In the 1950s psychiatrist Fredric Wertham published his book, Seduction of the Innocent, where Wertham blamed the violent subject matter of comic books for the problems with youths.
The book freaked out enough concerned do-gooders that, predictably, Congress launched an inquiry to save all the precious children from the lurid stories and pictures found in the popular medium. The result, under direct threat of Federal regulation of the comic book industry, the main comic book producers lobbied Congress to back of as they would vigorously self-regulate.
The Comics Code Authority was thus born, with the mission being to prohibit certain subject matters from reaching the precious eyes of America youth. All overt violence was banned, ‘In every instance good shall triumph over evil and the criminal punished for his misdeeds.’ and ‘Policemen, judges, government officials, and respected institutions shall never be presented in such a way as to create disrespect for established authority.’
In other words, they industry promised to pump out bland propaganda. This Seal of Approval prominently displayed on comic book covers, finally disappearing 60 years later in 2011.
Of course, eventually strict morays began to relax as other mediums freaked out the control freaks more, and the ingenuity of comic book artists began to get around the strict confines of the code.
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