Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Looking back at 2016: Top Ten Comic Series

I read a lot of comics every month. And while 2016 had me reading far less than I had in previous years, I still spent a lot of time with floppy issues open in front of me. Here's the ten best series I read all or part of in 2016.

  1. Dept. H: Matt Kindt is one of the best writers of modern comics. While his Valiant work (Ninjak, Divinity) is also amazing, his very best work of the year was this underwater murder mystery. Easily one of the most compelling books of the year with a heck of a lot more story to tell in 2017. 
  2. Sex: Joe Casey and Piotr Kowalski's series takes a solid look at superhero comics by telling the story of a Batman style superhero that retired to end a gang war. Definitely a book for adults, Sex offers maybe one of the most intriguing ongoing narratives I've read in years. While monthly issues have ended as of this month, it looks to continue as a series of OGNs over the upcoming years. 
  3. The Shadow: Death of Margo Lane: Matt Wagner and The Shadow are a match made in heaven. Nuff said. 
  4. Gold Digger: I never know what I am in for with each issue of Fred Perry's ongoing series. After over 200 issues, he's created a massive universe but never makes a reader feel like he's completely lost as he pokes at the many corners of his own personal cosmos. 
  5. Insexts: Victorian England, super-bug powers and two women's love are the key components to this fascinating series from Marguerite Bennett and Ariela Kristantina, the best offering of several great books from Aftershock Comics. 
  6. Deathstroke: DC recruited Christopher Priest to write one of my favorite characters. He took the ball and ran with it and has made Slade Wilson's life more intriguing than ever before. Probably the best mainstream book on stands today. 
  7. Black Hammer: Jeff Lemire's tale of exiled heroes is a fascinating deconstruction of superhero archetypes in a real world setting. I have no clue where he's going with it all, but I cannot wait to keep following the tale of the trapped heroes. 
  8. Doctor Fate: I dearly miss Paul Levitz and Sonny Liew's amazing series. They created a great new era of a classic character and did so while not hiding from the truths of reality. Any fan of Ms. Marvel should definitely check it out, as should any fan of great comics. Now canceled, a world without it is a sadder place. 
  9. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: While 2016 wasn't the absolute best run of the IDW Turtles books so far (that came in 2015), it remains one of the most compelling monthly titles on the market today. Kudos to Tom Waltz and company on consistently producing one of the best titles month after month. 
  10. Limbo: This weird limited series by newcomers Dan Watters and Caspar Wijngaard introduced a strange world with even stranger happenings. I cannot quite explain the slightly psychedelic aspects of this book, but it reads like classic Vertigo in all the right ways. Watters and Wijngaard have the potential to be huge creators in the next few years.

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