Best Comic to TV Series Adaptations, From The Sandman to Daredevil

TV these days is populated by comic book adaptations on both streaming and network lineups. From Disney+’s roster of MCU shows like Moon Knight or Ms. marvel to CWs Superman & Lois and stargirl, there’s certainly no shortage of comic book properties on screen. Thats why we’ve compiled a list of a few that are a cut above the rest and worth checking out for the next time you have a hankering for strong comic book adaptations.

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Doom Patrol (2019-Present)

It’s hard to predict the future of DC’s stable of superhero shows on HBO Max. Still, if there’s one series that certainly deserves to live on in the post-HBO Max future, it should be the Jeremy Carver created Doom Patrol, a live-action adaptation of DC Comics by the same name. The series features the adventures of Cliff Steele (Brendan Fraser), Vic Stone/Cyborg (Jovian Wade), Rita Farr (April Bowlby), Jane (Diane Guerrero) and Larry Trainer (Matt Bomer). The series also features Alan Tudyk, Timothy Dalton, Phil Morris, and Michele Rodriguez in sizable roles, making the cast a selling point of the show. But what really sets Doom Patrol apart from all the other comic book adaptations is its willingness to adapt the more quirky corners of its source material. Doom Patrol is inarguably the strangest series on this list and yet that very quality makes it such an enjoyable affair.


The Sandman (2022-Present)

DC’s most expensive series to date comes courtesy of Netflix which has finally adapted the popular Neil Gaiman comic The Sandman. Previously deemed ‘unfilmable’ due to its large sprawling fantastical story and lack of commercial appeal, the 2022 series spearheaded by Gaiman himself alongside Wonder Woman scribe Alan Heinberg and krypton‘s David S. Goyer has all the makings of a modern masterpiece. The series focuses on the titular Sandman who is one of the Endless, a group of beings present since the dawn of time regulating the affairs of humans, and who finds himself in peril after accidentally being captured by a human. starring Tom Sturridge, Jenna Coleman, Gwendoline Christie, and Boyd Holbrook amongst others, The Sandman is a visual treat for the senses and equal parts thought-provoking and entertaining.

Sweet Tooth (2021-Present)

Another DC Netflix affair, Sweet Tooth is an adaptation of a DC comic of the same name by Jeff Lemire. The fantasy drama is set in a world where new human babies being born are half animal, in the aftermath of a viral pandemic. gus (Christian Convery) the nine-year-old protagonist of the series is a half deer-half human boy who goes on a quest to find his mother in the wake of his father’s death. The show has already been renewed for an eight-episode second season. The series is great family entertainment and feels adult thematically yet has enough whimsy and charm to appeal to younger audiences. While pandemic storylines can feel a little too harrowing lately, Sweet Tooth retains its sweet core even as it unflinchingly depicts how harsh the world can be in uncertain times.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018-2020)

Created by Riverdale mastermind Roberto-Aguirre Sacasa, the horror drama is a darker spin on the misadventures of teenage witch Sabrina Spellman (Kiernan Shipka). The series details Sabrina’s coming of age as she begins her dark education on the path to becoming a witch as well as her relationship with her aunts Hilda (Lucy Davis) and Zelda (Miranda Otto). The series is a far cry from Sabrina The Teenage Witchthe 1996 sitcom with Melissa Joan Hart, instead dealing with the occult and darker subjects. The series is set in the Riverdale world and Sabrina crosses over to the CW series in its sixth season twice closing out lingering plot points from the Netflix show, so you can rest easy knowing that all answers about the series are eventually provided despite a hasty series finale.

Marvel’s Daredevil (2015-2018)

starring Charlie Cox as Marvel’s blind superhero, the Netflix show effectively adapts many of the popular comic storylines of the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen as he goes up against up foes like Kingpin (Vincent D’Onfarrio), Punisher (Jon Bernthal), The Hand and Bullseye (Wilson Bethel). Despite the advent of Disney+ MCU series, Daredevil still stands as one of the best comic series adaptations to date. It’s no wonder that Marvel has decided to induct Cox’s take on Daredevil to the MCU, with Spider Man: No Way Home and now in the upcoming She-Hulk series. Anyone looking for darker superhero adaptations can go no wrong with this show that towers above similar fare, thanks to its superb writing and sharp stunt choreography.

The Tick (2016-2019)

Amazon’s superhero comedy The Tick lasted for only two seasons on the streaming service but those interested in light-hearted comic book adaptations should nevertheless give this a try. comedian Peter Serafinowicz stars as The Tick, with Griffin Newman him as his timid sidekick Arthur Everest. The series chronicles the duo’s effort to fight crime. What makes the character so intriguing is that he has no clue of who he was before his life as the superhero, and the character and the series seem uninterested in exploring that, instead focusing more on comedy and the shenanigans he gets into.

Wynonna Earp (2016-2021)

This supernatural Western series (based on comics by Beau Smith) dives into all things supernatural and does so with gusto. The dark fantasy drama sees the descendant of lawman Wyatt Earp, Wynonna fend off the reanimated corpses of the outlaws Wyatt Earp killed using his superpowered handgun. There’s plenty of action and silliness that makes Wynonna Earp a good time and the series explores enough of its comic book source material and the supernatural world at large to not allow its take on gunslingers vs zombies to feel stale.

Y: The Last Man (2021)

Brian K. Vaughan‘s Y: The Last Man dropped one season on Hulu before it was cancelled, but the series is a fascinating post-apocalyptic story where mammal with a Y chromosome is dead except for the lead Yorick (Ben Schnetzer) and his monkey Ampersand. In the aftermath of the great loss, Yorick tries to understand why he is left standing as his mother Jennifer (Dianne Lane) is newly minted US President. Although it’s sad the series won’t continue past season one, the show is a fairly faithful adaptation of the comic and worth checking out.

The End of The F***ing World (2017-2019)

Netflix’s romantic black comedy is one of the most well-received web series on the streamer. starring Alex Lawther and Jessica Bardenthe series based on a mini-comic by Charles Forsman went on to win a Peabody in 2019. The show is a two-season, sixteen-episode series that wraps up the storyline of its two main characters James and Alyssa. The plot sees sixteen-year-old James come to the realization that he must be a psychopath and decides to murder Alyssa before falling in love with her.

Preacher (2016-2019)

before The Boys became a pop culture phenomenon, Seth Rogen first tested with adapting comic books through Garth Ennis‘s preacher. The series sees Jessie (Dominic Cooper), an alcoholic preacher who while suffering from a crisis of faith is given strange powers that allow him to command others to do his bidding. Alongside Cooper the series features talents of actors like Joseph Gilgun and Ruth Negga. There’s a lot of shock value to this fantastic comic book adaptation, and it’s one of the most adult series on this list but if gore and raunch doesn’t scare you away then the four season Preacher should be the perfect new binge.

Happy! (2017-2019)

Christopher Melonic makes the most of the role of Nick Sax, a former detective turned hit-man who begins to see a flying blue unicorn named Happy (voiced by Patton Oswalt) who claims to be the friend of a kidnaped little girl who needs his help. While the series may sound cute on the surface, it’s an edgy action-packed R-rated affair based on comics by Grant Morrison. The series was canceled after two seasons but the story is intense and exciting enough to keep you engaged till the end.

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