Preview from #25
An article from the 1982 Bystander Pilot Issue!
This week, we’ll be sending issue #25 to the printer—late, as is Bystander tradition. (We do this so the printer knows it’s really us, and not a North Korean false-flag operation like MAD.) Inside there’s a special treat for our readers, a thank you for sticking with us for lo! these seven and a half years: the 1982 Pilot Issue. Many of you have asked for this, and I’ve finally gotten off my duff and scanned it in its entirely.
We’ve spoken a lot about our illustrious 43-year-old forebear—Jenny Boylan spilled the whole gory story back in issue #10, and in issue #12 Alan Goldberg explained exactly how that promising-but-snakebit project turned into the massive publishing behemoth you see before you today…Sorry, that was the airport; one of our helicopters has crashed into another of our jets.
Arguably the last moment of a great era of American comedy, I think the Pilot is a fascinating artifact, a glimpse of publishing right as it changed from what it had been more or less since the 1920s, into the sucky corporatized monstrosity it is today. Full of whimsy and intelligence and mellow good humor, the 1982 Bystander is a wonderful piece of work, and I felt we should reprint it so that Brian, Jenny, and the many other remarkable talents involved would have their work properly catalogued, commemorated, and celebrated.
Paid subscribers at any tier will get a PDF of our print issues and further access to our shenanigans.
Anybody who isn’t a subscriber can order #25 a la carte here. I think you will enjoy it. Meanwhile, here’s a piece about the Soviet Union which…sounded an awful lot like Putin’s Russia as it struggles in Ukraine. Plus ça change.