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The Best Comics I Read in 2012

Posted on January 4, 2013 at 7:55 AM

Here's my entry is those annual "Best of..." lists all the comic blogs and sites release every year. My criteria was simple, how much did it entertain me? Am I still thinking about it today? If it passed those two criteria, it made the list.





DARTH VADER AND SON

By Jeffrey Brown


I'm not sure if this is technically a graphic novel or comics, but because it's by known comic creator Jeffrey Brown it makes the list. My 8 year old boy read this to me and it was one of the most awesome moments in my parenting life. Maybe that sounds corny, but my kid read to me an entire comic. Sure he's a Star Wars fan, but this book is funny. Funny to an 8 year old boy and to a 38 year old man. Great book and looking forward to the second book in the series starring little Leia.


NOT THE ISRAEL MY PARENTS PROMISED ME

By Harvey Pekar and JT Waldman


A very compact yet thorough breakdown of the history of the Jews and the modern day country of Israel. Being a history buff I love graphic novel renditions of famous history. I read a lot and sometimes little details have slipped from my mind. So a rehashing of the events which shaped Jewish life and culture was very educational for me. I have read almost every Harvey Pekar work he's ever done, I loved his straight forward, no frills storytelling. It was blunt, honest and transparent and no more so than in this book, one of his last he was part of before he died. JT Waldman is a decent artist, but it's when he drew the historical stuff that he really made his work stand out.


Marathon

By Boaz Yakin and Joe Infurnari


At first I thought this was a European book and First Second the publisher just translated this as part of an english translated release. But nope, the creators are from NYC and this was an entirely original America only release. The reason I thought this was a Euro book was because Joe Infurnari's work is amazing. Astounding even. It's got that really well done Euro style to it and I just assumed that's what this was. So how come I had never heard of this guy before? He's amazing. The story is of one of the ancient Greek wars between the Greeks and the Persians, where Eucles himself may have saved the city of Athens all by himself by running almost a total of 350 miles in a matter of 3 days. Again I love me some historical re-inactments graphic novel style and this book was hot shit.


NOWHERE MEN

By Eric Stephenson & Nate Bellegard


This just came out in December, but it woulda jumped onto this list even if it came out earlier this year. This was the best new series I read all year and I can't wait for more.


AVATAR The Last Airbender: The Promise pt. 1

By Gene Yang & Gurihiru


I loved the cartoon and loved this new story set after the cartoon ended. I'm also a big Gene Yang fan and can't wait to read part two.


BEST OF ENEMIES: A History of US and Middle East Relations

By Jean-Pierre Filiu & David B


Another historical account done in graphic novel style. Yeah it's two French guys dwelling on US history, but they get it all right, even though there's a lot of glossing over in this account. Plus you can't go wrong with anything illustrated by David B. He's one of our modern day artistic geniuses.




THE SHARK KING

By R. Kikuo Johnson


This is largely a kid's book, but a very well done kids book by a really good comic artist. I like the twist at the end.


THE GIRL WHO OWNED A CITY

By Dan Jolley and Joelle Jones


This was an adaptation of a book that came out in the 1970's. I never read that, but this adaptation was wonderful. Joelle Jones really shines in this book about a world where all the adults suddenly died and kids  are left to rule the world.


Jerusalem: Chronicles of the Holy City

By Guy Delisle


Guy Delisle draws auto-bio comics about his travels across the world as an NGO. Every one of his books are excellent and this one is no exception. Maybe I loved it more because I sympathize with his viewpoint, but I loved reading about his trials and ordeals of living in one of the more crazy areas of the world and him just trying to be a good family man and chronicling his day to day life in cartoon form.


ATTACK ON TITAN

By Isayama, Hajime


I'm not sure when the original Japanese version of this came out, but the english translation came out this year from Kodansha so I'm including it here. This book freaked me out. Giant naked human like beings have wiped out nearly the entire world by eating all the normal sized humans. The remaining humans have banded together in walled cities, but the giants keep finding them and destroying thier cities. This is only volume one, so maybe the normal sized humans will find a way to defeat the giants, but it ain't looking good by the end of this volume.




Baby's in Black

By Arne Bellestorf


This was originally a French comic, but the english translation came out this year so I'm including it here. This was the story of Stuart Sutcliff, the fifth Beatle and his German girlfriend Astrid Kircherr. Most if not all of the Beatles history is well known, but most of us forget that once upon a time Stuart Sutcliff was the original bass player and not too bad at it. When the Beatles were booted from Germany on immigration issues, Stuart stayed behind as an art student and to be with his new love Astrid Kircherr. It's a tragic tale ending in Stuart's death, but it's so well done and Arne Bellestorf's art is superb.


SNARKED vol. 1

By Roger Langridge


This was great! It's a spin on the universe of Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland stories starring the Walrus and his Butcher pal trying to do good despite their worst intentions. It's superbly illustrated by Roger Langridge and I can't wait for more.

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