I was surfing the web and came across the following page:
http://www.seanbaby.com/stupcom/comicscode.htm and I had a question about the Comics Code Authority. I’m sure this is the actual material (even though the web site is somewhat crass in its approach to comics and superheroes, it seems to draw from reliable info).
Why do comics follow these rules? Why does it matter if a comic is published under the CCA? Are the guidelines cast in stone? Especially: “5) Scenes dealing with, or instruments associated with walking dead, torture vampires and vampirism, ghouls, cannibalism, and werewolfism are prohibited.”
There are many stories that depict vampires, vampirism and lycanthropy, ones that came with the CCA on the cover. I remember BATMAN #s 350-351, There was a character in the Team Titans as well. Not to mention Moebius from Marvel.
And what’s a “torture vampire”?
— Sean Leonard (Leonardsean@hotmail.com)
When the Comics Code was first established in the 1950s, it was far more important (at least in the minds of the publishers) than it has been for the past 25 years. These days, I would say it hardly matters at all whether a book has the seal on it or not; there are very few potential customers who have any idea what it stands for.
The original Code was modified in the 1970s, allowing vampires, werewolves, etc. to appear in the books.
And “torture vampire” is a typo – there’s a comma missing between the two words.
I’m wondering if there’s a place to go in comics as an idea person, someone who creates properties vs. applying for a job as a writer or an artist? I have completely developed projects that include scripts, bios, and plots. I’ve even hired artists for portfolios. While I use these works as film/TV samples I would love to get them started as comics. Is it realistic to pitch these to a comic company? Do you need an artist onboard? Do they buy ideas?
— Scott Lenzi (email@example.com)
I can’t think of anyone whose job has been “idea man,” though a lot of that responsibility used to fall upon the editors. The only way to find out the answer is to contact various publishers and see if they are interested in what you have put together.
Sometimes in comics, especially in older ones, the lettering for the dialogue balloons will have some words in bold and some words in regular text. Is there any rhyme or reason to this? I’ve heard a number of theories such as “the words in bold receive extra spoken emphasis” and critics which state that “such a constant up-and-down emphasis level would sound ridiculous, making Batman’s dialogue sound like he’s singing a song.” Or is there no reason at all? Just curious.
— Jason Borlinghaus (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The intention is to put more emphasis on those words. You’re right about one thing: In many cases, it would seem like a rather odd speech pattern.
I have a BATMAN comic book with a printing error. On the second page where all the information is printed, it lists the comic book as number #000 instead of its real number. Have you ever heard of that? Seen it? Is it worth anything?
— Ruben (email@example.com)
Every copy of the book has the exact same error – a production artist neglected to paste the correct number into the indicia (or it fell off) and the problem was not noticed. It is unlikely that it is the only time that has ever occurred. Like every other comic book, it is worth what someone will pay you for it.
Okay, time for a really geeky question here: I just re-read the entire HERO HOTLINE series (a great piece of work, btw). And I noticed that in one issue, there is a dog-faced member of the Hotline telephone answering staff. Was this by any chance supposed to be Denton Fixx, the dog-faced pal of ‘Mazing Man?
— Ola “Hellstone” Hellsten (firstname.lastname@example.org)
No. It was probably one of Denton’s long-lost cousins, though.
Has Commissioner Gordon ever shot and killed anyone while either on or off duty? Was there any subsequent punishment if such an event occurred?
I asked my pal Bob Greenberger if he remembered any such story, but neither of us could come up with one. It would seem likely that Gordon fired his gun at some point, though.
Since Sci-Fi TV/film icons such as STAR TREK, STAR WARS, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA and the like were the rage in comics back in the late 1970s/early 80s, why didn’t Marvel or DC at the time do comics adaptations of the popular detective/crime/adventure shows of those periods (such as HAWAII FIVE-O, KOJAK, THE ROCKFORD FILES, BARETTA, STARSKY & HUTCH, CHARLIE’S ANGELS, etc.)? Was it licensing problems?
— Sherman Williams (Orson7@yahoo.com)
Obviously, the powers-that-were did not see enough of a potential market for such books to pay to license the properties.
Who are Super Islaw, Panday, Batang X, Darna, Bagwis, Captain Barbel, Pedro Panduko, Commander Bawang, and Lastikman?
