Consider today to be a big day in the history of comics. DC Comics has announced it isn’t participating in the Comics Code, and will instead use their own branding to let readers know what is appropriate, and what is not.

Jim Lee and Dan DiDio posted the following at The Source earlier today:

As of January 2011, DC Comics titles will no longer carry the Comics Code Authority Seal of Approval. In 2011, DC Comics will employ a rating system consistent with that of the rest of the industry, as well as with our digital releases, which already utilize a rating system. As for our Vertigo comic books, they will not utilize the rating system, because they will continue to be labeled as “For Mature Readers”.

Beginning with our April 2011 titles, all DC comic book covers will utilize the following rating system:


Appropriate for readers of all ages. May contain cartoon violence and/or some comic mischief.


Appropriate for readers age 12 and older. May contain mild violence, language and/or suggestive themes.


Appropriate for readers age 16 and older. May contain moderate violence, mild profanity, graphic imagery and/or suggestive themes.


Appropriate for readers age 18 and older. May contain intense violence, extensive profanity, nudity, sexual themes and other content suitable only for older readers.

Why is this a big deal?  Marvel left the code in 2001, which means this is the first time the big two publishers haven’t conformed to the code since the 1950s.

via The Source

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  1. January 20, 2011 at 2:34 pm — Reply

    With DC dropping it, Archie is officially the only company still using the Code. It all but signals the death of the CCA’s authority, which is why it’s news.

    • January 20, 2011 at 2:54 pm — Reply

      I believe Bongo Comics still uses The Code.

      • January 21, 2011 at 12:01 pm — Reply

        UPDATE: Bongo dropped the CCA in April 2010. So Archie is the last hold out…

  2. hermit
    January 20, 2011 at 2:50 pm — Reply

    i thought DC had dropped it years ago.

    DEATH TO THE CCA!!!!!!!!

  3. January 21, 2011 at 12:01 am — Reply

    I think since Marvel dropped it in the first place, the CCA has been pretty toothless. I’d say even before that, judging by the stuff in comics when I was a teen.

  4. Matthew
    January 21, 2011 at 1:11 am — Reply

    about time

  5. Blackthunder01
    January 21, 2011 at 6:59 am — Reply

    This news definately makes DC the cool kid on the playground today. Tomorrow? Who knows…

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The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

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