2015: The Best In Comics

It’s time to sum up 2015 in comics. Let’s take a look at the best this incredible medium had to offer this year.

Top 6 ongoing series of 2015

6Injustice ( DC Comics) – By Brian Buccellato, Bruno Redondo & various artists 

5. Astro City ( Image Comics) By Kurt Busiek, Brent Anderson & Various artisits

4. Martian Manhunter ( DC Comics) – By Rob Williams & Eddy Barrows  

3. The Autumnlands ( Image Comics) – By Kurt Busiek & Ben Dewey  

2. Batman ( DC Comics) – By Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo & Danny Miki 

1. Justice League ( DC Comics) – By Geoff Johns & Jason Fabok   

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2015 was a good year for comics but a great year for the Justice League. DC’s flagship book really stood out as my clear favorite this year. The Darkseid War arc has been a blast, that’s manged to reinvigorate new life into the series. It’s been solid action and story. Strong characterization still manages to be Geoff John’s strength.

Injustice continues to be enjoyable but I sorely miss Tom Taylor’s writing.  Martian Manhunter turned out to be a nice pleasant surprise. It’s loaded with an interesting supporting cast that helps drive the mystery at the heart of the story. It’s also a treat to have Eddy Barrows drawing regularly again.

Batman continues to impress me with how different and innovative it continues to be. Synder, Capullo & Danny Miki have carved out a legendary run that will be looked back on fondly in the years to come.

Image comics continues to put out relevant and interesting material from top notch talent. The Autumlands continues to be fresh and addictive, while Astro City does what it does better than any homage to superheroes out there.

Best Mini Series :

( Vertigo) Twilight Children – By Jaime Hernandez & Darwyn Cooke 

twilight-children

Indie comic fans will, no doubt recognize Jaime Hernandez’s name from his acclaimed ” Love and Rocket’s” comics. Darwyn Cooke has been a bit of an every man, in terms of comics. Hes done everything from Batman to Parker. Jaime Hernandez’s penchant for storytelling mixed with Darwyn Cooke’s equally impressive talents makes for one of the more intriguing reads of 2015.  A Science Fiction tale that’s much more interested in it’s quirky city and it’s inhabitants.It reads almost like watching an indie version of ” The Twilight Zone”.

Best Original Graphic Novel:

( Magnetic Press) Love: The Fox – By Frederick Brremaud & Federico Bertolucci  

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Love: The Fox is a beautiful book to have. It’s lush visuals are, truly a sight to behold. Like it’s predecessor, ( Love: The Tiger) It takes us through, a day in the animal in question. This time, a Fox. There is no dialogue in this box and you don’t really need them. The art and the storytelling are so good that nothing needs to be ” said”. A wonderful piece of work that showcases what the comics medium is truly capable of when in the right hands.

Best New Series:

( Image Comics) Black Magick by Greg Rucka & Nicola Scott 

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only 3 issues in and I’m loving it. Being a longtime Rucka fan, I pick up almost anything his name is attached to. I’m glad I did. picture a police procedural mixed with witchcraft and history. Looking at the back pages and following the ancestry of the characters gives you an idea of the amount of research and time that was put into this project. On top of it all, the art is gorgeous! In black & white with rich grey tones that make everything looked extremely detailed. Nicola’s most impressive work to date. I look forward to more from this series in 2016.

Best Event Series:

( Marvel Comics) Secret Wars – By Jonathan Hickman & Essad Ribic  

Secret-Wars

Not since Civil War, have I enjoyed a Marvel event this much. It’s epic in every sense of the word. Although if you haven’t kept up with most of Marvel’s flagship books, you might get lost. Those unfamiliar with Jonathan Hickman should be prepared for a zany, out of the box story. I always compare him to a more restrained version of writer, Grant Morrison. Artist Essad Ribic shines here. I was impressed to see him move from his well known , painted art style to a, more modern pencil and ink style. Almost seamless.  Having Alex Ross on cover duties doesn’t hurt this series either. I just had to pick it up when I saw it. Really, this is what DC’s “Convergence” event should have been. A shame , really.

Most Potential For 2016:

( DC Comics) Dark Knight III: The Master Race – By Frank Miller, Brian Azzarello, Andy Kuber & Klaus Janson 

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Due to the iconic status of Frank Miller’s ” The Dark Knight Returns”, and the fact that it’s Batman, I’d say that DK 3 has the most potential going for it into 2016. The hype is only building thanks to the quality of the first 2 issues. Particularly, issue 1.  Even the naysayers are pleasantly surprised how decent it has been considering that the wounds from ” Dark Knight Strikes Again” ( DK2) are still fresh. Azzarello and Kubert’s name add modern credibility to the project. This can only get better… I hope.

Best Writer:

Scott Snyder – Batman, Wyches, American Vampire   

Snyder deserves to be here just based on his work with Batman. It’s always daunting to write new stories starring the Dark Knight. There’s just so much out there that you feel, it’s all been done. You might even read a good Batman story , but know where it’s going to end up. Not with Snyder. He keeps trhowing twists and turns that I never expect. he’s keep the character at the top level, making it DC’s consitantly best selling book. His work on American Vampire is what put him in line for his Batman work, and it continues to impress. Wyches # 1 was one of the best selling first issues of the year. This man is on fire and with no signs of slowing down.

Best Artist :

Jason Fabok – Justice League 

Where did this guy come from? I’d seen his work before but never to this level. Everytime I read an issue of Justice League my jaw dropped. The detail, the inks, the splash pages! Oh my God, the Splash pages. He reminds me of Jim Lee, during the Batman: Hush era. With one notable difference… Speed. Jason Fabok manages to be on time every month! If you saw the work that goes into each issue, you know this is an impressive feat. Put into perspective the fact that, Neil Gaiman’s ” Sandman: Overture” took two years to finish! We’re only talking about 6 issues there. Look for Jason Fabok to be a star on the rise.

 

There you have it! the best in comics for 2015. Let’s hope 2016 is, as good or better!

 

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I'm a geek! I love all things SciFi and Fantasy and have done since I first read LOTR as a kid. Escapism to fantastic worlds filled with weird and wonderful creatures initially for me was via books and comics, but with the recent surge in popularity of this fare in film and television also - I'm in a state of bliss! As the editor of Zone Six, I've been lucky to meet some other awesome authors and writers that share this love and passion. The great Ray Bradbury said - "Science fiction is any idea that occurs in the head and doesn't exist yet, but soon will .. it will change everything for everybody, and nothing will ever be the same again."

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