Mad magazine is an ignoble institution of noble heritage. Originally just a magazine to parody other comics over time it grew to take on all of society with derision and humor. I have nearly every issue of the original magazine and I consider that a treasure. Even the tv show MAD TV (often considered far inferior to SNL), had enough bits of goodness to not sink the bad name of Mad magazine.
Now though, Cartoon Network is giving it a try. I have to admit the ads I saw turned me off. I do believe one of the things that helped made the magazine was the art. From intensely layered satiric panels ladened with visual gags to the sublimely simple doodles of "Spy vs. Spy," Mad was a magazine of funny and beautiful art. The TV show so far is not. Even when they take strips directly from the magazine they animate them in a crudish mtv way that is supposedly to give them an edge but really just dulls them considerably.
On the other hand, when I actually watched the show I could see some promise. Their initial satiric outing was a riff on Avatar called "Avaturd." It's simple and obvious. A collection of blunt objects as gags. But it pulls it off with sure fire timing and just keeping the jokes coming without mercy. Also, it was done completely unapologetically for popping in say Poppa Smurf as the leader of the blue cat group. It is something that Mad's "Usual gang of idiots" would find kinship with. I'm going to keep watching this, as it is for me on the cusp. This show can go either way with time.