Comic Vine News

108 Comments

How To Get Your Girlfriend To Read Comics

We've chosen a few great titles to help that special lady in your life ease into reading some funny books.

Unlike the many of you that have been reading comic books your entire lives, I came into the genre a bit later. Nevertheless, my passion for comic books and the graphic novel format shouldn't be questioned -- I love comics. A lot. However, being a girl who reads comics is still considered something of a rarity. In fact, most of my friends would rather pick up a PEOPLE magazine than sit down with a graphic novel to read a good story. One of the questions I sometimes get from guys who love comic books is how they should go about introducing funny books to their girl friend. Obviously, it's something they are interested in and passionate about, and something they really want to share with their significant other. And I don't blame them! Even with Batman and Iron Man movies becoming huge successes at the box office, graphic novels are still somewhat hard to delve into -- and let's face it, most girls don't head to the comic shop for their weekly fix all that often.

Kate Beaton's Wonder Woman

The problem with this question is that there is really no definitive answer because not all girls are the same and will like the same things. There are, however, suggestions that can be for books that would appeal to women, in my opinion. Now, I'm not really one for holiday gift guides, but it's also no accident that these suggestions are coming just in time for the holiday season; in case, you know, you haven't bought your girlfriend anything for Christmas yet.

I decided to list a few of my favorite titles that I personally feel would appeal to the majority of women who are inclined to give graphic novels and comic books a chance. Some of the books I chose will be familiar to most of you, and some of them not so much. Keep in mind girls are different. Just because one of them is totally into an action packed superhero title, doesn't mean all of them would be into that. Regardless, I've tried my best to present a few books I felt would help you introduce your girlfriend to comics.

== TEASER ==
HABIBI by Craig Thompson

HABIBI is a graphic novel that is not only absolutely gorgeous (the way the book is bound is really beautiful), but it's also an amazing story. Chronicling the lives of Dodola and Zam, refugee children who had been sold into slavery (and escaped), the story is sent in a world of fantasy -- of Arabian Nights and harems. The book deals with a lot of very revelant topics from the love that grows between the two children through their combined experiences, to the political atmosphere of the Middle East. The book is written by BLANKETS writer Craig Thompson and has been six years in the making. Habibi is a beautiful love story which would appeal to any reader.

Thompson's BLANKETS is another book that would appeal to any reader, and details the relationship between two children and later, a romantic love story. BLANKETS is a fantastic "coming of age" story that would appeal to both male and female readers.

Women are sometimes drawn to books about other women or girls because they can relate to the experiences some of these characters endure. ANYA's GHOST is a graphic novel by Vera Brosgol about a young girl who is struggling into her adolescence. She, like many of us, has an obnoxious younger brother, a best friend who is sometimes a little bit mean to her and a boy at school that she really, really likes. Things become a little bit more complicated when Anya falls into a well and discovers...a ghost! It's a very sweet and charming book, and a lot of fun to read.

ANYA's GHOST by Vera Brosgol

HARK! A VAGRANT Is a book I personally keep on my coffee table at home because I don't think anyone who has read it has had anything bad to say about it. Creator Kate Beaton keeps a fantastic website where she makes her comic strips available to read. They are intelligent, humorous and sassy. If you want something that will make laugh, HARK! A VAGRANT which compiles Beaton's strips all into one great package is a book you should absolutely look into. She's an incredibly talented creator and the book itself is lovely.

SCARLET by Brian Michael Bendis

There are some really great more mainstream books that may appeal to female readers, as well. One series that all of us at Comic Vine adore is Vertigo's FABLES. The series, written by Bill Willingham, takes characters from some of our favorite fairy tales and sets them in the real world. The books themselves are stunning and reading just one will not be enough.

WITCHBLADE Compendium Volume 2 is also a great title if you are looking for an action packed book. While the volume itself doesn't contain all of writer Ron Marz's work on the series, it does chronicle at least 20 of his issues and will serve to highlight the gradual evolution of Sara Pezzini's character.

If your girl friend likes to see women kicking major butt then she should definitely give Greg Rucka's QUEEN AND COUNTRY a chance, as well as Brian Michael Bendis' SCARLET.

Most of these titles can be found at your local comic shop or through the Amazon website. What books would you recommend? Have you read any of the books listed above?

108 Comments
  • 108 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Edited by Daveyo520

I have gotten a few of my girlfriends to read some comics. Big successes were The Umbrella Academy and ECHO. Also Hark a Vagrant is pretty awesome.

