Jiminy Christmas! | 2010 Picks

The new year is finally starting to roll out so I thought to highlight my picks from 2010: one book from each publisher that to me was the best material they put out.

Superman: Secret Origin by DC Comics

This one blew me away: a straight up superhero book.  Geoff Johns and Gary Frank deliver a reinterpretation of the Superman origin story: it’s a slight tweak with details for modern audiences.  No big surprises or twists, just solid story and art.  This one keeps the faith that a superhero story can be great.

The Marvels Project by Marvel Comics

Another origin story but with a brand new spin.  Brubaker know how to write a great story and be brings it here: a look at the very beginning of the Marvel Universe with a fantastic roster of Golden Age heroes.  Epting’s art brings the period to life.

Parker: The Outfit by IDW

The second story arc from Darwyn Cooke brings more of the same: gritty mob action with quick rapid dialogue and a no holds barred story.  Singular colour and heavy ink give the art a look that screams “period piece” and immerse the reader instantly.  Cooke’s hard lines and chiseled men enforce the story and contrast with his soft and rounded women: every element works together beautifully and can only happen when it’s a one creator work.

Usagi Yojimbo Special Edition by Fantagraphics

A beautiful collection of the first seven years of Usagi Yojimbo stories in a two book slipcase edition.  Excellent reproduction with a complete cover gallery, interview with Stan Sakai plus a whole lot more.

Scott VanderPloeg Written by:

Editor-In-Chief. Scott works in I.T. but lives to eat and read. His other ramblings can be found at eBabble. Art collection at Comic Art Fans. Joe Shuster Awards Harry Kremer coordinator.

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8 Comments

  1. January 11, 2011

    Wow.
    We are in completely different mind states here.
    Superman Secret Origin is an awful, awful book. Not only is retelling Superman’s origin story a very, very lazy cash grab – Geoff Johns does it in a way that seems robotic and bored. The art is so plastic and borderline creepy thanks to Gary Frank fills 224 pages with frozen facial expressions.

    The Marvels Project was a fun read, but it might as well have been billed as ‘storylines that I want to use elsewhere but I don’t have place for at the moment because I have to focus on events.’
    I’m glad we’re finally now getting the payback for re-introducing John Steel – but this mini-series definitely lacked purpose. Even the ended was more than a little lackluster… it was a strange read. Strong no doubt, but It seemed like it would have been as a condensed annual.

  2. January 11, 2011

    The Usagi Yojimbo special edition is so awesome that its awesomeness can barely be contained within its awesome pages.

    I shed a tear for the fact that only you and I bought copies.

  3. January 11, 2011

    Yeah, I thought about buying it but i have the softcovers.. and well, double dipping isn’t something one does after Christmas!

  4. January 12, 2011

    That’s the beauty of having an opinion: I read maybe a dozen superhero books in 2010 and liked these two the best.

    With Gary Frank you love his art or you hate it: his faces are intense and angry. Origin stories need to be retold every decade or so to give new readers a sense of belonging.

    The Marvels Project touched on an era we don’t see getting any coverage: I long for Invaders WWII stories.

  5. January 12, 2011

    I totally agree with you in regards to a good Invaders WW2 on-going! The best part of Brubaker’s early Cap run was the Lark drawn WW2 sequences!

  6. January 12, 2011

    I’d have to agree with Pete on this, I think Secret Origin was completely unnecessary ego stroking on the part of Johns. I like Frank’s artwork but Johns is so desperate to merge pre-Crisis continuity with the movie continuity established by his mentor director Dick Donner that it’s kind of annoying. I recommend S.O. only to new readers, kids who don’t know the Superman character but one thing is for sure —- it’s definitely better than the awful Superman: Earth One graphic novel by JMS.

    Marvels Project was very much meh.

    Batwoman: Elegy by Rucka and JHW3 would be my first DC hardcover pick for 2010. Bloody fantastic on every level. Do I have a Marvel pick for 2010? Maybe Hickman’s FF stuff. Maybe.

    Do yourselves a huge favour and grab a copy of Scott Chantler’s Two Generals!

  7. Marc
    January 13, 2011

    When you started with “one book from each publisher” I was really excited to see which Broadsword Comics book you chose. Disappointing.

  8. January 13, 2011

    Feel free to add your picks, including your Broadsword choice. As well I stated “one book from each publisher” and not “one book from every publisher”.

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