Welcome to Graphic Policy’s First Impressions where we take a look at a handful of comics in order to discern just how accessible they are for new readers, because every comic could be somebody’s first – and that’s the first question that’ll be answered with this feature. The second is whether youshould start there because sometimes a book could be accessible to new readers but the quality could be less than average, and so each comic will receive a score out of ten based upon Graphic Policy’s typical ten point scale.
Where possible we’ll also be providing recap of sorts for the relevant story beats up until the issue in question in order to help you figure out if the series is something you’re interested in, assuming we’ve read any part of the story thus far. All comics were provided for review purposes unless otherwise noted.
Fantastic Four #1 (Marvel)
Can a new reader start here? Yup.
Recap & review: There’s a lot of history surrounding the Fantastic Four, and there’s a lot that has been said about why they haven’t been around the past few years, but right now none of that matter (aside from the history, maybe) because the Fantastic Four finally have their own series again. If you’re wondering what’s been going on, there’s a quick recap that covers all you need before diving into the comic proper – and this is a fantastic comic. It’s almst enough to make me want to read all the old stories! Almost (and that’s only because I don’t own them…. but there must be some on Marvel Unlimited, right?)
Oblivion Song #6 (Image)
Can a new reader start here? Yes.
Recap & review: Nate Cole has been searching for his lost brother for ten years, saving survivors as he comes across them. Last issue he finally found him with the mysterious alternate dimension that swallowed a chunk of Philadelphia, but does his brother want to be rescued? Meanwhile, in our world, Nathan’s activities have drawn the attention of those who want him to stop… I read the last three issues of this series in one sitting, and I can’t get enough of it.
Red Hood and the Outlaws #25 (DC)
Can a new reader start here? Uh….
Recap & review: One of DC’s better series for a long time, I inexplicably missed a few issues – one or two of whch would have been key to understanding this a little more than I did. That being said, what wa lost in the plot was more than made up for in the action and choreography – a book that would benefit from prior knowledge, but enjoyable nonetheless.
Hey Kids! Comics! #1 (Image)
Can a new reader start here? |Technically, yes.
Recap & review: As a first issue, there’s no recap needed. As a history, or fictionalized retelling of history, it helps if you’re already intimately familiar with the gentlemen portrayed in this book – of course the names have been changed, which doesn’t help those without an already deep understanding, leading to the first real problem with the book. The next is that despite being hugely interested in comic book history, I struggled to get through this. It felt flat, overly wordy, and remarkably boring.
Amazing Spider-Man #3 (Marvel)
Can a new reader start here? Yeah, pretty much.
Recap & review: Perhaps one of the most surprising things about Nick Spencer’s run is that each issue feels fresh and accessible to all readers; recap or no, you can enjoy this. And if you want to look for the other two issues, feel free, but they’re not require to enjoy this comic.
Bloodshot Salvation #12 (DC)
Can a new reader start here? Nope
Recap & review: I’m not entirely sure why I included the finale of Jeff Lemire’s run on this book because there’s a lot to recap, and it’ not really worth doing so for the entire run just so you can red the book. The run is great, and doesn’t deserve a nutshell retelling just for this comic.