Sunday, November 30, 2008
Just before and during World War II, the Axis and Allied powers needed to instill a sense of "pride", "duty" and "honor" among its populace. Indeed, patriotic war songs, posters, slogans, movies and radio shows stirred the masses for a war in which they felt proud to rally behind. But the question soon became: How does one rally the younger generations? The answer was simple. Comic books, providing illustrated entertainment to old and young alike at a cheap price told stories of superheros fighting the enemy, of enlisting for service, and buying war bonds. Back then, they were a tool for children to learn who the "bad guys" were, and were used as an outlet for people's frustrations about the war. Today, however, they are a source of unintentionally hilarious, sometimes quite racist, pictures and strips. Although we may laugh now, it is also somewhat frightening to realize that this is what people thought and believed, or at least...what their governments wanted them to believe.