Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
EstrangedTWAT

Graphic Novel Required Reading List

Recommended Posts

In a loose order from most accessible to newcomers to Sequential Art/Graphic Fiction, to the more complex stuff.

1: Preacher by Garth Ennis (trust me....this book will blow your ass away....not for the squemish)

2: Sin City by Frank Miller (you've seen the movies? this is better!)

3: Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan (every man on earth dies at once except one guy. lucky dude huh? nope!)

4: Planetary by Warren Ellis (super-hero stuff, but like you've never seen before)

5: Ultimates by Mark Millar (the book the Avengers movie was based on)

6: Sandman by Neil Gaiman (considered by many the greatest comic book of all time)

7: Watchmen by Alan Moore (better than the movie)

8: Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller (the only Batman stories you'll ever need to read)

9: Animal Man by Grant Morrison (incredibly unique super-hero book)

10: AKIRA by Katsuhiro Otomo (greatest manga of all time)

11: Lone Wolf and Cub (samurai epic...second greatest manga of all time)

12: Wolverine by Mark Millar (best Wolverine stories ever)

13: Pushman/Abandon the old in Tokyo/Goodbye by Yoshihiro Tatsumi (dark stories about life in Tokyo)

14: The Invisibles by Grant Morrison (the ultimate mindfuck....the Matrix stole all the best shit from this one)

15: Saga by Brian K. Vaughan (awesomes space opera epic)

and honorable mention to Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye by James Roberts, the only comic book to make a series based on robot toys into actual interesting characters with amazing plot twists.

Anyone else have more to add?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also forgot to mention that of course it's best to support these artists and buy the actual books off amazon, ALL of this stuff is available on bittorrent if you don't mind reading it off of a screen. P_ritn is better of course, but hey, "free" is good too.

One last one....if you want just slice of life stories without anything fantastical, I recommend "Optic Nerve" by Adrian Tomine.

And yes, Arkham Asylum by Morrison is awesome, but it's a trip....may be a tough read for someone who's never read comics before.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1) Batman: The Dark Knight Returns (This was a game changer. The first hyper violent, adult-oriented comic, featuring comics two biggest characters, Batman & Superman, who faced off at the end.)

2) Kingdom Come (Introduced the incredible art of Alex Ross to the world, and an amazing story to boot.)

3) The Death of Superman (Just for what it is, still the best-selling graphic novel of all time, featuring Superman's fight to the finish with Doomsday.)

4) All Star Superman (A touching, emotional story, featuring the talents of Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely.)

5) Batman: The Killing Joke (Another adult oriented story from the 1980s, that helped change the direction of comics. The first to delve in the psychology of The Joker.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WATCHMEN will always be my favorite. Just head and shoulders above the rest. I've read it dozens of times.

In re: to Frank Miller

I really enjoyed Frank Miller's early work (Daredevil, the 1st Wolverine mini-series, Ronin, The Dark Knight Returns, and Batman: Year One), but he lost me after that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Miller's last really amazing work was "300." The later Sin City stuff got kinda repetitve, and the Dark Knight sequel was a piece of shit. The old man is off his rocker.

But he's still one of the all-time greats. His latest book "Holy Terror" is batshit insane right-wing anti-Islam propaganda but I bought it anyway, for the art.

His finest work other than Dark Knight was "Elektra Lives Again"....just fucking gorgeous artwork in that book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are so many really good Superman stories -- Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?, All-Star Superman, etc.

I also recommend the first 30 issues of Shade the Changing Man by Peter Milligan and Chris Bachalo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been on a tear lately.

I started by reading Mark Millar's Old Man Logan, which is fantastic.

It's 'The Dark Knight Returns' for Marvel and Wolverine.

 

That was so good, I just kept going, reading graphic novel after graphic novel, some borrowed from the public library, some bought on Kindle.

 

I read DC's Camelot 3000 which is absolutely terrible.

I re-read (again) all 150 issues of The Walking Dead.

I read Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men, and all of Grant Morrison's new x-men. <-- amazing stuff. Whedon's are some of the best X-Men stories ever. Grant Morrison's are pretty wacky. Very creative, but not as satisfying as Whedon's.

I read a ton of Wolverine stories, Origin, Origin II, Weapon X, Uncannny X-Men 268.

 

And a lot of other stuff I went through and have already forgotten.

 

Right now I am re-reading all of the John Byrne X-Men books from the late Seventies and early Eighties, and I am trying to get my hands on all of the John Byrne Fantastic Four comics from the 1980s -- Six years of material.

The John Byrne graphic novels are hard to get your hands on, the libraries don't have them, they are out-of-print, and expensive on eBay, Amazon.

You can buy them one single issue at a time on Kindle for $1.99 each, but I'm not doing that -- there are like more than 75 issues with all the Annuals and stuff.

 

Jack Kirby and John Byrne were fucking amazing artists!

I love Kirby's Pop-Art style from Fantastic Four #50-100.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My favorite John Byrne work was "Next Men," his creator owned thing in the early 90s.  Kind of his answer to Image comics.  It was really really good...at the time.

