Mad #281 (Nick Meglin and John Ficarra) - Viviano Issue - September 1988

Sam Viviano is one of the many talented artists on the Mad staff.  His drawings are distinctive and bold.  He started with Mad as the cover artist for the "Dallas Issue" in 1981 (Mad #223) with his great drawing of Larry Hagman as J.R. Ewing.  Viviano then was used sporadically with 13 credits in the next seven years.  Mad #281 marked the beginning of his career as a regular contributor.  He drew the cover showing the California Raisins with Alf-raisin in the lead; and he showed his artistic versatility in "A Look at Mad's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame" written by Desmond Devlin that featured ZZ Top in the first grade and the wedding cake of Sean Penn and Madonna.  The Mad editors recognized the many skills of Mr. Viviano and promoted him to replace Leonard Brenner as art director in 1999.

This issue also marked the return of the gray female spy drawn by the yet-uncredited Bob Clarke.  Duck Edwing wrote the spy page and drew three "Tales from the Duck Side" pages including the football game between King Kong and Godzilla wherein the giant lizard kicks a field goal through the twin towers of The World Trade Center. [JAM 8/31/2011]

Hippocratic Oafs - St. Healthscare
Tales from the Duck Side - The Perilous Pacific Pickle; The Manhattan Monster Monkeyshine; The Nauseating Nuptial Nightmare
Mutt Ado About Nothing - Spuds MacKenzie's Photo Album
Frank on a Roll - "If " (Revised for the'88 Campaign)
Berg's-Eye View - The Lighter Side
All Jaffee - A Collector's Guide to Stamps Sneakily Designed for Fun and Profit
Behind the Nominate Ball - The Mad "People Watchers" Guide to a National Political Convention
And the Beat Goes on ... Display - A Look at Mad's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Geriatricks - Foolproof Ways to Suck-Up to Grandparents
Ask Backwards - Really Tough Categories for the $100,000 Pyramid
Serge-In General - A Mad Look at Garage Sales
Rebel Without a Cos - An Indifferent World
Excerpts Mark the Spot - Caldwell
An Embarrassment of Richard's - A Mad Peek Behind the Scenes at a Ripoff Mail-Order House
Joke And Dagger - Spy vs. Spy vs. Spy
And Survey We Go Again! - Mad's reader Opinion Poll Part II: The Movies

Fold-In - Baseball Card