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by Wayne Markley

As this is my last blog for 2016 I believed I would look back as 2016 and ahead towards 2017 in terms of things I am looking ahead to in addition to things I took pleasure in in 2016. Along the method I will also point out both the positives and negatives of both years as I see them and I will provide us all something to look ahead to.

Snotgirl. A designer had title Wayne enjoyed.

In the comic book world, 2016 was full of a number of ups and downs.  It was a excellent year for new creators expressing themselves with a range of styles and publishers. just like the last few years it is one of the most creative times for comic books with such a broad spectrum of genres and subjects being published today. There is definitely something for everyone’s taste. On the other hand, the comic market one again drifted towards the lowest common dominator as retailers, and publishers, played the game of “variants” and restricted editions which always seem to work in the short term but in the long run everyone gets burned by it.  merchants buy far as well lots of books so they can get a “variant” which they can then mark up in price, intending to balance out the cost of the extra books they gotten to get the restricted edition.  It seldom works out.  Publishers when again restarted/rebooted/redid their publishing lines in an attempt to improve sales and get market share, which again in kind term does work, but in the longer term it provides the fans the chance to stop getting the book as there is a remove ending point.  and a great deal of fans take these chances to drop titles.  It is unusual to have a comic that is over a 100 problems anymore. outside of The walking Dead, what is there?  (Yes, I understand there is action Comics and Detective Comics, but they went back to the 900 numbering to they can try and get to 1000 and make it into a advertising event.) It is not as if the titles were published consecutively to the current numbers, besides both of them had 52 problems that were out of the current numbering. general I see a comic market that is still making the exact same errors it has made in the last 30 plus years of the direct market, and I discover that sad.  But, now on to a lot more positive things.

Superman: trial of the incredibly Sons

In 2016 my preferred DC regeneration titles was Superman by Pete Tomasi and Patrick Gleason.  This book tells stories about Lois, Clark and their son, Jon.  This book is a mix of action and heartwarming household drama.  The stories variety from Frankenstein Agents of shade to the household going to the specify fair together.  maybe my preferred story was the incredibly Sons story were Superman’s son, Jon, got to hang out with Batman’s son, Damian.  This two part story was as warm as it was funny as kids were being boys, and Superman and Batman having to be parents. This was easily one of my preferred stories of 2016.

Low and behold, 2017 brings us a new title called incredibly Sons, about, yes, Jon and Damian and it is written by Peter Tomasi with art by Jorge Jimenez.  If this book is half as entertaining as the story in Superman was, then this could easily increase to the top of my favorites list. provided the creators, I have extremely high really hopes for this book.

Avengers: Standoff

In 2016 there were a number of crossover events from a number of companies, both mixing characters from different business (JLA/Power Rangers, Tarzan/Planet of the Apes) to interior crossovers (such as Marvel’s Civil war II). but I believed the very best of the year, and to be sincere this was not difficult as a lot of of the crossovers where not that good, was Avengers: Standoff. This was a fairly little crossover with an alpha, and omega problem and 13 other titles, which you did not have to checked out to get the story but they truly did assist flesh out the big picture.  The crossover was written generally by Nick Spencer and told the tale of a top trick S.H.I.E.L.D. prison called pleasurable Hill.  practically every problem is full of twists and turns and true surprises.  This story is self-contained and reads excellent in one sitting, but it does lead into the current events in Captain America and Thunderbolts.  It is available in a spiffy hardcover collection.

Future Quest

2016 saw the return of the Hanna Barbara characters to comic books from DC Comics.  They essentially tried to update classic characters, which I seldom believe goes well, and this was no exception.  Of the four titles they did, Future Quest by Jeff Parker and Doc Shaner was my preferred as it featured Johnny Quest, area Ghost, and lots of of the other HB adventure characters.  It was also the most true to the original concepts.  The others such as goofy Raceland, Flintstones, and Scooby Apocalypse ranged from quite great (Scooby Apocalypse), to downright terrible (Wacky Raceland).  We can look ahead to 2017 which will bring us a series of annuals with DC characters crossing over with the Hanna Barbara characters.  At very first glimpse these look to be a lot more in the standard vain like Future Quest than the “modernized” versions of the HB characters, although each annual will have a backup story with an “updated” version of a classic Hanna Barbara character (Oh no!).  Titles revealed so far include eco-friendly Lantern/Space Ghost and three others.

Supergirl: The Silver Age Omnibus

Finally, 2016 saw a number of excellent collections of historical material reprinted from a range of places.  You had IDW continue their excellent newspaper strip collections, including Superman, Batman, Rip Kirby, bit Orphan Annie, Dick Tracy, and lots of more.  all of these will continues into 2017, and ideally we will lastly see the complete Ben Casey newspaper strips by Neal Adams. Fantagraphics continued with their fantastic reprints of the works of Carl Barks and Don Rosa. Plus, they started the reprinting of the complete works of Guido Crepax, which has to be seen to be believed.  The second volume just came out and, like the first, it is actually mind blowing.  and of course there is also Fantagraphics slow, but great, complete reprinting of Walt Kelly’s Pogo.  all of these, and let’s not forget, their reprinting of Hal Foster’s masterpiece, prince Valiant, will all continue in 2017.  also a loud shout out to Fantagraphics for completing their reprinting of all of Charles Shultz’s Peanuts. An fantastic feat. and a excellent read.  (The Sunday collections are genuinely amazing, the colors are fantastic). Also, not to be left out, marvel has continued their legendary line reprinting in sequence their entire library of comics and star Wars material. Not to be left behind, DC also started a similar program this year with golden Age Batman and Superman collections in addition to Silver Age collections of Flash, eco-friendly Lantern, Justice league of America and more.  DC also released maybe my preferred collection of 2016, the Supergirl Omnibus, a genuinely joyous trip down memory lane.  all of these collections will also continue into 2017 and I am looking ahead to filling my book shelves with them.

Moon woman and Devil Dinosaur

That wraps it up for me for 2016.  There were a great deal of excellent books out this year, lots of of which can be discovered in my prior blogs.  I have high really hopes for 2017 with a slew of new skill making their method into comics, and with publishers ready to try new genres and formats. (Image genuinely should have credit report for their diversity of titles). also there are so lots of new, alas smaller, publishers that are doing fantastic work, which when again because of the structure of the comic market, seldom get seen by a big audience, but they are worth looking for.  I am always surprised by the books people send me to evaluation that I had no concept existed and exactly how great they are.  Plus, there is the monthly choice of comics we have all come to understand and love. I personally have been thrilled with the step towards lighter storytelling, with such titles as Moon woman and Devil Dinosaur, one of my preferred marvel titles.  inspect it out.

Everything I have written here, both positive and unfavorable are my viewpoint and do not show the thoughts or opinions of Westfield Comics or their employees.  What did to you delight in in 2016? What stood out to you? What books am I missing out on? I would like to know. I can be reached at MFBWAY@AOL.COM or on Facebook at Wayne Markley.  I genuinely hope 2017 is a excellent year for all of us all around the world despite exactly how unfavorable the world may look at times. As always,

Thank you.

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