The final pick in The 2019 PopCult Gift Guide is a suggestion that you give a magazine subscription or two to the person on your holiday shopping list who seems to be afflicted with nostalgia for those good old days of pop culture when everything was better than it is today and everyone felt great.
If you know someone of that certain age where magazines are still a thing and they still want to read about what was cool when they were growing up, then you can get them a gift subscrption to Remind Magazine, or Retro Fan. Both are fun, refreshing looks at the stuff that was cool back when the people who read magazines were still cool.
published by NTVB
general newsstand distribution
cover price: $4.99
Remind is a great little magazine that is published by the folks who currently publish TV Guide, and it’s well-steeped in the days of yore.
The key to Remind is pure nostalgia. They claim to cover each decade from the 1960s to the 1990s, but since nostalgia was already such a huge part of pop culture by then, they have also delved into pre-1960’s pop culture icons like the Universal Monsters, Elvis Presley, Marlon Brando, Humphrey Bogart, Marilyn Monroe and the earlier stars of Hollywood.
I’m not complaining, because Remind employs a light, informed and fun approach to their articles. You won’t find deep, probing analysis here, just the highlights and some great photos. It’s fun, and that’s really something we need more of these days. The articles serve their purpose to remind us of the cool stuff from the history of pop culture. Hence the name.
Remind also has trivia, crossword puzzles, word search, and one of my favorite features, reprints of vintage comic strips from the various decades. This is the kind of magazine that, by law, should be required in all waiting rooms. It’s a bit like Highlights Magazine for grown-ups.
Another part of the charm of Remind is that it’s a hybrid magazine, with part of it printed on slick paper, and the rest on newprint. Hardly anybody prints on newsprint anymore, and to be honest, I sort of miss it. You can find your way to ordering gift subscriptions right HERE.
published by TwoMorrows
available at comic shops and select newsstands
cover price: $8.95
RetroFan is the brainchild of Michael Eury, who edits Back Issue Magazine (devoted to bronze-age comics) and TwoMorrows, who publish a variety of magazines and books that cover comics, pop culture and toys. RetroFan is a natural extension of the throroughly-researched nostalgia that Eury employs with Back Issue, only applied to pop culture in general.
With an all-star roster of writers, including Martin Pasko, Ernest D. Farino, Scott Shaw! Will Murray and others, RetroFan is a pure delight that dives head-first into topics like Charlie’s Angels, Captain Action Toys, Horror Movie hosts, The Andy Griffith Show, Space Toys, lunch boxes, classic TV shows and cartoons, pop music and anything else that made life more fun in our youth.
RetroFan has been successful enough to be bumped up to bi-monthly status from the quarterly schedule it began with and it’s clear that they have no shortage of topics that will punch the nostalgia buttons of any Baby Boomers, Sub-Boomers, Gen Xers or even Millenials with great taste on your holiday shopping list.
You can subscribe to RetroFan HERE, and I’m sure they can work out gift subscriptions for you as well. What could be more nostalgic than reading a magazine of any sort, let alone one that covers cool stuff from decades ago?