Tag Archives: Comics

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

It’s a short week of releases with the holiday and you can get every single issue for under $50! So, instead of picking which you should get, we’re doing something a little bit different with going over what they are and why you should check out each release!

Adventure Time: Marcy & Simon #1 (BOOM! Studios/KaBOOM!) – BOOM! Studios is continuing the world of Adventure Time after the series finale. Marceline and Simon are reunited and Simon must make amends for his time as Ice King.

Appalachian Apocalypse #1 (Cave Pictures Publishing) – The spiritually focused comic line launches with this series and we’re intrigued to see how it is and if they can do for spiritual comics like has been done with religious focused films.

Avatar: Tsu Teys Path #1 (Dark Horse Comics) – Avatar is a weird film and world that was such a breakthrough and didn’t go anywhere. Years later we’re getting sequels and it’ll be interesting to see how the comics build towards that.

The Batman Who Laughs #2 (DC Comics) – The breakout star of Dark Knights: Metal is back and he’s brought a friend. The first issue is solid and we’re so excited to see where this series goes.

Black Badge #6 (BOOM! Studios) – This series has been fantastic so far with its twisted take on the Boy Scouts and spy type stories.

Black Widow #1 (Marvel) – We’re a bit mixed on this first issue but it’s nice to see Black Widow back in her own series and it eventually gets to an interesting place. There’s just enough fun moments to check this one out.

Conan the Barbarian #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was fantastic and we’re expecting no less from this issue. A hell of a series debut for 2019.

Fantastic Four #6 (Marvel) – Last issue’s wedding actually happened! Now, we’ve got both Doctor Doom and Galactus to deal with. It’s old school Fantastic Four fun!

Goddess Mode #2 (DC Comics/Vertigo) – The first issue was a blend of tech/fantasy/magical girl and it worked really well. We want to see where it all goes in this second issue.

The Invaders #1 (Marvel) – Marvel is celebrating 80 years with this series and more! The series focuses on the Invaders both in World War II and today as Namor has a plan that’s been brewing and Captain America, Bucky, and the original Human Torch need to stop him.

Marvel Comics Presents #1 (Marvel) – 31 years has gone by since this series first debuted and we’re as excited to get this in our hands as we were back then. Three solid short stories to entertain.

Uncanny X-Men #10 (Marvel) – The end of “X-Men Disassembled” and it’s not what you think!

Diamond Announces the Top Selling Comics and Graphic Novels of 2018 as Annual Sales Increased

Diamond Comic Distributors has announced the top selling comics and graphic novels of 2018. Marvel was the top publisher of the year with The Infinity Gauntlet taking the slot for bestselling graphic novel of the year. That’s not surprising due to all of the excitement and success around Avengers: Infinity War in theaters. DC Comics came in second place for publishers and had the bestselling comic of the year with Action Comics #1000. Image Comics ranked third for publishers and lead the graphic novel chart with six out of the top ten titles.

Annual comic book sales to the comic book specialty market increased in 2018, up +3.3% for the year, while graphic novel sales dipped -6.6% from 2017. Combined, annual sales of comic book and graphic novels to comic book shops were up slightly in 2018, by .6%.

2018 Comic Dollar Share

Marvel Comics finished the year as the comic book specialty market’s top publisher, leading in both Dollar and Unit Market Shares, with a 38.24% Dollar Market Share and a 40.4% Unit Market Share. Marvel Comics top comic book, Amazing Spider-Man #800, the ten-year landmark issue led by Dan Slott and Stuart Immomen, charted at #2 for the year. Overall, Marvel had seven titles in the top ten comics of the year, including the preceding Amazing Spider-Man #798 and #799, as well as Fantastic Four #1, Amazing Spider-Man #1, Return of Wolverine #1, and Venom #1. That’s four comics written by Dan Slott in the top ten. Marvel Comics also had the top graphic novel of the year with The Infinity Gauntlet, the epic crossover event from Jim Starlin, George Pérez, and Rom Lim.

DC Entertainment was the comic book specialty market’s number two publisher in 2018 with a 30.04% Dollar Market Share and a 33.82% Unit Market Share. DC Entertainment had three of the year’s top ten comics; in addition to Action Comics #1000, Batman #50, and The Batman Who Laughs #1 were among the top ten.

Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ award-winning science fiction epic, Saga from Image Comics once again dominated the top ten graphic novels chart and solidified Image Comics as the year’s third largest comic book publisher, with a 9.93% Dollar Market Share and a 9.9% Unit Market Share. Image Comics took six of the top ten graphic novel spots, with Saga Volume 9 charting as the #2 best-selling graphic novel for 2018. Saga Volumes 1 and 8 also placed in the top ten, along with The Walking Dead Volume 29 Lines We Cross (#6), Paper Girls Volume 1 (#7), and Monstress Volume 1 (#10). The best-selling comic book for the year from Image was Mark Millar’s The Magic Order #1 at #18.

IDW Publishing was the comic book specialty market’s fourth largest publisher, propelled by its licensed titles from Hasbro, Disney, and Lucasfilm. The company’s Dollar Market Share was 3.83% for the year. Marvel Action: Spider-Man #1, was IDW’s top-selling comic book, landing at #460 for the year.

Dark Horse Comics‘ mix of creator-owned and licensed titles helped the company to be the fifth-ranked publisher in the comic book specialty market in 2018 with a 2.92% Dollar Market Share. Dark Horse’s top comic book for the year Stranger Things #1, based upon the popular Netflix series, at #184.

BOOM! Studios was the sixth ranked publisher at 2.24%, and Dynamite Entertainment was seventh at 1.86%. Viz Media, Titan Comics, and Oni Press rounded out the top ten comic book publishers for 2018.

2018 Comic Unit Share

2018 TOP COMIC BOOK PUBLISHERS

PUBLISHERDOLLARSHAREUNITSHARE
MARVEL COMICS38.24%40.40%
DC ENTERTAINMENT30.04%33.82%
IMAGE COMICS9.93%9.90%
IDW PUBLISHING3.83%3.30%
DARK HORSE COMICS2.92%2.10%
BOOM! STUDIOS2.24%1.90%
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT1.86%1.73%
VIZ MEDIA1.22%0.46%
TITAN COMICS0.87%0.61%
ONI PRESS0.83%0.54%
OTHER NON-TOP 108.01%5.25%

2018 TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS

QTYRANKRETAILRANKDESCRIPTIONPRICEITEM CODEVENDOR
11ACTION COMICS #1000$7.99FEB180142-MDC ENTERTAINMENT
22AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #800$9.99MAR180831-MMARVEL COMICS
33BATMAN #50$4.99MAY180450-MDC ENTERTAINMENT
44FANTASTIC FOUR #1$5.99JUN180771-MMARVEL COMICS
55AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #1$5.99MAY180784-MMARVEL COMICS
66RETURN OF WOLVERINE #1$4.99JUL180968-MMARVEL COMICS
79VENOM #1$4.99MAR180803-MMARVEL COMICS
810AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #798$3.99FEB180832-MMARVEL COMICS
98BATMAN WHO LAUGHS #1$4.99OCT180464-MDC ENTERTAINMENT
1013AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #799$3.99FEB180836-MMARVEL COMICS

2018 TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS

QTYRANKRETAILRANKDESCRIPTIONPRICEITEM CODEVENDOR
11INFINITY GAUNTLET TP$24.99JUL110745MARVEL COMICS
24SAGA TP VOL 09 (MR)$14.99JUL180297IMAGE COMICS
319SAGA TP VOL 01 (MR)$9.99AUG120491IMAGE COMICS
46SAGA TP VOL 08 (MR)$14.99OCT170715IMAGE COMICS
52ACTION COMICS 80 YEARS OF SUPERMAN HC$29.99DEC170241DC ENTERTAINMENT
68WALKING DEAD TP VOL 29 LINES WE CROSS$16.99JAN180844IMAGE COMICS
738PAPER GIRLS TP VOL 01$9.99JAN160645IMAGE COMICS
87BATMAN WHITE KNIGHT TP$19.99JUL180733DC ENTERTAINMENT
93DARK NIGHTS METAL DELUXE ED HC$29.99JAN180379DC ENTERTAINMENT
1033MONSTRESS TP VOL 01 (MR)$9.99APR160803-MIMAGE COMICS

Review: Young Justice #1

Superboy! Wonder Girl! Robin! Impulse! Amethyst! They’re all united in YOUNG JUSTICE #1, the debut issue of a brand-new series that also introduces new heroes Teen Lantern and Jinny Hex!

