In the early beginnings of the Golden Age the United States government recognized that advertising to a young audience would help garner pro-American support for the War effort. So much so, that heroes like Batman, Superman and Captain America wanted kids (and the adult parents) to help out by purchasing war bonds. But even after WWII, the US didn’t stop there. Hundreds of public service announcements were authorized through various publishing houses and even commissioned to-notch artists and writers like Will Esiner, Milton Caniff and Walt Kelly, to name a few. Governemt, and even Corporate, sponsored ads even run today and now, for the first time a collection has been published Government Issue – Comics for the People, 1940s-2000s (Abrams ComicArts) that showcase this artform and today I interview the editor, Richard L. Graham. This truly is a fascinating look into the USA’s forgotten and overlooked use of some of our favorite super-heroes and cartoon characters. Original art abounds from Walt Disney and Joe Maneely and scores of others. If you like your comic book history, and I know that listeners and readers of the podcast and blog do, then you will enjoy this trip back through time.
I want to thank Richard Graham and Abrams ComicArts for supplying me a copy of this book and if you would like a free copy for yourself, please listen to find out how.