• By - Def-C


If you don’t mind manga or anime, there’s *Planetes.* Both the manga and the anime that was adapted from it can be a little difficult to find. It’s a story about a found family crew of debris collectors removing debris that is a hazard to navigation in Earth orbit. The story can get anime melodramatic at times, but the attention to detail about how people would live and work in space is top-notch.


Loved the anime but my god the main fmc is insufferable.


Since others have mentioned some big ones here's some others: *Transmetropolitan* is an excellent and fun read if you're interested in weird cyberpunkesque political gonzo-inspired journalism that offers great commentaries while still focusing on its characters. I don't have it collected myself but I imagine by now it has been put together in some form. *Stray Toasters* is another interesting one with great art work. Though I don't think it's as well known or lauded. I wouldn't call it a must read. *Judge Dredd* likely has several collections and is a long running, much loved series. *Paper Girls* and *Y: The Last Man* are two scifi comics by the same creator with a lot of accolades. *Valérian and Laureline* is a highly influential French originating scifi comics series that the terrible Luc Besson film was based on. The work of Moebius is also highly influential: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Giraud Also don't discount some superhero books. Like X-Men have some big memorable scifi stories, like the Phoenix Saga. There's also Jack Kirby's work and Green Lantern stories that are solid scifi epics.


Will second Transmetropolitan. It is an extraordinary achievement. Warren Ellis is disgusting though so you should try to borrow or buy it second hand.


Ghost in the Shell


For *Ghost in the Shell,* I feel the movies & TV series are better than the comic book versions. The original 1995 movie has great visuals - just look at these [cityscapes](https://www.heavymetal.com/carousel-gallery/ghost-in-the-shell-background-cityscapes/)! The TV series has awesome music by Yoko Kanno.




Absolutely. I'm not a huge fan of graphic novels in general, but this is easily one of my favorite books. It's phenomenal.


The Incal


This gets raved about all the time, but honestly I found it kind of disappointing. The plot is just one long succession of "and then this happened" with no real rhyme or reason to it, the main character isn't very engaging or relatable, and the ending is just disappointing on every level (thematically, in terms of character arc, etc), and honestly *really fucking dark* when you think about it, which kind of comes out of nowhere and doesn't really fit with the tone of the entire rest of the series. Maybe I'm missing something or people are just that in love with Moebius' drawing (which, to be fair, is excellent), but I was genuinely more disappointed in *The Incal* than any other graphic novel I can recall finishing.


Definitely not everyone's cup of tea, I can imagine


BLAME! By Tsutomu Nihei. Sprawling pages of beauty and mega structure terror as the protagonist Killy moves across immense distances? Immense times? I've never come across anything else like it.


[Planetes](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planetes) [Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nausica%C3%A4_of_the_Valley_of_the_Wind_(manga)) They are very different, so it's hard to say which is better. The first is a "hard" near-future sci-fi about astronauts who work for an orbital debris removal company. The second is an epic fantasy that takes place in a post-apocalyptic world. (You may be familiar with the movie of the same name; it's based on the first book of the series.)


Planetes is one of the best out there imo. Mostly because it makes the mundane look fantastical


Great manga but it's main fmc knocked it down a peg.


Seconding Nausicaä. It is one of the best stories I've experienced in any medium.


Battle Angel Alita - Love the comic. Worth checking out.




I'll add that if you're a person that's seen the anime and liked it, the manga is still worth reading as it does have some additional subplots and changes. The overall plot is basically the same, but the anime film obviously had to cut a lot out from the manga's several volumes of story. Like the priestess we briefly see in the anime film is an actual character and head of a cult that plays a part in the story of the manga. The art is also just as great, though it's primarily in black and white.


For the US version, Epic comics did a good job colorizing the series.


The manga has a TON more stuff than the anime. Like the anime is not even half the manga.




Saga. Staggeringly good and breathtakingly grand in scope.


Great comic. For the uninitiated I like to describe it as the R rated Farscape.


Hard R actually. There's some pretty graphic scenes in that comic. [This one is particularly graphic.](http://cbldf.org/2013/04/why-saga-12-is-protected-by-the-first-amendment/) Honestly I'm glad it there though. More comics should embrace being unapologetically adult. Saga tackles some pretty adult themes and presents them in a really good light.


