American cartoonist Al Jaffe has died at the age of 102. He is considered one of the most important cartoonists of his time. Jaffee worked for 65 years for the satirical magazine Mad, which also ran a Dutch edition for decades. With his painting career spanning from 1942 to 2020, Jaffe is World record holder: Nobody made comics taller than him.
Jaffe was born in the US state of Georgia to Lithuanian immigrants. In his youth he moved twice to Lithuania and returned to the United States. He spent his teenage years in New York City, where he studied art.
In 1942, Jaffe began his career drawing, among others, at the predecessor to Marvel Comics and the now-defunct newspaper The New York Herald Tribune. His first contribution was to Mad magazine in the mid-1950s, after which he quickly grew to be a loyal force. Between 1964 and 2013, there was only one issue of the magazine without a contribution from Jaffee.
Crazy, but not good
The satirical magazine Mad debuted in 1952. The magazine satirizes comics, movies, politics, and pop culture, among other things. A Dutch edition was published from 1964 to 1996, which was filled in part with translations of American comics, but also with an increasing number of Dutch contributions. Dutch magazine’s slogan was “Crazy but no good”.
was the so-called fold-ins. By folding the back page a completely different drawing was created, which gave a comic answer to a question. He also edited the section quick answers to stupid questions, Where different witty answers are given to the same (silly) question.
Jaffee continued his work into old age. He did not retire until he was 99 years old.
“Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Freelance organizer. Avid analyst. Friendly troublemaker. Bacon junkie.”
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