|Henry Flint's Catalyst Island, which I've loved, isn't in the following list because I've concentrated on comics that can be held in the hand rather than read on the net. But I've thoroughly enjoyed the splendid Catalyst Island, and it deserves an enthusiastic thumbs up. (From Aces Weekly, volume 2)|
I'm appalled to find that I can't find a place for Matt Fraction and Mike Allred's FF in the following baker's dozen of my favourite books of the year so far. How many fine comics must be being produced when such an enjoyable book isn't an automatic pick? I know I've said that we're living through a golden age of comics before, and more than just the once too. But these are exceptional times, and though what follows isn't meant as a snapshot of today's various markets, its 13 choices might reflect something of how wonderful a range of comics we can now enjoy.
What follows isn't in any order of merit. In truth, ranking these books would be next to impossible. There's everything from horror to the broadest of comedy there, and a surprising number of titles from one particular publisher who I'd practically given up on a few years ago. (There's also one book whose first issue I struggled to appreciate, and which has since quite won we over.) Shamefully, there's no method to the choices beyond the fact that I simply enjoyed them a great deal, and they reflect no learned critical manifesto at all. What's worse for my chin-stroking credentials, I'm sure I've forgotten a great many fine comics that I shouldn't have, so if you'd consider letting me know what you would have added, and what you wouldn't have, then I'd be grateful to you.
Saga, by Brian K Vaughan & Fiona Staples (ongoing, Image comics)
Judge Dredd.: Closet, by Rob Williams and Mike Dowling, in 2000AD #1817 (weekly, Rebellion Press)
Daredevil, by Mark Waid & Chris Samnee et al, (monthly, Marvel)
The Phoenix Comic (weekly, David Fickling Books)
Criminal Macabre: Final Night by Steve Niles and Christopher Mitten (mini-series, Dark Horse, IDW)
Young Avengers, by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, Mike Norton et al, (monthly, Marvel Comics)
The Silver Darlings, by William Morris, (graphic novel, Blank Slate)
Jennifer Blood, by Al Ewing, Kewber Baal et al (monthly, Dynamite)
Adventure Time, by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, Braden Lamb, et al, (monthly, Kaboom)
Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction & David Aja et al (monthly, Marvel Comics)
Mind MGMT, by Matt Kindt, (monthly, Dark Horse)
Popeye by Roger Langridge, Ken Wheaton, Vince Musacchia et al, (monthly, IDW)
Thor, God Of Thunder, by Jason Aaron & Esad Ribic (monthly, Marvel Comics)
That was my comicsy truth. Tell me yours, if you would.
|Of course, if this list had included web-comics, then Ed piskor's wonderful Hip Hop Family Tree - here - would most certainly be on it. If there's any web-comics you'd care to recommend, I'd be fascinated to follow up your nudges.|