Mad #366 (Nick Meglin and John Ficarra) - Pro Wrestling Issue - February 1998

 Number 365 was the last (I hope) of three consecutive issues that were printed with and without borders.  I like the border art.  This was probably a test by the DC suits to compare sales results.  The four different covers of the "Cheap Gimmick Issue" (No. 359) was a clever joke but the disappearing border was not.  I think the best border to date was Paul Coker's Soup Nazi in the "Seinfeld Issue" (No. 364).

The best cover of the three [Nos. 364-366] was Mort Drucker's wrestler-accordian in No. 366.  This was the 28th cover for Drucker which places him fifth on the all-time list behind Mingo (83), Williams (56), Rickard (32) and Freas (30).  Since Rickard and Freas are not active, it is reasonable to assume that Drucker will eventually be third.

I thought the best combinations of story and art were "A Punch in the Knows Dept.: Americans are Smarter than Ever" by Geary & Snee (No. 365), "And They Called It Yuppie Love Dept.: Fairview Estates" by Blackwell & Eisenporth (No. 366), and "Bugs Funny Dept.: Starless Troopers" by Drucker & DeBartolo (No. 367).

Rick Geary has a drawing style that is simple but distinctive.  His characters are right on the money and, I especially like the cigar-smoking "Y" chromosome.  Geary first appeared in issue number 341 ("Martha Stewart Remakes the O.J. Trial").

Gerry Blackwell made an excellent debut in number 366 with his yuppie drawings.  Let's see some more of Mr. Blackwell.

It's hard to beat the Drucker/DeBartolo combination.  Issue number 367 was the 136th consecutive for DeBartolo, the most for any Mad contributor who does not do drawings.  The longest current active streak is held by Sergio Aragones (256).  The Aragones streak goes back to issue number 112.

Other things I liked: Christmas carols by veteran writer Frank Jacobs; DeBartolo's "Nic-o-Stop" ad; Jaffee as actress fan; the liposuction war by Bunk & Eisenporth ( I love the expressions on the faces of the patients); the Tom Bunk wanted poster; drawings by Bob Staake for Mad's "1998 Movie Preview" (No. 367); "Route 666."

I still didn't like: "Melvin & Jenkins" and "Monroe".  The artwork is poor and the writing is repetitive.  Monroe's mom is OK and I like the fact that artist Bill Wray usually gets Stimpy into one of his panels.  M & J should take a hike.

Other notes: Dave Berg was featured in 2 of 3 [Nos. 364-366]; Berg holds the all-time record of 323 consecutive appearances (Nos. 34 to 356); isn't it about time for "Spy vs. Spy vs Spy"? [MADlog #10 - April 1998]


The Stat in the Mat - Pro Wrestling by the Numbers
Angster's Paradise - Monroe & ... Valentine's Day
Score Losers - 1-900-BAD-PIKZ
Joke And Dagger - Spy vs. Spy
Animal Rites - Attitudes to Avid When Your Child's Pet Dies
Liar Education - College Tours Exposed
The Schmucks Stop Here - Melvin & Jenkins Guide to Hosting a Party
Jest Say No - How to Talk to Your Kids About Drugs
Jock Around the Clock - A Mad Peek Behind the Scenes at ESPN
And They Call It Yuppie Love - Meet the People of Fairview Estates
Go From Gags to Riches - The California Institute of Comedy Writing
Tales From the Duck Side - Three Days of the Condom
Serge-In General - A Mad Look at Drag Racing
Remodel Citizen - Bob Villa's Home Aghast
Geek Tragedies - Video Arcade Personalities Volume II
Grieving Las Vegas - Mad's Celebrity Cause-of-Death Betting Odds

Fold-In - Restaurant