— Jesus (email@example.com)
I have no idea. Anyone?
How many different people have played Superman?
— Marisha (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I presume you’re asking for major media, not how many people have dressed up in their Underoos and pretended to be the Man of Steel. So there are Kirk Alyn, George Reeves, Christopher Reeve, and Dean Cain in movies and TV (plus Jeff East, John Haymes Newton, Gerard Christopher, and Tom Welling as “Superboy”); Bud Collyer on the radio; and Bob Holiday on the Broadway stage.
What blood type would Black Canary be? In FLASH #219, it’s stated that she has a “RH Negative blood type…very rare!” which might lead you to believe she’s AB-Negative. But, she can only accept blood from someone of the same type, which makes you think that she’s O-Negative, which is less rare. Which one is the case?
— Orville Eastland (email@example.com)
The case is most likely that Denny O’Neil, who wrote the story, got confused about blood types.
Not a question, just want to say, thank you, Bob. I knew Archie had a superhero alter-ego, I just couldn’t remember his name. What about (Okay, I’ve got a question after all) the rest of the gang?
— Marlon Wong (Marlonwong@hotmail.com)
Jughead was Captain Hero. Reggie was Evilheart.
I am interested in a subscription to JOHN CARPENTER’S SNAKE PLISSKEN CHRONICLES. How do I go about getting this and issues I have already missed?
I’d suggest you start at the source, CrossGen Comics. Click on over to their website at http://www.crossgen.com/
In a recent issue of JLA, Bruce Wayne is seen on an “almost date” with Diana. However, the “Hush” story line in the Batman book, he is seen romantically linked with Catwoman. Are these stories taking place at different times? Are the two books completely independent of one another (no continuity of character in different titles)? Or is this in another reality?
— Ever Lovin, Blue Eyed Dawson (MrThatGuy@hotmail.com)
Bruce, wealthy playboy that he’s supposed to be, toys with the hearts of more than one woman. Since he’s not married, he’s certainly free to date a variety of interesting women if he chooses to.
Everyone seems to have an opinion on this subject and I’d love to hear your take on it. Do you think Billy Batson turns into a grown version of himself when he says “Shazam” or is he a grown man with the mind of a boy?
— Blue Burke (SCStingRays2002@yahoo.com)
I have finally collected all the MAN FROM ATLANTIS comics based on the TV series with Patrick Duffy. Loved the series and loved the comics, but the end of #7 it has a huge open ending. Has there ever been a #8? And if it got cancelled…WHY…I HATE open endings!!
— Richard Boom (firstname.lastname@example.org)
There were only the seven issues and it got cancelled for the same reason virtually every other cancelled comic book in history goes bye-bye – not enough people bought it.
Do comic characters eventually become public domain like Cinderella or Snow White and such? I’m curious because AC Comics publish some books featuring old superhero titles.
— Andy Salendu (email@example.com)
Comic book characters fall into the public domain if their publishers do not maintain copyrights and trademarks on them. This is the case with many Golden Age characters, whose publishers have long since faded from existence. It is highly unlikely that you will see characters owned by DC, Marvel, et al falling into the public domain during your lifetime.
I was wondering if you know the deal with Marvel and Kevin Smith…what I mean is, when are his comics going to be released? Specifically, SPIDER-MAN/BLACK CAT THE EVIL THAT MEN DO #4.
— Trinh Pham (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The issue will undoubtedly appear when it is finally completed. The “deal” between Marvel and Smith is the same as it is with most “hot” writers and artists – the publishers are so happy to have ANYTHING by them that they allow these stars to deliver material whenever they get around to it.
Actually, the Crime Syndicate (and all of Earth-3) was destroyed in CRISIS, though they were brought back by Grant Morrison in the JLA: EARTH 2 graphic novel. I have yet to receive JLA/AVENGERS #1 (on it’s way by snail-mail to Israel), but I have to assume that the story is out of continuity.
— Harry Tzvi Keusch (email@example.com)
A case of “they were dead but they got better.”
In answer to Kurt Busiek’s question about the Clark Bar Sweepstakes, I believe the DC winner did appear in a DC comic. I think the winner appeared in a team-up between Superman and Hawkman in DC COMICS PRESENTS #11. I know a contest winner appeared in that issue but unfortunately it is buried so I can’t verify that it was for the Clark Bar contest. If so, the winner made more than a cameo as Superman took him on a tour and ended up giving Superman a clue about what was wrong with Hawkman.
