The Best Comics That Are Based On Action Movies

Table of Contents 10 The Terminator Comics Expand The Universe Far Beyond The Films9 Frank…

The Best Comics That Are Based On Action Movies


While the majority of superhero films are comic book adaptations, there is a whole genre of comic book series and mini-series that spawned from movies. Some of the most popular action movie franchises like Predator, Terminator, and even The Matrix released comic books based either directly or loosely on the films that inspired them.

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These movie-adapted comic books have been published by Marvel Comics, Dark Horse, IDW, and more, and written and illustrated by talented comic creators like Alex Ross and Frank Miller. There are many hidden gems in these collections of comics that any fan of the original movie franchises should check out.

10 The Terminator Comics Expand The Universe Far Beyond The Films


Terminator Burning Earth comic

Since the original film’s release, there has been no shortage of Terminator comic series – be it direct adaptations, sequels, or completely secluded stories. In 1990, NOW Comics published a mini-series titled Terminator: The Burning Earth, which was written by Ron Fortier with art by the legendary Alex Ross.

The Terminator franchise represents many things: war, action, horror. Told from the perspectives of both John and his resistance fighters, Burning Earth depicts the future war and Skynet as it constructs new Terminator models. Almost the entire Terminator timeline is explored throughout the many series published by NOW, Dark Horse, Dynamite, and more.

9 Frank Miller’s Dark & Gritty RoboCop Comic Series


Frank Miller's RoboCop comic

Though the series was written by Steven Grant and illustrated by Juan Jose Ryp, Frank Miller provided cover art for the RoboCop mini-series based on an unused screenplay written by Miller himself. Miller supervised the series, which acts as a potential sequel to the original film.

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The art is striking and supremely detailed in every panel. As with many of Miller’s works on previously established characters, reception for the mini-series was mixed and often broke the continuity of what came before and after. However, as is also common with Miller, the story is exciting and fresh and certainly stands out among other RoboCop adaptations.


8 Marvel Pits Godzilla Against The Avengers


The Avengers battle Godzilla in New York

In 1977, Marvel Comics published an ongoing series titled Godzilla, King of the Monsters. The series featured Godzilla traveling the world, battling monsters, and generally defending the planet.

One of the most memorable issues of the run is #23. Godzilla enters New York City in a fit of rage and destroys everything in his path. It requires the combined might of the Fantastic Four and Avengers to stop him (or at least slow him down). It’s a fun and memorable crossover that was only possible because Marvel owned the publishing rights at the time.


7 Read The Origins & Further Adventures Of The Incredibles


The Incredibles comic book

Published five years after The Incredibles movie was released, the ongoing comic book series of the same name only ran for 15 issues. The series picks up after the events of the first film and follows the Parr’s as they adjust to life as a superhero family.

The series frequently jumps to different points in time, like Bob’s time before meeting Helen and her pregnancy leading up to Jack-Jack’s birth. Notable comic writers like Mark Waid and artists like Marcio Takara lent their talents for some of the issues. And although the series didn’t gain much popularity, it’s a fun continuation that stays true to the characters.


6 The Total Recall Sequel By Dynamite


Total Recall sequel comic

The Total Recall mini-series published by Dynamite picks up after the ending of the classic Arnold Schwarzenegger film. As Mars recovers and reorganizes, Quaid attempts to live a normal life with Melina. However, the mysteries of Mars unfold and force Quaid back into action.

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Illustrated by Cezar Rezak, this series looks and feels like a true sequel to the original Total Recall film. As it was a sequel and not just a straight movie adaptation, it allowed writer Vince Moore to delve deeper into the status quo of the Mars colony and expand upon the characters.


5 Going Back To The Future With Marty McFly & Doc Brown Again


Doc, Marty and Jennifer from Back to the Future

Back to the Future co-writer and producer Bob Gale returns to write IDW Publishing’s Back to the Future comic book series. The ongoing book expands on much of the Back to the Future lore, finally presenting fans and readers with events spoken of but never shown onscreen.

Events like Doc Brown working on the Manhattan Project and Marty meeting Doc for the first time are finally explored. The series even gets heavy in issue #14 when Marty faces his guilt about taking over the life of the Marty that vanished from Lone Pine Mall. Marty questions what his counterpart was like and whether he deserves the better life he’s been given.


4 The Predator Visits The Big Apple


The Predator visits New York

Published in 1989 by Dark Horse Comics, Predator: Concrete Jungle follows the story of Detective John Schaefer, Dutch’s brother, who encounters a deadly Predator in New York City. The first in what would become a long list of Predator comic sequels, true to its name, Concrete Jungle brings the Predator to America and puts it in an environment fans had never seen it in before.

This comic sequel to the 1987 film goes bigger and brings not just one Predator to Earth but an entire fleet of hunters. If the story alone isn’t enough to grab a reader’s attention, the art by Chris Warner and Ron Randall is both gorgeous and terrifying.




3 Dark Horse Presents Many New Indiana Jones Adventures


Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny

During the 1980s, Marvel published three limited series comic adaptations representing the three Indiana Jones movies that had been released at that point. When Dark Horse acquired the publishing rights in the ’90s, all-new and original adventures were produced in seven mini-series.

Shrine of the Sea Devil, Iron Phoenix, and Spear of Destiny – to name a few – acted as sequels to the Last Crusade and presented readers with brand new adventures in archeology featuring Indiana Jones. Each of the mini-series captures the essence, humor, and bombastic nature of the original trilogy that fans fell in love with.


2 BOOM! Studios Expands The Planet Of The Apes Canon


Planet of the Apes Lost War

BOOM! Studios launched a new ongoing Planet of the Apes comic book in 2011. Running for 16 issues, the series begins before the events of the first film and displays the ape society at its peak (before the arrival of George Taylor). Writer Daryl Gregory explores the entire Planet of the Apes timeline, how they came to rule over the human race, and how their society reached the state it’s in when audiences first see it onscreen.

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Carlos Magno deserves a huge shout-out for his artwork throughout the series. It both captures the look and feel of the original film series while somehow making the apes look even more menacing than their on-screen counterparts.


1 Delve Deeper Into The Matrix With Dozens Of Original Stories


Agent Smith from The Matrix comics

Coinciding with the release of the films, three comic mini-series were released on the official Matrix website. Each of the series contains at least half a dozen shorter stories created by some legendary comic writers and artists such as Neil Gaiman, Bill Sienkiewicz, Tim Sale, and even some from the Wachowski’s themselves.

Each of these stories are original plots that explore a previously unexplored part of Matrix lore that wasn’t seen or expanded on in the films. These comics are mesmerizing, both narratively and visually, and should satisfy any fan’s craving for more Matrix content ahead of the new film release.

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