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Top 10 Sci-Fi Comics of All Time

VO: Adrian Sousa WRITTEN BY: Thomas O'Connor
Comics aren’t just for superheroes! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our Top 10 Sci-Fi Comics of All Time. For this list, we’re looking at our favorite science fiction comics and graphic novels. We have some special stipulations, though, specifically that we’re omitting sci-fi superhero comics, as well as Japanese Manga, and anthology series, which don’t have overarching storylines.
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Comics aren’t just for superheroes! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our Top 10 Sci-Fi Comics of All Time.

For this list, we’re looking at our favorite science fiction comics and graphic novels. We have some special stipulations, though, specifically that we’re omitting sci-fi superhero comics, as well as Japanese Manga, and anthology series, which don’t have overarching storylines.

#10: "Lazarus" (2013-)


Like several entries on this list, this series takes place in a dark alternate future. Humanity has reverted back to a feudal system, with 16 powerful families controlling the entire world. Each of these families has a single warrior, called a Lazarus, who represents them in battle. Our protagonist is Forever Carlisle, the Lazarus of the powerful Carlisle family. Forever finds herself questioning her place in the grand scheme of things, her loyalty torn between her own interests and those of her family. The series is penned by Greg Rucka, one of the writers behind Gotham Central, with stunning artwork by illustrator Michael Lark.

#9: "Paper Girls" (2015-)


This fan-favorite series stars a group of pre-teen paper delivery girls who meet one night and get pulled into an incredible adventure when they witness a strange light in the sky and find a mysterious computer device sporting an Apple logo. For fans of “Stranger Things” and 80s nostalgia in general, the series is an absolute must-read, with timely 80s references to spare. But beyond the pop-culture name-dropping, the series is also a fantastic coming of age adventure brimming with creativity and heart.

#8: "East of West" (2013-)


This epic alternate history series takes place in a reality in which the Civil War raged on until 1908, when a massive meteor hit Kansas, forcing the seven warring factions to unite into the Seven Nations of America. Years later, the Horsemen of the Apocalypse arrive on Earth and seek to fulfill a prophecy warning of the end of days. There’s a whole lot more ground to cover, far more than we have time for here. The short version is that if you’re into comics that combine history, philosophy, religion, and scads of other topics into one big, violent, sci-fi Western epic, then this is the comic for you.

#7: "Bitch Planet" (2014-)


If you’re not super familiar with one of exploitation cinema’s seedier tropes, the “women in prison” genre of exploitation film focuses on, well...women in prison. The genre is known for its violence, rampant sexuality, and general unpleasantness, so it’s easy to say that it’s not for everyone. This sci-fi comic by writer Kelly Sue Deconnick seeks to reclaim that genre for feminism, presenting a dystopian future in which “non-compliant” women are sent to an off-world prison. While the series indulges in all the tropes of its genre, it never shies away from depicting its characters as unsympathetic and complex victims of a brutal system.

#6: "Transmetropolitan" (1997-2002)


If you ever read the works of Hunter S. Thompson and thought they just weren’t weird enough, we have the comic for you. The series takes place in a dark but very possible future in which technology has advanced, but human corruption is still going strong. In the middle of this morass of high-tech depravity stands Spider Jerusalem, a two-fisted journalist on a crusade to uncover corruption and societal injustice with maximum prejudice. The series is crass, violent and very, very weird, but its depiction of a society on the brink of moral and political collapse gets more realistic every day. Grab your Bowel Disruptors, kids, it’s time to find the truth.

#5: "Valerian and Laureline" (1967-2018)


You probably remember the blockbuster film starring Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne, but before it was a movie, this trend-setting French sci-fi comic was practically writing the formula for modern space operas. Combining high-concept with pulp adventure and political drama, the series follows a dashing space adventurer named Valerian as he and his partner/lover Laureline, in reality, an 11th-Century French peasant girl, protect the universe from all manner of threats. The series is massively influential, with ties to everything from “Star Wars” to “Guardians of the Galaxy”. It’s also extremely long with hundreds of issues. Clear your calendar if you’re looking to read all of it.

#4: "Y: The Last Man" (2002-08)


After a mysterious plague kills nearly every male lifeform on Earth, one man named Yorick and his pet Capuchin monkey Ampersand find themselves as the only surviving men left on the planet, and the pair set off on an adventure that takes them across the globe. On his travels, Yorick meets an almost uncountable number of character, each possessing their own ideas about why all the men died, and what to do next. This landmark series from writer Brian K. Vaughan was a smash hit when it first hit stands, drawing in fans from every walk of life with its richly developed world and characters.

#3: "Fear Agent" (2005-11)


This series by writer Rick Remender seeks to return sci-fi to its pulp roots and leaves all that deep exploration and commentary in the dust in favor of rip-snorting action among the stars. Our protagonist is Heath Huston, a take-no-prisoners, hard-drinking Fear Agent, a member of a force dedicated to protecting Earth from alien threats. The series is highly serialized and heavy on action, and it’s pretty much tailor-made for fans looking for fun, exciting sci-fi action that never slows down once it gets started. And if fun, pulpy sci-fi isn’t enough to get you interested, the artwork by Tony Moore, Jerome Opena, and others definitely should.

#2: "Saga" (2012-)


Readers looking for a series with more creativity and charm than any other comic on the stands need look no further than this epic space opera from writer Brian K. Vaughan and artist Fiona Staples. The series stars Alana and Marko, two ex-soldiers who found love and had a child despite the fact that their respective races have been at war for as long as anyone can remember. From that fairly simple premise, the series springboards into a galaxy-spanning tale of love, family, politics and so much more. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll cry some more, and that’s usually just from reading one single volume.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are some of our honorable mentions:

"Tank Girl" (1988-2016)

"The Manhattan Projects" (2012-)

"WE3" (2004)

#1: "The Incal" (1980-2014)


Alejandro Jodorowsky is a Chilean filmmaker and writer known for his passion for surrealism and Avant-Garde style works. After his ludicrously ambitious attempt to adapt David Herbert’s novel “Dune” fell apart, Jodorowsky teamed up with legendary French illustrator Jean Giraud on a comic that adapted several ideas from the abandoned project. The result is a comic that spanned over three decades under various titles, an almost indescribable spiritual odyssey that follows a private detective pushed, often against his will, into a role of cosmic significance. We can’t think of any other sci-fi comic more ambitious, more artistically vibrant, and more essential in the library of any sci-fi comics fan.
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