Five comics that need television/movie adaptations

It’s a no brainer for properties like Spider-Man and Batman to get adapted for film, but there are still other graphic novels out there that seem to be begging for a place on the big or small screen. Below are five picks for comics that should be adapted into television shows or movies.

HighRoads

High Roads:

Many of you probably haven’t heard of this six issue miniseries from Wildstorm, which is a shame because it is the best action movie NOT on film. Drawn by Leinil Yu (Superman: Birthright) and written by Scott Lobdell, High Roads tells the story of Nick Highroad, a World War II army captain, who teams up with a British actor, one of Hitler’s mistresses and a disgraced kamikaze pilot to steal Adolph’s greatest treasure. Unfortunately they find themselves embroiled in an adventure that takes them from the streets of France to a secret Nazi fortress. Each issue of the comic series plays like a set piece from an Indiana Jones film. And the archetypal characters are extraordinarily memorable and engaging.

High Roads could bring a  team action-adventure film to the screen in the same vein as The Dirty Dozen or Ocean’s Eleven. Also, it would be really neat to see Warwick Davis play Sir Arthur, the British actor known for playing a tiny version of Adolph Hitler in a stage show called “The Littlest Dictator”.

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American Vampire:

Writer Scott Snyder and artist Rafael Albuquerque have given vampires their teeth back, with their multi-generational tale of the undead in America. The first arc in the series tells the story of Pearl, an actress in 1920s Hollywood, who gets lured into becoming food for a European vampire running a movie studio. When she is left for dead, the first American vampire Skinner Sweet happens upon her and, through an act of malice/kindness, turns her into a vampire. American Vampire uses monsters as an allegory for the history of America and if that sounds too cerebral for you, in volume four, there’s a greaser vampire hunter named Travis Kidd that is a stone-cold badass. There’s lots of action, but just as many thoughtful and mysterious moments.

This story would make an excellent film or television series and if done properly, I could see the vampire finally becoming scary again. Cast Josh Holloway as Skinner Sweet, have Stephen King write the pilot, KNB effects do the makeup and I think you may be in business.

Ruse_-01

Ruse:

Ruse was a mystery/fantasy series from CrossGen Comics in the early 2000s. The comic featured master sleuth, Simon Archard and his assistant, Emma Bishop, as the two solved mysteries great and small in an alternate version of Victorian England. While there were several stand alone stories, there was also an overarching plot that included the return of Simon’s nemesis Malcom Lightbourne, an evil Moriarty-like character as well as the supernatural machinations of Miranda Cross, one of the city’s most powerful socialites. This is a series that brought back the fun and romance of the classic adventure tales of the past, and really who doesn’t want to see a television show where mysteries are solved in a Victorian world where gargoyles fly overhead.

With the popularity of shows like Sherlock as well as the steampunk subculture, Ruse would make a wonderful, if expensive, television show; and since Disney acquired the rights to all of CrossGen Comics’ properties, there might be a chance we’ll see it.

Bone

Bone:

If you’re a comic reader and haven’t ever read Jeff Smith‘s BONE, you are a creature to be pitied. If the adorable art style is what’s hanging you up because “that’s for kids”, I have news for you, what begins as an cute adventure soon transforms into a Lord of the Rings epic fantasy. The series finds the balance between comedy and adventure slowly but surely luring its audience into the dark epic fantasy that plays like Mickey Mouse meets the Hobbit.

There was a rumor a long time ago that BONE was being developed for Nickelodeon as an animated movie, and that would be wonderful. With something like this you could never do live action. Suggestion: Denny DeVito for the voice of Phoney Bone

planetary-26

Planetary:

If you’re someone who likes the sci-fi mystery of shows like Lost and Fringe, but you also have an bottomless appetite for pop culture and pulp literature, then I would say that you have very specific tastes; I would also say that you should check out Planetary. Written by Warren Ellis and penciled by John Cassaday, Planetary tells the story of an organization that consider themselves “Archaeologists of the impossible”. The feel of the comic is very X-Files-ish drawing from the history of superheroes as well as where the genres of sci-fi and fantasy are currently headed.

Planetary would be perfect to fill the void of  a show like Fringe, and could be expanded to fill multiple seasons detailing more of the past of Planetary featuring cameos from Dr. Frankenstein, Dracula and Sherlock Holmes. With Breaking Bad ending, Brian Cranston would make a wonderful Elijah Snow…just saying.

 

So these are my picks for comics that should be adapted. What are some of yours? Let us know in the comments.

 

P.S.: I left Sandman off the list, because it’s not adaptable, nor should anyone ever try. It would be a disaster.

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Robert Walker
Robert Walker 152 posts

Rob Walker is a writer and filmmaker in Colorado, and is creator of the comedy web series Victorian Cut-out Theatre. He loves horror films and comic books (American Vampire, Jonah Hex, The Flash, Planetary). Rob has been a Sherlockian since the age of ten, is a Dark Tower junky and believes that Indiana Jones is the greatest cinematic hero ever created. You can follow him on twitter at: @timidwerewolf and see his other writings and videos at robwalkerfilms.com