— Mike Gernand (firstname.lastname@example.org)
D’oh! I just read your Sept. 8 column, wherein you posted my response to the Batman/ Catwoman kissing question – ” they first kissed way back in BATMAN #1 (Fall, 1940)” — and immediately realized that this was the wrong issue number! I had the date right — it WAS Fall, 1940 — but it was issue #3, not #1. Issue #1 contained Catwoman’s first appearance; it wasn’t until her third story (in which she first wore a cat costume) that she kissed Batman. I don’t know how I typed “1” instead of “3.” It wasn’t as if I’d dredged this up from the back of my hazy memory — I had just looked it up, right before I wrote it! Aarrghh!
— Dave Potts (email@example.com)
Re: the Spider-Man costume originally being black and red: I once got a look at an original copy of AMAZING FANTASY #15, and in it, the spider on Spider-Man’s back is colored blue. Since it couldn’t have been meant to be blue on blue, the costume must have been intended to be black.
— Mike Thomas (mthomas@creativeGIANT.net)
Bob, Bob, Bob. How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop??? As the owl told us all through the 70s “T-T-T-T-T-THREE! =crunch!=”
— Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org)
RETURN OF THE DEPARTMENT OF SILLY QUESTIONS (AND/OR ANSWERS):
Do you remember a comic called OMAC?
— D Moran (email@example.com)
Yes, I do. (Oh, I guess you’d like me to mention that the original Jack Kirby series ran for eight issues in 1974-75. John Byrne brought the One Man Army Corps back in a four-issue miniseries in 1991.)
What happens in the Wonder Woman story “The Case of the Girl in Braces” (SENSATION COMICS #50)?
I don’t have a copy of that issue, so I suspect we will have to wait until it appears in a volume of WONDER WOMAN ARCHIVES to find out.
Is there such a thing as X-Men pogs?
— Randy (Hseveneleven@aol.com)
If there are, I’ll bet someone has a stockpile of them and thinks they are going to be worth millions of dollars someday.
Please tell me the nickname of Ron Hinkley in a show from the 60s.
— John (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I love when people have a trivia question from somewhere else that they need an answer for and send it to me – even if it has nothing to do with comic books. In any case, ROY Hinkley is the real name of the Professor on “Gilligan’s Island.”
Why did the Egyptians take all the organs apart from the heart out of a dead person?
Because they were there?
How was Paul Levitz allowed to kill off the Earth-2 Batman, as I thought he was a fascinating character as the commissioner.
— Randy (email@example.com)
He’s President and Publisher of DC, so he can do anything he wants.
I keep seeing on Marvel’s website a new ULTIMATE DAREDEVIL AND ELEKTRA series. The first issue, according to the site, is to ship soon, and there are subsequent books of that title in following months. Is this an error or is it real?
— Jim Jones (firstname.lastname@example.org)
If it’s on Marvel’s own site, one would presume it’s real. Why would they lie?
Is there any way that I can still get a Kurt Cobain lunch box? I cannot find them anywhere. Please help me find one.
— Amanda (email@example.com)
I’ll look around my attic, but WHY do I get these questions????
What bat powers does Batman have?
— Bruce Dwayne (firstname.lastname@example.org)
He STRIKES at criminals and HITS them where it hurts!
What was the first movie tie-in toy given away with a McDonalds Happy Meal?
— Lando Griffin (SCStingRays2002@yahoo.com)
The “Citizen Kane” sled?
Why aren’t there any comic book heroes or groups based in the modern metropolis that Farmingdale, Long Island is?
— Kevin (email@example.com)
Ever since “Gabriel’s Horn” closed and the Teen Titans moved away, nobody’s interested in setting up headquarters there. The groups seem to prefer caves, mansions and the moon these days, none of which are available in Farmingdale.
Time for me to go scout out possible headquarters for super-groups. While I’m gone, don’t forget your daily dose of my Anything Goes Trivia at http://www.worldfamouscomics.com. And I’ll see you back here next week.
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Copyright ? 2000 to 2003 by Bob Rozakis. All Rights Reserved.