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Comic Book Confidential (1988)

1:07 | Trailer
A survey of the artistic history of the comic book medium and some of the major talents associated with it.


Ron Mann
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Lynda Barry Lynda Barry ... Self
Charles Burns Charles Burns ... Self
Sue Coe Sue Coe ... Self
Robert Crumb ... Self
Will Eisner Will Eisner ... Self
Al Feldstein ... Self
Shary Flenniken Shary Flenniken ... Self
William M. Gaines ... Self
Bill Griffith Bill Griffith ... Self / Zippy the Pinhead
Jaime Hernández Jaime Hernández ... Self
Jack Kirby ... Self
Harvey Kurtzman Harvey Kurtzman ... Self
Stan Lee ... Self
Paul Mavrides Paul Mavrides ... Self
Frank Miller ... Self


In the 20th century, no artistic medium in North America with so much potential for creative expression has had a more turbulent history plagued with less respect than comic books. Through animated montages, readings and interviews, this film guides us through the history of the medium from the late 1930s and 1940s with the first explosion of popularity with the superheroes created by great talents like Jack Kirby and hitting its first artistic zenith with Will Eisner's "Spirit". It then shifts to the post war comics world with the rising popularity of crime and horror comics, especially those published by EC Comics under the editorship of William B. Gaines until it came crashing down the rise of censorship with the imposition of the Comics Code. In its wake of the devastation of the medium's creative freedom, we also explore EC's defiant survival with the creation of the singular "Mad Magazine" by Harvey Kurtzman. We then move to the resurgence of the superheroes in the late 1950's ... Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

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Unrated | See all certifications »

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Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

At the end of the credits the following paragraph can be found: There are over 6000 comic book stores across North America. Check one in your neighbourhood. See more »

Alternate Versions

Available on CD-ROM with additional footage. Comic Book Confidential was re-released on CD-ROM in 1994. The video quality of the film is significantly degraded since the CD's storage capacity is very limited. The film's video resolution is 224x168. The CD also contains short FMV interviews with the film's director Ron Mann, sample pages from the comics mentioned in the film, artists index as well as further reading materials such as the biographies and publishing histories of the artists involved and the actual Comics Code in its entirety. See more »


References The Flintstones (1960) See more »


Performed by Silence Is Foo with Keith Elliott
Composed by Kevin Kelly
See more »

User Reviews

Great Primer on Comic History as well as Indie/Undie Comics
26 August 2005 | by mistah_remeatSee all my reviews

Fantastic documentary. It shows portions of the comic book world, behind the scenes that you may or may not have known about until this movie hit the streets. It's a bit like a primer to the less known, forward thinking creator producers that are/were shaping the face of comics.

The chronological/sequential time-line of the show gives you an interesting perspective on the state of comics in all their forms, focusing on the most important aspects of the industry at the time. I also like the way the big 2 are almost a side bar, with comments made about changes and relevant timely issues (Frank Miller talks Batman about the pivotal "Dark Knight Returns")

I highly recommend this movie to anyone interested in sequential art or documentaries for that matter...

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Release Date:

27 April 1989 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

Comic Book Confidential CD-ROM See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sphinx Productions See more »
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