Posted by Decoy Elite

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).  
 
I'll toss out Gunnerkrigg Court for consideration, it starts off a bit boring but it gets really good. Seems like something most girls would like, although it's not really what I'd call a girly comic. 

Posted by pikahyper

Lenore and Strangers in Paradise always work, the six SiP pocket editions are great gifts.

Moderator
Edited by Jonny_Anonymous

I gave my Ex Lost at Sea by Brian Lee O'Malley and she loved it. On another note I'm always really tempted to check out SCARLET but I loath to give Bendis any of my money 

Posted by MyraMyraMyra

I can only speak for myself, but my first comic book love was Sandman. I read the whole series as a teenager during my Neil Gaiman craze. Sandman is a great series that I think suits readers of almost all tastes. It contains enough philosophical musings, literary references and historical figures to please academic nerds like me, but it's also an enjoyable read with a compelling story, beautiful art, and an interesting cast of characters. Also, Gaiman writes female characters very well. Women aren't reduced to passive love interests and scantly-clad sex objects in any of his stories. Sandman has Death, Rose Walker, Delirium, Nada, and Thessaly, for starters, and a whole bunch of other interesting and identifiable female characters. As for individual volumes, I think A Game of You is a female-oriented story arc since it's a kind of study of the many aspects of gender and femininity.

I also love Hark! A Vagrant by Kate Beaton. She's also recently had her work in a collection that depicts Marvel characters reimagined by comic artists like Beaton. Her comic strips are a delightful mix of academic subjects and silly humour.

Posted by Primmaster64

Forever Alone :(


 
 
 
 
 
 
XD
Posted by Icarusflies

@Decoy Elite said:

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).

NOPE.

Moderator
Posted by Mr. Dead Pool

My wife reads manga and has started to read some comics, mostly because my love of comics rubbed off on her. I didn't really try to get her to read them she just slowly started on her own.

Posted by fred9101

Great ideas!

Posted by Primmaster64
@Icarusflies said:

@Decoy Elite said:

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).

NOPE.

It actually is...
Posted by Laiton

My poppa got me into comic books and my mum got me into science fiction. My fav comics are sci-fi saturated trades or graphic novels. I'm more likely to play the matching game with my friends by finding comics I think they'd like so I dig this article. This gives me a few more stories to share.

^.^

Posted by Decoy Elite
@Icarusflies said:

@Decoy Elite said:

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).

NOPE.

I meant the ladies in general and you miss are not all the ladies. :P
Posted by fifichiapet

Jeff Lemire's Tales From the Farm, his first volume in the Essex County Trilogy. This is a story I had a few of my female family members try. This book did not cause my eyes to water--I cried like a baby.

Edited by Xenozoic Shaman

Typical response from non-comic book readers is unfortunately still: "People who read comics have girlfriends?"

Posted by foxandwall

Well, It is not always a good a idea to get your girlfriends to read comic.

One of my best friends tried so and he succeed. His girlfriend even more fond of comic than him, though she only concentrate on Superman and Batman.

However, there is a small problem.

She began to talk about the relationship between the world's finest and start writing slash fanfiction……

That‘s all

Posted by thanosrules

Two responses to this:

"I don't need even more comics on my pull list."

and...

Gives new meaning to "pull list"

Posted by Bearded Justice

sara you need to tell us how to get a girlfriend first!

Posted by Daveyo520

@Primmaster64 said:

@Icarusflies said:

@Decoy Elite said:

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).

NOPE.

It actually is...

It is. I know many who like it.

Posted by cincyducksfan35

can't go wrong with y the last man

Posted by Psykhophear

I feel confident with this list, especially when it was written by a fine woman like yourself, Babs. Even I feel like reading these comics. Thanks.

Posted by eclecticmess

For my first attempt to get my wife to read comics I used titles that were intended for a female audience (Models, HER-oes) but most of those titles aren't very good, so my attempt failed. After that I just started giving her any comics that I thought were really good. And wouldn't you know it, good stories are good stories, regardless of the audience's gender. My wife loves Hack/Slash, Morning Glories, Locke and Key, and she can't get enough of Sweet Tooth.

Don't look for "girlie" comics to recommend...look for good comics.

Posted by Iron Apollo

My wife loves league of extraordinary gentleman, she got all the trades two x-mas's ago and breezed through them. Although I will say she has different tastes than most.

