It’s been a while since the Top 10 religion and comics installments, and I’ve been meaning to post a number of other comics that didn’t make it into that list but are still worth mentioning in passing. No commentary on these apart from the official blurbs. As always, YMMV reading these.
Creators: Douglas Rushkoff & Liam Sharp
Publisher: Vertigo (DC Comics)
From the imagination of best-selling author Douglas Rushkoff, one of the most iconoclastic and acclaimed minds of our era, comes a graphic novel series that exposes the “real” Bible as it was actually written, and reveals how its mythic tales are repeated today. Grad student Jake Stern leads an underground band of renegades that uses any means necessary to combat the frightening threats to freedom that permeate the world. They employ technology, alchemy, media hacking and mysticism to fight a modern threat that has its roots in ancient stories destined to recur in the modern age.
Creators: Mark Millar & Peter Gross
Publisher: Image Comics
From the writer of the Universal hit, Wanted, comes his next graphic novel on the way to becoming a feature film! American Jesus Volume 1: Chosen follows a twelve-year-old boy who suddenly discovers he’s returned as Jesus Christ. He can turn water into wine, make the crippled walk, and, perhaps, even raise the dead! How will he deal with the destiny to lead the world in a conflict thousands of years in the making?
Creators: Naif Al-Mutawa
Publisher: Teshkeel Comics
Young heroes gain superhuman abilities when they bond with 99 powerful gemstones. These Noor Stones were forged from the destruction of ancient Baghdad to preserve the wisdom of the ages, and were lost for centuries, but they are being found, one-by-one…
Creators: Tom Sniegoski & Johnny D.
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
For years, the raven-haired heroine Vampirella has hunted the world’s supernatural threats, all the while fighting back her own bloodthirsty nature. After a night out in Boston leads to particularly brutal violence, she seeks comfort in her Brownstone home… but discovers the most unexpected surprise of all. Angels have been sent to her by God — and they come asking for help! Enter Janus, a former soldier in the legion of Heaven, who skirts the line between the damned and divine. Only a fallen angel can navigate Vampirella through the seedy, demon-run underworld, where she hopes to find the source of an addictive, body-altering drug derived from archangel blood. Will Vampirella’s mission redeem her… or will she uncover secrets so shocking that their discovery will damn her forever?
Creators: Tim Seeley, Nate Bellegarde & Mark Englert
Publisher: Image Comics
In the near future, nuclear Holy War has decimated North America and humanity’s last stronghold is the dome metropolis of New Vatican City. When vampires attack, the Church turns to a clone of Jesus Christ Himself to protect them! But all is not as it seems for the Test Tube Messiah, as he’s drawn into a web of betrayal, bloodshed, and seduction!
The Order of the Holy Sepulchre is an elite group of specially trained nuns, the world’s most powerful exorcists. But they don’t just get rid of the demons they exorcise…the Sisters draw the demons into themselves, using their own bodies as cages of flesh. If they die a natural death, the demons die with them, small pieces of the world’s evil gone forever. But if the Sisters should dies violently…the demons are released into the world again!
Now someone has sent assassins to kill the oldest of the sisters, releasing the captive demons out into the world. Eden Parish is assigned the task of discovering who is behind this massacre, and why. In her journey she will uncover dark secrets about the Order, and about their enemies. And the real reason behind all this murder.
Creators: Craig Thompson
Publisher: Top Shelf Productions
Blankets is the story of a young man coming of age and finding the confidence to express his creative voice. Craig Thompson’s poignant graphic memoir plays out against the backdrop of a Midwestern winterscape: finely-hewn linework draws together a portrait of small town life, a rigorously fundamentalist Christian childhood, and a lonely, emotionally mixed-up adolescence.
Under an engulfing blanket of snow, Craig and Raina fall in love at winter church camp, revealing to one another their struggles with faith and their dreams of escape. Over time though, their personal demons resurface and their relationship falls apart. It’s a universal story, and Thompson’s vibrant brushstrokes and unique page designs make the familiar heartbreaking all over again.
This groundbreaking graphic novel, winner of two Eisner and three Harvey Awards, is an eloquent portrait of adolescent yearning; first love (and first heartache); faith in crisis; and the process of moving beyond all of that. Beautifully rendered in pen and ink, Thompson has created a love story that lasts.
Creator: Will Eisner
This semi-autobiographical work captures with pen and ink the drama of the city and its all-too-human inhabitants. Set in the same Bronx neighborhood as later works Dropsie Avenue and A Life Force, the four stories that comprise the book – “A Contract With God”,”The Street Singer”, “The Super” and “Cookalein” – examine the world of immigrant life in New York City in the 1930s with a unique look at the emotion and character of its denizens.
Creator: Ben Dunn
Publisher: Antarctic Press
Follows the exploits of Sister Shannon Masters who is part of a militant Catholic organisation, the Order of the Cruciform Sword, who protect Church and world from supernatural threats. Plays fast and loose with things Catholic the series still manages to portray characters with genuine faith, humility and the odd bit of theology.
Creator: Michael Mendheim; Mike Kennedy; Sean Jaffe; & Simon Bisley
Publisher: Titan Comics
Raised by the ancient Order of Solomon, Adam Cahill is one of a rare handful of highly trained warriors bound by bloodline to guard the Seven Holy Seals that contain the End of Days.
But ageless forces have conspired towards a prophetic event foretold by numerous cultures and multiple religions… and when that cryptic date arrives, they strike against the order without mercy!
Pharaoh Ramses II hasn’t seen his long-lost cousin Moses in nearly forty years. Yet while pressed by the Hittites to the North and construction delays in the South, Ramses must make time for this ancient desert rascal, the long-ago mystery he represents, and the impossible demands of an alien deity. Drawing on the Bible, the Qur’an, and historical sources, writer A. David Lewis (Mortal Coils) and artist Marvin Perry Mann (Arcana Jayne) present a retelling of the Book of Exodus through the eyes of the man who is either its greatest leader or its worst villain: a man trying to rule wisely, love his family well, and deal justly in the face of a divine wrath.
If there is one constant throughout most of Earth’s historical nations, cultures, and religions, it is the threat and the destruction of the Great Flood. In the wake of the recent Indian tsunami, Hurricane Katrina, and alarm over global warming, the award-winning creators of The Lone and Level Sands return to plumb the depths of the world’s great myths with this graphic novel exploring how this legendary fear may be more relevant now than ever before. Like Noah, sea-bound Ziusudra and other heroes across time must strive against the coming Floods and the baffling will of the gods.
Creator: Jeff Loveness & Jakub Rebelka
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Judas Iscariot journeys through life and death, grappling with his place in “The Greatest Story Ever Told,” and how much of his part was preordained. In a religion built on redemption and forgiveness, one man had to sacrifice himself for everyone…and it wasn’t Jesus.
Creator: A. David Lewis; Noel Tuazon; Rob Croonenborghs; Taylor Esposito; & Tyler Chin-Tanner
Publisher: A Wave Blue World
Punching Nazis used to be more than a meme. In 1944, it was a vocation. And no one put his gloved fist in the faces of more fascists than the Man of Fate, the Algerian Operative, our man in Occupied France — Kismet.
Then, he disappeared. Gone without a trace…until now.
Back from beyond, Kismet finds a new world of gay rights, quantum physics, and computer technology along with the old evils of bigotry, greed, and ignorance at a crossroads. Twenty-first-century America needs more than a superhero. It needs an ally.