Comic books have the potential to tell some downright crazy stories. Monsters, magic, giant robots and explosions all frequent comic book pages; they wouldn’t get the time of day anywhere else, but are able to exist in the comic book medium. Stories like “Chew,” — a tale about a cannibal cop — and “Sex Criminals” — a story about two people with sex-based powers — have all managed to find big audiences and thrive in the comic book market. Seriously, they don’t call them the “Funny Books” for nothing!
The craziness of comic book storytelling doesn’t stop at what is contained in the panels, it extends to the names of the comic books as well. Ridiculous, eye-catching titles are just par for the course when it comes to standing out in the world of comics. Below are our picks for the most out-there, whimsical, wacky and downright bizarre titles of comics ever!
15. SIX-GUN GORILLA
The name says it all. “Six-Gun Gorilla” is about a giant talking gorilla clad in a poncho and armed with two six-shooter pistols. Writer Si Spurrier has been known for attention grabbing concepts, but “Six-Gun Gorilla” extended this quality to the title. Published by Boom! Studios and written by Si Spurrier with art from Jeff Stokely, “Six-Gun Gorilla” had a lot more to offer than the giant gun-toting Gorilla that adorned its covers. There were giant turtles, sentient weeds and a green-eyed psychopath as well!
The book seamlessly blended science fiction, westerns and reality television to create a truly unique — and not to mention utterly strange — comic book offering. Yep, a few pages in and it became clear that the title was probably the least strange part of “Six Gun Gorilla!” Although Si Spurrier and Jeff Stokely gave the pistol-wielding primate new life, he originally began his career as a pulp comic strip before falling into the public domain.
14. COWBOY NINJA VIKING
“Cowboy Ninja Viking,” by J.L. Lieberman and Riley Rossmo, is as ridiculous a comic as its name is straight forward. The book follows a cowboy, a ninja and a viking — the only thing is, they happen to be the same person! The protagonist of “Cowboy Ninja Viking” is Duncan; a secret agent-style operative who has multiple personalities. These multiple personalities are — you guessed it — a cowboy, a ninja and a viking. Got to love the simple things in life.
As the title suggests, the book doesn’t take itself seriously at all and is populated by characters with three weaponized multiple personalities — known as “Triplets.” These triplets vary in their deadliness. Some, like Carl — who happens to be an army staff argent, Apache Warrior and a Scottish Highlander — are extremely deadly while others, such as as Xia, Xia, Xian — who is a sniper, archer and a clothing designer — have personalities that are somewhat lacking in the combat department.
13. AMERICAN JESUS
Mark Millar has a habit of grabbing people’s attention. His bombastic, often gore-filled and always over-the-top writing style doesn’t lend itself to subtlety and neither do his titles. Titles of his comic books — like “Super Crooks” and “Kick-Ass” — demand your attention. These books are designed to catch your eye and, at times, offend. His series, “American Jesus” is certainly no exception. Given Jesus’ status as a historical and religious figure, the title “American Jesus” isn’t just catchy, it is downright provocative.
Written by Mark Millar with art by Peter Gross, “American Jesus” followed the story of a young boy named Jodie who — surprise, surprise — finds out he is actually the returned Jesus Christ. Just in case the other shoe hadn’t dropped, Jodie is also American. The book was originally released under the name of “Chosen” and for better or worse was re-named “American Jesus” when Millar moved the book to a new publisher.
12. DINOSAURS VS. ALIENS
It’s unlikely there is a better name for a book about prehistoric reptiles fighting off a horde of hostile extra-terrestrials than the title “Dinosaurs Vs. Aliens.” Like a lot of the entries on this list, this comic book’s title leaves little to the imagination. Right from the get-go you know there are going to be dinosaurs, there are going to be aliens and you better believe there is going to be some fighting between these two aforementioned groups!
As is fairly obvious, the book took many scientific and historic liberties — portraying dinosaurs as highly intelligent and capable of fending off an invasion from a technologically advanced alien race. “Dinosaurs Vs. Aliens” was written by Barry Sonnenfeld — the director of all three films in the “Men in Black” franchise — and legendary comics scribe Grant Morrison. The comic book’s art was provided by illustrator Mukesh Singh and it was published (with abandon!) by Dynamite.
11. SEX CRIMINALS
When it comes to out-there comic book titles, “Sex Criminals” is about as out-there as they get. As the name implies, “Sex Criminals” is about… well, sex criminals — only not in the way you are probably thinking. The Image Comics series follows Suzie and Jon, two people who stop time when they “get down.” As to be expected from anyone with time-stopping sex powers, they use this ability to rob banks — hence the “Criminals” part. Well, that is until they get caught by the sex police, but that’s a whole other story!
