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Jun 03, 2021

Top 5 Graphic Novel & Comic Adaptations That Aren’t Marvel or DC

Top 5 Graphic Novel & Comic Adaptations That Aren't Marvel or DC

Once upon a time, graphic novels and comics were considered the staple of pubescent teenage boys looking to escape the mundanity of looming adult life.

How times have changed. Marvel and DC are the epitome of cool, and we’re swimming in a sea of blockbuster movies that doesn’t ever feel like it’s going to end.

But while the likes of DC and Marvel helped popularise the graphic-novel-to-big-screen adaptation, there are hundreds of graphic novel adaptations, and here are some of our favourites.

1. Scott Pilgrim vs the World

The film stars Michael Cera as Scott Pilgrim, a slacker musician who has to win a competition to get a record deal and battle the seven evil exes of his new girlfriend, Ramona Flowers.

While the film was a failure at the box office, it has received numerous awards, appears in many top ten lists and has a cult following thanks to its impressive visuals, inventive plot and its use of real bands (Beck, Metric) in the battle of the bands’ style plot.

Watch on: Netflix

2. The Umbrella Academy

Earlier depictions of superhero comics and novels tend to take on the more traditional good vs evil plot, with the good guys eventually winning. As that method becomes all too common, directors start to take on more complex novels, and The Umbrella Academy fits the bill.

Firstly, it’s written by My Chemical Romance’s Gerard Way. Unusual. The story revolves around a dysfunctional family of superheroes who have to reunite to discover the purpose of their father’s death and stop an oncoming apocalypse. It’s funny, unexpected, and one of Netflix’s most-streamed series of 2019.

Watch on: Netflix

3. Kick-Ass

Kick-Ass is a coming-of-age black comedy superhero movie with an unusual character list as superheroes and villains are accompanied by children. ‘Kick-Ass, also known as teenager Dave Lizewski joins Big Daddy and Hit-Girl as they attempt to take down Frank D’Amico and his son, Red Mist.

While it may sound a little on the tame side, it’s anything but, and there was some controversy about the profanity and violence used by children. It has since gained a cult following and is a popular film to this day.

Watch on: Amazon

4. Richie Rich

Moving away from the predictable superhero comics to something a little different. Now, if you’re a 90s kid, you’ll be familiar with Home Alone’s distant cousin Richie Rich, the kid so rich his middle name is a dollar sign.

The film is based on the comics of the same name, which ran from 1960 to 1991. The film follows Richie as he tries to make friends and protect his family fortunes from the company’s greedy CFO. It has the slapstick element of Home Alone, hence the comparisons.

Watch on: Netflix

5. The Mask

It’s one of the most iconic Jim Carrey and Cameron Diaz films of all time, but who knew The Mask was based on a comic series? There’s probably a good reason for that, in that the film is loosely based on the comics.

In the comics, the mask’s wearer becomes a villain in a Jekyll and Hyde type of way. However, Stanley Ipkiss turns into somewhat of an anti-hero in the film, although he’s still battling with the mask. It was the most profitable film based on a comic at the time of its release.

Watch on: Netflix

What’s your favourite adaptation?

There are hundreds of graphic novel and comic book adaptations out there. Do you have one that could rival our choice? We’d love to hear about it!

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