Comics Archive

In the 1950s, America declared war on the comic book. People feared that they’d turn children into hardened criminals, and so opponents burned them in large piles, states banned them, and the U.S. Senate investigated their dangers.

Comic Book Murder

Herald and News | November 27th, 1948

The younger of the pair told Judge Kitchen that he read some 50 so-called comic books a week. His elder companion admitted reading about 30 each week.

 

Youth Crime Wave

The Daily Times | January 10th, 1947

I t is hard to grasp the full import of the tidal wave of juvenile delinquency as today reported by police and courts, by social workers, and by the grim lips of school and church… The teen-age situation at present is frankly bad and scientists fear that the future outlook is even worse.”

 

Comics Linked to Two Killings

The New York Times | June 5th 1954

In two Canadian homicides the courts specifically found that the minds of the teen-aged killers had been affected by crime comics. 

Addicted to Comic Books

Daytona Beach Morning Journal  | April 5th, 1948

Howard Land, 13, who has entered a plea of guilty in the slaying of a seven-year-old playmate, reads a selection of comic books with his attorney… after the youth had testified at a pre-sentencing hearing that he was addicted to lurid comic books and crime and mystery movies.

 

Comic Books Injurious to Children, Mothers Decide

The Coshocton Tribune | January 29th, 1942

Comic books are too brightly colored and are apt to strain children’s eyes and the adventures portrayed are too exciting for the youngster’s nervous system, the groups agreed.

 

Comic Book Blood and Thunder Breed Juvenile Crime

The Gastonia Gazette | July 29th, 1948

An increase of violence in juvenile delinquency has gone hand in hand with the increased distribution of comic books featuring murder, tortured and other violent crimes.

 

Comics Assailed by Catholic Leader

Courier-Post  | February 19th, 1945

Parents and teachers must join now in a crusade against comic books and newspaper strips that glamorize super characters and others tending to pollute the minds and hearts of young readers.

 

“Unfunny” Comic Books Assailed by A.A.U.W.

The Indianapolis Star | December 10th, 1941

The blame of children’s liking for these books was placed upon the parents “who,” the panel members said, “do not know and do not care what children are reading.”

 

A National Disgrace

The Dispatch  | November 14th, 1940

Badly drawn, badly written and badly printed—a strain on young eyes and young nervous systems—the effect of these pulp-paper nightmares is that of a violent stimulant. 

 

Juvenile Delinquency 

The Bakersfield Californian  | March 11th, 1944

The parent who hands a child an uncensored comic book is literally saying to that child: Meet these murderers, sadists and degenerates, observe and study how these inhuman monsters torture and kill their helpless victims…

 

Britain Has Anti-Comics Law

The New York Times  | May 7th, 1955

A bill banning “horror comics” became law today in Britain after receiving Queen Elizabeth’s approval. The act makes anyone who prints, publishes or sells such comics liable to four months in jail and fines up to nearly $300.

 

Horror in the Nursery

Collier’s  | March 27th, 1948

The comic books, in intent and effect, are demoralizing the morals of youth. They are sexually aggressive in an abnormal way. They make violence alluring and cruelty heroic. They are not educational but stultifying. 

 

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