Mad #21 (Harvey Kurtzman) - Bouncing Potrzebie Issue - 1955

That's more like it.  After a lackluster issue (No. 20), Kurtzman came back with an excellent issue that may have been the best of the Mad comics.  Elder nails the Thimble Theater characters as "Poopeye" battles Mazola Oil, Mammy Jokeum, Melvin of the Apes, Superduperman and, finally Mad-Man Swee'Back.  Davis does slow-motion sports and Wood parodies a Brando movie.

The classic feature of Mad No. 21 is the six pages of comic book ad parodies which included the cover.  Get out your magnifying glass and read every word.  The cover also features the first appearance of the idiot kid who was to become the symbol of Mad Magazine as "Alfred E. Neuman."

It appears that Kurtzman revealed the origin of the Mad word "potrzebie" on page five of the movie parody with the club house conversation: "Potrzebie in da toid race" and "But Potrzebie bounces!"  Was Potrzebie the name of a race horse?

This March issue ended with a Christmas message, as did Panic No. 1 (March 1954). [PSA1]

"Bouncing Potrzebie" appears five times.

Newspaper Cartoon - Poopeye! (Elder)
Science - Slow Motion! (Davis)
Cut-Your-Own-Throat - Comic Book Ads! (Elder)
Movie - Under the Waterfront! (Wood)