scottedelman (scottedelman) wrote,

Steve Gerber Was Crazy

With all of the love currently being shown online to the high-profile projects Steve Gerber had been involved with—including Howard the Duck, Omega the Unknown, and Man-Thing—I want to make sure that everyone also remembers his absurd work as editor of Crazy magazine.

Crazy was intended by Marvel to be just another MAD clone, and while it did have the standard movie spoofs everyone has come to expect from that sort of knock-off magazine, it also featured Bob Foster's bizarre "History of Moosekind" series, artwork by Lee Mars, Will Eisner, and Marie Severin, and strange photo features starring unidentified members of the Marvel Bullpen.

And, oh, yes, then there were Steve's offbeat editorials.

Here's one of them, titled "Beat the Scuzzies," from the August 1975 issue of Crazy. (Click on it to see a larger version. You might have to click on it a second time to view it in easily readable form.) It includes Steve's recommendation for a 1976 presidential candidate, so it's timely again now.

The inside front cover of the same issue of Crazy spotlights another piece of Steve's writing, this one a spoof ad featuring one of those undercover Marvel staffers I mentioned.


The spoof took off on a bizarre ad which was then running in all the Marvel Comics books of the time about Dim Mak and the Black Dragon Fighting Society. I was chosen to appear in the parody because with my shaggy hair and beard I looked wild enough to pass for the supposed Count Dumme of the Black Cow Fighting Society, though I suspect it was also because I was also the only Bullpenner at the time who had a bathrobe that could pass for a gi.

The accompanying text was a hilarious piece of writing (again, click on through to find it in more easily readable form), but due to my picture, which I've snatched for the icon above, and also because it appeared uncredited, people always thought I was the one who wrote it. But no, it was Steve, as I had to tell people again and again back then whenever they came around to compliment me on what a great parody ad I'd written.

So in the midst of the celebration for Steve's revolutionary superhero work, don't forget that his sense of whimsy also popped up in places you might not have expected. Too bad the world hadn't let him find an outlet for more of that absurd prose.
Tags: comics, steve gerber

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