A Brief List of 2013 Favorites
By Tom Barnett
Another year has passed by? Holy Shit! Where does the time go? I don’t know about you, but I feel like I’m always playing catch up with life and then the end of the year comes and I’m surprised! That’s why I wanted to take a look back and pick out some comic book highlights from this past year. These will be in no particular order and there’s no top five or best of, just highlights of the year. First, let me say that I want to thank all the creators and companies for giving us such great stories and artwork to read. It’s been such a wonderful year in the comics industry.
East of West – This series has been slow burn, from Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta, but I’ve really come to love it.
Rocket Girl and Pretty Deadly – Off to strong starts from writers Brandon Montclare and Kelly Sue Deconnick. Amy Reeder on Rocket Girl and Emma Rios on Pretty Deadly turn in beautiful artwork.
Baltimore, Sledgehammer 44 and Lobster Johnson – These are some of my favorite horror books and they all exist in the Mike Mignola world. Some nice pulp style thrown in and monsters around every corner. Love it. Sledgehammer character was a great new addition.
Black Beetle – The pulp style character from Pulp master Francavilla!
Half Past Danger – Pulp style stories that were flawlessly executed, by Stephen Mooney and colors from Jordie Bellaire.
5 Ghosts – Writer Frank Barbiere and artist Chris Mooneyham delivered on a great concept.
Ghosted – This was a wonderful surprise series, from Joshua Williamson, Miroslav Mrva and Goran Sudzuka, that came out of nowhere.
Doc Unknown – Another pulp style comic, from Fabian Rangel Jr., Ryan Cody and Ed Brisson, that is just plain fun to read.
Battling Boy – From Paul Pope! I’m new to Pope’s works, but I’m now hooked like an addict!
Satellite Sam – I LOVE this book. I love the time setting, the 1950’s. I love all the untrustworthy characters. Fraction and Chaykin at some of their best.
Breath of Bones – From Steve Niles and Dave Watcher, this is a must read for anyone who likes any of the pulp adventures or horror style comics. A lot of heart!
Digital First Comics
Bandette – From the team of Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover, a wonderfully original tale, filled with humor, action and beautiful art. This is a must read for comic fans!
Masks and Mobsters – Beautiful and original. Another book from writer Joshua Williamson. Artists Mike Henderson and Seth Damoose handled the art here.
Big Two Favorites
Daredevil – Ok, If you have read any of my reviews or follow me on Twitter, you know how I love this book. Waid, Samnee, Rodriguez, Caramagna and when Lopez fills in for inks when Rodriguez pencils, consistently turn out a solid book. I’m giddy like a 13 year old talking to a pretty girl every time this book comes out.
Journey Into Mystery – I know it’s been cancelled, but its absence leaves a hole in my heart. I feel like the prince in Cinderella, wondering if I’ll ever see that creative team and the Lady Sif again. So many feels on this title. Thanks Kathryn Immonen, Valerio Schit, Jordie Bellaire, Clayton Cowles and Jeff Dekal for a wonderful series.
Batman and Robin – This is my favorite Bat title. The creative team of Peter Tomasi, Pat Gleason and Mick Gray tore me up with the silent issue and did a fantastic job with Batman dealing, or not dealing, with the loss of Damien. I’m tearing up thinking about it!
Infinity – Hell Yeah! This is how events should be done.
Avengers A.I. – This book was a slow start for me, but has become a much anticipated read over the course of the year. Sam Humphries is telling a great story.
Batman 66 – Jeff Parker and crew always deliver a smile with the adaption of the old Batman tv show.
Fearless Defenders – Alas, we hardly knew you. Thanks to Cullen Bunn and Will Sliney, this was a fun ride.
Superior Spider-Man – Love it or hate it, Dan Slott keeps churning out an engaging book that has been a fun read.
Thor – For me there are two moments from Thor this year. First when he sends Mjolnir out into space and it comes screaming back right through a Builder’s body, thereby rallying the Kree to the cause in Infinity. The second moment is issue 12 of Thor. Jason Aaron wrote a one shot story about what a God does on a day off that was one of the more emotionally powerful stories all year.
Thanks to the colorists for bringing the artwork into the four color world. Thanks to the letterers, like Joe Caramagna, Rus Wooten, and Cory Petit for giving the characters voices. And a big shout out and thanks to all those in the industry who help deliver the goods, whether they are assistant editors, editors, or your crew at your local comic store.
I know I missed a lot of books and creators and I’m positive I didn’t mention your favorite. This was just my little glimpse back at a great year in comics. Hope next year is even better!
Most Anticipated of 2014
Silver Surfer – Slott and Allred! I just peed myself! Nuff said!
Tom is a contributing writer for Drunk On Comics. You can follow him on Twitter at @tphoto10.