OP this is the one…check it out


Transmetropolitan, Ghost in the shell, Valérian , Judge Dredd, anything by Jean Giraud möbius, as others have said ​ Shang gri la by mattieu babilet BLAME! (manga) Many comics published by Humanoids Publishing (some Moebius, etc ) Zara by Luc and Francois Schuiten , or anything by those two. Mostly for the scenery We3 by grant Morrison VAGRANT QUEEN BY MAGDALENE VISAGGIO, JASON SMITH, HARRY SAXON, AND ZAKK SAAM FAR SECTOR BY N.K. JEMISIN AND JAMAL CAMPBELL there's a lot of small, great one-off comics from all over and the rest of these: [https://bookriot.com/spacefaring-comics/](https://bookriot.com/spacefaring-comics/) Edit: A few others: the future is wild (tv series about future evolution on BBC) has a manga book of stories. Only available in Japan. Wordless. (Not a classic, but niche and sci fi. Akira, as others have said Berserk (manga)


Nausicaa by Miyazaki. For me it's the greatest graphic novel/manga ever made. It's a far bigger story than the movie. It has the same kind of massive scale, and sense of history as something like Dune, of Lord of the Rings. It's just very very good.


Blame! manga is dope. Truly little writing and an absurd amount of visual detail. Predates the Matrix and has a better storyline.


I really enjoyed Descender, and its follow-up Ascender, by Jeff Lemire. It's a sci-fi opera about a robot/human war, with swashbuckling adventure, romance, big explosions... all that good stuff. Well-written characters and a plot you give a shit about.


I'm not familiar with Manga, but I have been reading quite a lot of western sci-fi comics, and here's the list of the ones I really enjoyed: Essentially anything by Warren Ellis, in particular: * *Transmetropolitan* - Already mentioned in this thread. A wonderfully bizarre mix of near future corruption in politics, the role of media, extreme body modification and a bowel disruptor. * *Planetary* - A small team with limited superpowers investigates a hidden cabal that creates weird events all over the world. This appears to be Ellis' common theme, as he used something similar in *Global Frequency* and the recent *Injection*. Especially the latter is very close to *Planetary*, only the cabal is replaced by an A.I. * *Trees* - A very recent series, with giant and seemingly dormant aliens descending on Earth, doing nothing, other than inadvertently causing some limited ecological changes. The alien presence is only used as an excuse for all kinds of political and military opportunists. * *Shipwrecked* - A self-contained volume of a inter-dimensional traveller stranded on a strange old world. The art and the seeming old West setting may put off some readers, but I really enjoyed it. * *The Authority* - A group of superheroes battles global and inter-dimensional threats. This is closest to the superhero genre, but still firmly within the science fiction area. It is actually an offshoot of the *Stormwatch* universe that he wrote, and recently he started reimagining it in *The Wild Storm* series. I'm also convinced that *The Authority* served, at least partially, as inspiration for N. K. Jemisin's Hugo-nominated novel *The City We Became*. From other authors: * *The Invisibles* by Grant Morrison. A serious mindfuck, quite difficult to process, but worth it if you are into the weird stuff. He also did *The Filth*, which is in the same vein but a lot less confusing. * *The Adventures of Luther Arkwright* and its sequel, *Heart of the Empire*, by Brian Talbot. The titular character travels the parallel universes to try to stop the antagonists from utilising a weapon that has the potential to disrupt the multiverse. That premise may not be too original, but the comics features some of the best character development in this medium. * *Ronin* by Frank Miller. A samurai without a master is reincarnated in a futuristic dystopian New York City. Miller has written some of the highest quality comics I've read, and is well known for his movie adaptations. This was also optioned for a movie and a TV series, but nothing has materialised yet. If these titles are not enough, I recommend you check the list of Hugo nominations for comics for the past few years. The most nominated series tend to be *Girl Genius*, *Paper Girls*, *Saga* and *Monstress*. I haven't read the first one, but personally wasn't all that impressed with the other series, save for the art in *Monstress*.


The Sci-Fi greats in graphic novels/comics are; Brian K Vaughan (Saga, Ex Machina, Y - The Last Man) Moebius (Incal, The Metabarons) And of course pretty much anything and everything Warren Ellis ever touched. (Transmetropolitan, Trees, Injection, Ocean, ...) I'll second Planetes. I've only seen the anime but no doubt the manga is just as good.


it's moebin time!


Don't forget "the private eye" from Vaughan, it's amazing! I dare say it's his best sci-fi work


Morbius didnt do metabarons


I know you've mentioned a blanket recommendation of Warren Ellis, but I wanted to just add a specific shout out to Planetary. I really enjoyed the big concept scifi in it, and while it does cross-over into the superhero thing, it's more about exploring transhumanism than anything. Good stuff. Wish it was longer.


Akira. https://akira.fandom.com/wiki/Akira_(manga)


Saga -- still in progress but positively amazing.


