How do you know you've made it in the TV business? Well, for one of the producers of the hit CBS series Blue Bloods it's when your show is parodied in Mad Magazine. After 10 seasons however, they couldn't wait anymore and reached out to one of Mad's artist alums to pay for a Mad-style parody as a gift to the cast and crew.
"In mid-January, I was contacted via LinkedIn by the executive producer of the CBS series Blue Bloods. He was disappointed (although he used a different word) that his long-running show had never been parodied in Mad Magazine. So he decided to commission one himself, to give as a present to his cast and crew when the tenth season wrapped in April, and he wanted real MAD veterans to produce it," former Mad Magazine art director Sam Viviano wrote on LinkedIn (opens in new tab).
Viviano has worked as an illustrator and caricaturist for the past 43 years, and from 1999 to 2017 he served as Mad Magazine's Art Director. Even leaving his staff position there, he continued to draw for Mad on a freelance basis.
"I had promised myself, after illustrating Mad's five-page spoof of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel last year, that I would never again take on such a labor-intensive assignment...but this was a challenge I couldn't pass up, even though the time frame was incredibly tight," Viviano explains. "I conscripted my old Mad colleagues Desmond Devlin and John Ficarra to write and edit the script, while I, in addition to illustrating the cover and the six-page story, would act as designer, art director, and project manager."
Devlin, Ficarra, and Vivano finished the ‘Blue Duds’ parody of Blue Bloods but despite the COVID-19 pandemic cutting production of the TV show’s tenth season short - Newsarama can confirm that the cast and crew did get copies of 'Blue Duds.'
Blue Bloods is currently filming its eleventh season for CBS, although a release date has not been announced.
This Blue Bloods parody is available to the public, but Mad and many other comics are available digitally. Check out our list of the best comics readers for Android and iOS devices.