Comics on the Stand

Friday, April 25, 2008


In his new book, The Ten-Cent Plague: The Great Comic-Book Scare and How It Changed America, David Hajdu tells the story of the spectacular rise and devastating fall of the comic book. He says comics helped shape America's post-war cultural landscape.

Comments [4]

Chris Gray from New Haven, CT

The outsiders clearly did find their way back into the business just as juvenile delinquency is now a science. I kind of pine for the old CCA and, even, DD’s original costume: bolder, less dark.

May. 01 2008 02:22 AM
Chris Gray from New Haven, CT

I grew up on comics with the Comics Code of Authority stamp in the upper left hand corner, which explains why I act like the superhero Seth Meyers plays on SNL, who gets a beating every time he tries to fight crime. My dad even figured out some way to get Marvel to embellish an idea for a hero, name and general costume, I had left in our office and within months I was reading about The Man Without Fear, Daredevil.

That gave me skewed idea of the power of my imagination, especially considering it took me decades to even suspect the agent of that power and I never confirmed it. Stan Lee hasn’t responded to my inquiry, but it is the only plausible scenario.

I knew about Zap and the underground comics by the mid-‘60s and by the ‘70s I even owned a collection given to me by a departing friend. Living with a woman with four children showed me quickly that such material had to be removed, so I sold them. Only to live with them again years later as they passed through several hands, from Myron Mercury Suraski, who got me to unsuspectingly read “Joe Blow” with him on WYBC, to Darius James of “Negrophobia” fame, to Jason Dubin, a Yale student with whom I collaborated in producing a short-lived comics magazine and roomed.

May. 01 2008 02:21 AM
Thomas Westgard from Chicago, Illinois

We have parallels today to the release of Grand Theft Auto, and in the 1980's it was Tipper Gore's music thing. The more things change...

Apr. 28 2008 02:47 PM
Jocelyn Paine from anchorage, alaska

Now I understand why my mother forbid me to read comics! I was seven in 1953, and I couldn't grasp what was so bad about Archie and his friends, or Casper--I never got to see the severed-heads type of comics. I grew up to be fascinated by animation and don't miss, at the age of 61, the latest film, but seeing the kinds of comics that sparked the Ten-Cent Plague, I conclude I might have acted as my mother did. However, I have also come to respect freedom of information and am torn by conflicted concerns--one for resisting censorship and the other for bringing up children without exposure to alarming influences.

Apr. 26 2008 10:05 PM

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