When the nightmare dimension known as Gemworld invades Metropolis, these teen heroes reunite to deal with the situation—but they’re shocked to discover the battle may be the key to the return of Conner Kent, a.k.a. Superboy! This mix of fan favorites and new legacy heroes will be the center point for some of the biggest goings-on at DC! As if that weren’t enough, Bendis reunites with all-star artist Patrick Gleason (SUPERMAN, ACTION COMICS, GREEN LANTERN CORPS) to bring the new heroes of DC’s Wonder Comics to life!

Mini Reviews For The Week Ending 1/12

Sometimes, the staff at Graphic Policy read more comics than we’re able to get reviewed. When that happens you’ll see a weekly feature compiling short reviews from the staff of the comics, or graphic novels, we just didn’t get a chance to write a full review for.

These are Graphic Policy’s Mini Reviews.


Ryan C


Batman #62 (DC)** – Not so much a stand-alone issue as a sidebar that connects into the current ongoing storyline, this is a pretty gruesome and unrelenting yarn, superbly illustrated by Mitch Gerads and featuring a (who thought we’d be saying this anytime again?) stunning Frank Miller variant cover, but all the pretty bells and whistles can’t hide another lackluster Tom King script. Points for trying, though. Overall: 5.5. Recommendation: Read. Or, more specifically, just look at the pictures

Martian Manhunter #2 (DC)** – Another terrific installment from Steve Orlando and Riley Rossmo that adds depth and mystery both to J’Onn J’Onzz’s past on Mars and his more recent past on Earth. Two issues in, you already get the distinct feeling that this is shaping up to be something well and truly special. Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

The Green Lantern #3 (DC)** – Grant Morrison is getting a bit more ambitious with his scripting here, but it’s still well below his usual standard. Hal Jordan confronts a God-like being who bought the Earth at a cosmic auction and then gets — uhhmmm — overzealous with some bad guys. That’s about it. Nicely-detailed, very crisp art from Liam Sharp elevates the proceedings a bit and truly magnificent colors from the great Steve Oliff elevates them even more, but it’s still a pretty average read at the end of the day. Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Read

Cemetery Beach #5 (Image)** – No one seems to be talking about this brisk, relatively high-concept science fiction barn-burner from Warren Ellis and Jason Howard, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why as it’s both fun and, believe it or not, coming out right on schedule. This is another breakneck chapter that doesn’t give you time to slow down and think, with magnificent, dynamic art. Might be a better read in trade as each “single” only takes a few minutes to read, but that’s a very solid and entertaining few minutes, indeed. Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Buy

Logan

Die #2 (Image)– Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans bring more of the fantasy and RPG elements to the forefront in Die #2 as the main cast of characters are a little frightened to see their long lost friend ruling a fantasy world and also have a good timesettling into their old roles as Godbinder, Neo, Dictator, (especially) Fool, and more. They want to get back and return to their normal lives, but doing spells, fighting, and melding the cyberpunk aesthetic with fantasy can be pretty cool. These contradictions extend to Hans’ art, which ranges from majestic landscapes to maggot ridden corpses. At times, the book feels like Prince Caspian with horror elements, and seeing the heroic quest through jaded adult eyes is both sad and fascinating. Overall: 8.6 Verdict: Buy

Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #1 (Marvel)– Tom Taylor and Juann Cabal’s new Spider-Man book is refreshingly street level and not in a crime sort of way, but in a Spider-Man/Peter Parker interacts with his roommates and neighbors, which drives the book. Sure, there’s a fantastic action scene towards the beginning, but Taylor and Cabal immediately connect it to a father and daughter moving to Peter’s area. And until things get weird, psychological, and property damage-y towards the end, this is a very location driven, slice of life book where Spider-Man helps people in his community instead of fighting animal themed villains or ninjas and dealing with awkward Marvel superhero cameos. The backup drawn by Marcelo Ferreira and Roberto Poggi is even more emotionally resonant because it’s told from Aunt May’s POV. This book is the perfect purchase for readers who want their superheroes a little more character driven, and Spider-Man to be involved in his community than whatever jet setting he was doing at the end of Dan Slott’s run. Overall: 8 Verdict: Buy

