Here on Panels, we often discuss that the best place to find representative, inclusive comics is on the Internet, by reading webcomics. As a South Asian, it can be difficult for me to find representation in print comics (but not impossible, and it gets better and better each month!), but if I turn to webcomics, I find that things get better by leaps and bounds. There are so many webcomics by South Asians and featuring South Asian characters out there, so this list is by no means comprehensive. It’s just a starting point, a snapshot of what you can find; if I missed your favorite, please let me know in the comments so I can check it out!
(1) Travelogue by Aatmaja Pandaya
A fantasy diary webcomic that has incredible art, and it’s not too far in, so you don’t have mountains of comics to catch up on!
(2) Fried Cheese Balls by Arp
This comic promises to be a thoughtful look at life as the child of Indian immigrants to America (and the identity issues that come with it) and starts with the marriage of the main character’s parents. I love what I’ve seen of this comic so far. It’s still new, so I can’t wait to see where it goes from here.
(3) Kahlil by Kumail Rizvi
This comic imagines what might have happened if Superman landed in Pakistan instead of in Kansas. SO HERE FOR THIS.
(4) Homewards by Siddharth Sengupta
This webcomic is about a boy living in India who left his village behind for the larger wider world of Delhi and never looked back. But 6 years later, he’s being forced to return, and to think about the places you left behind, and what home might actually mean.
(5) Demon Street by Aliza Layne
Demon Street actually drew me in with its gorgeous artwork and color before I learned it features a multiracial cast with queer representation. One of the main cast members is a young South Asian girl, and it’s an intriguing fantasy webcomic about a magic door and the creatures that have come through it into our world.
(6) Royal Existentialists by Falana Dimka Films
This comic is incredibly interesting. It takes old Indian art and iconic imagery to discuss both historical and contemporary issues. The commentary is fascinating, and I love the craft that goes into this.
(7) The Less than Epic Adventures of TJ and Amal by E.K. Weaver
This very popular webcomic (now collected in a gorgeous print edition, which I own) features a South Asian main character in Amal, who in one day calls off his arranged marriage and comes out to his parents. He then embarks on a cross-country roadtrip with T.J., someone he doesn’t even know. Talk about exciting!
Tell me, what are some other great webcomics drawn by South Asians or featuring South Asian characters?