Appearance on CGS Episode 794 – The Early Days of DC Comics

Needless to say, I had a great time appearing on Episode 794 of Comic Geek Speak to discuss the early days of DC Comics.

We discuss the period from 1935 through approximately 1947.  These were the formative years of the company and the great characters they published.  Thanks to the guys at CGS for inviting me to be on the show as we all celebrate 75 years of DC Comics!

You can listen to the episode by clicking on the player, below.


About Bill Jourdain

Bill is the host of the Golden Age of Comic Books Podcast. Learn more about Bill in the "About Bill" page to this site.
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8 Responses to Appearance on CGS Episode 794 – The Early Days of DC Comics

  1. Pat Curley says:

    Great stuff, Bill! Movie Comics is a weird one. They had comics based on actual movies that were current at the time. There was artwork, but the faces on the characters were taken from photos, which makes it a very weird hybrid.

  2. Sam Kressin says:

    A great pod cast really enjoyed listening to it. I really like listening to all your podcasts Bill they are both educational and entertaining. While listening to this podcast discussion I was just thinking about was how in 1938 a 64pg comic book costs 10 cents. The first federal minimum wage was also established this year at 25 cents an hour. Today a 32pg comic book costs about $3.99 a 64pg book probably about $5.00 and the federal minimum wage is $7.25 and hour. So today either comic books are too expensive or minimum wage is too low?

  3. Pat Curley says:

    Sam, minimum wage was around $1.50 in 1968, when 32-pg comics were 12 cents, so that’s probably right around the “comic book optimum”; unfortunately the prices rose dramatically from there.

  4. I agree with Pat. It took many years for books to go from 10 cents to 12 cents, but of course page count and size got smaller and smaller. After the change to 12 cents, the prices went up pretty quickly to 15, 20, 25 and beyond. I was reading a Silver Age Action, Adventure or Superman recently (yes, I read Silver Age books, too!) and found a full page letter from DC to its readers (kids at the time) explaining why they had to go from ten to twelve cents. It was apologetic and put things in terms of the rising costs of everything else. Pat may be able to find a copy and post it on his blog.

  5. Sam Kressin says:

    Wow that’s amazing thanks for the replies. Do you think that the rise in comic book prices is a result a disparity in wage vs. inflation increases or a change in the demographics of comic book readers. Today there are fewer issues sold per-month and a smaller / older demographic of readers. But I’m not sure how much that’s influenced the increase in the price of comic books?

  6. Pat Curley says:

    Sam, there are obviously a lot of factors involved; the price of paper, the price of ink, general inflation (which means that creators and editors have to be paid more), shrinking circulation, etc. I know that in the old days the comics companies actually lost money on the comics themselves. That is, the five or six cents sent by retailers in for their sold copies did not cover the cost of producing and printing. It was only the advertising revenue that made the business profitable, and of course the per-page ad rates had to drop as circulation dropped. Certainly the price increases since 1968 are wildly out of line with general inflation. General inflation has probably increased prices by about five times, while comics have risen to 25-30 times their old price.

  7. Sam Kressin says:

    Thanks Pat your incite has already helped me further research this topic. I appreciate the replies.

  8. John Hoppin says:

    ~~explaining why they had to go from ten to twelve cents.~~~
    The used the same letter verbatim in 1969 to explain the jump from 12 to 15 cents.

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