You have always been interested in comics, but did you come across anything other than "Funny Pictures" and "Mickey Mouse"? Are you wondering why comics often become a source of inspiration for Hollywood? You want to understand why adults are comic-read, forgetting everything? You came to the address! Below is a list of American comics that we recommend to anyone who is interested in them, but does not know where to start.
It should immediately clarify - all comics on this list are presented in their own English language . Some of them can be found in Russian, but the translation, as a rule, leaves much to be desired.
The list was compiled by experienced comic book geeks from different parts of the former USSR. The compilers tried to cover the whole spectrum of the medium as objectively as possible and to summarize in the list all the best for which comics are called an independent art form along with literature and cinema.
Historically, the main genre direction in American comics is superhero - As a result, half of this list is somehow connected with superheroes. This should not scare you - start reading and you will understand how unforgivably wrong about the characters in silly costumes.
Of course 100 positions could not accommodate all significant works. Worthy comics are much more and new ones regularly appear among them. It was decided not to include manga in the list - this should be done by other experts. The presence of European and underground works is also small - you can reach all of this if you wish, having pushed off from the proposed list.
So, you are at the beginning of the journey, there are regiments with absolute classics in front of you - choose, start reading, discover new worlds and you will forget about everything!
Top 10 most popular comics:
1. "Spiderman". This comic is probably known to all. It describes the story of a superhero, which is a guy who survived a spider bite and turned into Spider-Man himself. Now the guy has superpowers. With a flick of the wrist, he can release a solid web, his height is not terrible for him.
Spiderman hears well and can catch up with any villain. And, as befits all superheroes, he fights crime and tries to make the city safe. But things are not going the way we would like.
Of course, the hero begins to hunt. But he does not give up, because he is driven not only by the desire to improve the world, but also by love. The comic was published in the period from 1963 to 2012. Based on this story, several films were shot, as well as several computer games and cartoons. It all started with pictures, but in the end Spider-Man became the favorite of many.
2. “V means vendetta”. This comic series, consisting of only 10 issues, was written by Alan Moore and illustrated by David Lloyd. All events unfold in the 80-90s of the last century in the UK. The country has barely recovered from a nuclear war and is mired in corruption, crime and violence. Part of the world was destroyed during the war, many people died because of crop failures.
The fascist party, which turned Britain into a police state, rules. The main character of the comic book is a mysterious person who dreams of changing the world and calls himself V. He is trying with all his might to destroy the existing totalitarian regime.
The man wearing the mask of Guy Fawkes decides to start a long and difficult struggle with the existing rules and prove to people that they are able to rule the world without cruel despots. Based on the comic book was shot the same film.
3. "X-Men". This is a comic about mutant humans, released in 1963. Most likely, the name was chosen because each hero was a mutant and had a special gene called "Factor X". Initially, the comic wanted to be called "Mutants", but the publishers expressed their disagreement.
The main characters in the process of creating a series of comic books changed, but they all differed from ordinary people and had unique abilities, for which they were periodically persecuted. In the early versions, such characters as the Stormy Petrel, Thunderstorm, Colossus, Night Serpent were present, as well as Wolverine, Sunfire, Banshee, Angel, Polaris and others.
Around 1975, the X-Men became literally known all over the world, which was associated with a wide cultural, ethnic and racial diversity. The plot of the comic was shot several films, as well as released animated films.
4. "The Avengers". Today, the group of avengers, consisting of people with supernormal abilities, is known to all thanks to the films based on the comic book. And this story appeared back in 1963. Initially, the group of avengers, who later became known as the most powerful heroes of the Earth, included Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Wasp and Ant-Man.
A little later, Captain America joined the team. Then the composition periodically changed. Aliens, gods, robots, mutants, supernatural creatures, former villains and people managed to enter it. But all the avengers were tied by one goal - common enemies. And these enemies have always been so strong that only team members could defeat them.
