Vertigo is an imprint of the American comic-book publisher DC Comics. It was originally created to do stories that could not meet the stringent guidelines of the Comics Code Authority and this allowed their comics to have more graphic content than their main imprint of titles. This also meant that their age-restricted titles were free to contain explicit contents of violence, substance abuse, sexuality, nudity, profanity, and other controversial subjects similar to that of an R-rated film. Although many of its releases are in the horror and fantasy genres, it also publishes works dealing with crime, social satire, speculative fiction, and biography. In early 2013, Karen Berger left her role as the executive editor of the imprint, having overseen it since its inception in 1993. She has been succeeded in that role by Shelly Bond.
Vertigo comics series have won the comics industry's Eisner Award, including the Best Continuing Series of various years (The Sandman, Preacher, 100 Bullets and Fables). Several of its publications have been adapted to film, including Hellblazer, A History of Violence, Stardust, and V for Vendetta.
In 2010, it was announced that Vertigo would become a strictly creator-owned imprint, with all titles that originated in the DC Universe returning to DC's main imprint. This includes characters related to Swamp Thing, Hellblazer, The Sandman, Madame Xanadu, Black Orchid, The Books of Magic, House of Mystery, Sandman Mystery Theatre, The Haunted Tank, Unknown Soldier, and Shade, the Changing Man. This had already been done with Animal Man, Doom Patrol, and The Human Target.