We love comic books. Clearly. Just look at the piles of single issues stacked on our desks like the world’s most psychotically dangerous game of Jenga. Or take a gander at the literal butt ton (approximately 2.5 pancake pounds for your metric folks out there) of trade paperbacks lining our bookshelves. (Don’t look in the closet though. You don’t want to know what’s in there.)
We love comics—because like novels and television shows and movies they allow us to escape from the mediocrity of reality (stupid reality!) and enter a world where anything is possible (where are our teleporters, real life, where?!). Sure, many of those worlds include slipping on a costume and fighting off evildoers as one of the World’s Greatest Super Heroes, but like television, novels and movies, the breadth of the medium spans all sorts of genres.
And that brings us to the point of this week’s column. With so much attention directed at characters like Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman, and so many great storylines like “Throne of Atlantis” and “Death of the Family” stealing the spotlight, it’s easy to forget that there’s plenty to love at DC, even if you don’t love super heroes. We don’t just publish super hero comics in DC COMICS – THE NEW 52. In fact, we can list off at least 5.2 Reasons to Read DC Comics…Even if You Don’t Like Super Heroes!
1. Sword of Sorcery
Sword of Sorcery combines the politics, world building and intrigue of a certain incredibly popular, critically successfully HBO television series with the adventure and magic of Harry Potter and the action and whimsy of Avatar: The Last Airbender. Combine all that with the beautiful art of Justice League International’s Aaron Lopresti, and…well, don’t break your brain trying to imagine it. Just read it and you’ll see.
2. Demon Knights
Demon Knights takes a more classic approach to the fantasy genre. Heck, in the first issue, all the characters meet in an inn—the go-to opening for a D&D campaign. They then fight a pack of knife-wielding dinosaurs. That’s right. DINOSAURS. Again, just read it. It’s the sort of unbridled, imaginative awesome that only fantasy can deliver. It’s FANTASY-TIC.
Okay, so maybe you’re not a fan of swords and sorcery and instead find more appeal in the vastness of space. Well, set your phaser to stun, point it at your face and fire cause this comic is going to leave you breathless. Threshold is a sci-fi anthology series that debuted last month. It features a two-fisted main story that reads like a space-based “Most Dangerous Game” style adventure starring both a former Green Lantern and an insanely badass looking Captain K’Rot dual-wielding blaster pistols. Your move, Bugs.
4. All-Star Western
Pretty much in the title on this one. All-Star Western tracks the adventures of the good, the bad and the ugly in the Old West era of the DCU. Incidentally, series protagonist Jonah Hex fits all three of those categories (ESPECIALLY ugly…but please don’t tell him we said that). However, the cast also includes sharp-shooting heroes like Nighthawk and Cinnamon, the deadly Z.C. Branke and Tallulah Black, and the legendary Amadeus Arkham (he founded some sort of institution you may have heard of in Gotham).
5. Dial H
If you’re familiar with China Miéville’s work, then you get why Dial H isn’t your typical super hero adventure. If you’re not familiar, we seriously can’t explain it. It’s like a Grant Morrison comic—you can’t explain it; you have to EXPERIENCE it. However, suffice to say that it’s a one of a kind comic unlike anything else in The New 52…or anywhere else in comic book land.
5.1 Justice League Dark
Exploring the supernatural side of the DC Universe with a host of magic-and-monster-based characters.
Classifying the upcoming Constantine series would be almost contrary to the character himself, who simply defies classification. But if there’s one thing he definitely doesn’t see himself as, it’s a super hero.
What non-superhero comics do you enjoy? Let us know in the comments below!