For as much as I love the madness that was the comics of the 1990s, I cannot even imagine how incredible it must have been to be a comic-loving kid (or weird comic loving adult) in the 1950/60s period known as The Silver Age.

Within this gallery, I've put together only the smallest of fractions of some of the entertaining, out-of-context fun that Batman's 75 years of non-stop published stories have afforded us. Try your best to make sense of them.

Comics, and specifically superhero comics, had been big business since Superman’s debut in 1938, and reached even greater heights of circulation and public interest when both kids and servicemen were reading them during World War II. But following the war, superheroes fell out of fashion as crime, mystery, and horror comics became more popular. When crackpots started trying to blame all of society’s ills on those darn, awful comic books, as crackpots always seem to do with whatever is popular with the young people at the time, superheroes were given a new lease on life, and The Silver Age was born.

Superhero comics in the past had been weird, moody, atmospheric, and had no problem showing evil-doers meeting their fates in fantastically violent ways, but after all the horror comics were run out of Comicville, and the industry chose to regulate itself with the Comics Code, superheroes had to find new ways to be weird. So, in lieu of violence and anything that might be deemed too scary, superheroes got more lighthearted, but also much more bizarre.

Batman comes from such a dark and moody place, it would be hard to imagine how light-hearted and fun his adventures became if we weren't already aware of the Batman TV show with Adam West, but it must have been incredible and mystifying watching the shadowy avenger of the underworld transition into the day-glow defender of the status quo. Even without super-powers, the creators behind Batman's evolving persona would find ways to put the Caped Crusader in wild situations that stretched the imagination, but also just went ahead and gave him super-powers if an issue called for it. Strange, wild times.


Enjoy More of the Weirdest Silver Age Comic Panels


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