Posted by Danial79

My girlfriend doesn't read any fiction, so I doubt I could ever get her to read a comic :(

Posted by elayem98

pride of baghdad would be good too

Posted by The_Kid_Lantern

I got my wife into the Beyond Wonderland series, the Bite Club books from Vertigo/DC, and she has a couple Catwoman trades from the last good Catwoman series with art by Darwyn Cooke as well as the graphic novel where Wonder Woman kicked the crap out of Batman. From her years with me she's on par with the average comic book nerd in terms of how much she knows about the big two companies... LOL

~KL~

Edited by JonesDeini

I think the best bet for this is to find out what kind of literature the person is into then choose works with similar themes. I got my lady friend into a few of my graphic novels like Fables, Y: The Last Man, Sandman, The Unwritten, and American Vampire. I also gave her some more thoughtful superhero stuff like New Universal. She's not going to the shop anytime soon, but she's definitely receptive to the medium now and I can't seem to let her breeze through my bookshelf quick enough. I can't wait to get her into the works of Alan Moore.

@eclecticmess said:

For my first attempt to get my wife to read comics I used titles that were intended for a female audience (Models, HER-oes) but most of those titles aren't very good, so my attempt failed. After that I just started giving her any comics that I thought were really good. And wouldn't you know it, good stories are good stories, regardless of the audience's gender. My wife loves Hack/Slash, Morning Glories, Locke and Key, and she can't get enough of Sweet Tooth.

Don't look for "girlie" comics to recommend...look for good comics.

Bingo! I just recommend things that I truly enjoy myself. Good storytelling will take care of the rest.

Posted by ForeignLawns

Hark! A Vagrant is so, so good. YES!

Anyhoo, I did get the fiance hooked on Fables. She enjoyed Watchmen, and also really enjoyed Identity Crisis.

I think what's importance is to go by quality, not by genre. Some superhero books are well written, and some are pretty dumb. A good book will speak for itself.

Edited by jloneblackheart

Unless they come up with a Real Housewives or Kardashians ongoing, I'm out of luck.

Moderator
Edited by KamenRider00

How about an article on how to get your boyfriend into comics? :-)

Posted by sashique

I'm the one that got my boyfriend into comics :P Dragging him with me to the London MCM Expo a couple of times might have helped and he always asks to have a look after I'd finish a comic.

I would first say don't assume we all love girly comics. I'm personally a sucker for any comic with a kick-ass sexy woman on the front like Lady Death, Witchblade, Madame Mirage but I also read Vampire Knight Requiem and have adored Marvel, especially X-Men, since I was a child.

You could also see what other hobbies and interests they have and suggest a comic that would compliment that e.g. if your girlfriend screams at horror movies then don't suggest Walking Dead. If she likes steampunk, maybe Lady Mechanika and so on. I think in a relationship (in my experiences anyways) you both take an interest in each other's hobbies so she might appreciate you showing the ones you like? I would. Oh yeah, could also try taking her to your local comic book store and she if likes the sound of titles or even art style.

Posted by Mercy_
@jloneblackheart
Unless they come up with a Real Houswives or Kardashians ongoing, I'm out of luck.
That's so sad :(
Moderator
Posted by Maxdestiny

What if your girlfriend doesn't want to read comic books?

Posted by Wattup

CHEW!!! Besides being hilarious and awesome, there's a sweet love story in there!

Posted by Mahzian

My wife loves Tiny Titans and anything with an Artgerm cover, she also loved Blackest Night but hasn't got past Brightest Day yet

Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus

I will be honest in thinking that no two people are alike and that it would be hard to always find a graphic novel or comic that would appeal to anyone, and with females it is even tougher to find stuff that they'd typically like to read. For my part, I've thus far only dated Batman fans so it was no issue that the females I was involved with could be coaxed into reading a good Dark Knight comic. The challenge will be if I don't date another Caped Crusader fan in the future, what do I do then? I've taken note of these works and will try them out on my own sometime to see what they are all about. As to appealing to other female readers, I don't know if I could really suggest anything that would be accepted by all female parties. I mean, superhero or funny comic? Serious or romantic? Who can really say what they want? I'm sure no authority on what females would and wouldn't like, but I will say to you awesome gents who do get a female that likes the comics...hang onto her!

