Wednesday, 23 December 2015

My favourites of 2015!!!

So, 2015 is (almost) over!!!

Ok, not quite as it's Christmas Eve Eve, but comics are pretty much done for me this year with many changes to my pull list, lots of con attendances and plenty of reviews meaning that I've been able to read a LOT of books.

And because I enjoyed doing it last year, I figured I'd list out my favourite comic related stuff for the past 12 months (this time with a few extra categories)!!!

Favourite Comic Book Issue: Superman: American Alien #1. Ok, this was a late entry to the year but, oh my God, what a late entry!! Just a month earlier I'd picked up Superman #42 and felt it , along with what I'd read from Action Comics, DC was doing the character a disservice. But Max Landis changed my thinking right here and it's ingrained optimism had me going back time and again.

Runner-Up: Fantastic Four #645. Totally got screwed at the eleventh hour, otherwise it would have been my favourite. The FF's final issue was just so beautiful a send off for the characters and because it is my favourite book, I just couldn't place it anywhere else.

Favourite Comic Book Series: Black Science. Last year, Black Science was a book which was middle of my list. This year, it totally hit high gear with something and is now my number one. It was exciting, action-packed, intense and I couldn't put it down. It's been so good, even a 2-3 month hiatus couldn't put me off it.

Runner-Up: Daredevil. Here was another book which seemed to achieve a miracle with me in this last year. The 1st volume of the Waid/Samnee run was near perfect and so I struggled to get into the 2nd volume and DD's move to San Francisco. Well, the book really picked up it's game in the run up to the end and, so, deserves my praise for it.

Favourite Comic Book Writer: Greg Rucka (Lazarus/Black Magick). I was stuck here with a three way tie, but then Black Magick #1 came out and solidified my decision. The Poison and War arcs on Lazarus have been incredible and Black Magick's first issue was stunning. Both books have been so well written, I expect more of the same next year.

Runner-Up: (Tie) Mark Waid (Daredevil)/Rick Remender (Black Science). Like I said, it was a three way tie and so it makes sense the other two tie for runner up. Besides that, both Waid and Remender made me turn 180 on their books (as stated above) and so they both deserve acknowledgement.

Favourite Comics Book Artist: Babs Tarr (Batgirl). You know, it really was a shame that I couldn't get into Batgirl because Babs Tarr's art is so gloriously beautiful. It is so refreshingly different, that even if I couldn't get into the book, I'm glad I bought issues just for their panels.

Runner-Up: Nicola Scott (Black Magick). I swear, I REALLY love Nicola Scott's art. Her stuff on Earth 2 was terrific and her work on Black Magick's first issue was a thousand times better still. She lost out simply because Black Magick has only one issue. Next year she'll have top spot, I'm sure.

Favourite Comic Book Inker/Colourist: Chiara Arena (Black Magick). This decision became really easy after one panel. This panel:

Really, what more needs to be said?

Runner-Up: Matt Milla (Daredevil). Much like the winner, maybe I'm being presumptive, basing this on a single issue at the end of the year. However, while picking up the new Daredevil wasn't entirely a good thing, the nior-esque monochrome, gold and red that Milla used here is just SO beautiful that I couldn't resist making him the runner-up.

Favourite Independent Comic Book: Porcelain/Bone China (Improper Books). Ok, I'm cheating a bit but I've literally read both of these in the last week but I sure wish I had gotten round to reading them sooner. This is a truly gorgeous series with an unbelievably wonderful story which, and if I never read anything else again then I'll still be happy.

Runner-Up: (Tie) House Party (Rachael Smith)/Chunks (Matt Garvey). Until a week ago, these two were slugging it out for top spot, then Porcelain arrived. House Party is a slice of real life comic which is written so beautifully. Chunks could be the funniest thing I've ever read. These are great books who lost out at the last minute and so I'm happy to cheat here.

Favourite Comic Book Character: Johanna Carlyle (Lazarus). OMHG!!! This character was a truly despicable character when Lazarus first started, but the most recent arc (17-20) has made her just so much more interesting. I truly hate this character, but I have to know where she goes next.

Runner-Up: Kirsten McDuffie (Daredevil). She almost won. Almost. Waid wrote such a strong female character here who was every inch the equal to Daredevil. There's one issue with her on the cover holding a gavel. That's what clinched it for me. Pray Marvel don't kill her off.

Favourite Comic Convention: True Believers Comic Festival 2015. Definitely my favourite Con of the year. True Believers did everything right. It was glorious, I had so much fun and, as a result, it just pipped Melksham to the post.

Runner-Up: Melksham Comic-Con 2015. It wasn't really fair as Melksham was SO good this year. Great in depth conversations with creators, great, topical panels and tonnes of the good stuff (comics). It more than made up for my lacklustre trip to Sheffield's Con.

Favourite Comic Book inspired TV show: Daredevil. This was an easy decision, without a doubt. From Theme music to final scenes, story to action, costume to atmosphere; Daredevil had everything for me and if all the other Netflix shows are half as good (as Jessica Jones was deffo more than half) then they'll be awesome!

Runner-Up: The Flash. I was going to give the runner-up slot to Jessica Jones but then I remembered something. Jessica Jones hasn't given me Rogues, Gorilla Grodd, Jay Garrick or King Shark. The Flash has, and it's been so totally comic booky and fun while doing it.

Favourite Comic Book Movie: Ant-Man. Before both movies came out, I expected these films to be swapped around here, but Ant-Man showed it was the bigger film (figuratively speaking) to me. It was pure awesomeness, with a good representation of my favourite Ant-Man, Scott Lang.

Runner-Up: Avengers: Age of Ultron. On the flip side, Avengers AoU, was really cool with some great characters added to the roster, but it lost out to the little man in my eyes because it bogged itself down too much (I really need to rate this Marvel movies now, 1 - 12). It got 2nd place due to the lack of competition.

And so, that's that! Like I said, a few extra categories this year, but I figured I'd had a little more time to think about these things. Sadly, my choices seemed limited to only a handful of comics which is a sign of my current pull list size.

Hopefully next year I can get a few more books on the roster and open out the field a little bit more.

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