Try 'The Invisibles' by Grant Morrison if you want to really twist your melon.


The original Nausicaa manga drawn by Hayao Miyazaki himself. Full volume available on Amazon. It’s pretty massive.


Prophet by Brandon Graham Lone Sloane by Philippe Druillet Seven to Eternity by Rick Remender The Ballad of Halo Jones by Alan Moore The Eternaut by Héctor Germán Oesterheld Other books already mentioned: Akira, Blame!, East of West, Low


Loved Halo Jones. Very Haldeman in parts, the humour and pathos of the story and the graphic stylemade it unforgettable.


The Incal, by Moebius and Jodorowsky


[*2001 Nights*](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2001_Nights) by Yukinobu Hoshino.


Universal War One! It's one of the few European graphic novels translated in English (well besides stuff like Tintin, but that's not scifi at all...) I have the collector's edition (in french) and it is awesome thanks to a making off at the end with diagrams of the various timelines. I won't spoil though.


Tintin did travel to the moon before it happened in real life, does that count as scifi?


Legends of the Galactic Heroes.


East of West. I don’t read a lot of comics but that hooked me.




I love Parasyte. It is my favorite manga of all time. It is the most tightly (perfectly) edited Manga I've ever read. If you start reading it you won't be able to stop until you're done. I also LOVE that the writer refused to bow to editor/publishing pressure to keep writing and extending the story as much as possible to milk the cash cow. The writer has said that he started the story visualizing a certain ending and that is exactly what he did. The ending is perfect, btw. You should (!) also watch the anime. It has an amazing metal theme song!


I only watched the anime. I really enjoyed it. The way you get to understand the motivation of each character is very well done.


Mobile Suit Gundam, particularly The Origin. It’s great at depicting sociopolitical issues that come with space colonization and obviously, giant robots


Buck Godot, especially "The Gallimaufy".


Kill 6 billion demons




HARD BOILED https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hard\_Boiled\_(comics)


Manga suggestions. All of these series have been around for awhile and all are complete. However I think Alita is still ongoing. "All You Need Is Kill" is a short good read. Tom Cruise's Edge of Tomorrow is based off the same book. "Trigun" is about a failed space colonization mission and follows a misunderstood outlaw in the barren waste. It's got a old west feel mixed with sci-fi weapons. "Battle Angel Alita" is a great sci fi classic. Robots, cyborgs, androids, and a oppressive higher archy. The original story is somewhat like Matt Damon's Elysium (I actually think Alita inspired Elysium). "Appleseed" and "Ghost In the Shell" are great old school manga by the legendary Shirow Masamune. Both Mangas have similar themes with cyborgs and a post war torn world that follows specially formed police units. Appleseed is more SWAT. GITS is more cyberwarfare (think Neuromancer).


Space Brothers. Modern-day/near-future sci-fi. It follows a pair of brothers as they become astronauts. There's 40+ volumes already and no end in sight as far as I know. I think one of the best things about it is that it doesn't really have the ridiculous, braindead interpersonal drama you see all the time. No wives sleeping with their dead son's best friend here.


I'll second a bunch of recs in this thread (Appleseed, Alita, GITS, Blame, Planetes, 2001 Nights, Kill Six Billion Demons, Nausicaa, pretty much anything by Moebius...) and add a few more: [Monstress](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24426209-monstress-1?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=AfRo5ZQoLu&rank=6) by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda [Habitat](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30896672-habitat?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=kw3vTly0uh&rank=14) by Simon Roy [Prophet](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15770131-prophet-volume-1) By Brandon Graham [Yokohama Kaidashi Kikou](https://anilist.co/manga/30004) by Hitoshi Ashinano [The Forever War comic adaptation](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34356506-the-forever-war-vol-1?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=zEy3OhMoj1&rank=11) by Joe Haldeman and Marvano


Descender and the follow up series Ascender by Jeff Lemire Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan


In terms of Manga have a look at Appleseed, Ghost In The Shell, Akira, Nausicaa. Your enjoyment of the anime adaptions may vary as some have a lot of terrible expanded content. Similar to these (with the exception of Nausicaa) is Patlabor that has a decent take on giant robots. This is all from the 80s/90s manga stuff. I dropped out of it afterwards as little fit in with the excellent stories or generally realistic portrayal


Sandman. Watchmen. Dark Knight.


Have read these and enjoyed them immensely. However, would you categorise them as sci-fi because I always thought they were more fantastical realism? Genuine question.


