Comics aren’t just about superheroes saving the day. In fact, some of the best comics ever created have nothing to do with capes or spandex. From epic space operas to gritty crime dramas, the world of non-superhero comics is vast and diverse, offering up stories and characters that are just as compelling and engaging as any superhero tale. we’ve compiled the 20 best non-superhero comics of all time, featuring some of the most beloved and acclaimed comics ever published. From the post-apocalyptic world of “The Walking Dead” to the surreal dreamscape of “The Sandman,” these comics will take you on a journey you won’t soon forget. So, whether you’re a die-hard fan of the superhero genre or just looking to explore new horizons, these comics are sure to capture your imagination and leave you wanting more.
20 Best Non-Superhero Comics of all Time
I must say that the series about the two star-crossed lovers caught in an interplanetary war is an absolute masterpiece. The story begins with the birth of their daughter, Hazel, and follows their journey across space as they try to escape the clutches of the government and its hired bounty hunters. The imaginative plot and the beautiful artwork make this series a must-read for any fan of comics. From a lie-detecting cat to people with televisions for heads and a forest that grows autonomous spaceship-trees, the creativity and imagination of the series is unparalleled. It is not only a fantastic read for those who love comics but also an excellent introduction to the world of comics for new readers.
East of West
One of Image’s most intriguing comic series is a sci-fi western featuring the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. The heroes are unique, with one of the horsemen, Death, resembling Clint Eastwood. However, Death’s take on the apocalypse differs from his three counterparts, causing him to leave them behind. The story is complex, with an epic feel to it, and the artwork is breathtaking. The pages are filled with bright colors, and the story is rich with texture. The idea behind the comic is fantastic, and the love story aspect of Death is an unexpected and fascinating twist.
A unique take on beloved fairy tale characters, this comic series follows their lives after being exiled from their Homeland by “The Adversary”. Now living in secret in Manhattan’s Upper West Side, these characters have formed a society known as Fabletown, trying to blend in with the “mundy” citizens and fight for their survival. The first volume is a thrilling murder mystery, with a reformed Big Bad Wolf serving as the sheriff of Fabletown, while subsequent volumes offer their own twists and turns, giving each one a unique feel that sets this series apart.
The Walking Dead
It’s hard to deny the significance of Robert Kirkman’s zombie epic, a comic book masterpiece that has left an indelible mark on the industry. With its gritty, unflinching portrayal of survival in a post-apocalyptic world, The Walking Dead has captured the hearts of comic fans everywhere. The series is a triumph of storytelling, filled with unforgettable characters, breathtaking art, and jaw-dropping plot twists. It’s a true horror comic that constantly pushes the boundaries, delivering thrilling scares and suspenseful moments that will leave you breathless. Its impact is felt not only in comics but in popular culture, with its influence on the zombie genre undeniable.
Y: The Last Man
For those seeking non-superhero comics, Brian K. Vaughan’s Y: The Last Man is a must-read. This 60-issue series tells a post-apocalyptic tale filled with adventure that will keep you hooked from start to finish. It centers around a young man named Yorick and his pet monkey, Ampersand, who are the only surviving males after a mysterious event wipes out all others with a Y chromosome. Set in a dystopian world, the story explores themes of survival, gender, and the human condition.
Watson and Holmes
A comic book that has been making waves recently is A Study in Black, which is a modern-day retelling of the Sherlock Holmes story, but with two African American protagonists living in Harlem. In this version, Watson is an Afghanistan war veteran working in an inner-city clinic, while Holmes is a private investigator. The two team up after a case of Holmes’ ends up in the emergency room where Watson works. The project was successfully funded on Kickstarter, and it received an Eisner award nomination in 2013. While the idea of reimagining classic characters in a modern setting is not new, A Study in Black puts a unique spin on the concept.
With its unique blend of pop culture references, humor, and video game elements, Bryan Lee O’Malley’s beloved comic series has gained a devoted following over the years. It follows the adventures of a slacker musician named Scott as he navigates his love life and battles against the evil exes of his crush, Ramona Flowers. The artwork is colorful and dynamic, and the writing is witty and engaging. Although the series is often compared to manga, it stands on its own as a unique and entertaining story that speaks to a generation of fans.
Afterlife With Archie
Archie Comics have been around for over 80 years, but Afterlife with Archie is not your typical Riverdale story. This horror series takes the iconic characters and throws them into a world where the dead come back to life. When Jughead’s dog is killed in a hit-and-run, Sabrina the Teenage Witch tries to bring him back to life with disastrous consequences. The gang must navigate a post-apocalyptic Riverdale filled with zombies. The series is a thrilling take on the familiar characters, with a darker tone and adult themes that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
Frank Miller is a legend in the comic book world, having written some of the most iconic stories in the medium. Sin City, his noir masterpiece, is an essential read for fans of the genre. The gritty story follows Marv, a tough-as-nails loner who sets out to avenge the murder of his dream woman, Goldie, in a corrupt and dangerous city. The stark black-and-white artwork perfectly captures the dark and moody atmosphere of the story. If you’re a fan of Miller’s previous work or just love a good noir tale, you won’t want to miss Sin City.
Tim Seeley’s macabre comic series, Revival, is a dark and twisted take on the classic zombie genre. The story takes place in a small Wisconsin town where the dead have come back to life, but they’re not mindless creatures looking for brains. Instead, they are intelligent and retain their personalities, which creates an eerie atmosphere. When a brutal murder takes place in the town, everyone becomes a suspect, and the story takes a thrilling turn. With its unique spin on the zombie genre and captivating storyline, Revival is a must-read for horror fans.
