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10 Best Non-Superhero Comic Books Of The 2010s | Screen Rant – Screen Rant

Superheroes ruled popular culture in the 2010s but some of the best non-superhero comics of the decade like Saga could be the future of entertainment.
Superheroes dominated the pop-culture landscape in the 2010s and still do today. To be sure, many great comic books from the last decade focus on classic superhero characters. But some of the best comics of the 2010s belong to non-superhero series such as  Saga and Prince of Cats, which feature diverse casts and concepts  that push the medium of comics into the future.
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The MCU and DCEU aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, but with many of the best non-superhero comics of the 2010s being optioned for streaming movies and series, the future of entertainment could belong to these unique stories. Though they embody elements of the fantastic, they chart their own path beyond the limits of the superhero genre of comic books.
Prince of Cats is a modern reimagining of the Romeo and Juliet story told through the lens of diverse characters living in New York City in the 1980s. Written and drawn by Ron Wimberly, it’s an inventive story with a manga sensibility far removed from superhero comics.
The series replaced Shakespearean iambic pentameter with rap lyrics, creating a modern and new approach to the classic story. It began with the Vertigo imprint from DC Comics in the early 2010s and eventually transitioned to Image Comics where it finished up its run.
Lumberjanes focuses on a group of young girls at a summer camp who confront all kinds of supernatural challenges, but it’s not a superhero comic in the slightest. The series has a fun and cartoon-like quality, embodied in the name of the camp, the Miss Qiunzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for Hardcore Lady Types.
Lumberjanes began in 2014 and ran for 75 issues before concluding in 2000. The series has been optioned for animation from nearly the beginning, with its long journey to the screen now coming through HBO Max in the near future.
The Wicked + Divine began in 2014 with a unique premise that incorporates supernatural elements but avoids any association with superheroes. The main character, Laura, discovers The Pantheon, a group of twelve people who are pop stars with superhuman abilities.
That’s just the beginning of one of the most unusual ongoing stories of the 2010s. Written by Kieron Gillen and drawn by Jamie McKelvie, it’s a hero’s journey with a pop culture twist and an exciting example of how fantasy-style stories can thrive outside the superhero genre in comics.
Bitch Planet is a 2014 series written by Kelly Sue DeConnick and drawn by Valentine De Landro that features a dystopian future where women are imprisoned on an alien planet. The series takes a page from 70s exploitation moves that make it a great non-superhero series.
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The story follows a group of characters as they try to escape the Auxiliary Compliance Outpost and also provides a great deal of character work by flashing back to the prisoners’ lives before their incarceration in a style somewhat reminiscent of Lost
Love And Rockets is one of the best non-superhero comics ever, dating back to its origins in the 1980s. The landmark series by the Hernandez brothers has continued with a series of new storylines in the 2010s, continuing its artistic power and relevance.
The comic focuses on a broad spectrum of characters over the course of many years, focusing mainly on Maggie and Hopey, friends and sometimes lovers who together represents one of the best comic book relationships not from Marvel and DC Comics.
Home Sick Pilots started in December 2020, just making the cut on the best non-superhero comics of the 2010s. This Image Comics series centers on a haunted house that is actually mobile and is occupied by a punk rock singer named Ami.
The gonzo premise of the series, written by Dan Watters and drawn by Caspar Wijngaard, is as refreshing as it is unusual. It’s not only a great comic without superheroes, it’s one of the best horror comics currently on the racks.
Sex Criminals is an unusual and funny fantasy story from 2013 that focuses on two non-superhero characters, Suzie and Jon, who both possess incredible power. Time literally stops when they make love, presenting them with intriguing possibilities.
Written by Matt Fraction, the writer of some of the best Hawkeye comic books of the 2010s, and drawn by Chip Zdarsky, this unusual series follows the couple as they use their unlikely advantage to rob banks and make a living.
Bryan Lee O’Malley produced an all-time comic book classic in Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World and he delivered another knockout in 2014’s Seconds. This graphic novel features the same surreal and fun cartooning as his earlier work and adds a layer of seriousness.
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The story focuses on Kate, a young woman who isn’t a superhero but discovers she can rewrite reality. This seems like a good idea at the start, but absolute power isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, as Kate finds out in this fun and sometimes dark story.
Paper Girls is another Image Comic from 2015 with a surreal sci-fi premise and strong Stranger Things vibes. The series follows a quartet of young girls who deliver newspapers as they’re bound up in a complex time travel plot that isn’t exactly what readers might expect.
Written by Brian K. Vaughn and drawn by Cliff Chiang, the series is a great example of outside-the-box cartooning that builds off ready-made premises for TV or movies, and that’s exemplified in the fact that Paper Girls has been optioned for a streaming series.
Saga debuted in the spring of 2012 and it quickly became one of the most popular ongoing series from Image. The sci-fi/fantasy epic by writer Brian K. Vaughn and artist Fiona Staples takes many classic SF tropes and turns them upside down.
The series is smart, sexy, and often unexpected. The blend of visual and narrative inventiveness has made it one of the most popular series in any format, and one of the most critically recognized. The series has won numerous Eisner and Harvey Awards in its first decade.
NEXT: 10 Best Characters From Saga
DARBY HARN is the author of the novels Ever The Hero, The Judgment Of Valene, and A Country Of Eternal Light. His short fiction appears in Strange Horizons, Interzone, Shimmer, and other venues.


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