Al Jaffee folds in his tent & leaves

POSTED: June 9, 2020

Al Jaffee has decided to retire at the age of ninety nine. To celebrate Mad Magazine will publish a special issue next week, featuring new art including his final fold-in.

They have already published a number of specials and books based around his material.

Comic Book Resources notes that

Born March 21, 1921 to Jewish Lithuanian parents, Jaffee has worked as a cartoonist since 1941. His work was first published in Mad in 1955. Jaffee drew the first trademark Fold-In, which involves an image with a question or a statement revealing a “hidden” image and statement once the page is folded, in issue #86 in 1964.

The Washington Post quotes Mad caricature artist Tom Richmond in their appreciation.

Peers marvel at the consistent satiric sharpness of Jaffee, who has received the National Cartoonists Society’s Reuben Award and was inducted into the Will Eisner Hall of Fame. “The most remarkable thing about him is he has been doing it at the highest of levels for over seven decades,” Richmond said. “That is more than remarkable — it is literally without comparison.”

Richmond thinks Jaffee is the ideal blend “of genius writing, razor-sharp wit, seemingly endless creativity and ideas and brilliant art,” yet also believes he is underappreciated. “But among cartoonists or people who really know about the art form,” Richmond said, “he’s Zeus among the lesser gods.”

For those of you who don’t know, or don’t remember: a Jaffee fold-in looked like this:

He created more than 500 of them…