Locke & Key
If you’re a horror comic lover and haven’t read Locke & Key yet, you’re missing out on one of the best modern horror comics out there! Written by Joe Hill, son of the legendary Stephen King, this series follows the Locke family as they move to the mysterious Keyhouse mansion in Lovecraft, Massachusetts after a family tragedy. The Keyhouse is full of supernatural doors that can be unlocked only by special keys, each of which has its unique properties. However, the family soon discovers that the house is also haunted by a malevolent spirit that resides in the well. The creepy and atmospheric storytelling is complemented by Gabriel Rodriguez’s stunning artwork, making it a must-read for any horror comic enthusiast.
Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman is a must-read for fans of mythology, fantasy, and surrealism. Published under DC imprint Vertigo, this Eisner Award-winning masterpiece follows the story of Dream, a powerful and enigmatic entity who is mistakenly captured by a magician seeking immortality. After his escape, Dream embarks on a journey to retrieve his lost totems of power, encountering a host of fascinating characters along the way, including his own sister, Death. Gaiman’s writing is masterful, and the artwork by various artists is stunning, making The Sandman a true feast for the eyes and mind.
With some of the most unforgettable characters in comic book history, Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s epic series is a must-read for fans of gritty and irreverent storytelling. Jesse Custer may be a small-town preacher, but he’s anything but righteous. After merging with a powerful entity known as Genesis, Jesse gains a dangerous gift that puts him on a collision course with the Almighty. Accompanied by his badass ex-girlfriend Tulip and a hard-drinking Irish vampire named Cassidy, Jesse’s quest for answers takes him on a wild journey across America – one that’s equal parts violent, profane, and hilarious. The artwork is stunning, with Dillon’s dynamic pencils capturing the series’ brutal and grotesque moments perfectly.
The comic that goes by the name Bitch Planet is a bold and unabashed exploration of feminist themes that will leave you feeling empowered. Kelly Sue DeConnick, a talented writer and Eisner Award nominee, takes us on a thrilling ride to a dystopian future where women are punished by being sent to a penal colony for not conforming to the oppressive rules of a patriarchal society. The story is an inventive mash-up of Margaret Atwood and Orange is the New Black, with a cosmic twist, that deftly tackles issues women face in their everyday lives, including the double standards and unrealistic beauty standards. The comic is a scathing critique of the patriarchal order and a celebration of female empowerment.
Tony Chu, a detective in Chew, has an unusual ability that makes him an asset to the Special Crimes Division of the FDA – he’s cibopathic, which means he gets psychic impressions from anything he eats. However, this has some drawbacks – for example, he can’t stand beets. The story takes place in a world where chicken is illegal, and Tony has to use his ability to investigate bizarre crimes. Although it’s not a zombie story, Tony still samples murder victims’ remains to get clues. Chew is both hilariously funny and disgustingly grotesque at the same time.
Imagine being given the ultimate opportunity to avenge yourself against someone who has deeply hurt you, without any fear of punishment. That’s the question at the heart of the gripping and suspenseful series 100 Bullets. The enigmatic Agent Graves offers a select few individuals a chance to take justice into their own hands by providing indisputable evidence of the wrong that has been done to them, along with a gun and 100 bullets, and a promise of impunity. Two of the first people to be approached are a woman whose husband and son were brutally murdered, and a man who was falsely accused of a heinous crime and lost everything as a result. The series raises thought-provoking questions about morality and the lengths one will go to achieve revenge.
It’s refreshing to see a comic that is suitable for all ages, and Bone is a perfect example of this. The story is timeless, and the artwork is charming, making it enjoyable for readers of all generations. The Bone cousins, who hail from Boneville, are forced to flee and are separated in the process, becoming stranded in a mystical valley. The narrative that follows is a rollercoaster of an adventure that spans multiple volumes. The artwork, although now available in color, was just as captivating when it was originally published in black and white.
Scott Snyder and Stephen King have teamed up to bring us an absolutely chilling vampire series. The story is divided into two parts, with Snyder taking us to the 1920s, where Pearl, an aspiring actress, is brutally attacked and left for dead. Luckily, the enigmatic Skinner Sweet is there to save her – by turning her into a vampire. King’s half of the story is set in the Wild West of the 1880s and tells the story of Skinner’s origins, revealing how he became the very first American Vampire. This comic is not for the faint of heart; the vampires are portrayed as dangerous creatures, more akin to monsters than to romanticized versions of the undead.
It’s not every day that a comic book series can make you laugh, cry, and question the morality of its characters, but that’s exactly what Sex Criminals does. The story follows Suzie, a woman who discovers that she has the extraordinary ability to freeze time when she climaxes. When she meets Jon, another person with the same power, they embark on a journey of sexual discovery, love, and bank robbery. Yes, you read that right. The two of them use their power to rob banks in order to save their local library, but they quickly find themselves being hunted down by the mysterious Sex Police. It’s a hilariously irreverent and yet deeply human exploration of love, sex, and what people will do for the things they care about.
Buckaroo, Oregon is a town with a dark secret. It has produced 16 of the world’s most notorious serial killers. In this horror-mystery comic, NSA Agent Nicholas Finch is tasked with uncovering the reason behind this disturbing pattern to save his friend. He forms an uneasy alliance with the most recent of these killers, Edward Warren, aka the Nailbiter. This comic is packed with suspense and is perfect for fans of psychological thrillers. Even if you’re not a fan of traditional horror comics, you’ll love Nailbiter’s unique take on the genre.