Mad Magazine - Wrapper?

I never subscribed to Mad Magazine (nobody’s perfect) but I have been told that subscribers received a copy in a plain brown wrapper labelled “Educational Material”

Google reveals several references to the p.b. wrapper, but I am unable to find any mention of the ‘educational’ label.

Was it ever so labelled?

I don’t have a definitive answer but is your understanding that Mad did it as a matter of practice or was it a one time thing?

I certainly sounds like something Mad would have done. But is also sounds like a publicity stunt.
I subscribe to the theory that Mad Magazine and Rocky & Bulwinkle were the seeds of the cynicism and anti-establishment attitudes of the '60 and '70.

(Yes, I’m being a bit factious but not entirely.)

I sounds like a one time deal to me. I know the store copies never were wrapped, and even though some friends got the mag delivered I don’t remember seeing a wrapper. If you find any with a mailing label on the cover I would say why is it there instead of on the wrapper.

When I subscribed back in the 70s MAD did arrive in a plain brown wrapper - and I have a vague recollection of the word “Periodical” -not “Educational” printed next to the mailing label. Then, for years, I instead bought it at the newsstand. When they started carrying ads I re-subscribed. (Damned if I was going to pay full price if they were going to inflict ads on their readers!) For years MAD had a white wrapper on subscriber’s copies, and each had a unique “joke” in the form of a note to the subscriber, or, sometimes, the mail-carrier. (One of the latter said “If this was your address, you’d be home by now”.) Nowadays, it still has the white wrapper, but the message is the same each month - “SUBSCRIBE NOW!”

Dick de Bartolo – who wrote many of the Mad wrappers, describes them and gives a few examples in his book Good Days and Mad

Could it be that there was a special postal rate for educational printed material or something? I know such schemes have existed in some places in the past.

The only one I remember specifically was one that had, in large block printing, “HERE IS THE PORNOGRAPHY YOU REQUESTED WE SEND YOU IN A PLAIN BROWN WRAPPER”.
Mom was NOT amused. =P

[quote=“Spartydog, post:2, topic:464618”]

I don’t have a definitive answer but is your understanding that Mad did it as a matter of practice or was it a one time thing?

I didn’t really have an expectation of one-time or ongoing. I just heard about it and wondered if it was real (plauble with them) or just a legend.

Reading the responses here it may be likely that it was a one-time joke.

I had a subscription to Mad for many years when I was a kid. It always arrived in a brown paper wrapper (akin to the plastic wrappers the Playboys arrived in that I subscribed to after I let my Mad subscription lapse), that included an extra joke. I think I remember the “Here is the porn you requested” wrapper. The magazines were never sold with the wrapper on newsstands, AFAIK.

In fact I had a subscription when I lived in Africa. In an article in the Times in the 70s, Jeff Greenfield said that he thought that a program called “Andy’s Gang” was the actual seed. It had a segment where a puppet called Froggy tormented an authority figure trying to tell a fairy tale to the audience. Kind of like MST3K if the movie started going off in odd directions based on their comments.

I loved that segment also - it made watching the 20 minutes of junk that went before it palatable.

I remember getting Mad magazine through the mail, but it didn’t have a cover. I remember folding the back cover to discover the secret message while standing at the mailbox.

I subscribed to Mad Magazine from 1987 until last year ( I hope to renew again soon—I just didn’t have the cash when th subscription ran out this time).

In the late 80s and early 90s my issues came in a brown wrapper, but it wasn’t educational. It usually had another gag, or just a drawing of Alfred, etc.

For the last few years, it has come with a different kind of wrapper–the brown ones were initiially removable, more like a slipcover than a wrapper. The white ones are stapled over the cover, like a second cover, and often feature another gag of some kind or another.

I had a subscription in the early '80s, and I’m not sure. All the comic books I subscribed to had PBWs. Mad? Not sure. CARtoons didn’t.

Shit. I’m wracking my brain…

Dunno, sorry. But I’ve bought the mag on newsstands as recently as a couple of years ago, and as far back as the late '70s, and they never had a wrapper.