Martian Manhunter #2 (DC)– Steve Orlando and Riley Rossmo craft an emotional tour de force as J’onn is outed as a Martian to his partner, who completely and totally freaks out. With an almost gooey art style, Rossmo shows the painful effects of fire onthe Martian physiology that leads into a flashback of J’onn as a beat cop on Mars with a wife, kid, and an interest in the planet Earth. Orlando does some crazy worldbuilding with the Martian culture by giving the Green Martians a social shape they show around society and a private one for the closest people in their lives. Character comes before the mystery in this pulp detective story, and this is what makes it successful. Overall: 8.8 Verdict: Buy

Elana

Barbarella / Dejah Thoris #1 (Dynamite) Writer Leah Williams (guest on my next episode of Graphic Policy Radio) and artist: Germán García weave together pulp heroines of two very different eras — the swinging-est of sixties and the birth of pulp fiction in the 1910s — and transform them into a hard scifi story. The art is pleasantly trippy. The science is robust. The ladies are flirting with each other. It’s good! Verdict: Buy

Jon

Die #2 (Image)** On its own merits the first issue of Die was my favorite debut of 2018. This second episode fulfills its promise as we get our first real look at the magical world of Die. Writer. Kieron Gillen is on point, wasting nary a panel or word of dialog to excess. Gillen conjures thrilling action and bizarre horrors with equal aplomb. Stephanie Hans’ artwork comes into its own,rendering Gillen’s visions in expressive lines. I wasn’t completely sold on her style before but now I can’t imagine any other artist taking her place. Die might be the best comic of this year. It also might be one of the best comics ever. Overall Rating:10. Recommendation: Buy.

The Dreaming # 5 (DC/Vertigo)** Si Spurrier and Bilquis Evely’s run on The Dreaming has been the best of the four titles in Vertigo’s Sandman Universe line. This issue is the best yet. Everything starts coming to a head as Judge Gallows reign of terror begins to fracture and Dora prepares to take a stand against his tyranny. Spurrier understands what made Gaiman’s Sandman unique was not just the plot and characters but the deeper themes that united. Evely’s artwork is as magnificent as ever though there are a few fill in pages that are not up to the high standards she has set for this book. Overall Rating: 8. Recommendation: Buy.

The Green Lantern #3 (DC)** Grant Morrison and Liam Sharp’s The Green Lantern may well be one of the most insane comics I’ve ever read…and one of greatest. Morrison has a tendency to outpace his audience and write at a level most mere mortals can’t grasp. Here he manages to avoid that trap nicely producing a fun sci-fi adventure comic with hints of pulp. If you’ve never read a Morrison comic before this is a great one to start with. Every issue has been better than the last and this one is no exception. I never knew I wanted to see Hal Jordan punch God in the face with the giant green boxing glove until Liam Sharp showed it to me. Sharp is the perfect fit for this series. If you loved his work on Wonder Woman this is even better. His lush, hyper detailed style makes you feel like this should be hidden your mattress in an issue of Heavy Metal. The Green Lantern is so good waiting for the next issue hurts. Overall Rating: 10 Recommendation: Buy.

Shean

Star Wars: Jango Fett #1 (Marvel) In this one shot we get Marvel’s version of Batman and Damian. As Jango takes Boba on his first job with a crew. A double cross shows the young prodigy’s aptitude for the job. By issue’s end, this one story I would love to see continued. Overall: 9:3 Recommendation: Buy

Joe Hesh

Young Justice #1 (DC) Another book thats been away a minute that i was looking forward to. Bendis, Gleason no brainer. Well its not quite the bombastic return i was hoping for. Sure its great to see Conner, Cass and Bart back in the fold but it doesn’tfeel quite right. This doesnt feel like a homecoming as much as it does an awkward blind date. Now i love Damian Wayne but without careful observation I almost thought i was reading Tim Drake in a Robin costume again. Also the alien menace come to Earth and everyone bands together has been done to death. Also much better. I love all these characters but the magic is when they are on their downtime and being themselves. This just felt like a generic super team of teens taking on another menace. I’m sure this is just a building issue as all Bendis writing is. He does the long game but it didnt grab me out the gate. I think that is something he forgot how to do. It happened with the first issue of Superman and it happened here. Sure building the danger is great, but it doesn’t have to be boring right at the jump. I will chalk this up as one month and return for the next one but I am certainly not going to be long on this title if this is the tempo. Shame too given the talent that is on it. Overall: What should have felt like seeing long lost friends after many years just felt like a chore and not quite inspired. Score: 5 Recommendation: Pass


Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write. See you next week!

