This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Comics not in Diamonds top 100 sellers for May.
This week we’re going to be looking at a list of comics that are all fantastic, but don’t get the attention that they deserve. Now I’m not even going to pretend to have a definitively exhaustive list of underrated comics here, because we’re hoping that you decide to check at least one of these series out next time you’re looking for something new either online or at your LCS, and giving you a huge list to check out would be counter productive to that. Instead, you’ll find six(ish) comics that are worth your attention that failed to crack the top 100 in sales. You’ll notice that there’s only one comic from a publisher featured – this was done to try and spread the love around, rather than focus exclusively on one publisher.
Where possible, I’ve also avoided comics that have appeared on the last version of this list, but the only hard stipulation for this week: not one of the comics made it into the top 100 for May’s comic sales, according to Comichron, which is why they’re Underrated.
Croak #1 (Alterna)
May Sales Rank/Comics Sold: 424 /2,906
Alterna’s range of newsprint comics have been a fantastic addition to my pull list, with the stories on offer crossing numerous different genres and styles, and each one easily being worth the price of admission. Croak is a fantastic little horror tale that’ dripping atmosphere from every panel – if horror isn’t your thing, I’d still recommend you give this a shot. It’s more a thriller/psychological horror style of comic, and one that benefits from the newsprint adding a murky, retro feel to the art. I’m a big fan of the newsprint idea, and thankfully this comic lives up to the promise.
4 Kids Walk Into A Bank #4 (Black Mask)
May Sales Rank/Comics Sold: 263 /6,706
There have been some significant delays surrounding this series, which is a genuine shame because the momentum the series had been gathering seems to have dissipated a little bit, but if you can find the individual issues then this is a series that’s going to take you on quite an unexpectedly brilliant ride.
TMNT #69 (IDW)
May Sales Rank/Comics Sold: 169 /13,726
Ninja Turtles fan? You’ll love this. It’s a brilliant series that has been quietly chugging along for nearly seventy issues for a good reason.
X-O Manowar #3 (Valiant)
May Sales Rank/Comics Sold: 152 /16,002
Perhaps my most loved on going series right now, X-O Manowar can be best described as Space Conan. Every issue is a joy to read and experience. Seriously I can’t express just how great a series this has been over the last few issues, and Matt Kindt’s reluctant-soldier story meshes really well with the phenomenal artwork of Tomas Giorello and Diego Rodriguez give an almost effervescent quality to the pages in your hands. Quite simply, this series is one you have to check out.
Unless the comics industry ceases any and all publication look for a future installment of Underrated to cover more comics that aren’t cracking the top 100.