5. Comic Saga released recently, but already managed to conquer the hearts of millions. Much attention deserves attention: graphics, plot, unusual main characters. At the heart of the plot is the story of two lovers, belonging to different races. The race of technicians is at war with the race of magicians, so no one understands the feelings of Alana and Marco.
But still a chance meeting (Alan was supposed to protect Marco in prison) led to a real feeling. A child was born, which, of course, everyone is trying to kill. But lovers bravely protect their daughter.
6. Comics "Fables" (The name translates as “legends”), released for the first time in 2002 and released to this day - the story of the well-known heroes of fairy tales, songs, legends and other works of folklore. All these characters, who call themselves tales, were expelled from their native lands "the mysterious enemy."
Once in the real world, the heroes cannot show their true face and tell the truth, therefore they hide and pretend to be simple people. They all live on the outskirts of New York and dream of only one thing - to conquer their lands and return to their homelands. The main characters include Pinocchio, Bluebeard, Snow White, Prince, Gray Wolf and many others.
7. "City of Sins" - the world-famous comic book cycle, which tells about life in the fictional city of Beysin City, which was originally a place of rest and relaxation for gold miners. Comics is a cycle of intertwined stories.
The protagonist of one story could be a minor character of another. Each plot has a clear moral message and criminal background. The city has grown greatly and has become one of the most dangerous places in America. The government has corrupt officials, and the heart of the city is the brothel quarter, which is maintained by armed girls of easy virtue.
The cruelty and cynicism of the heroes are intertwined with morality and feelings. Some are driven by love, others are revenge, and others are guilt feelings. Based on the comic was shot two films.
8. "Batman". About Batman first learned back in 1939, but to this day this character remains popular. The main difference of the hero from all the others is the lack of supernormal abilities.
Batman, whose name translates as “man-bat,” relies only on his skills and abilities peculiar to absolutely all people, such as strength, sharpness, technique and speed. He saved the world more than once and appeared as a secondary character in other comics. This hero can be seen in computer games, movies and cartoons.
9. Comics "300 Spartans" is also one of the most popular, based on his famous film of the same name. The main event was the battle of Thermopylae. In the story the Spartan king Leonid with his best warriors goes to war with the Persian army.
The forces are unequal, and Sparta faces defeat, but still the warriors do not surrender. Persian king Xerox periodically invites Leonid to surrender, but he is adamant. The bloody battle continues for two days and two nights. Xerox again asks Leonid to surrender. As a result, all the survivors of the battle Spartan warriors die. The plot, it would seem, is simple to the banality, but still deserves attention.
10. Comics "Sandman" ("Sandman") became a real bestseller and received several awards. This is the story of Morpheus - the lord of dreams, who must save the world and bring everything back to normal.
The story began with the fact that one occultist decided to cause death, but in the end, Morpheus was locked in the pentogram. He spent 70 years in prison, and during that time the world has changed a lot. Dream Lord must help people.
Green Arrow (known as Oliver Queen) inherited a corporation that made him rich. Thanks to which he became a superhero. Probably the most unfortunate businessman in the universe who pays less attention to business and more to help people.
Norman Osbourne, also known as the Green Goblin. It is considered one of the most vile and evil characters of all comics. In ninth place in the ranking, because becoming the director of SHIELD, the Green Goblin received the full support of the government.
Victor von Doom is one of the smartest characters in the Marvel universe. The sworn enemy of the Fantastic Four, the intellectual rival of Reed Richards and the ruler of the small state of Latveria (in the Marvel universe) - he does everything to destroy the kind and beloved superheroes.
Its country provides the Duma with its own army and all the necessary resources. Having connections with many galactic leaders, Dr. Doom is considered one of the most respected and dangerous supervillains from the Marvel comics.
The son of Howard Stark, founder of Stark Industries, Tony Stark is a kind of "Bruce Wayne" in the Marvel universe. Tony is considered a genius of science, he creates incredible technological inventions that help him to be one of the most invincible heroes.
