|The deity of cool. Big Lebowski graphic novel anyone?|
Everyone has their favourite graphic novel characters. Usually, these will be one of a number of superheroes, men and women who dedicate their lives to battling evil. That's all well and good, and I do enjoy a superhero story, but I don't necessarily think all superheroes are cool.
No, being a cool character means something different. Sometimes it means having a moral compass made up of shades of grey rather than black and white, and sometimes it just means being an all-round badass. 'Coolness' is a difficult thing to define, and I think the only way I can do it effectively is to list some of the people that embody it. Let’s take a look. Beware, this is such a big subject., I may well need several parts to cover it. Also, don't be angry if I miss out one of your favourites.
Deadpool is enjoying a kind of cult popularity on sites like Reddit and Digg, because the Deadpool comics have a strange ability to apply to almost every situation. He is a disfigured 'merc with a mouth' whose hinges are loose, and he has a tendency to speak to the reader, thus breaking the forth wall. He may not be as strong as Superman or have the combat and detective skills of Batman, but Deadpool does have something going for him; his advanced healing rate. He gets over cuts and bruises quicker than a vampire in True Blood, and he is immune to nasty germs and diseases.
Saint of Killers
The Patron Saint of Murderers and Assassination. Do I need to say more? Probably not, but I will anyway. Saint of Killers is in the classic Preacher series written by Garth Ennis, who is also known for a great run on the Punisher books. A character with so much hatred that he actually makes hell freeze over, Saint of Killers is one of the coolest and most feared characters ever created. His defining moment was being hit by a nuclear rocket, after which he walked away unscathed and said "Not enough gun'. Not enough gun indeed.
A bald headed man approaches you. He knows your name. He places a briefcase in front of you, and when he opens it, you see a gun and 100 bullets. The man has a proposition for you. He is Agent Graves, and he is a key character in the 100 Bullets comics. A puppet master who always has a plan, Agent Graves is cool because he just cannot be ruffled. An entire organisation of high-level Mafia families tried to wipe him out, but they failed. You should read 100 bullets and watch Graves take his calculated revenge.
A samurai rabbit, Miyamoto is a master of swordsmanship. For a long time in the Yojimbo Usagi series he has an unflagging moral compass, but as they story goes on he develops more of an edge. Miyamoto's lot in life is to travel Japan on a musha shugyo, or warrior's journey, and this is what he dedicates himself to. If this and his mastery of the swordsmanship craft aren't good enough for you, Miyamoto has also appeared in the Ninja Turtles comics. Come on, admit it. You're impressed. Read more on Yojimbo Usagi here.
Saint of Killers
What do you read next? Try the top 100 graphic novels list.