Comic Book Color Palette: Are You a Hero or a Villain? [Infographic]

Color schemes in comic books and strips are usually not noticed, but the age-old division of what’s dark and what’s ‘light’ holds true to these strips as well.

by COLOURlovers via

In an infographic that depicts the color palettes used in comic books, one can see the archetypes of colours just as Carl Jung would have seen it. The darker shades are reserved for the villains, and the lighter ones for the heroes. Only, sometimes would a confused and anti-establishment comic hero would be assigned a dark shade. Batman, for instance donned black in 1990 and the Spiderman too changed from the famous Red & Blue to an acrid black in 1984. However, he was quickly given a makeover and he was back to the ‘pleasing’ colors of red and blue.

The Comic Book Color Palette neatly and graphically paints a picture of all the colors that are used by comic production companies who have used color combinations just as the colors have significance in each of our colours. For instance, purple, which is usually associated with poison, is given to the villain, where as white is usually assigned to the Messiah-type hero. However, what piques me the most is the usage of black as the colour of villainy of all sorts. The colour still evokes feelings of darkness, vitriol and vileness that most villains would easily fit into the color, or so the comic production companies try to tell us. It is rather difficult to change old archetypes all over a sudden.

Humans have associated darkness with all things that are unknowable, mysterious and possibly harmful. The dark forest usually holds all the demons and monsters which are better left alone. Outside the forest though, the green meadows and bright blue skies shower their azure light on various colors of flowers, signifying happiness, prosperity and most importantly, safety. Thus, the colorful and the bright shades are reserved for the good guys. This dichotomy has been challenged in many instances, like I mentioned how both Spiderman and Batman went completely black for a short while.

The infographic also tells you a lot about what each color means, and why comic production houses typically use these colors for particular personalities. Just read throgh the infographic, and I am sure that will tell you a lot about how the color archetypes are deeply embedded in our collective unconscious. These color archetypes are revealed and expressed in art forms, including comic strips. You could also check out other cool infographics like the Geeks vs Nerds Infographic and the Illiteracy Infographic.