The Modern Age of Comic Books

The Modern Age of American comic books of is thought to be between the mid-1980 until present day. This age saw a continuation of the Bronze Age with a notable exception. The independent comic book publishers grew and rose from obscurity. Some of the more well known people from the two big comic book publishers to independent comic book companies. These include, but are not limited to Pacific, Eclipse and First. Why would someone who had made a name for themselves change companies, In independent comic books, the writers had more freedom of expression. The creativity would have been a prized commodity. No limitations or restraints produce some very interesting comic books. With such freedom, they would be able to personify their works.

Moreover, the waned influence that the Comic Code Authority experienced was a boom to the comic book industry of the Modern Age. Horror stories and science fiction once again became popular. The novels of Conan the Destroyer were put into comic book format with much success. Given the popularity of Conan, other venues showed up. Dracula started making a comeback. Dracula once had an encounter with The Batman. The ability to fuse two genres, horror and super heroes, enabled the comic books to showcased two great characters. Thus, the artistic expressions of the independent comic books were enhanced because the readers had the pleasure of experiencing fine artwork, without the limitations imposed by the other mainstream comic books.

The culmination of changes that rippled through the comic book industry created a need for the creation of an anti- super hero. With super heroes and arch villains exploring their dark side, it became apparent that that endeavor needed exploration. The Batman had experienced a metamorphosis that turned him into a darker character. Jason Todd, who was the second incarnation of Robin, died at the hands of the Joker.

Another comic book hero that personified darkness was the Wolverine. From his introduction, Wolverine had a bad attitude. He was the quintessential anti-hero. He was a super hero who helped people in need. However, the darker side held sway. He is a mutant and knows people’s perception. He still does the right thing, albeit sometimes he barely manages to hold his temper in check.

Daredevil typifies a hero who possesses a dark side. The devil costume he wears is supposed to instill fear in criminals. Yet, wearing a devils costume also illustrates his darker side. Indeed, Daredevil’s original costume was yellow and it would be a stretch to see any significance germane to his other half. Another attribute that casts him in the category of anti-hero is his blindness. He knows he is different from the rest of society with his amplification of hearing, smelling, tasting and “seeing”. Daredevil still maintains a resolute personality, a key ingredient in any super hero.
The Modern Age of Comic Books inception is hard to pinpoint. It could be a continuation of the Bronze Age with minor changes, or it could be an entity by itself. What matters most is the comic book industry continues to evolve and create make believe characters and make them believable.