When observing the history of comics, there apparently existed the question of cultural influence at one time. Although the United States dominated the comic books market, during and after the second world war, the unique European influences were prominent.
It was Rodolphe Topffer, who lived from 1799 to 1846, who actually invented the comic strip. His stories were about Monsieur Cryptogam or Monsieur Jacob. The trend moved to America and the comic strip was developed. The first colored newspaper comic strip appeared in America in 1895.
At the turn of the nineteenth century, two newspaper titans, Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst, were engaged in a bitter rivalry for supremacy of the New York newspaper market. They used the new color printing press and the recently introduced comic strip to circulate the most newspapers.
The first comic strip character emerged from the work of cartoonist, Richard Outcault. The name of the strip was Hogan’s Alley and the character was The Yellow Kid. Outcault was able to depict New York City as many of its residents did, and to present it in such a way that people were made to laugh. He became the father of the American comic strip.
In 1890, Outcault joined the staff of Electrical World magazine. He also freelanced jokes and cartoons to some of the weekly humor magazines.
The first Yellow Kid cartoons were small and published in black and white. The Yellow Kid was only a secondary character in the early cartoons. As the strip gained popularity, the Yellow Kid received a bright yellow nightshirt. He soon became the central figure in a full-page cartoon.
The Yellow Kid showed the power of the Sunday comics to sell newspapers. R F Outcault took his place as one of the most important comic artists of all time.
In 1897, The Katzenjammer Kids comic was developed by Rudolph Dirks. This strip represented the three components of the modern comic strip. These were character continuity, sequential panels or pictures and speech within the picture enclosed within a balloon.
While comic strips were becoming popular in America, in Europe, comic strips were restricted to pictures with accompanying texts and were only in magazines for children. American comics were addressed towards adults.
At the end of the nineteenth century, the European culture of comics was exported to the United States. Producers of European comics continued to use traditional methods. After the second world war, the cultural trends in comics were dominated by the American market.
Comics today are produced all over the world. They are an accepted part of the culture.