Jack Rickard

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For Jack Rickard who edited Boardwatch magazine, see Boardwatch
Jack Rickard self-portrait

Jack Rickard (March 8, 1922 – July 22, 1983), was an illustrator for numerous advertising campaigns and multiple comic strips, bur was best known as a key contributor to Mad for more than two decades. Original Rickard work appeared in more than 175 Mad issues as well as on many paperback covers.

After attending the Rochester Institute of Technology on an art scholarship, Rickard did commercial art for Chaite Studios in the 1950s. He contributed to Charlton Comics and worked as an assistant on the Li'l Abner comic strip. Soon after, he became a mainstay in the advertising field, where his work attracted the attention of Mad's editors. He began illustrating for the humor magazine in 1961.

Comic strip[edit]

In 1966–1967, he collaborated with Mell Lazarus on a newspaper comic strip, Pauline McPeril (a.k.a. The Adventures of Pauline McPeril) for Publishers-Hall Syndicate. Lazarus used the pseudonym "Fulton" on this strip, which followed the misadventures of blonde secret agent McPeril.


Jack Rickard cover for Mad #186 (October 1976)

Mad editor Nick Meglin commented, "I think of all the artists we've had, we miss Jack the most. Jack had so many styles, such a total command of all techniques. He was especially useful when we wanted something to have a real rounded, 3-D look to it." After the 1980 death of Norman Mingo, Rickard became Mad's main cover artist until his own death three years later.

He also illustrated for the original Mad paperbacks, including Frank Jacobs' Mad About Sports (1972). Some of his Mad work was reprinted in Richard Linklater's Dazed and Confused: Teenage Nostalgia. Instant and Cool 70's Memorabilia (MCA, 1993), a tie-in with Linklater's 1993 film, Dazed and Confused.


Rickard's style was in demand for movie promotions. He created the poster art for two Sidney Poitier movies, Uptown Saturday Night and Let's Do It Again, and for two Peter Sellers films, the 1963 film The Pink Panther and the 1974 Soft Beds, Hard Battles (a.k.a. Party for Hitler and Undercovers Hero). He created both the original movie poster for Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice and its parody on the cover of Mad #137.


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