Take this cover to The Vault of Horror. It is overtly sexual. There is nothing subtle about it. Yes, there is a very creepy ghoul coming out of that wishing well. That ghoul is also clearly keeping that guy from grabbing a hand full of booty. Oh, and do you notice how nice the art is? It's beautiful and ghastly.
The first comic books to be produced in the 1930's were mostly adaptations of popular novels. Conan, Tarzan, John Carter of Mars. You get the drift. The comic book publishers then began to produce original content. This is when super heroes as we know them today were introduced. They were a smash hit, and there was every type of super hero you could think of. This is the Golden Age period, and the market became over saturated with super heroes. It wasn't too different than what we have today.
The Golden Age lasted from about 1938 to the late 40's early 50's. By the late 40's, the appetite for super heroes waned. You couldn't throw a rock and not hit a comic book publisher that wasn't putting out another trite superhero. A lot of the titles ended. The exception being Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. They're probably the only super hero characters that have been in regular publication since before and during World War II. (And their constant state of publication creates a huge continuity problem that will be for a future card. You get a brownie point if you know what it is.) There were still some out there, but the bread and butter of comic book companies became westerns, romance, crime, fantasy, science fiction and horror. Very much like now, the kids who were reading comics in the 30's and early 40's, grew up. Their appetite changed. So the industry changed with that. There were no video games. No movies and TV with CGI. Comic books were a visual medium where you could see the fantastical happen. If you were a child, a young adult, a teenager, then you were a comic book reader. These books were selling millions of copies.
There were also no checks and balances. The company that was the head of the pack for this time was EC. Chances are very likely that you have no idea who they are. If you've ever seen an episode of Tales from the Crypt, or read an issue of Mad Magazine, then you know who they are. Many episodes of Tales from the Crypt were adapted from issues of EC comics. Below are the last two pages from a 1953 Tales from the Crypt #38 story called Only Skin Deep.
Only Skin Deep, was adapted into an episode of Tales from the Crypt where Lita Ford was the masked woman. The story goes, Herbie meets Sue at a Mardi Gras party and they fall in love. They meet at the same party every year, have a one night affair, and go along their way till the following year. This year, Herbie can't take it anymore. The anticipation is too much. In the end, you see what happens. These comics almost caused the downfall of the industry. Mostly due to the crime comics. Every title came under attack, but the crime comics in particular didn't paint a pretty picture of society. You can say that they painted a realistic picture of society. They did glamorize the things that just weren't talked about. The things that were shamed. They pushed the envelope.
Even pre code Archie Andrews wasn't such a goodie two shoes.