Check out Punch, the MAD magazine for iPad users
Hey you youngsters who don’t know what MAD magazine is, go ahead and Google it, and then go find the old copies and enjoy some great wit and humorous comics. But if you had to reinvigorate and do a complete do-over of MAD magazine for the post-Facebook, post-Twitter and the post-YouTube generation, you would completely abandon the paper format and focus on the iPad instead, but of course. (Yes, I am completely aware of the fact that MAD has just launched an iPad app.) Of course it would also takes its lines from today’s Internet/social-driven Pop Culture and turn it into a sort of a game.
That is precisely what Punch! Media of New York is doing to tee. The start-up company is co-founded by David S. Bennahum (CEO,) Maer Roshan (Founding Editor,) Ethan Fletcher (Chief Operating Officer,) Dany Levy and Daniel Wyszynski, who is Chief Technology Officer. The venture is sponsored by John Borthwick’s Betaworks, David Tisch, New Enterprise Associates and Jason Calacanis. By complete chance, Roshan was building Radar, a gossip paper right next door to the old Red Herring offices in an incubator on 11th Street back in the day, so it seems he has a liking towards incubators.
What this app has achieved is taking popular videos and Internet memes and morphed them into graphical games that are interactive and oh so fun. That is all in its essence, with the added bonus of complete randomness such as clicking on an icon that leads you to a window where Bj?rk is going berserk on a Thai TV reporter. Click another icon and a different video or game pops onto your screen. That is exactly how they nutshelled their own app in the press release.
Punch! is an interactive app that is driven by satire and redefines the content experience with game-like engagement and ultra-mega-uber-razor sharp design. Punch! blends the experience of mobile game apps with real-time web submissions/offerings to present content in a way that can only make its way into the light of existence if it were on a slate. It is a new iPad Platform that encourages users to “muck around with pop culture.”
Punch! Also produces original content exclusively showcased in “The Culture Shelf,” a series of scrollable shelves presenting diverse and often borderline-bizarre cultural offerings – both high and lowbrow. Punch! feels like an interactive Vaudevillian display, featuring a range of pop culture sketches and sketches that create complete harmony between animation, sound, web applications such as YouTube and Google Maps, and a multitude of other social sharing tools.
Sure there is a lot of kitsch-value on this app, but I can tell you that the dumb funnies were never this much fun. I hope you get the chance to”muck around with pop culture” using the app. It is free to download and you can do so from the App Store on your iPad.