The cheeky comic book series is written by Matt Fraction and illustrated by Chip Zdarsky, two creators unafraid to indulge in a bit of crude humor and explore usually taboo topics. This brave honesty from both the comic book’s creators has built “Sex Criminals” a loyal fan following, who affectionately call themselves “Brimpers.” Who would have thought a book called “Sex Criminals” would be a huge success!? (Literally everyone.)
10. ZOMBIE TRAMP
Just to set things straight, “Zombie Tramp” is a comic book about a scantily clad zombie and most definitely not a sequel to the beloved Disney animated film “Lady and the Tramp.” Like the name suggests, this comic book series from publisher Action Lab is certainly not for kids, and accordingly is published under the publisher’s 18+ “Danger Zone” imprint. Created and originally illustrated by Dan Mendoza, “Zombie Tramp” tells the tale of Janey Belle: a high-class call girl who gets turned into a zombie after being fed to a crooked cop’s zombie son — so you know, a totally normal origin story.
Although Janey can take on the appearance of a normal, not dead woman, she is most definitely a zombie. Additionally, she is almost always in clothes that are way to tight or cover very little of her slowly decomposing body. We guess that must be why she is known as “Zombie Tramp!” Call it an educated guess.
9. SUPER DINOSAUR
“Super Dinosaur” followed the adventures of the titular Super Dinosaur; a T-Rex genetically engineered to be smaller in size and have increased intelligence. To help compensate for Super Dinosaur’s comically short arms, the dino would wear exo-suits that featured large robotic arms he could control through small joysticks. If this all sounds overly ridiculous, that’s because it is, but what you my not have guessed is that this comic series was actually good!
“Super Dinosaur” was written by Robert Kirkman — creator of “Invincible” and “The Walking Dead” — and illustrated by Jason Howard. Under Kirkman’s steady hand, “Super Dinosaur” was able to stay emotionally grounded while at the same time being a whole lot of over-the-top fun. The idea for the comic book originally came from Howard, who drew a picture of a dinosaur in a cape for his son. Howard showed the picture to Kirkman and “Super Dinosaur” was born!
8. THAT’S BECAUSE YOU’RE A ROBOT
The title “That’s because you’re a robot” can’t help but make you chuckle. The situations that warrant such a phrase are few and far between, but all of them are hilarious. With this in mind, it is not at all surprising that the comic book “That’s because you’re a robot” — written by David Quantick with art by Shaky Kane — is consistently funny. By “consistently,” we do mean there is a laugh on just about every panel.
The comic book followed two cops, both alike in rank and skill; however, one of them is a robot! And, here is the twist — wait for it — they don’t know which is which! What followed was a laugh-out-loud one-shot in which the two cops constantly bickered about which one of them was a real human being and which one of them was an android in disguise. This disagreement often led to one of them remarking “That’s because you’re a robot!” Hence, the title.
So what exactly is a “Sexcastle?” Is it a place were people go to hook-up? A castle built out of sex? If you said yes to any of those answers, you would be wrong. Turns out, it is something way more ridiculous. “Sexcastle” follows Shane Sexcastle, — and yes, that is his real name — an ex-hitman, ex-secret service agent and a reformed convict. After being released from jail, Shane just wants to live a quiet life in a small town. Well, that is until he is drawn back into his old life of violence and adventure.
Not surprisingly, “Sexcastle” takes a lot — and we do mean a lot — of inspiration and ideas from the action films of the 1980s. When creating “Sexcastle,” writer and artist Kyle Starks wanted to pack all of his love and adoration for ’80s films into a comic, and ,judging by the title alone, it is clear that he succeeded!
6. PINOCCHIO, VAMPIRE SLAYER
Following in the footsteps of bad-ass vampire killers like Buffy and Van Helsing, it’s the vampire slaying action romp we have all been waiting for. We are of course talking about “Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer.” Wait, what? Yep, you read that correctly — “Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer” re-imagines Gepetto’s gentle creation as a hunter and killer of the undead. Although the comic book certainly feels like an unlikely pairing, it makes sense the more you think about it. Pinocchio is made of wood, making him immune to vampire bites, and what is his nose if not a sharp, size-adjusting stake?
Written by Van Jensen and illustrated by Dusty Higgins, “Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer” is — somewhat surprisingly — a solid and fun action affair. The book follows the wooden puppet on his quest for revenge after his creator and father — Gepetto — is brutally murdered by vampires. “Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer” may grab your attention with its ridiculous title, but it will keep it through its compelling narrative.
