Skip to main content

20 comic book TV shows heading your way

11. Marvel's Most Wanted

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Taking its inspiration from two characters as opposed to one specific comic title, Marvel's Most Wanted follows the experiences of two highly-skilled S.H.I.E.L.D agents. The storylines for Bobbi Morse aka Mockingbird and Lance Hunter stretch back decades, with both playing major roles in the Marvel universe.

The TV show: This Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D spin-off is moving forward after it received a pilot order from ABC in January 2016. Developed by S.H.I.E.L.D showrunner Jeffrey Bell and executive producer Paul Zbyszewski, it's said to focus on Adrienne Palicki's Mockingbird and Nick Blood's Lance Hunter with a "new take" on their adventures. Delroy Lindo will be along for the ride as adventurer Dominic Fortune.

10. Empire of the Dead

Release date: TBA

The comic book: The granddaddy of the modern zombie George A. Romero just can't let the undead lie. In his 15-issue story arc for Marvel, Romero chronicles an outbreak in New York that throws in a new twist on the flesh-eater epidemic. Who wants just another rote zombie story when you can throw in vampires too!

The TV show: Maintaining control over the adaptation is Romero himself, who is set to co-write the series with longtime scribbling partner Peter Grunwald. Demarest productions is financing the show that's rumored to be landing at AMC, home of The Walking Dead.

9. Y: The Last Man

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Heralded as one of the finest stories to make the most of the comic book format, this modern classic from Brian K. Vaughn (Saga) ran for 60 issues between 2002 and 2008. It takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, after a plague wipes out every mammal on Earth with a Y chromosome. Except escape artist Yorrick Brown and his monkey, Ampersand, who journey across America in search of answers.

The TV show: Initially set up at New Line Cinema as a film trilogy - strangely enough, the studio didn't want a franchise - when the option ran out the rights reverted back to Vaughn. The show is now in development at FX with Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson producing alongside Vaughn. FX chief John Landgraf told reporters earlier this year that Vaughn is closing in on a writing collaborator.

8. Jacked

Release date: TBA

The comic book: When Supernatural creator Eric Kripke pitched his idea for a new brand of superhero to Vertigo, he simultaneously brokered a deal for its TV adaptation. Clever chap. The six-issue miniseries debuted in November 2015, a subversive riff on the old cape wearers that places a balding, middle-aged hero at its center. The story follows Josh Jaffe, a regular joe who orders a "smart pill" online, only to later discover that it gives him... yep, super powers. "Im having a crazy amount of fun writing by far the most violent and R-rated thing Ive ever written," Kripke told MTV.

The TV show: Kripke is also responsible for the show, that he'll executive produce and write for USA Network. So far the series is holding back - presumably to pounce on word-of-mouth once the comic builds up a fanbase.

7. Dreadstar

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Even a cursory glance over the premise for Dreadstar brings about a sense of the familiar. It's a little like Guardians of the Galaxy. That's 'cause they're both products of Jim Starlin, who unleashed the first Vanth Dreadstar tale back in 1982 through Marvel's Epic imprint, going on to pen 41 of its 60 issues. The story follows Dreadstar, the sole survivor of the entire Milky Way, who ventures to a new galaxy and befriends a bunch of misfits. Along the way, he becomes a freedom fighter of sorts, who gets trapped in a war between two ancient empires.

The TV show: Universal Cable Productions and Benderspink optioned the comic in February 2015, Since then there's not been much news. However, with Starlin reviving the comic book, that might give this eagerly-awaited series a push.

6. Harrow County

Release date: TBA

The comic book: A teen dealing with the supernatural? Count us in. Created by Cullen Bunn and Tyler Crook, Harrow County centers on Emmy, who discovers on the eve of her 18th birthday learns that she is connected to the creatures within the nearby woods, and to the land itself in a way she never imagined. No, she's not a slayer, but she is the reincarnation of a powerful witch who was put to death on the very day Emmy was born.

The TV show: The first of four comic book properties in development as part of a first-look deal between Dark Horse Entertainment and Universal. It's still in the nascent stages of production but whatever Universal's got cooking has impressed SyFy who picked up the series, assigning 12 Monkeys scribe Becky Kirsch the job of showrunner. Casting for the pilot is expected to begin shortly.

5. Umbrella Academy

Release date: TBA

The comic book: This Eisner award-winning series hails from My Chemical Romance singer Gerard Way, and Gabriel Ba, taking place in an alternate timeline where JFK was never assassinated. In the middle of the 20th century, 43 babies with super powers are born to random women scattered across the globe; the comic revolves around 7 of those children as adults who are described as a dysfunctional family of superheroes with bizarre powers."

The TV show: Swirling around in development as a film, then an animated series, and now a live-action show it looks like this adaptation has found a home on the small screen as part of Universal Cable Productions' deal with Dark Horse Comics.

4. Krypton

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Krypton features across multiple DC titles, most commonly in connection with Superman who, along with his cousin Supergirl, is a native of the green planet. The planet was introduced in Action Comics #1.

The TV show: While the fate of Krypton is widely-known, David S. Goyer (TV's Daredevil) believes there's still a story worth telling on Superman's home planet. SyFy is producing the show, that's said to take place 200 years before the prelude in Man of Steel with Kal-El's grandfather taking a key role, as he brings hope and equality to Krypton, turning a planet in disarray into one worthy of giving birth to the greatest superhero ever known. Once Upon a Time's Ian Goldberg is co-writing the pilot with Goyer.

3. Hack/Slash

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Fans of meta-horror take note. Tim Seeley's Hack/Slash follows the adventures of Cassie Hack, a young "final girl" who survived a brutal massacre, going on to become a killer of killers. She embarks on a trip across America wiping out serial killers and monsters made famous in slasher flicks, including the likes of Chucky.

The TV show: Eyed as a movie adaptation, it stewed in development hell as far back as 2006 with a tentative 2008 release date on the calendar, before it all fell apart. Talk of an animated and then a live-action film stirred for a while, until eventually the project landed at Relativity Television. Hitman and Swordfish scribe Skip Woods is attached to pen the script, that's aiming for a "dark and gritty" tone in line with The Walking Dead.

2. The Wicked And The Divine

Release date: TBA

The comic book: Another superhero tale with a twist. Image Comics launched this innovative and skillfully-drawn title by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie and Matt Wilson that tells of ancient deities who every 90 years return to Earth by snatching the bodies of young humans. The twist? These gods only have 2 years to play out their mortal fantasies, often accruing devout followings, after which they explode. Literally.

The TV show: Universal Television picked up the rights to the comic, enlisting producing duo Matt Fraction and Kelly Sue DeConnick to help bring it to life. Based on an interview in October 2015, its trio of creators will be somewhat involved in the adaptation.

Gem Seddon
Gem is GR+'s west coast entertainment news reporter. She’s a bit obsessed with all things Aliens and Terminator.