It’s been a big week in the comics world with announcements of the ends of two influential works. Okay, so Mad Magazine isn’t technically ceasing publication, and it’s not nearly as much of a shock as The Walking Dead’s end (I have to be honest, I had long forgotten that Mad was even still in print), but still…it’s worth a lament!
Since Mad will no longer be printing new content, it joins its funny mag clones, such as Cracked which laid off most of its writing staff and is now available exclusively online, in transforming into something different. That different thing, though, is simply reprints of older material with new covers. It will be removed from newsstands and will only be available in comic shops and by subscription. My question is…why even bother? Why not just cancel the thing? Does this mean that DC is holding out hope that there may be life left in Mad, life that can be rediscovered, life that can reignite the magazine’s popularity by publishing older, possibly funnier, material?
I would be curious how many public libraries out there carry Mad as part of their magazine offerings. I also wonder if coming up with new satirical material has just become too difficult when trying to compete with the real-world lunacy we are now facing.