Mad #188 (Albert Feldstein) - Unwanted Catalogue Issue - January 1977

Clever Mad writer Frank Jacobs wrote the self-parody of Mad ("The Mad Clearance Catalogue of Unwanted Articles, Features, Gimmicks, And Premises") that included 39 Eskimo marginals, Dick Tracy with lipstick, the Bulgarian naval officer cover, etc.  This "catalogue" lampooned all of the regular Mad formats including Jacobs himself ("Xmas Song Parodies") that was pulled from the catalogue at the last minute and used as a filler in the current issue on page 32.  One of the great things about Mad is that it never took itself seriously.  And, Mad readers always got the feeling that the "gang of idiots" was always having great fun producing about 400 pages of silliness every year.

Among the silliness in this issue, were a few examples of racial insensitivity.  Although all subjects are fair game for humor, I doubt that the 21st century editors of Mad would allow the letter "from a Harlem family" by Larry Siegel (page 30), the player using the N-word on page 42, the tap-dancing black boy with watermelon (page 43) and the marginal afro on page 45. 

This issue also had a strange panel frame drawn by Jack Davis on page 44 of "The Bad-Mouth Bears."  The frame shows the cigarette-smoking Tatum O'Neal baseball-player character talking to the motorbike-riding boy.  However, the word bubbles show the boy asking the girl to join the team.  Methinks that Davis got his genders confused and the editors missed it or just didn't care.  These are the things that happen when you hand a story to an artist.  My guess is that Davis did not see the movie before drawing the pages. [JAM 7/17/2010]

Jammy stops a runaway truck of the "Runaway Trucking Co." with her chest and then takes the "This Bus" to "OSI" in "The Moronic Woman."

Marlon Brando has a rubber duck in his bathtub. ("The Misery Breaks")

Tran-Sister - The Moronic Woman
Don Martin - Early One Afternoon on a Desert Island; One Day Five Thousand Years Ago; Late One Afternoon Last January
Double-Standard Barers - No Wonder We're All Screwed Up!
Doc-Walloper - A Mad History of Medicine
Incident Replay - What's the Story?
Berg's-Eye View - The Lighter Side of Consumers
Corn on the Card - Year-End Family Greeting Letters We'd Like to See
Season's Bleatings - Mad Christmas Carols for the 1976 Season
Publisher's Over-Schlock - Mad's Clearance Catalogue of Unwanted Articles, Features, Gimmicks, And Premises
Court Jestings - A Mad Look at the Tennis Set
Joke And Dagger - Spy vs. Spy
Split Scream -  A Mad Double Feature: The Bad-Mouth Bears and The Misery Breaks

Fold-In - Fat Cat