6 Dystopian and Post-Apocalyptic Graphic Novels I Love

I love post-apocalyptic stories! And as you know, I love comics. So, these are my favorite post-apocalyptic comics. (Disclosure: Amazon links are affiliate links.)

Any book or series on this list I loved at the time I read it, whether I had a chance to write a review or not. Obviously a re-read years later might reveal a problematic aspect I didn’t pick up on back then. Please let me know via my contact form if you find something yikes in a book I recommend.

Girls’ Last Tour (Amazon/Comixology / Goodreads) By Tsukumizu. Translated by Amanda Haley. Lettered by Abigail Blackman and Xian Michele Lee.

It feels strange to call this a hopeful post-apocalyptic manga, since all signs point to the main characters eventually starving or freezing to death, but watching these two girls enjoy exploring the ruins of their world leaves me with a somewhat pleasant feeling? Chito and Yuuri basically ride around on a heavy quad motorbike looking for food and fuel, taking in the sights, speculating about what life was like before civilization collapsed. They encounter other survivors, but no one seems to be trying to collect a group, plan for the future, build anything, etc. It’s more existential, I guess? There doesn’t seem to be an overarching plot, but I’m still really digging something about these two friends and their adventures. If you’re looking for something a little quirky after the end of the world, try it out.

There are two volumes of Girls’ Last Tour out so far, and it’s an ongoing series.

Days of Hate (Amazon/Comixology / Goodreads) By Aleš Kot, illustrated by Danijel Žeželj, colored by Jordie Bellaire, lettered by Aditya Bidikar.

Dystopian graphic novel with queer women main characters, and it’s So. Good. I. Can’t. Even. In the United States, 2022, two women are on opposite sides of the struggle against ruling the white supremacist police state. Huian Xing is a bi Chinese-American architect cooperating (kinda) with the government to track down her ex-wife, now-revolutionary terrorist, Amanda. The book follows each woman’s story as Amanda crosses the country carrying out her missions and Huian is subjected to increasing pressure by a government agent. The art is foreboding and lovely, with these muted tones and so much black that it sometimes seems like stained glass, only without any brightness (metaphor intentional). Huian just seems so sad, and as she tells the agent the story of how her marriage ended, we find out why. Kot had me second guessing my understanding of what’s going on multiple times, in such a good way. Can’t wait for the second book!

[UPDATE: The second book was really, really good!]

Aster of Pan (Amazon / Goodreads) By Merwan.

Amusing post-apocalyptic romp of a graphic novel about a young outcast named Aster who leads a team to defend her home against an invading force by competing in… dodge ball. Well, it starts as dodge ball, but it escalates from there, and kinda turns into paintball? Whatever, it’s fun! Some of the plot doesn’t make complete sense, but I decided not to get too hung up on that because I was enjoying Aster and the sheer ludicrousness of the situation so much. It definitely took a bit to get started, but once it did, it was an enjoyable ride.

The Infinite Horizon (Amazon / Kindle / Goodreads) By Gerry Duggan, with art by Phil Noto and letters by Ed Dukeshire.

Somewhat inspired by The Odyssey, this is the bleakest post-war post-apocalyptic comic I’ve ever read, and I love it. You want a messed up world? Here you go! You want a small number of good people facing off against terrible odds, their fellow citizens running amok? Yep, got that right here! The storytelling is arresting, pitting a husband and father against seemingly overwhelming odds as he tries to reunite with his wife and child. Phil Noto’s art is gorgeous as always. But maybe don’t read this when you’re in a bad headspace about the future of humanity.

The Infinite Horizon is complete in one volume.

Wasteland (Amazon/Comixology / Goodreads) By Antony Johnston. Art primarily by Christopher Mitten (6+ of the 11 volumes), with several other artists over the series: Carla Speed McNeil, Joe Infurnari, Chuck BB, Remington Veteto, Justin Greenwood (2 volumes), Russel Roehling, Brett Weldele, Sandy Jarrell, and Omar Olivera. Lettering by Douglas E. Sherwood

The remnants of humanity survive in a desert, long after civilization was destroyed by an event called The Big Wet. There are creatures in the desert who prey on humans, and humans with strange powers who are maybe not so human after all. Like Abi, the village healer and kick-ass gal. Like Michael, the traveler who turns up with a small machine that may lead the way to a lost city. And then there’s creepy Marcus and his creepy sister who are running a large city as their own personal cult. Religion, mystery, corruption, violence, distrust, and death vie with friendship, faith, and magic. C-Man says it would make an excellent Dungeons and Dragons game setting.

Wasteland is a complete series in eleven paperback volumes, but for the love of all that is holy, the tenth volume should be read LAST. It’s full of spoilers, and I don’t know what the heck they were thinking publishing it before the eleventh book where the series ends and you get All The Answers to how the world was destroyed.

There’s also a set of five hardcover Apocalyptic Editions, but I haven’t checked to see how the content is arranged to make sure it doesn’t have the same problem.

The series Yokohama Station SF by Yuba Isukari, art by Tatsuyuki Tanaka and Gonbe Shinkawa, translated by Stephen Paul, lettering by Adnazeer Macalangcom (Amazon / Goodreads)

I’m very much here for this futuristic manga series starter about a young man venturing into the self-propagating train station that’s taken over almost all of Japan’s main island. I love how low-key the information-sharing is about the world, and the possibility of a resistance movement has me intrigued.

“Two hundred years ago, Yokohama Station, which had been under constant construction, developed the ability to self-propagate. Now with nearly all Honshu, the mainisland of Japan, consumed by the growing station, the population has been split into two groups: those who live inside the sprawl with fare cards embedded in their brains and the few who persist on the remaining scraps of untouched land. Hiroto has lived his whole life on the outside, but when an exile from the station entrusts him with a mission and a ticket, he ventures into the ominous belly of the beast for the first time…”

And that’s the list!