Magneto is primarily known for the fact that in the Marvel universe after the war he stole gold from the Nazis from Hydra, but not many people remember that he is the “lord” of the metal, including the precious one. Theoretically, he can assign himself all the jewels of the world.
LexCorp's owner, Lex Luther, is one of the most ruthless and morally cruel characters in the DC universe. Of course, he's damn rich, because LexCorp is one of the most successful multinational corporations in the DC universe.
Bruce Wayne is the owner of Wayne Enterprises, the billionaire who made himself a superhero. Bruce early orphaned and inherited billions of dollars. So he turned into one of the most powerful superheroes. Thanks to his intellect, Wayne is able to be the leader of a billion-dollar company and a cool hero at the same time.
Adrian Weidt, also known as Ozimandia, the bad guy from the Guardians, is considered one of the richest superheroes in history. His power and wealth are reminiscent of Bruce Wayne's style, but they are one step ahead of him. Doubtful moral principles of Ozymandia open up unlimited financial possibilities. Everything else, he is also one of the smartest people on Earth.
Namor always has plenty of money, because he has to work with all the "riches of the sea." In addition, it always becomes richer when someone drops a wallet into the water. Do not forget that in the Marvel universe in the sea a huge number of lost pirate treasures and untold wealth, and they all belong to the reigning Prince of Atlantis Namor.
The first black comic book superhero, appeared in 1966 in the Fantastic Four comic book # 52. Of the entire list, Black Panther is the richest superhero (or supervillain) among both DC heroes and Marvel heroes. Why precisely he? First, the Black Panther is leading the whole country of Wakanda (a fictional country in Africa from the Marvel universe), on the ground that discovered the deposit of the strongest and most valuable metal - vibranium. Secondly, this character is one of the eight smartest people in the Marvel universe.
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10 amazing facts about comics. The history of their creation and development. The origin of the word "comics" and the feature of the Normalmen.
He has seven names: Heyman's Sandman
Now, all avid telemans (in our case, people who love and appreciate masterpiece series) have stopped waiting for the film adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel American Gods. In addition to prose, Neil is also involved in work on comics, the best of which is Sandman, who survived several editions (including a four-volume hardback and a cycle of ten books with a soft cover). The title character of the series (it is also called the “comic for intellectuals”) is the supernatural being Sandman. He is known by different names: Morpheus, Death, Drema, Delirium, Desire, Destiny, Despair. In the plot of the comic closely intertwined symbolism, mythology, horror, history.
Joker as a tragic figure: a killer joke
Alan Moore's graphic novel Batman: A Killing Joke is a rare case when the Joker is shown not just a complete psychopath and a ruthless sadist, but a tragic figure. He lost his family, he was deceived by evil people who accidentally turned a decent guy into a madman. This is one of the best comic books from the Batman series, and the Dark Knight here is pushed into the background: the main character is the Joker.
Arkhem Asilum: The Mournful House on the Sorrowful Land
The original graphic novel Batman: Arkhem Asilum. Mournful House on the Land of Sorrows was one of the most gothic and best comics in the series. He inspired the creators of popular games about Batman and other comic book authors for years to come. Roman told about the history of the creation of the mental hospital, its builder Amadeus Arkhem, about all the supernatural that is hidden in the dark corridors of the mental hospital. However, the publication of the comic dedicated to its 25th anniversary turned out to be simply unsurpassed thanks to the writer Grant Morrison.
In the world of the walking dead you need to be alert
In October of 2003, the first volume of the graphic novel The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman was released. This is one of the best comics of our time, so the work on it continues. In 2010, the comic about Sheriff Rick Grimes, his family and friends trying to survive the zombie epidemic, won the Eisner Prize, the same year the premiere of the show of the same name took place - The Walking Dead are on their seventh season and are not slowing down. By the way, Kirkman not so long ago explained why the characters use the terms "walking", "rotten" and "biting". It turns out that the characters live in the universe, where the concept of "zombies" (as well as books and films about them) did not exist.