 

He actually resurrected it after 20 years or so to complete the story, but the sequel, like most after such a long absence, was pretty lousy.

 

I liked Old Man Logan, but I thought Mark Millar's first Wolverine story "Enemy of the State/Agent of Shield" was way more fun.  Highly recommended if you can get your hands on it.

 

I first read "Camelot 3000" in the late 80s when I was in junior high and it absolutely blew me away.  It was so epic.

 

It.....hasn't aged well, sadly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, I finally read Maus I and II about two years ago.

 

It was good but it really wasn't a great example of what makes a great comic book.  It was just a biography that happened to have pictures.  I don't think it really deserves the praise it's gotten over the years, but oh well.

 

As for Superman?  I think Grant Morrison's All Star Superman is my favorite Superman story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/22/2017 at 6:18 PM, John Bonham said:

I have been on a tear lately.

I started by reading Mark Millar's Old Man Logan, which is fantastic.

It's 'The Dark Knight Returns' for Marvel and Wolverine.

 

That was so good, I just kept going, reading graphic novel after graphic novel, some borrowed from the public library, some bought on Kindle.

 

I read DC's Camelot 3000 which is absolutely terrible.

I re-read (again) all 150 issues of The Walking Dead.

I read Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men, and all of Grant Morrison's new x-men. <-- amazing stuff. Whedon's are some of the best X-Men stories ever. Grant Morrison's are pretty wacky. Very creative, but not as satisfying as Whedon's.

I read a ton of Wolverine stories, Origin, Origin II, Weapon X, Uncannny X-Men 268.

 

And a lot of other stuff I went through and have already forgotten.

 

Right now I am re-reading all of the John Byrne X-Men books from the late Seventies and early Eighties, and I am trying to get my hands on all of the John Byrne Fantastic Four comics from the 1980s -- Six years of material.

The John Byrne graphic novels are hard to get your hands on, the libraries don't have them, they are out-of-print, and expensive on eBay, Amazon.

You can buy them one single issue at a time on Kindle for $1.99 each, but I'm not doing that -- there are like more than 75 issues with all the Annuals and stuff.

 

Jack Kirby and John Byrne were fucking amazing artists!

I love Kirby's Pop-Art style from Fantastic Four #50-100.

Not really graphic novel related, but John Byrne's Hulk run was great. Shorter lived than it should have been, but great. I subscribe to Marvel Unlimited, so I'm just reading stories. I have no idea what's been made into a graphic novel or not. I really wish DC would do an Unlimited of their own though. Best thing to ever happen to comics, imho.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Damn_Smooth said:

Not really graphic novel related, but John Byrne's Hulk run was great. Shorter lived than it should have been, but great. I subscribe to Marvel Unlimited, so I'm just reading stories. I have no idea what's been made into a graphic novel or not. I really wish DC would do an Unlimited of their own though. Best thing to ever happen to comics, imho.

I have been considering subscribing to Marvel Unlimited.

Can you tell me more about it?

Does it have every Marvel Comic from the '60s, '70s and '80s?

Can you tell me as much as you can? Their website isn't very informative.

I am not that interested in reading current Marvel comics 2014-2017.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, John Bonham said:

I have been considering subscribing to Marvel Unlimited.

Can you tell me more about it?

Does it have every Marvel Comic from the '60s, '70s and '80s?

Can you tell me as much as you can? There website isn't very informative.

I am not that interested in reading current Marvel comics 2014-2017.

It's collection is truly massive, but it does have holes. They add comics every week though, so those holes keep getting smaller. I think the new issues are 6 months behind newstand, but I don't read spoilers so they're new to me. Since that doesn't interest you though, it doesn't matter. Just for information purposes. They have every major storyline I've been able to think of so far. I highly recommend it. I have subscribed for over 2 years and I haven't regretted it once.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Damn_Smooth said:

It's collection is truly massive, but it does have holes. They add comics every week though, so those holes keep getting smaller. I think the new issues are 6 months behind newstand, but I don't read spoilers so they're new to me. Since that doesn't interest you though, it doesn't matter. Just for information purposes. They have every major storyline I've been able to think of so far. I highly recommend it. I have subscribed for over 2 years and I haven't regretted it once.

Do they have every Marvel comic John Byrne ever touched?

It's just a streaming service, so when you cancel, you have nothing, right?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know if all, but they have 391 of them. It's a streaming service, but you can buy digital copies through them if you want to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Damn_Smooth said:

I don't know if all, but they have 391 of them. It's a streaming service, but you can buy digital copies through them if you want to.

Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Damn_Smooth said:

Not really graphic novel related, but John Byrne's Hulk run was great.

I also enjoyed John Byrne's short run on The Hulk.

It started off very strong with a great idea - separating Bruce Banner from The Hulk - and really good artwork.

I remember being disappointed that it was so short, and it fizzled towards the end, but there were a few really amazing issues in the first half.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought John Byrne's original, 6-issue Man of Steel series was another disappointment (at the time), but as the regular Superman series progressed, with Byrne at the helm, he proved me wrong.

One by One, by adding back in all the classic Superman elements with a Byrne twist.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...