Monday, 12 May 2008

118: Al Jaffee – Fold-In

in “Mad” April, 1974

And here we have one of the most famous and durable features from “Mad” – a fold-in by Al Jaffee. How you are going to make it work is up to you: if you’re bold and strong enough you could try folding your computer screen, or you could print it out and fold it, or you could cut and past the left and right sections together, or you could use a sheet of paper to blank out the middle section on the screen, or (oh SHUT up!)

A nifty visual gag. Female gestures become effeminate gay gestures, and it’s worth remembering that the hideousness of 70s styles (Cuban heels and migraine-inducing clashes of colour and patterns) can make it hard to identify an actual homosexual.

As part of the public discussion about a place for homosexuality in a modern society, given various social and ecological fears about over-population, arguments were often made that homosexuality’s non-reproductive aspect was actually a contribution to the public good. Gore Vidal used to make this point quite a bit.

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