300 against thousands
Almost everyone heard about the graphic novel “300” - after all, this work by Frank Miller was filmed by Zack Snyder. The main characters of peplum - king Leonid and his antagonist Xerxes - were played by Gerard Butler and Rodrigo Santoro. "300 Spartans" - almost a perfect adaptation of the comic, telling about the confrontation between the warriors of Sparta and the Persians who came together in the bloody Fermopilskuyu battle.
Jack the Ripper came to London from hell
Alan Moore is the legendary author of the best comics, so his name will appear more than once in our ranking. Black and white very dark graphic novel "From Hell" revives the troubled days of the late XIX century, when Jack the Ripper wielded in the poorest quarters of the London East End. This is one of the terrible pages of the Victorian era, and although the victims of the maniac were not noble ladies, but Whitechapel prostitutes, the Ripper's crimes still haunt the imagination. Comic Moore describes these events, citing the exact nature of the atrocities and following the police Eberlein. In 2001, a film on comics was staged in Hollywood, the main role in the film “From Hell” was played by Johnny Depp.
V - means "vendetta": a terrorist against totalitarianism
And again - Alan Moore, and his anti-utopic comic "V - means" vendetta ". The main character of the novel is the same V who is trying to fight the pro-fascist totalitarian regime prevailing in the UK of the near future. The government pursues non-believers, gays, illegal immigrants. V actively opposes him - the fighter against the regime intended to blow up Parliament. He even wears the mask of his distant predecessor, who also tried to arrange an explosion - Guy Fawkes. The comic was moved to the big screen, the film was shot by Hugo Weaving and Natalie Portman.
Terrible things are happening in the City of Sins
The popular author Frank Miller became co-director of Robert Rodriguez, when an American director of Mexican origin began to adapt the comics from the series "Sin City". No wonder criminal stories in this series are considered the best comics in their niche. Who saw the film, he was probably impressed by this bloody noir and memorable characters, including Yellow Bastard Roarke Jr. (Nick Stal played in the movie), Kevin the maniac (Elijah Wood) and the desperate Marv (Mickey Rourke).
The dark knight returns, tired and disappointed
Третий, самый лучший, комикс Фрэнка Миллера из этого топа «Темный рыцарь возвращается» оказал огромное влияние на другие комиксы, видеоигры и фильмы. Именно этот графический роман стал основой трилогии Кристофера Нолана «Темный рыцарь» с Кристианом Бэйлом и вдохновил Снайдера на съемки картины «Бэтмен против Супермена: На заре Справедливости». Произведение Миллера показывает Бэтмена очень возмужавшим и многое пережившим. Он старше, мрачнее и слегка устал от борьбы со злом.
Хранители не дадут этому миру погибнуть
Closes the top of the best comics novel by Alan Moore (and he also filmed Zack Snyder) - "Keepers". About the quality of this comic, says this fact: "The Keepers" entered the list of "100 best novels of all time" (the only comic that has been given such an honor). In the universe of this novel, courageous superheroes act (Night Owl, Doctor Manhattan, Silk Ghost, and others), and the action takes place in an alternate noir reality. By the way, one of the characters, the Comedian, is played in a blockbuster by Jeffrey Dean Morgan (who is also the new charismatic antagonist in the TV series The Walking Dead).
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. John Romita Jr. (John Romita Jr)
John Romita Jr. (John Romita Jr), New York author and comic book artist, son of another famous American comic book artist, John Romith Sr., author of the Spider-Man comic book series. John Romita Jr. won fame and popularity thanks to Iron Man created by him and the story of how playboy, billionaire and philanthropist, Tony Stark, become a superhero and saves the world.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Brian Bolland (Brian Bolland)
Brian Bolland (Brian Bolland) - British comic book artist. He was educated as a graphic designer. Immediately after training, he is immersed in the work on illustrating fantasy stories. Worked in London. In 1988, the legendary release of the comic book Batman: The Killing Joke, written by the legendary Alan Moore. This is a story about the origin of the Joker and is one of the most controversial stories about Batman. The image invented by Brian inspired Heath Ledger so much when working on the image of the Joker in the film The Dark Knight, that Ledger tried to convey this very, Dutch character.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Will Eisner (Will Eisner)
Will Eisner (Will Eisner) is an American illustrator and comic book artist. Eisner is called the "Father of the graphic novel." The term "graphic novel" was coined in the 60s of the 20th century, as a marketing ploy.
