Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Don Orehek & "A CRACKED Look at an Unemployment Office"

When people are worried about the future, they look to cultural touchstones for guidance. In this case, look no further than the one and only Don Orehek and his drawings for "A CRACKED Look at an Unemployment Office."

Above is a detail from his gatefold drawing. Just look at those characters. I love Don's work. So expressive, the lines full of the love of drawing.

Ahh, CRACKED. "the World's Humorest Funny Magazine." Remember CRACKED? Above is the cover of CRACKED No. 139, January 1976. Copyright 1976 by Major Magazines Inc. It's an expertly drawn cover by John Severin, who was probably the busiest of the stable of CRACKED artists. His ability to caricature is very much on the mark, without resorting to outlandish visual hyperbole. He did the bulk of the CRACKED cover art for 40 years.

And, below, is "A CRACKED Look at an Unemployment Office," drawn by Don Orehek, with writing by one of the stable of writers at CRACKED. The articles are, unlike MAD, uncredited. Joe Catalano, George Gladir and Bob Rafferty are listed as the writers on the masthead. Click the below to super-size this great work by Don:

And that's not all. If Severin was the busiest artist bee at CRACKED, than Don was absolutely no slouch. He has nine pages in this 52 page issue.

Here are just three samples from one four page feature titled "CRACKED Looks at the World of Superdom."

Above and below, a smartly dressed woman (dig that hat!) has a problem that she has learned to solve.

And we have the below comment on those who put on tights and capes and prance around ....

I really was just going to post the Unemployment gatefold above, but I got carried away by sharing Don's terrific cartoon art.

You can see Don's cartoons regularly in Playboy magazine.


Mark Anderson said...

Man oh man that's some nice stuff! LOVE the Wonder Woman in the phone booth!

Mike Lynch said...

Don is a great guy.

BarryCorbett said...

Wow, he's really good. I remember seeing his work as a kid and not knowing his name. They did have some talented people on that magazine. At least Mad would credit the artists. We all knew the work of Drucker, Aragones, Davis, etc. Of course, Drucker was the Babe Ruth of caricaturists.

John R. Platt said...

Little-known fact: All of the stored negatives for the entire history of Cracked had to be destroyed following the Anthrax attack on that publisher in Florida.