13 COMICS to Help You Escape Right Now

Christy Blanch brings some comfort.

Sean Von Gorman

Sean Von Gorman

For many if not most people, comic books are a refuge, a haven.

Had a rough day? Pick up a comic. Want some alone time? Pick up a comic. Want to forget the crap that’s going on in the world right now? Pick up a comic.

And that’s where our LAST WEEK’S COMICS TODAY columnist Christy Blanch comes in. She’s picked 13 uplifting, life-affirming comics for you to read to put all the lousiness out of your head right now. At least for a moment or two. Consider it comfort food for comics fans.

Oh, by the way, I heartily endorse this list. I’ve read almost everything on it. And I’ll tell you, she ain’t kiddin’.

Here’s Christy. — Dan


While these comics may not be your Top 13 comfort comics, they are mine. It’s kind of like my Monty Python “Whenever Life Gets You Down, Mrs. Brown” list.

I give to you, in no particular order:

Thor: The Goddess of Thunder, by Jason Aaron, Russell Dauterman and Jorge Molina. I think most people know who she is now, but I’m not telling. Read it yourself. And realize what courage it takes for her to do what she does. And then emulate that courage in your every day life. That is the real power of superheroes.


DC: The New Frontier, by Darwyn Cooke. They just don’t come better than this. The art would be enough but Darwyn’s writing is simply spectacular. If this book has been on your radar but you haven’t read it yet, this is a great time to pick it up. Darwyn’s passing left a hole in comics, and in the world, that won’t be filled anytime soon.


Saga of the Swamp Thing, by Alan Moore, John Totleben and Stephen Bissette. This is my all-time favorite comic story. I will reread this series anytime I have the time and in many instances even when I don’t have the time. Swamp Thing and Abby’s story is the greatest love story that has ever been written in my humble opinion. There are six volumes and while this may seem like a lot to take on, it’s well worth your time.


The Fifth Beatle by Vivek Tiwary, Andrew Robinson and Kyle Baker. Granted, I am a huge Beatles fan and am happy to read anything about the boys, but this is quite an amazing endeavor and I can’t recommend this book enough. It’s upbeat, it’s happy and it’s beautiful.


Spider-Man: Blue, by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. Peter Parker missing Gwen Stacy on Valentine’s Day. Need I say more? Well, I will. It makes you feel but it’s a good feel.


Doctor Strange: The Oath, by Brian K. Vaughan and Marcos Martin. If you saw the new Doctor Strange movie and noticed these two creators in the credits, read this book and you will see why. It’s a roller-coaster ride but it will leave you feeling like there is hope. Plus, look at the talent on this book! Two of the best! (Side note: You can get a special hardcover of this book at comics shops participating in Local Comic Shop Day on 11/19!)


Essex County, by Jeff Lemire. There’s a significance in the little victories. That is what I think this book encapsulates so well. On top of that, it’s simply beautiful.


Daytripper, by Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon, is all about living life to its fullest. This is an amazing book that means something different to you every time you read it. If you haven’t read it, do so. If you have but haven’t in quite some time, read it again. I guarantee you will get something else from it.


I Hate Fairyland, by Skottie Young. Yes, there is killing and gross things and craziness. And you will have a huge smile on your face the whole time you are reading it. I think Skottie Young is unstoppable when it comes to making me laugh.


All-Star Superman, by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely. This story is full of heart and soul and really gets down to what Superman is really about. And it’s gorgeous.


American Born Chinese, by Gene Luen Yang. I still remember the first time I read this and couldn’t figure out what Yang was doing. Then BAM! It all comes together. This is a brilliant read. Just brilliant.


Y: The Last Man, by Brian K. Vaughan, Pia Guerra and Jose Marzan Jr., may seem an odd choice, but this a book that completely changed my life. It’s what got me using comics in the classroom and was the first book I thought of when designing my Gender Through Comic Books course. It is dark but there are bright spots of humanity throughout. It remains one of my Top 5 series of all time.


Superman: Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?, by Alan Moore, Curt Swan, George Perez and Kurt Schaffenberger. With that line-up, of course it’s amazing, but it is beyond that. It is a “What If” story, a happily-ever-after story, and it remains my favorite Superman story to date.


Christy Blanch is an educator, writer and comics-shop retailer, operating Aw Yeah Comics in Muncie, Ind. She’s a regular columnist at 13th Dimension. You can find her LAST WEEK’S COMICS TODAY columns here.

Author: Dan Greenfield

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