By Darkmount1 63 Comments
A theory of mine:
If you want to introduce kids (especially today's kids) to comics, you should treat it like what level of a school subject you start with (say, History 101, then 102, etc.). From there, as their tastes develop, you can introduce them to the more sophisticated books as they go on. I call it "graphic literature nurturing". For example:
1. At age 7-10, start with something like Marvel's Super Hero Squad comic, DC's Tiny Titans or those Cartoon Network Action Pack comics. They're not exactly dumbed-down, but they're decent enought that parents won't object.
2. When they get older, around 11-14, hand them Marvel Adventures, DC's Young Justice adaptation or similar books, and reprints of older material (like, say, something along the lines of Marvel Essentials/DC's Showcase Presents, or any of the colorized reprints), along with handbook/bio comics like DC's Who's Who or Marvel's Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, or even their Index series, just to give them any more information should they need it.
3. From age 15-18, that's when you give them the stuff that is moderately violent, but not too serious.
4. From 18 and up, THAT'S when you let them read the "scarier" stuff.
Sounds reasonable to you?
*Update December 4th, 2011*
I've decided to change a couple of things in regards to some of the comments here. So, from this point on, #1 will be ages 5-7, #2's will be ages 7-14, but #3 and 4 will be the same.