Comics come in many different shapes, forms and sizes: from the literary graphic novels to head turning controversial underground comix,from the simple text playful strip drawings for children to the erotic artwork of the ero-comics ,from Japanese manga to Italian fumetti , newspaper comics to French bandes dessinées.
What are comics? Its pretty hard give a definitive definition that fits all of them.
Will Eisner, godfather of the American comic, came up with the useful term “sequential art” – any sequence of pictures – which can rightly be called ‘comics’.
Comics, like films, have a primary goal to entertain, whether they are newspaper strips or horror comics. Unfortunately, the comics medium has mostly been associated with childish leisure, and is not yet fully appreciated as an important medium in which art and literature can combine to result in a visual and literary experience as praise worthy as any good book or film, especially when not hindered by any sort of censorship or comics code.
• The 90’s
Ero comics in particular trace their history to the political cartoons published in broadsheets since the 19th century. The history of adult comics can be traced as far back as the 1920s, over a decade before the premiere of what is traditionally considered the “first” comic book, Action Comics#1, the first appearance of Superman.
In 1920,One of Popular early noted ero comics were the “Tijuana bibles” rectangular, eight page pamphlets with black printing on cheap white paper with stories containing explicit sexual.
These pornographic comic books, like stag films, circulated illegally in the United States during the 1930s and 1940s, providing inexpensive, titillating entertainment during the Depression (1929–1939).Which also featured either public figures or characters engaged in all manner of sexual activity.
Most Tijuana bibles were obscene parodies of popular newspaper comic strips of the day, like ” Blondie”, ” Barney Google”, ” Moon Mullins”, ” Popeye”, ” Tillie the Toiler”, ” Dick Tracy”, ” Little Orphan Annie”, ” Bringing Up Father”, ” Dixie Dugan”, and ” Mutt and Jeff”.Most authors of these strips were anonymous.
They went into a steep decline after World War II and by the mid-1950s,mostly circulating mainly among delinquent teenagers.
In England, the star of Norman Pett’s (1891–1960) newspaper comic Jane’s Journal, the Diary of a Bright Young Thing(1932) regularly shed her clothes, increasingly more often during World War II (1939–1945) when the strip was the favorite of soldiers.
Almost from their beginnings in the early 1940s, American superheroine comic books portrayed namesake characters such as Wonder Woman and Sheena, Queen of the Jungle, in scanty apparel, often posed in bondage or with phallic-shaped objects.
The French comics anthology Pilote was published from 1959–89, and featured the work of adult-oriented creators such as Jean Giraud(Moebius), Guido Crepax, Cazaand the American Robert Crumb.
By 1974, Jean Giraud and some of his comrades had become dissatisfied with Pilote, and broke off to found the Metal Hurlantmagazine to showcase adult comics in the science fiction or fantasy genres.
In France in 1962, Jean-Claude Forest started producing a strip called Barbarella, set in outer space, but where the heroine found herself losing her clothing or ending up in sexual situations.
By the mid-1960s, there were quite a few comic strips featuring sexually-liberated heroines: Modesty Blaise and Mayfair’s Carrie by Don Lawrencein England, The Adventures of Jodellein France,Isabella (by Sandro Angiolini) and Valentinain Italy.
• Magazine and Ero comics
Risque cartoons appeared in men’s magazines (Esquire, Calgary Eye-Opener, and so on) pre-World War II, and American newspapers featured sexy, young women in the flapper comic strips of the 1920s and others a decade later.
As popular in comic grew, so birthed the Comic Code label and guideline institutions which at most prevented creative liberty. This led to magazines becoming one of the most common formats for adult comics.
Playboy magazine in 1953 and 1960 featured single panel and series cartoons by artists such as Alberto Vargas, Archie Comics artist Dan De Carlo, Jack Cole, LeRoy Neiman and,Harvey Kurtzma, Will Elder, Frank Frazetta later Olivia De Berardinis and Dean Yeagle.
Penthouse would later put out a number of erotic comic magazines: Penthouse Comix,Penthouse Men’s Adventure and Penthouse Max with the likes of Adam Hughes contributing artwork.
• Underground ComicsComics
The Comics Code Authority in 1954 was a response to a widespread public concern over gory and horrific comic-book content prohibition on almost all mature subject matter from comic books. It was a voluntary system, and a comics company could publish whatever they liked without submitting it for approval to the CCA.
Adult comics continued underground in the late 1960s under the umbrella of the CCA. the underground comics movement was spearheaded by people like Robert Crumb, Art Spiegelman, Kim Deitch, Spain Rodriguezand Harvey Pekar, and were often sold at head shops. When law enforcement cracked down on these establishments in the 1970s, many titles were left without a way to reach their audience.
• Modern Ero comics
Today, As the 21st century and the internet community grows and expands, A lot of acceptance and creative liberty has been given to this media. Modernity gives this media a platform like never before. Ofcourse, cultural stigma globally still show heads in view of what should be shown as erotic,but all in all independent artists worldwide display themselves,set up platforms based not on speculation but on quality of individualistic art and general storytelling.
– World library
– Lambiek Comics
-Shirrel Rhoades: A Complete History of American Comic Books