Sandman is most definitely not sci-fi. Watchmen and dark knight are superhero comics, and whilst there is some advanced science involved I'd never consider them sci-fi but I suppose it's debatable


Legit question. I’m using the broad brush of “speculative fiction “ and fantasy, and not the “hard science SF” brush. I get annoyed when mainstream “legitimate” fiction steals long-standing SF & Fantasy tropes, while sneering at the ghettos they came from. So I have a more inclusive definition.




Legit question. I’m using the broad brush of “speculative fiction “ and fantasy, and not the “hard science SF” brush. I get annoyed when mainstream “legitimate” fiction steals long-standing SF & Fantasy tropes, while sneering at the ghettos they came from. So I have a more inclusive definition.


Black Science (has omnibus) Saga


You can check out every recommendation you receive from this post, but... If I were to say my worst experience anything sci-fi related it would be saga by Brian k vaughan. I would say to avoid that series with all my heart. That is my opinion of course. Saga is basically a soap opera in space with wacky and dumb writing. Way overrated. I fell into the goodreads trap and definitely regret it. If you want something not too expensive and collected together in a single volume my *#1* suggestion is **world** **of** **edena** by **moebius**


MAUS ...


Uhhh… Isn’t that a Semi-Biography based on the life of somebody in the WWII Concentration Camps?….


If you don’t mind online comics, Humanity Lost is quite impressive. For regular comics, Fear Agent is fantastic. For Manga, well, Akira is absolutely mind blowing.


There is a manga of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and it’s pretty cool.


[Schlock Mercenary](https://www.schlockmercenary.com/2000-06-12). It's not a graphic novel, but it's certainly as extensive as one. June 2000 to September 2020, one strip per day, every day, without a single missed day. Sorry and artwork pick up in the later books, but the entire thing is a joy to read.


Legend of The Galactic Heroes. The 90's version is probably the best anime ever. Space Opera. Studio IG is making a remake (Die Neue These) but it is still incomplete. It is based on a series of japanese novels. Attack on Titan counts as SciFi. And the manga is available everywhere these days. Ghost in The Shell. Both the movies and the first two seasons of Stand Alone Complex. "Steins;Gate" is about time travel and how it is capable of destroying everything, and they really get heavy on the speculative science and conspiracy theories. One of my favorite TV series. Later on I played the original material, a Visual Novel videogame, and it was even better. It is available on Steam (steampowered.com) and they are having the summer sale right now: https://store.steampowered.com/app/819030/STEINSGATE_ELITE/




*Transmetropolitan* - ten graphic novels telling one epic story of a gonzo journalist's battle to expose a corrupt future president of the USA, set in a densely-realised *convincingly* post-singularity world, which is something I didn't think was even possible before I read it. Also features bowl disruptors, someone shitting themself into unconsciousness and an AI home-replicator that spends all its time making weird machine drugs to get high. *The Invisibles* - fuck, how do you even explain this? At one level it's a contemporary story about a bunch of anarchist magicians fighting for the cause of disorder against the Outer Church, a sinister extra-dimensional organisation that worship Lovecraftian entities of order and repression that secretly control most of the modern world. On another it's a mystical group attempting to recruit and train an angry young juvenile delinquent in Liverpool, England, who might be the next Buddha... or possibly a metaphysical WMD. Or perhaps it's a psychedelic and forth-wall-breaking story about a group trying to play nursemaid to a difficult birth as humanity evolves out of our four-dimensional reality into the next stage of our existence. It's basically a literary version of [this] (https://preview.redd.it/dgymw3hfu4m21.jpg?width=500&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=bf9515cae4beb864f776763138d98818136276d6), if it existed in about eight dimensions instead of three. *Watchmen* is an amazing deconstruction of superhero mythology, set in an alternative-universe 1980s. It's one of the first ever serious graphic novels that was clearly and unambiguously written exclusively for adults. Oh, and of course *The Sandman*. It's definitely more fantasy than sci-fi, and it's very emo and goth-y, but it's also like the ur-example of the kind of epic, multi-volume, complex and adult graphic novel series that later spawned things like Transmet and The Invisibles.


The meta barons


Marvel's *Annihilation* and *Annihilation: Conquest* are both some good old fashioned space opera.


Tokyo Ghost was cool. Post-apocalyptic sci fi tokyo style. https://imagecomics.com/comics/series/tokyo-ghost


There's some good recommendations on this thread but most of them are not sci-fi at all, if you really want to check sci-fi you can't go wrong with [The Metabarons](https://www.amazon.com/Metabarons-Alejandro-Jodorowsky/dp/159465106X) by Jodorowski and Jimenez, crazy millenia spawning story across the universe, think of Dune meets The Borgias, you won't find any better sci-fi art


Anything by Druillet, Mœbius or Bilal