and its very first address, like those who visit the Sherlock Holmes museum on Baker Street in London. (I did that, too.)
Well, farewell, Mad, sort of. I hope the new arrangement is better.
It can’t get much worse.
John Lockwood, Washington