Comic books have been with us for ages and are an integral part of our pop culture. With the passage of time, they have become so much better because the printing quality is getting better every day. It is a universal experience for people of all ages to enjoy the graphic story telling of comic books.
The dimensions of today’s standard comic book are 6-5/8 inches in width and 10-1/4 inches in length. Comic companies do not follow a standard size for comic books. They simply choose the size they prefer for graphic panels.
Comic books started getting popular in 1940 because they were a reliable source of entertainment, cheap to buy, and easy to carry.
The most famous comic books in the world are the Marvel Comics franchises due to their huge variety of unique superheroes.
Printers suggest sizes to the author so they can produce more efficiently and distribute more cheaply. Small changes in size can have a huge impact on investment.
Comic book dimensions:
The finished design of a comic book depends on the dimensions of its width and height. As I have mentioned above the standard size of a comic book is 6-5/8 inches in width and 10-1/4 inches in length. In reality, the final dimensions of a comic book depend on the printer and the author, as there is no hard rule to follow regarding standard dimensions.
To understand the changes in dimension, let’s have a look at the historian’s changes in the dimensions of comic books. The history of comic books is divided into ages by fans. Each age has its own characteristics and dimensions.
Let’s have a look at the ages of comic books.
- Golden Age – 1938 – 1956
- Silver Age – 1956 – 1970
- Bronze Age – 1970 – 1985
- Current Age – 1998 – present
1. Golden age – 1938 to 1956:
The very first comic book of the golden age had 5 adventures in one cover and had 64 pages. In that age the dimensions of a comic book were 10-1/2 inches (26.7 cm) in height and 7-3/4 inches (19.7 cm) in width.
The golden age of action comics started in 1938 when Superman first came to the comic world and continued until 1956. It started right after the platinum era. As a result of the lack of fans at that time, very little history is available about the platinum era.
2. Silver age – 1956 to 1970:
Silver Age in history of comic books is known as the most famous era. The era began in 1956 and ended in 1970. The popularity of this age stems from the recreation of iconic characters. If we read the books of this era, we will get a lot of knowledge from them.
Some characters from that era are still popular and have a huge fanbase. It began with the stories of DC comics.
In the silver age the width of comic books was reduced a little bit and the new dimensions were 7-1/8 inches (18.1 cm) in width and 10-1/2 inches (26.7 cm) in height. As you can see, the height was the same.
3. Bronze age – 1970 – 1985:
A new and more serious theme was introduced to the comic storylines. The comic was initially only about current affairs and social awareness. In the Bronze Age, these stories evolved into more sophisticated ones. This shift was revolutionary and unprecedented in the comic book industry.
There was a slight decrease in the width dimension. The revised dimensions were 7-1/4 inches (18.4 cm) in width and the height was the same as 10-1/2 inches (26.7 cm).
4. Current age:
There was a dark age in between the bronze age aand the Current age. In that dark age, some of the heroes retired and some were seriously injured. Thus, when that dark age ended, the new modern age began.
In that era, the new title given to the Justice League franchise and DC comics allowed their writers freedom of writing without the burden of old stories. So that they can produce some high-quality and fresh content. The dimensions of comic books in the modern age were 6-7/8 inches (17.5 cm).
5. Different other formats:
It is also significant to note that comic books are also printed in other formats, such as trade paperbacks, magazines, mangas, and graphic novels.
In regular magazine format, comic books can be found in two different sizes, such as 8 3/4×11 inches (22.2×27.9 cm) and 8 1/2×11 inches (21.7×27.9 cm).
The collection of comic stories are reprinted in the new format that is called trade paperback. The size of trade paperback is same as the original comic book. But you can also find paperbacks in smaller sizes as well. The dimensions of the trade paperback are 6.625 inches in width and 10.25 inches in height. Alternatively the dimensions could be 6.75 * 10.375 inches as well.
Mega volumes are also the format of comics and are known as “tankoubon” in Japan. It is available in the different sizes and designs. The most common size dimensions are 5.04*7.17 inches or 5.83*8.2 inches.
This post discusses the history of comics books and how the story and dimensions of books have evolved over time. We also have looked through the different formats of comic books. A measuring tape can also be used to get the exact dimensions of a comic book.
1. What are the dimensions of a modern comic book?
The most common dimensions of comic books are 6-5/8 inches in width and 10-1/4 inches in height. In any case, these dimensions don’t represent a standard that comics must follow.
3. When did comic books begin?
The first comic book, “Yellow Kid in McFadden’s Flats,” was published in 1897. In two different newspapers, two different artists drew the yellow kid, which became very popular.
3. What are the reasons for the different sizes of comic books?
When we look at the history of comic books, we see they have been published in different sizes. Those sizes have evolved with the passage of time because they belong to different eras. The width of the book has decreased over time.
4. How do comic books and graphic novels differ?
Almost all comic books and graphic novels have the same illustrations, but graphic novels contain more in-depth details of the stories, while comic books are excerpts. Comic books are published more frequently, like on a weekly or monthly basis, but graphic novels do not have a specific schedule.
5. What is the right way to store comic books?
The most effective way of storing comic books is to store them in plastic bags. Remember to add some additional padding of cardboard and foam to the bag and place it on top of the shelf. So you can also protect the bag from weight damage.