In the mid 1950s the U.S. Senate forced comic book publishers to adhere to the guidelines of a Comic Code Authority. The ‘Code’ was brought in to protect America’s youth from what was then deemed disturbingly graphic and blatantly sexual content in comic books.
Post ‘Code’ comic books were produced with quite severe content restrictions. No longer did artists and writers have license to create anything they wished. Artists being artists and writers being writers these talented people soon began looking for creative ways to express themselves beyond the constraints of the ‘Code’. Suggestive art and wordplay was now being covertly added into comics.
Our Sleepy Censors articles will expose many comics that deserve a closer look. Some will be so obvious you’ll think “how’d they let that through” while others will be tamer. We hope all the posts will be entertaining and we encourage your feedback and suggestions of comics you think caught the censors sleeping.
Amazing Heroes #47, Fantagraphics Pub. May 1984
Amazing Heroes was a long running fanzine that really did well in the 80s. It enjoyed wide circulation through the direct market and was known for good interviews with the best creators of the day.
Though not a comic book we just had to include this issue in our Sleepy Censor segment. In comicdom there is no bigger artist that Jack Kirby. Jack Kirby is the king of kings when it comes to the comic book media.
This issue of Amazing Heroes celebrated Kirby’s return to the New Gods. Imagine our surprise when we came across a very poorly hidden penis penciled in by the late great Mr. Kirby.
Take a look at the bottom right. Whoa! Is that a penis in that guy’s mouth? I honestly think it is and you know what? It’s just not right!