Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Hard Sell, WWII-Style!

Remember how, in the mid-1970s, Marvel had those goofy little ads for other titles at the bottom of every page?

 Well, back in the Golden Age, there were some comics that did the same thing, except they weren't advertising other books--they were pushing the war effort:

Let's look at a collection of these, all from Startling Comics #30 (1944):

Fats? Really?
Define foolishly...? Like spending 10¢ on comic books?

If I'm too young to enlist, where did I get that much money...?


Guilt is a great motivator...

Well, yes, that's kind of obvious, isn't it?

Poor Mussolini...always an afterthought.

A litmus test...

Fats again? Really?
These continued on a repeating loop throughout the issue.

This was a 52-page comic, and except for the text pieces, these slogans appeared on every single page for the first 45 pages. Then they just stopped...perhaps someone got bored?

Still, the stories themselves continued to pound the message:

Certainly this was a combination of patriotic war fervor, and trying to keep the government happy so the War Department wouldn't get cranky about allowing companies to "waste paper" by printing "foolish" comic books. But Standard Comics seems to have gone the extra mile by festooning the slogans on every page.

It is an interesting contrast to modern times. Instead of pitching shared sacrifice and investing in the government, today the reaction to a time of crisis is "cut taxes, go shopping, and the market will cure everything." Little surprise we never see that at the bottom of comics pages...


anthrax2525 said...

The thing for the waste fats was because they were used in explosives manufacture.

Dan said...

The man knows his fats ^^^