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Design

The Top Five Mad Magazine Covers, According to George Lois


Feldstein (center), sitting with Art Director John Putnam (left), at Mad magazine's New York headquarters in 1972

Photograph by Jerry Mosey/AP Photo

Feldstein (center), sitting with Art Director John Putnam (left), at Mad magazine's New York headquarters in 1972

Al Feldstein, the editor of Mad magazine for almost 30 years, died on Tuesday at his ranch home in Montana. He left behind a legacy of sharp parody mixed with adolescent humor that has resonated with magazine makers, including George Lois, the legendary adman who designed many irreverent covers for Esquire. Lois is known for his brash, pull-no-punches style, but he had nothing but kind words to say about Feldstein’s rag: “These days, no celebrity on a magazine cover, including Brad Pitt, Oprah Winfrey, Julia Roberts, or Leonardo DiCaprio, could possibly match the visual punch of Alfred E. Neuman, the gap-tooted, grinning boy, goofily peeking out at us on the newsstand.”

Here, Lois picks his top five Mad covers:
Courtesy Mad Magazine
March 1969

Courtesy Mad Magazine
October 1963

Courtesy Mad Magazine
April 1969

Courtesy Mad Magazine
October 1972

Courtesy Mad Magazine
December 1983

Lanks is the design editor of Businessweek.com.

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