We are bringing back our famous “Best Of” lists and looking over what our favorites were for October! There were a lot of greats here, with Image continuing to lead the pack in innovation and quality of both art and writing. This was also the first month for both the Marvel and Vertigo relaunch, which are bringing fresh takes to the brands we trust. One thing we are seeing in October was the return of trusted talent.
We also would like to ask you to share your favorites for October, comment below and let’s start a conversation about where the most exciting work happened to be!
Paper Girls #1
Yes, Brian K Vaughn really knows how to do a good first issue. We Stand Guard has had a modicum of success, but is really finding an audience as it goes longer. Paper Girls, on the other hand, was a stand out success right from the start. The book follows a group of young paper girls, smoking and bicycling around a late 1980s neighborhood. After encroaching on what could be an alien invasion, we start an adventure story that could be as apocalyptic as it is entertaining. Vaughn is adept at really creating interesting characters that you are invested in immediately, and much of what makes Paper Girls such an immediate home run is what brought Saga and Y: The Last Man to the front of the list.
I HATE FAIRYLAND #1
The response to I Hate Fairyland has been more mixed than we would have expected. The book is basically Skottie Young letting it all good and taking both his sense of humor and intrinsic art style go as big as possible. A girl is taken to a magical “fairyland” where dreams and imagination reign. Cut to decades later, she is an adult stuck in a child’s body and the charm has certainly worn off. The back of the book has a short essay from Young talking about the inspiration that came from his childhood love of Mad Magazine and the importance of comedy. The book is personal in the way that it plays so deeply on the skill set that really pays Young’s bills, namely the ability to “draw young.” This R-rated cartoon is another break through from Image and the kind of book that we can really have a lot of fun with, especially those who have maintained a love of “child media” into their adult years and love the melding of the two perspectives.
TWILIGHT CHILDREN #1
Unsurprising enough, we reviewed this before and continue to say it is one of the best books of the year. Written with indie flair by Gilbert Hernandez and drawn by dynamite cartoonist Darwyn Cook, Twilight Children tells a supernatural story that is more about characters and setting than the mystery. This really feels like it was taken from the outtakes of Love and Rockets, where the culture and relationships are unique and relatable. This is really the kind of book that has always kept Vertigo inside of the challenging comics sphere, and it is the first step of a Vertigo that is coming back as a major player in adult-reader comics.
Justice League #45
This is not the type of book that usually makes it onto these lists, but Darkseid War is right up our alley. Bringing the Justice League back into a mythological pantheon it became with Grant Morrison, stories of Darkseid ring biblical with allegories to Satan and the Anti-Christ. This issue heads up after the death of Darkseid and how the heroes are being inundated by the power of the New Gods. The art here is breathtaking as we see Superman, The Flash, and Batman take on power that you never would have imagined.
Captain America: White #2 and #3
It is going to be hard to not include every issue of this miniseries, especially since we have been waiting for it for almost a decade. Following up Hulk: Gray, Spider-Man: Blue, and Daredevil: Yellow from superstar team Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, this is an old-fashioned take on early Captain America and Bucky during World War II. It features the iconic Sale style that plays so perfectly with Loeb that they feel built to tell archetypal superhero stories together. These are issues to read again and again, both fun and engaging.
This is the second issue of the Drive miniseries, telling a deeper story to the movie counterpart from several years ago. Despite the fact that it is strange to see a Drive miniseries so far from the film or book, it is telling an engaging story about a stunt/crime driver who is challenged to make choices in the L.A. underworld. The second issue starts to bring the series together and give it a more cohesive narrative, which is making it the kind of book that we are excited to check in with again in issue #3 next month.