Please note that with some of the above comics, Graphic Policy was provided FREE copies for review. Where we purchased the comics, you’ll see an asterisk (*). If you don’t see that, you can infer the comic was a review copy. In cases where we were provided a review copy and we also purchased the comic you’ll see two asterisks (**).

Those Two Geeks Episode Thirty Three: Paul Rudd is Immortal

On the docket this week: Absolutely no plans. Where does the episode go? I honestly have no idea. There’s something about Aquaman, though.

As always, the Alex and Joe can be found on twitter respectively @karcossa and @jc_hesh if you feel the need to tell them they’re wrong individually, or @those2geeks if you want to yell at them together on twitter, or by email at ItsThose2Geeks@gmail.com.

Review: Young Justice #1

Young Justice #1 kicks off Wonder Comics, the curated line/imprint of DC Comics headed by Brian Michael Bendis. The issue brings back the fan-favorite team but is this one all about nostalgia? Find out!

Young Justice #1 is by Brian Michael Bendis, Patrick Gleason, and Alejandro Sanchez.

Get your copy in comic shops now! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon/comiXology/Kindle

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Exclusive Preview: Red Hood Outlaw #30

Red Hood Outlaw #30

Written by: Scott Lobdell
Art by: Pete Woods
Cover by: Pete Woods
Variant cover by: Philip Tan
U.S. Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: January 16, 2019

Will the Red Hood’s latest campaign be his last? Jason’s hot on the heels of the drugs he and Arsenal recently tracked to Beijing, but instead of finally encountering the mysterious Solitary, he finds himself face to face with a figure from his past. Plus, who’s the new Wingman, and why’s he tracking the Red Hood? And how can he and Jason be in the same place at the same time? Find out in “Outlaw” part five!

Red Hood Outlaw #30

Preview: United States vs. Murder Inc. #5

United States vs. Murder Inc. #5

(W) Brian Michael Bendis (A/CA) Michael Avon Oeming
In Shops: Jan 09, 2019
SRP: $3.99

Well that happened! The world has been ripped apart by mob enforcer Jagger Rose’s actions last issue, and the fallout is like nothing anyone has ever seen! In a world where the mob’s influence is both huge and public, the battle between organized crime and the United States government has reached its tipping point. It’s another barn-burning issue by the award-winning creators of POWERS, Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming.

United States vs. Murder Inc. #5

Preview: The Unexpected #8

The Unexpected #8

(W) Steve Orlando (A) Ronan Cliquet (CA) Yanick Paquette
In Shops: Jan 09, 2019
SRP: $2.99

In defusing the Nth metal isotope, the Unexpected have accidentally given the Bad Samaritan what he’s always wanted: a doorway to the Dark Multiverse and Mandrakk! But Monitor World isn’t just a doorway, it’s a trapdoor. With the Multiverse on life support, opening it might just be the kill-shot everyone’s feared.

The Unexpected #8

Preview: Suicide Squad: Black Files #3

Suicide Squad: Black Files #3

(W) Mike W. Barr, Jai Nitz (A) Philippe Briones, Scot Eaton, Wayne Faucher (CA) Frazer Irving
RATED T+
In Shops: Jan 09, 2019
SRP: $4.99

“KATANA: REVENGE OF KOBRA” part three! Trapped in the mystic dimension within the Soultaker sword, Katana and her husband, Maseo, fight the forces of the mad swordsmith Muramasa, who has amassed an army to invade the world outside-our world!
“SUICIDE SQUAD BLACK” part three! Suicide Squad Black comes face to face with Sebastian Faust, who naturally makes Amanda Waller’s supernatural enforcers an offer they can’t refuse. Will the Suicide Squad make (another) deal with the devil?

Suicide Squad: Black Files #3
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