Any child of the 1970's remembers the Scholastic Book Club. Once a month students could check boxes in a newsprint catalog of books and magazines to order. Most of the books were pretty awful like novelizations of movies and TV shows. I'm Learning to Share has a good gallery of Scholastic Book Club book covers.
Awful or not, the day the glossy new books and mags came in almost made school enjoyable. The poor saps who didn't order anything had to sit and watch enviously as you unveiled your treasures. By far the biggest hit, the one that made the no-orderers insanely jealous, was Dynamite magazine - the greatest magazine for 70s kids bar none. What made it so great? Let me count the ways.
The cover always featured a stark background with a pop icon dead center. One time it was Shaun Cassidy with Chewbacca, another time it was The Dukes of Hazzard, then Farrah Fawcett... you get the picture - stuff kids loved before the days of Nickelodeon and MTV. RetroCrush has a good gallery of Dynamite covers.
My favorite part of every issue were the Bummers. Here's a scan from the Fonz issue (click to enlarge). I guess my sense of humor has become more refined over the years - I used to double over laughing at these pathetic jokes. I was easily amused.
Other highlights in every issue were: "Count Morbida's Monthly Puzzle Pages", magic tricks, and let's not forget "And Now a Word from Our Sponsor".
And if that weren't enough to keep every 70s kid frothing at the mouth, there was a cool superhero comic segment in each issue! This Fonz issue has a full color two page Daredevil spread (in the days before Frank Miller retooled the blind superhero, making him edgy, of course, and less fun).
Doing a little research for this post, I learned that Jane Stine was the editor of the magazine from 1974 to 1977 - the wife of bestselling children's author RL Stine, who was then a Dynamite scribe. This interesting article points out that the Dynamite staff consisted of only three people who rotated duties!
"... All the noise in the Sixties helped bring peace in the Seventies. And what else will the Seventies bring? That's up to you. You are a Seventies Kid. What you do today may be gone tomorrow, or it might just be remembered as one of the signs of your time."
Amen, Dynamite magazine. Thanks for the memories.