Modern comics are often known for being action packed and sometimes humorous but just like any other form of literature comics can also be emotional. I thought I’d share with you my top ten emotional stories that I’ve read. This is a purely subjective list and your results may vary.
Green Arrow (Oliver Queen) has always had a strange relationship with his son, Connor Hawke in most cases they have been shown as partners rather than father and son. Green Arrow/Black Canary #4 opens with Connor Hawke having been shot in the previous issue having been shot while escaping Themyscira. Bleeding out Team Arrow (Oliver, Black Canary and Speedy) try everything from trying to contact Bruce Wayne (Batman), returning to Themyscira before Oliver stands and yells “CLARK!!!” at the top of his lungs in a vain attempt to contact Clark Kent (Superman). Superman picks up Connor and flies him to the hospital.
In the hospital Oliver is loses it blaming Green Lantern, Superman and others demanding to go into the hospital room. Black Canary helps calm Oliver by reminding him that he is not sterile and would cause more harm than good.
Hours pass with Oliver thinking over his time as a father and coming to the realisation that he has never been a father to him. News comes in of Connor’s condition- the operation was a success physically but Connor will be brain dead.
Oliver barges into the operating room where Connor lies on the operating table saying “I’m here, Connor”
“Daddy’s right here.”
Its the Daddy’s right here line that gets me every time...
Wesley Dodds stands at the top of Mount Kailash contemplating his life but most importantly his death. He plans to return to his late wife, well really companion as they never married, who died last year.
He meets his old friend, Speed Saunders, and the Grey Man an immortal who gathers the dream essence in the DCU. Moving past their conversation they leave Wesley by himself to then be attacked by Mordru the sorcerer. He shoots him with his gas gun and then throws himself off the mountain.
“I’m coming for you Dian. My one and true companion. My Love”
Over a period of time Asterios and his wife Daisy have been drifting apart. Daisy finding her path as an artistic director for a theatre group and Asterios well being Asterios (Okay I just like typing the word Asterios). This evenings fight is about her returning to work at the theatre.
This is shown through Mazzuchelli’s art in them no longer living in the same plane of existence. Daisy becoming more sketch like and Asterios becoming angular.
Polyp contemplates what he wants to say and instinctively choses the most hurtful responses.
Daisy explains that Asterios “hears words but doesn’t know how to listen” (great line). She explains that that once in a while a person want recognition. Something she has been receiving in her work but never from Asterios.
Daisy asks her cat:
“Why do you always let him talk to me like that?”
HE we can now see that their relationship will never be the same again.
In the previous issue Jesse Custer was shot by a sniper- releasing the voice the offspring of an Angel and a devil into the world. Issue 66 starts with a letter from Jesse to Tulip- the love of his life. In this letter he outlines what has come before, why he had to do what he did and what is coming around the corner. Most importantly he outlines his greatest regret- that he will never see Tulip again and that he loves her.
Tensions are strained because Jesse has been resurrected but more that Tulip feels her trust has been betrayed. Jesse stays behind believing he doesn’t deserve her anymore. Jesse contemplates going after her and steals a horse to follow her.
Tulip: You came after me
Jesse: I had to. People like you and me don’t find each other too often in this damn world”
Tulip and Jesse have a meaningful conversation about logic and sense.
Jesse: We can make our lives the way we want them or we ain’t nothing. Now take my hand an’ I swear I’ll love you ‘til the goddamn stars go out.
Jesse then stars crying...something he hasn’t done before now.
Its the line: I’ll love you ‘til the goddamn stars go out....every time
This is part of the “Whatever happened to the man of tomorrow” story. The villain Kryptoniteman is attacking the Fortress of Solitude. He strides down the hallway berating Superman for a fight but he is faced by the dog of steel: Krypto.
Krypto violently attacks Kryptoniteman administering the killing bite before succumbing to kryptonite poisoning.
The realisation that he is dying he lets out a “death howl” knowing his master will hear him...but Superman can do nothing.
Jordan Lint is not a nice man. He has lived his life selfishly and full of failure. His family has nothing to do with him after he sues his son after he writes a book about their relationship.
His other ex-wife won’t let him see his son because of what he read in the book. Jordan is fast realising that he will live his last days alone.
