When it comes to inspiring love stories, movies or TV shows always come to mind. But did you know that you can get the same warm and fuzzy feeling with comics?
Yes, you read that right!
In fact, I’ll be counting down the top 10 best love comics here.
Let’s get underway.
Set in the chilly midwestern US, Blankets is a masterpiece that narrates something we all know too well – the bliss (and pain) of first love.
Craig Thompson’s coming-of-age autobiography details the story of his namesake, a devout Christian who falls in love with Raina during summer camp.
Far more than just an enthralling love story, many consider Blankets a ‘magnum opus.’ In fact, it was named by Time Magazine as the #1 comic of 2003 and, subsequently, the 8th best of the decade.
Written by Brian K. Vaughan and drawn by Fiona Staples, Saga talks about love that transcends both time and space.
The story is narrated by Hazel, whose parents Marko and Alana got together amid an intergalactic war. (If this theme somehow rings a bell, it’s because it’s said to be a hybrid of Star Wars and Game of Thrones.)
A truly inspiring tale, it shows how love survives – even after the novelty wears off.
Although Scott Pilgrim’s 2010 movie adaptation was a flop, it did gain a cult following (me included.) The same can be said about the graphic novel from which it was inspired.
Penned by Bryan Lee O’Malley, the story centers around the namesake bassist from Toronto, Ontario. He falls head over heels in love with delivery girl Ramona Flowers, whom he saw in a dream.
But to win her heart, he must defeat each of her seven evil exes.
One of the best things about this series is it’s not just about romance – it has some exciting battle sequences as well!
For those who know the Greek myth, the abduction of Persephone is a tragedy – not a romance. But in Lore Olympus, which was created by Rachel Smyth, this tale is told with a modern twist.
By modern, I mean the inclusion of smartphones, sports cars, and the like.
Here, Persephone and Hades try to cultivate a romantic relationship, in contrast to the old myth.
But, like any other love story – modern or otherwise – it’s not without obstacles. There are the issues of rape, abuse, and trauma – issues that many people still face today.
Strangers in Paradise
Fact: romantic comics need not be exclusively cheesy. It can be a thriller too, as evidenced by the famous ‘Strangers in Paradise’ by Terry Moore.
The story talks about the lives of Francine, Katchoo, and David, who are caught up in a love triangle (and later on, a love rectangle – or square. You decide.)
While the comic focuses on the overlapping love stories, it does shed light on Katchoo’s colorful past – a hooker overseen by an organized crime syndicate.
Indeed, this one-of-a-kind love story will keep you glued to your seat.
Alex + Ada
True love transcends gender, belief, and socio-economic status, among many other things. And this tale by Jonathan Luna and Saga’s Sara Vaughn shows that it can rise above ‘life’ too.
The story revolves around Alex, a man who becomes depressed after his fiance dumps him. He eventually receives the android Ada from his grandmum so that he’ll have company.
Alex decides to give Ada the mental freedom she deserves, which is an illegal act in itself. He gets locked up for this but eventually reunites with the seemingly non-sentient Ada after his release.
Just when you thought this story ends on a dark note, wait ‘til you get to the ending!
True to its’ name, Heartstopper is a graphic novel (which lately has been adapted into a Netflix series) that will make your heart skip a beat.
The story revolves around Nick, who fell in love with Charlie. This inspiring love story chronicles relationship problems, eating disorders, and the struggles of coming out to their parents.
One of the great things about this comic? The story is still ongoing! The fifth volume, which would be the last according to Alice Oseman, is set to be released on November 2023.
If you’re looking for romance – with a side of kink – then Sunstone is the webcomic you ought to read. Published by Stjepan Šejić (a BDSM practitioner himself) in 2011, this ongoing erotic romantic comedy centers on Lisa and Ally, who find themselves in a sub-domme arrangement.
Because of the nature of their relationship, the two ladies find it hard to establish a romantic one. However, despite the tension, conflict, and jealousy, Lisa and Ally finally confessed their feelings for one another (awww.)
Spoilers: they get married in the future! As to how it’ll unfold, you’ll have to wait for the third arc, ‘Jasper,’ which is set to be released soon.
DC may be known for its superheroes, but the company makes mean romantic comics as well. Case in point: Heart Throbs, which had its illustrious run from 1949 to 1972. It talks about the lives (and loves) of three girls.
Unlike other comics in this list, Heart Throbs actually comes with ‘Advice on Love Problems’ by Marilyn Minton. Who knows? The answer to your heart’s woes may actually be on a decades-old comic book!
Right even before the creators of the above (and below) comics were born, there was already a romantic comic series making our forefathers swoon (and laugh.) Enter Blondie, which has been published by the late Chic Young in newspapers since the 1930s.
The storyline is one for the soap operas, I might say. Dagwood, an industrial heir, falls in love (and marries) the beautiful flapper Blondie. And because she was beneath his class, Dagwood’s family decided to disinherit him.
Outside their funny antics, there’s no doubt that the couple’s lovely relationship is one many people aspire to have.
There you have it – the ten best love comics you could read today. So what are you waiting for? I suggest you get started reading now. I know I will!
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