Posted by pikahyper

@jloneblackheart said:

Unless they come up with a Real Houswives or Kardashians ongoing, I'm out of luck.

hilarious !!! try slipping her a Suicide Girls comic :P

Moderator
Posted by pikahyper

@KamenRider00 said:

How about an article on how to get your boyfriend into comics? :-)

That would be a short article, "bribe him with sex" done, 100% success rate.

Moderator
Posted by fables87

LOVE THE WONDER WOMAN COMIC!!!!!

Posted by acomicbooklook

There's plenty our there for the ladies to read, but I still can't get my Wife to read any comics, oh well. I did read Anya's Ghost and it was awesome, I highly recomend it.

Also I think part of the reason Girls don't like comics (broad generalization) is because Most Books are about White oversized men in there underwear. We talk a lot about diversity in comics in our last episode, give it a watch:

Posted by rawr

Scarlet? You mean that amazing comic that just stopped because Brian Michael Bendis cant keep up with his solicits? Oh yes. THAT ONE. Give her the TPB and then have her say "wait, where is the next part?" and then explain why issue #6 hasn't even come out when #7 was in the January solicits from what I recall. >_> (I love Scarlet. I love BMB and Alex Maleev. I just hate the fact the comic has stalled.)

Posted by OracleX

No Wonder Woman recommendations? I just wrote a thoughtful analysis on the significance of inviting best-selling author Jodi Picoult to write a story arc. I thought it was an awful jumping in point for new readers who only picked it up because they knew the author from her topical, schmaltzy, stories. Elements of it were not bad, but the story was all over the place. I liked Greg Rucka's run the most.

My favorite series that would appeal to a "non-reader" would be Air or Cairo. G. Willow Wilson is awesome.

AND if anyone can tell me where to find out where Wonder Woman: Love and Murder ended up on the chart for that year between now and midnight, I would be beyond grateful.

Posted by NightFang

I'm thinking any comic book with a strong female lead.

Posted by RedOwl_1

Uh uh I have a suggestion - Tiny Titans, is one of my favs maybe looks silly but for me is amazingly cute, sweet and pretty I'm a lil' tomboy but it melt me of cuteness

Edited by sj_esposito

This is a great article, and I applaud you, Sara, for writing it. However, I will say this: giving my girlfriend (of 6 years) a comic book or graphic novel for Christmas would be like her making tofu squares instead of baking cookies for the holiday. That said, after years of her buying me hardcovers on the holidays -- and going with me to my first con last year -- she has gained a respect for the hobby.

Posted by FoxxFireArt

You should really be proud of your work these past few weeks, Sara. Not that I'm saying you normally do mediocre works. Just saying you've been posting some passion and detail that I'm really enjoying. Keep it up.

@Mr. Dead Pool: @Decoy Elite:

The name is Shojo, but many Shonen are very poplar with all sexes.The series One Piece has broad age and gender appeal. The previous volume 64 sold over 2 Million in three days of it's release in Japan. That's not really rare for this series. It's been selling like that for years. You can't sell those numbers without extremely broad appeal.

Fullmetal Alchemist is also big with female readers. Probably because the creator and artist is also a woman. It does really well by the female cast.

Posted by Decoy Elite
@FoxxFireArt: Ah, thanks. Most of the girls I knew got into manga because of Shojo(Fruits Basket was the most popular one amount the ladies I knew) but yeah they liked a lot of Shonen too. 
 
FMA should be big with everyone, it is just plain awesome. :D
Posted by Mr. Dead Pool

@Decoy Elite: FMA is one of the few manga/anime that I never really got into, not for lack of trying because my wife is a mega fan girl of it and I tried to get into it for her, but it never struck a cord with me.

Posted by Neverpraying

@Primmaster64 said:

@Icarusflies said:

@Decoy Elite said:

Manga seems to be more popular with the ladies, or at least that's how it's seemed to me. I guess it's all the girly manga(forgot the name for that).

NOPE.

It actually is...

Ya...Sorry Icarus, but it's true. I know a LOT of ladies that are bananas about Manga.

Posted by FoxxFireArt

@Decoy Elite:

The manga ended in Japan and the last volume is coming to the US soon. The Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood anime, based all on the manga, is awesome. You can find most of those on youttube, legally. I think one of teh appeals that is causing manga to grow in the US is it's appeal to female readers.

Posted by Kal'smahboi

This is just a little sexist :)

  • 108 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3