5. TODD, THE UGLIEST KID ON EARTH
What is there to say about “Todd, the Ugliest Kid on Earth” that the title doesn’t already tell us? Like the name says, the book is about Todd Belluomo, a child who is apparently so ugly, he is forced to wear a paper bag over his head. Ironically enough, we will never actually know if Todd is the ugliest kid on earth — or even ugly at all — given that we never get to actually see his face. Despite being forced to wear a paper bag over his head, Todd is always happy and upbeat; seeing the good in people and always trying to make new friends. Unfortunately, this usually gets him into trouble.
This truly bizarre comic book series is written by Ken Kristensen with art by M.K Perker. With a title like “Todd, the Ugliest kid on Earth,” it is not surprising that this Image Comic’s series is a dark satire — a comedy that is filled with outrageous (often horrible) characters and constantly lampoons the excess and greed of modern American society.
4. SAVAGE SWORD OF JESUS CHRIST
If you thought the title “American Jesus” was poking the bear, wait until you get a load of this! “Savage Sword of Jesus Christ” — an actual, real comic that exists — is a title that doesn’t pull any punches. If you think that sounds a bit controversial just wait until you hear about the inspiration for the story: Nazi propaganda from World War II! In a revelation surprising no one, “Savage Sword of Jesus Christ” was written and created by legendary writer and general comics lunatic, Grant Morrison.
Previously, Morrison had written some of the biggest and most influential stories for DC Comics and Marvel Comics. He now works as the editor in chief for Heavy Metal, the comics magazine that publishes “Savage Sword of Jesus Christ.” Like the source material that inspired it, the comic re-imagines Jesus Christ as a hulking barbarian with flowing blonde hair and a taste for vengeance! Now that’s the kind of messiah we can really get behind!
3. BATTLE POPE
Robert Kirkman’s comic debut had the attention-grabbing title “Battle Pope.” Designed by Kirkman to be deliberately out-there, the story re-imagined the leader of the Catholic Church as a combat- ready, demon fighting badass! The book was written by Robert Kirkman and illustrated by artist Tony Moore — the creative pair who would go on to give us “The Walking Dead.” Although the book was later picked up by Image Comics, it was originally released under Kirkman’s small-press imprint “Funk-O-Tron.”
The comic followed Pope Oswald Leopold II, a sleazy Pope who enjoys nothing more than heavy drinking and womanizing. Although he never fully leaves his sleazy ways behind him, Leopold does earn redemption in the eyes of the lord and is eventually granted access to enter heaven. As can be expected from the comic’s title, what happens in between is a whole lot of high-octane, demon-busting action. Yep, Leopold is one tough Pope. Also, did we mention Jesus is his roommate? Because he is.
2. SHIRTLESS BEAR FIGHTER
This book is perfect for anyone who loves fighting bears but hates a particular type of torso-covering garment. Yep, “Shirtless Bear Fighter” has it all, assuming your definition of “all” is a hairy chested man beating the crap out of bears. “Shirtless Bear Fighter” isn’t just a ridiculous title, it’s designed to deliberately bamboozle anyone that hears it! Think of it as weaponized confusion. This wacky series is published by Image comics, written by Jody LeHup & Sebastian Girner and is illustrated by Nil Vendrell and Mike Spicer.
“Shirtless Bear Fighter” follows Shirtless, a man who was is betrayed by the bears that raise him. What follows is — you guessed it — a lot of bear punching, bear kicking, bear pile-driving and everything in between! Although the book promises high-octane bear beating-up shenanigans, writers Jody LeHup and Sebastain Girner have promised it will have a grounded emotional core as well as a coherent story in between all the action. Regardless, you had us at the words “Shirtless Bear Fighter!”
1. Giant-Size Man-Thing
When it comes to ridiculous comic titles, you really can’t beat a classic. We are of course referring to the (un)fortunately named “Giant-Size Man-Thing.” We can’t stress enough that this is a real thing and not just a weird dream you had, which means multiple people saw the title and no one thought that maybe, just maybe, it could be taken the wrong way. Just to make things clear, the “Giant-Size” in the title refers to the comic book’s page count, not the size of the “Man-thing!”
Seriously, who on earth thought that calling a character “Man-Thing” was a good idea? Well Stan Lee, apparently, who helped create the character along with writers Gerry Conway and Roy Thomas and artist Gray Morrow. Although he came before DC Comic’s “Swamp Thing” — if only by a small margin — Man-Thing and Swamp Thing share a lot in common. Both are hulking creatures covered in moss and leaves that call the swamp their home. Only thing is, you don’t want to laugh out loud when you here the name “Swamp Thing!”
What are you favorite weirdly-named comic books? Fill the comments with your debauched offerings!