Last year, inside the UNLV Barrick Museum, I assembled and curated an exhibition that would serve as a primer on the history of censorship in the comic book industry. The show, named “Seduction of the Innocent” after the incendiary 1954 book of the same name by Fredric Wertham, was timed to open during Banned Books Week, and was the first of two satellite events (and exhibits) I helped organize for the 2011 Vegas Valley Comic Book Festival.
Well, guess what time it is again?
“Seduction of the Innocent” is coming back, this time to Alternate Reality Comics, opening with a benefit for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund this Friday, Oct. 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. to kick off the week leading up to the Comic Book Festival (more about that event next week). The opening reception will feature – along with the visual timeline of comics’ sordid past and present – food, beverages, raffle prizes, and more. I’ll also be debuting a special, signed-and-numbered 11×14-inch commemorative print (seen at right), limited to a print run of 100, available that night for only $5. All proceeds from the sales of prints, as well as raffle tickets and select T-shirts, will benefit the CBLDF, a non-profit organization that fights to protect the First Amendment rights of comic creators, publishers, retailers and, yes, even readers.
I know there’s a lot going on that night (including the Neon Museum’s “First Night”), but if you get a chance, please drop by and say “hi.” The show will be up through Nov. 28, so even if you can’t make it to the opening, stop by the store anytime in the next month to check it out and learn a little more than you knew before you walked in the door. And stay tuned for more details on the Comic Book Festival itself, happening on Nov. 3. Save the date.