Atomic Comics: Cartoonists Confront the Nuclear World by Ferenc Morton Szasz

By Ferenc Morton Szasz

The introduction of the Atomic Age challenged purveyors of pop culture to give an explanation for to most people the advanced medical and social problems with atomic energy. Atomic Comics examines how comedian books, comedian strips, and different comic strip media represented the Atomic Age from the early Nineteen Twenties to the current. in the course of the exploits of superhero figures resembling Atomic guy and Spiderman, in addition to an array of nuclear adversaries and atomic-themed adventures, the general public obtained a brand new medical vocabulary and came across the foremost controversies surrounding nuclear technological know-how. Ferenc Morton Szasz’s considerate research of the topics, content material, and imagery of rankings of comics that seemed mostly within the usa and Japan deals a desirable standpoint at the method pop culture formed American comprehension of the fissioned atom for greater than 3 generations.

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They bore such names as the Flag, the Shield, Minuteman, the Spirit of Old Glory (the 26â•… ^â•… before hiroshima first patriotic heroine), Captain Daring, Captain Freedom, Pat Parker War Nurse, the Eagle, the Sentinel, Pat Patriot, Miss Victory, Citizen Smith, Fighting Yank, Yankee Doodle Jones, the War Eagle, the American Eagle and Eaglet, Liberty Belle, and Miss America. One could also read about Jane Martin War Nurse, “Greasemonkey” Griffin, “Powder” Burns, and F-4 of the Air Intelligence Fifth Column Fighter.

Sven Dahlgren invents an “atomic beam” machine that vibrates buildings to destruction. Unfortunately, a traitor steals the atomic fuel cylinders (as well as kidnaps Lois Lane) in an effort to destroy the Daily Planet newspaper, where Clark Kent works. 26 Once the nation had entered the war, the editors at DC Comics feared that Superman’s popularity was such that he would be expected to end the conflict overnight. So, they cleverly had Clark Kent fail the eye exam (he mistakenly read the eye chart in the next room).

Based in New York City, the industry drew on the skills of a talented generation of Italian and Jewish immigrant children. The major city advertising agencies all had “Jewish quotas” for hiring, but the comic book business remained open to talent. 9 In fact, Rabbi Simcha Weinstein has recently argued that the greatest of the superheroes, Superman, Batman, Captain America, and Spider-Man, all could trace their origins to the rich legacy of Jewish-American culture. Since the fledgling comics industry of the late 1930s was based in New York City and heavily staffed by young Jewish writers, artists, and publishers, it is not surprising that comic book heroes began fighting Fascism almost two years before the American government.

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