Decades Later, Kentucky Newspaperman Will Defy Mother’s Comic Ban

FCBD no date logoTomorrow comic retailers across the country will celebrate Free Comic Book Day, and a recent column in the Ashland, KY Daily Independent newspaper is proving the effectiveness of this annual event, which aims to introduce new fans to the often misunderstood format and to draw back those who haven’t read a comic in years.

Semi-retired Daily Independent editor John Cannon plans to accompany his granddaughter to pick up some free comics at Ashland’s local ice cream parlor and comic book store — a winning combination if ever there was one. But as Cannon explains in his column, at nearly 67 years of age he’s never actually owned a comic because his mother forbade them when he was young. That didn’t stop him from reading them, however:

While I never went so far as to hide comic books under my mattress, my cousins who lived in St. Louis had a basement full of hundreds of comic books, and when visiting them one summer, I devoured that forbidden literature. I ignored the superhero comic books and concentrated on Archie and his Gang, Little Lula, Richie Rich and Donald Duck. Thus, to this day all I know about Batman, Wonder Woman, Superman, Spiderman and other superheroes is from watching TV shows and movies.

So this weekend, Cannon will correct that lacuna with a few Free Comic Book Day offerings, “just to see what I am missing.” He certainly has a lot of catching up to do, but we hope he’ll find books to enjoy on his own and some to share with his granddaughter, such as our own Defend Comics! If you’d like to partake as well, search for participating local retailers here. In addition, don’t miss our directory of CBLDF member shops that will have displays and events in conjunction with FCBD and Children’s Book Week.

Help support CBLDF’s important First Amendment work in 2015 by visiting the Rewards Zonemaking a donation, or becoming a member of CBLDF! 

Contributing Editor Maren Williams is a reference librarian who enjoys free speech and rescue dogs.