FROM THE CO-PUBLISHERS…
by Jim Lee
As of January 2011, DC Comics titles will no longer carry the Comics Code Authority Seal of Approval. In 2011, DC Comics will employ a rating system consistent with that of the rest of the industry, as well as with our digital releases, which already utilize a rating system. As for our Vertigo comic books, they will not utilize the rating system, because they will continue to be labeled as “For Mature Readers”.
Beginning with our April 2011 titles, all DC comic book covers will utilize the following rating system:
E – EVERYONE
Appropriate for readers of all ages. May contain cartoon violence and/or some comic mischief.
T – TEEN
Appropriate for readers age 12 and older. May contain mild violence, language and/or suggestive themes.
T+ – TEEN PLUS
Appropriate for readers age 16 and older. May contain moderate violence, mild profanity, graphic imagery and/or suggestive themes.
M – MATURE
Appropriate for readers age 18 and older. May contain intense violence, extensive profanity, nudity, sexual themes and other content suitable only for older readers.
Jim and Dan
Founded in 1954 as a response to the infamous congressional hearings on comics called by Senator Estes Kefauver and spurred by the publication of Fredric Wertham’s book “Seduction of the Innocent,” the Comics Code Authority has long been the sole censorship body for the monthly comics magazine industry. Built around a set of standards meant to protect children from harmful content, the Code’s influence has waned in recent decades. In 2001, Marvel Comics abandoned the Code Seal of Approval in favor of an in-house ratings system much like the one DC announced above, and even though DC continued to submit its Johnny DC and DC Universe titles for approval through to this year, their mature readers Vertigo imprint has always operated under its own warning labels while other DC titles that didn’t meet the Code’s standards would simply publish without the Seal.
With DC’s departure from the Code, the only two major publisher which still work with the organization are Archie Comics and Bongo Comics.
For more on this announcement, look to The Source, and keep your eyes peeled to CBR for more on the news as it becomes available.