When did comics shift to focusing on visual storytelling?

Listen, we all love Stan Lee. Without Lee's signature sense of humor and turn of phrase, pop culture as we know it wouldn't be the same. Sure, Marvel's continued insistence that Lee was the sole mastermind behind the company's massive explosion in popularity during the Silver Age is a tad annoying, but his importance to the medium of comics can't be understated. However, love for Lee notwithstanding, it's difficult to go back and read Silver Age Marvel books without being bogged down by his excessive walls of text that essentially recap the image you're looking at instead of letting the visuals tell the story. You know, like a storyboard–or even a comic book.

To be fair, Lee isn't the only offender that utilized this approach during the era. In fact, this comic book layout style was the industry standard. I only bring up Lee and Silver Age Marvel to illustrate just how long it took for comic books to rely on illustrators to tell a story. Even some of the best books in the era- including a host of Lee and Kirby gems- just don't read like modern comics when it comes to disseminating visual information. In the video linked above, the YouTube channel Matttt explains when comics transitioned from a cluster of panels stitched together with exposition to purposefully arranged layouts.