TITLE: Cracked Magazine Issue #200
YEAR: December 1983
COMPANY: Major Magazines/Candar Publishing Corp
Publisher: Robert C. Sproul
Editor: Elaine Ozimok
Contributig Editor: Joe Catalano
Writers: George Gladir, Randy Epley, Mike Ricigliano, Don chin, Lorin Wegand
Artists: John Severin, Sururi gumen, Bill Ward, Warren Sattler, Don Orehek, Fran Matera
Proof Reader: Imogene E. USS
Janitor: Sylvester P. Smythe
Along with the comic books I purchased as a child, there were two magazines that incorporated comic book stories and other content that were very much a huge part of my life, “Mad Magazine” and “Cracked Magazine”.
But because “Mad Magazine” were often sold out at stores, at a very young age, I decided that since I couldn’t find “Mad”, I would solely focus only on “Cracked Magazine” from here on in. Although, I won’t deny, I loved folding the rear cover of “Mad Magazine” to see what image I would get after folding. And I remember that it was common place to be at a magazine store or supermarket with the rear page already folded.
But despite not having access to “Mad Magazine”, I was cool with that…getting my influx of comic books that my mother would buy for me and with whatever money I got for being sent to a local store to pick up an issue of “Teen Beat” for my Aunt Judy, there would be an extra dollar, which I would use to buy the inexpensive “Cracked Magazine”.
Most importantly, I wanted to read anything that featured artwork from illustrator, John Severin. A man who drew with wonderful detail and he was also one of the founding cartoonists of “Mad Magazine” back in 1952 but worked with “Cracked Magazine” for 45-years.
He worked for Marvel Comics, DC Comics, Dark Horse and other publishers and prior to that, he worked with the original EC Comics. Not only that, he was inducted into the Will Eisner Hall of Fame in 2003.
The other person would be Bill Ward known for his good girl art (GGA) and his work on Nanny Dickering, the sexy reporter and stories that Cracked Magazines knew would entice teens who were discovering sex. But Ward was a regular for “Cracked Magazine” and knew how to make women sexy and if the slogan “Sex sells” was quite prominent, Ward’s work knew how to hook readers and keep them hooked to the magazine.
But for me, the pop culture parodies, Ward’s work but most importantly Severin’s artwork and paintings are what captivated me. Severin’s covers were works of art and. It was his worked that made me a fan of “Cracked Magazine” and purchased many issues until I became a teenager and became interested in girls and most of my money went into cassette tapes and CDs.
And Severin’s covers featured the mascot, janitor Sylvester P. Smythe doing something to “Mad Magazine” mascot, Alfred E. Neuman.
In issue #200, the subject is a parody of the film “War Games” and titled “War Gains”. While “Cracked” never really put the writer of the stories next to the story, all I can say is it was a hilarious and fun storyline!
Also included is “The Cracked Guide to Hobbies”, “The Cracked Lens” which was a screen capture from a film with a hilarious word balloon, hilarious “Help Wanted!” ads, “How to Buy a New Car”, “When All of Television Goes 3-D”, “You Kow It’s Gonna Be One of Dem Days”, a hilarious “Cracked Interviews Star Warts Creator, George Lucre”, “The Cracked Guide to Hockey”, “Shut-Ups” and so much more!
Surprisingly, when my parents forced me to sell all my comic books, I thought all were gone. But somehow I manage to hide a few issues of “Cracked”, which I found again recently. It’s a shame because I had a good-sized collection and found myself perusing eBay to repurchase those that I had and literally spending more on a few issues than I spent on probably my collection back in the ’80s.
But “Cracked Magazine” was a big part of my childhood from the ages 9-12 and while the magazine may have never had the budget or the longevity as the popular “Mad” which is still producing magazine issues to this day.
I’ll always remember “Cracked Magazine” and those early years of my life reading it.