Total Nerd The 26 Most Stunning Pieces of Art in Comics  

Jacob Shelton
1k votes 260 voters 11.6k views 26 items

List Rules Vote on the best comic book illustrations below.

Since they first came to prominence in the 1930s, comic books have been viewed as something for kids, not as a medium that could break new ground or inspire artists to greatness. Until recently, if you were an adult and seen reading comics you were either thought of as a dolt or a hideous man child who was living in your mother’s basement. And while those things may be true of some comic fans, they’re certainly not indicative of modern readers or of the books themselves. Comic books have been improving stylistically for over fifty years with no sign of breaking stride. If you’re a fan, you probably know a lot of the comics on this list, and if you’re new to the form, get ready to be impressed. Check out our list of the most beautiful comic books from the last 50+ years.

The style of the illustrations in the comics on this list differs in a multitude of ways. Some are steeped in photo-realism, while others hearken back to the golden age of comics, when colors popped and giant black globs were how you knew someone had telekinetic powers. The art on this list oscillates wildly between gruesome visages, breathtaking backgrounds, and stark minimalism. To deny their artistic leanings would be to look like an absolute dummy.

Vote on which comic speaks to you, or grabs your attention the most, and if we left off your favorite book then let us know in the comments – we’re always looking for a new book to salivate over.
1 82 VOTES


Justice is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The 26 Most Stunning Pieces of Art in Comics
Photo: via Twitter
Justice, by Alex Ross, was a 12 issue story arc that followed the Justice League as they fought the Legion of Doom. The painted covers and frames brought back a classic style that made even the readers feel heroic.
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2 74 VOTES


Marvels is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The 26 Most Stunning Pieces of Art in Comics
Photo: via Tumblr
Alex Ross's art for Marvels has been described as "Norman Rockwell meets George Pérez," and his masterfully painted covers are basically honey to the Eisner Awards's flies.

Also Ranked

#19 on The Greatest Graphic Novels and Collected Editions

52 22
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3 82 VOTES


Joker is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The 26 Most Stunning Pieces of Art in Comics
Photo: via Wikimedia
Is there a character that's been through more artistic permutations that the Joker? The art for Joker has been described as "moutherwatering" (UGH) and supposedly it inspired the look of Heath Ledger's Joker from The Dark Knight.
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4 57 VOTES

Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth

Arkham Asylum: A Serious House... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The 26 Most Stunning Pieces of Art in Comics
Photo: via Twitter
Blending paintings, drawings, photography, and mixed-media collage to come up with the striking page design for Arkham Asylum, Dave McKean built a nightmare world to match the mindset of your average Arkham Asylum inmate.

Also Ranked

#10 on The Best Batman Comics

40 17
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