Eisner’s career began with cartoons for New York newspapers. The most famous work of the illustrator The Spirit was published in 1940.
Will Eisner taught caricature for a long time at the School of Visual Arts in New York, and many of today's designers and illustrators are his students.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Jim Steranko
Jim Steranko (Jim Steranko) is an American graphic designer, illustrator and comic artist. Interest in art from Jim arose at an early age, since his childhood he collected cans and bottles through the streets to earn money and buy art supplies. Jim's first job was for Harvey Comics. Then, he meets Stan Lee, an American comic book author who brought Jim to Marvel.
Steranko revolutionized the art of graphic narration. He breathed new life into the old hero of Captain America and presented the world with giant-sized Hulk.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Osamu Tezuka
Osamu Tezuka (Osamu Tezuka) - Japanese illustrator, artist, often called the Japanese Walt Disney. “Astro Boy” is a hero by whom the whole world has learned and knows Osamu Tezuka. For the first time “Astro Boy” flew to the big world in 1951 and since then, it is the most sought-after and beloved hero of Japan. Astro Boy himself even became an honorary citizen of the city of Saitama, where the studio of its author is located.
Osamu Tezuka is called “Father of anime” and “God of Manga”, he was always several years ahead of all other illustrators, he became the inventor of “Big Eyes” in Japanese animation, he felt equally comfortable in any genre, whether science fiction, mysticism horror or story.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Steve Ditko
Steve Ditko is an American illustrator and cartoonist. He was educated at the New York School of Visual Art. He worked for Marvel, developing images of the Hulk, Iron Man, Spider-Man. His new look at Spider-Man brought an incredible success to the illustrator. Steve's illustrations look more intriguing, restless, and fierce. An innovative look at the images of Spider-Man allows you to say that this beloved hero in a new way sounded from under Ditko's pencil.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Frank Miller
Frank Miller (Frank Miller) - modern American illustrator, graphic designer. The works of Frank are distinguished by a pronounced cinematic quality, the illustrator creates works in the style of film - noir. One of the most famous illustrator works is Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, which translated the comic into fiction for an adult audience. Miller's thoughtful work helped Christopher Nolan to work on his film.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Dave Gibbons
Dave Gibbons is an English writer, illustrator and comic book artist. Widely known for his collaboration with the greatest Alan Moore. In the early 80s of the 20th century to become the leading artist of the historical comic book "Doctor Who".
In the works of Dave reflected modern anxiety, becoming more acute and dramatic.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Steve Dillon
Steve Dillon is an English book illustrator and comic book artist. I fell in love with comics, as if I was still in school when I was working on school comics. His first job in drawing was at the age of 16 years already in a large company Marvel. He worked on the themes of super-spies, along with Nick Fury. Meet the author Garth Ennis, with whom he is working on several author stories, one of which is “The Preacher”. This is a graphic novel about the Texas mafia and the realities of the American dream.
Top 10 greatest comic artists of all time. Jack Kirby (Jack Kirby)
Jack Kirby (Jack Kirby) - American illustrator, comic book artist. Draw comics began at the age of 13 years. Together with writer Joe Simon, Kirby worked on a graphic image of the greatest superhero - Captain America. Also, at one time became the author of the Fantastic Four. Kirby was the king of innovation and in the context of the characters, and in the context of the very construction of comics. For more than half a century of career, Kirby has built a new narrative comic book grammar with a cinematic style of movement.