1950s TV show exposes medical quacks

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And black salve is still a thing…

ETA holy crap the prices on those devices for 1950!


Re: the show on comics. You’d think the producers would have at least positioned cue cards near the camera. The host consistently stares off to screen left. Makes him look shifty-eyed.

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They had “quacks” way back when.


As opposed to a current show that gives exposure to medical quacks…


We call him the “dime store” scientist around my house.


That’s generous.


Well they were right about the comic books. Look around you - how many comics fans grew up to be happy mutants?


The Comic one was hard to watch. The Comics Code Authority killed a lot of good books and dumbed down comics a whole. It wasn’t until the 60s that we saw the revival. I mean, that line of children talking about being scarred from comics - give me a break. I’m not saying that some of the vintage horror and crime comics weren’t maybe a bit much, but if a kid wasn’t into them, they wouldn’t read them, and 2) that fantasy of them kid napping and torturing a kid is just that.

I can’t believe it took over 50 years for that to go away.

In other comics news, I did not know this until the other day, but I found out that The Shadow had like 101 issues of comics in the 40s and 50s. Of course Gold Age stuff is so scarce and expensive, I will never see them. I wish they would get reprinted, though.


…get shifted onto video games.


I had a deep hatred for the work of Fredric Wertham and the Comics Code Authority when I was growing up. Our county library had a 1st edition of Seduction of the Innocent and I read it cover to cover. At least we got MAD Magazine out of the whole mess, supposedly.

As a young kid I was pretty sensitive and very easily frightened but I absolutely LOVED scary stuff, still do. My parents RARELY let me have comic books and then it was only Whitman and Gold Key funny animal type of stories. When I was in first or second grade (1966-1967) this kid brought in an old EC horror rip-off comic with a cover showing butchered human limbs, heads and inner organs dripping blood and hanging from meat hooks with butcher knives and cleavers and human torsos on a table below, probably rendered as horrifically and realistically as the second-rate artist was able to do.

Not only did it turn my stomach but it offended my 6 or 7-year-old sense of propriety. I knew with one look that this wasn’t intended for young children and decent parents wouldn’t allow their young children to look at stuff like that. It wasn’t so much that it was scary as it was just wrong. I’m still not a huge fan of slasher type stuff, and the first time I saw the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre I got my two bucks’ worth of adrenaline and bile, but I still love horror and dark fantasy in general.

But yeah… fuck Fredric Wertham.

I know that there are sites with public domain Golden Age comic book scans that you can read online or download, but I don’t know if they have any Shadow comics available. Street and Smith or whoever owns the property now might DCMA that stuff.

Good luck!


I know I’m a terrible person, but I really want to read the comic book mentioned at the top of the program, if only to find out what depraved sexual activity wouldn’t be mentioned, even with the “medical term”.

As long as there are pearls there will be people to clutch them. Comic books, music lyrics (thanks Tipper), now video games. Today I think (hope) that the pearl-clutchers are losing the demographics game.

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Yeah, that’s gonna bug me for a few days. A portion of my brain will be saying, “What the hell was it?” until something stupider comes along.

I think the weirdest stuff I saw real little was Swamp Thing. I remember when I was 5 or so I had a big stack of comic books that I flipped through. But one day my parents took me to some place for a baby sitter, and I fell asleep there, and they were left there :frowning:

The CCA was horrible because it was censorship, and a lot of their shit was arbitrary. IIRC Bill Gaines recounted a sci-fi story they rejected when it turned out the main character was black, but changed to white and it was approved.

Personally I don’t mind RATINGS systems, which is what games have, as well as movies. Though they aren’t prefect and, again, some ratings are rather arbitrary.

I have been aware sites with scans of old comics, but last I checked, I couldn’t find the old Shadows. All the Street and Smith stuff is owned by Conde Nast. So the characters are secured for sure, but I don’t know if the old pulps and comics have entered the public domain, or if they are protected like a lot of Disney’s stuff is.

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