Knowing this he goes to visit the grave of his mother, who died when he was very young, and he starts coughing... up blood.
He starts to think over his life and his accomplishments running toward the finish line where he feels the almost orgasmic joy of death...then lets himself go.
The Losers are in disarray. The team has splintered and the mission is going haywire. Max ‘s crew firing on the Losers. Cougar and Jensen running for cover finding refuge after sliding down an elevator shaft. Heading to the pipe room and their exit Cougar is fired upon. Critical hits to Cougar AND a nuclear bomb.
Jensen wants Cougar to go through the pip and to freedom first, but Cougar knows he’s dead and if he dies he’ll block their only escape.
Cougar says that he’ll cover Jensen’s exit. Cougar felling the ghost of the dead children who died in the mission that made them the losers knows he just wants it all to end.
Jensen and Cougar hug. He has clips but there is one thing he needs his hat. Cougar puts on his hat as Jensen leaves him to die.
Yorrick has been searching for his fiancé only to find that the relationship isn’t the same and that they can not return to the way they were before. At the same time 355 is becoming more at ease with her life away from Yorrick and allowing herself to be a woman. This is the time that Yorrick and 355 find each other in a hotel room, 355 shown in a dress for the first time in this series.
Here they profess their love but that Yorrick does not want to sleep with her (well maybe eventually). They both realise that the time that they have spent together have made them the perfect couple.
As their new relationship status 355 decides to tell Yorrick her real name (which we never hear). A faint crack is heard off panel as we close up on 355 a red circle forming on her head trickling down her face. She falls down dead.
And I only just noticed that the final page of Yorrick huddled over 355 makes the letter y.
Damn you Brian K Vaughn....
Its super hard to find one moment in Daytripper that is more emotional. Every time I read it I find something new my favourite issue still remains the final issue “76”.
Bras has cancer. His doctors want to run more tests or perform operations but Bras really wants nothing to do with it. He has lived a long life but now its time to make his peace and get ready to die.
He returns home to his wife and tells her his decision- that he is ready to die. Its a beautiful scene where instead of the cliched crying over why he has stopped fighting its more about them professing their love for each other.
Bras and his son Miguel have a deep conversation about sons and fathers, about writing and smoking. At the end of this conversation Bras’ son gives him a letter from Bras’ father to him. This is a letter that Bras has always wanted to hear from his father- once again about the nature of being a father and about life as a whole.
That night Bras goes to the beach and lights 3 candles throws 3 roses into the sea and watches the horizon.
Current Starman, Jack Knight, and his father the golden age Starman Ted have a strange relationship. At the beginning of the series they loved each other but were far from close. As the series went on and Jack became more at ease with his role in Opal City as Starman his relationship with his father became more about respect for each other as well as the love of a family member.
This bring us to Starman #72. This issue, the finale of the Grand Guignol storyline. Atop the Central POst Office building The Mist then does his best Bond villain impersonation by explaining how Neron, The Mephisto of the DC Universe, offered to cure his dementia in exchange for his soul.The newly restored Mist is about to destroy Opal City with an atomic bomb. This bomb is activated by any change in his vital statistics. If his heart flatlines then the bomb explodes....and he’s just taken some poison.
To twist the knife in Jack Knights heart The Mist introduces him to Jacks son Ted and explains that Jack Knight will never get to hold his son.
It seems that nothing will stop The Mist from Triumphing, then from behind him rises Ted Knight wearing a massive version of the cosmic rod. The new cosmic rod lack portability but it does have the power to raise his whole building into the sky.
Ted Knights final act as Starman will be to save his beloved Opal city one more time. Ted meets his grandson before leaving Jack and his companions for the last time.
The building is lifted out of the Earths atmosphere and the two old enemies stand in a protective bubble and say their goodbyes. The bomb then explodes in an explosion seen from space.
Jack: It all happened so quickly. I never got the chance to say I love you.
Now this issue came out at a sad time for me. It came out the same time my Grandfather was going through cancer treatment, treatment that he never recovered from. This issue had me crying and even to this day takes me back to that day.
So as you can see most of these are deaths or love stories, I guess that fits in with what I find emotional I guess...
Now I need some tissues