I hear it on occasion at the library, parents telling their children, comics in hand, “you need to choose a real book,” or, “I don’t want you only getting superhero stories.” After the infamous campaign against reading comics in the middle of the 1950s by psychiatrist Fredric Wertham and the resulting self-censorship by the Comics Code Authority, the previously diverse storytelling platform of comics became dominated by the superhero stories of publishers DC and Marvel, and were considered by most an immature pastime.
Although comic book publishers have abandoned the Comics Code Authority over the last decade and a half, and comics are becoming a more diverse and effective storytelling mode, the stubborn idea persists that the comic book medium equals the superhero genre, and that the superhero genre is exclusively for children or immature adults.
However, just as films are a medium, not limited to the financially lucrative action genre; and books are a medium, not only embodied by the popular mystery genre; so too are comic books another unique storytelling medium, not exclusively represented by the highly visible superhero genre.
Below is a list of a dozen recent non-superhero genre comic books that are available at The Seattle Public Library. Branch out, and discover something new!
Southern Horror – Harrow County by Cullen Bunn
Adventure Fable – Over the Garden Wall by Pat McHale
Murder Mystery – Dept H by Matt Kindt
Fantasy Adventure – The Nameless City by Faith Erin Hicks
Visual Fable – In the Sounds and Seas by Marnie Galloway
Magical Girl – Bee and Puppycat by Natasha Allegri
Crime Noir – The Fade Out by Ed Brubaker
Historical Memoir – March by John Lewis
Satirical Exploitation – Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick
Sci-Fi Fantasy – Mirror: The Mountain by Emma Rios
Dark Music Fantasy – Phonogram by Kieron Gillen
Erotic Historical Fantasy – Letters for Lucardo
~ posted by Mychal L.