In October 1956, issue number four of “Showcase” comics included a story called “Whirlwind Adventures of the Fastest Man Alive – the Flash!” With this reinvention of a Golden Age comic-book character called the Flash, the Silver Age of comics had begun.
At the time, the comic-book industry was suffering from two major setbacks. First, World War II was over, leaving writers and illustrators with a much smaller pool of stock villains to choose from. Second, Frederick Wertham’s book, “Seduction of the Innocent,” echoed accusations aired at a Senate subcommittee hearing on juvenile delinquency in 1954—in that famous hearing, comic books had been blamed for the rise in deviancy among adolescents and teens.
With the success of the Flash, however, superheroes experienced a rush of new life. Another Golden Age hero, Green Lantern, was resurrected, and Marvel—propelled by the creative output of Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and others—produced enduring characters like the Fantastic Four, the Avengers, Dr. Doom, and the Amazing Spider-Man.
Unlike the hardy, forever-optimistic heroes of the Golden Age, these characters battled enemies both inside their heads and out on the streets—their human frailties helped readers identify with them. The Silver Age was also contemporaneous with the space race against Russia, and the genre’s fascination with plots and characters that revolved around science—or some imitation of it—spawned characters like the X-Men and settings like Earth-2.
Many comic book collectors peg the end of the Silver Age at 1970, when Jack Kirby left Marvel for DC Comics.
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Teddy Sears Talks Bringing a Change of Pace to "The Flash" as Jay GarrickComic Book Resources, October 7th
introduction of the show's take on the parallel world concept, a longtime DC Comics tradition first pioneered in a 1961 issue of the Scarlet Speedster's comic that first united Barry Allen and Jay Garrick, the Flashes of Silver Age and Golden Age...Read more
Jim Shaw On Dream-Drawing, Happiness, and Art SchoolBLOUIN ARTINFO, October 7th
I met this woman, Ramona Fradon, who was a Silver Age artist at DC Comics. She produced these utterly genius comics — “Metamorpho,” she did six issues and then they handed it off. They were sophisticated, the page-design was amazing. It was a ...Read more
The Flash & iZombie: EW reviewsEntertainment Weekly, October 6th
This development will no doubt please old fanboys like me, who could go on and on about how the Silver Age Flash – a flashpoint in the development of modern comics – introduced the concept of the multiverse to comics in the sixties, and how the DC ...Read more
Mike W. Barr On 'Katana And Deadshot' [Interview]ComicsAlliance, October 6th
CA: I know that you were a big fan in your run on Detective Comics of doing stories that were tributes to Golden and Silver Age stories — the stories you did with Alan Davis always had those big Silver Age style splash pages. The Steve Englehart...Read more
The Boy of 100 Faces! A Tribute to Superman's Pal, Jimmy OlsenComicsAlliance, October 5th
of Superman's Pal into a Kirby-style action book as the surest dividing line between the Silver and Bronze Ages, as Jimmy was, prior to Kirby's run, the purest Silver Age character of them all, and a change for him meant a change for DC Comics as a...Read more
The DC Comics Roots of The Flash, Arrow, and Legends of TomorrowDen of Geek!, October 5th
The Legends of Tomorrow roster certainly isn't a who's who of DC Comics' most recognizable characters. When the biggest name on the team is comparatively obscure Silver Age superhero The Atom, it's a safe bet that calculating potential action figure...Read more
Legends of Tomorrow's Hawkman and Hawkgirl: A Closer LookComicbook.com, October 3rd
Printed on a trading card marked "Golden Age Hawkman," it is rare to find other art online of Hawkman wearing so much in the Golden and Silver Age eras. Later, when he got more science fiction-heavy for a while, he would start to suit up...but that...Read more
Ask Chris #254: What's So Great About The Silver Age?ComicsAlliance, August 21st
So, first things first: When we talk about “The Silver Age,” we're not actually talking about all comics printed between October of 1956 and October of 1970. Not really, anyway. It's certainly the catch-all term for that particular time, and a very...Read more