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Creators’ Year in Review, Part 5: What 2020 Comic Would You Recommend to Our Readers?

By | December 29th, 2020
Posted in Columns | % Comments

Every year, we gather some of our favorite creators to take our ‘Creators’ Year in Review’ survey. When thinking about this year, however, the usual questions didn’t seem to make as much sense. So, we’ve tweaked the questions a bit to better reflect what 2020 was truly like for all of us.

Profuse thank yous to the creators who took a few minutes to answer our questions. You’ll be seeing all five of their responses this week and next, as we continue our Holiday Season celebrations. Happy Holidays to all, and please stay safe!

What 2020 comic would you recommend to our readers?

Lisa Brown (“The Phantom Twin,” “Long Story Short”)

Can’t do only one. I have a particular love for “Glass Town” by Isabelle Greenberg, and my son and I both spent a good deal of 2020 immersed in Tillie Walden’s “On A Sunbeam.”

David Pepose (“Spencer and Locke,” “Go to the Chapel”)

Anything with Al Ewing’s name on it. “Immortal Hulk,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” his new relaunch of “S.W.O.R.D.” — they’re all incredibly thoughtful works each with a deeply profound point of view. He’s definitely the kind of writer I want to be when I grow up.

Michael Walsh (“Black Hammer/Justice League,” “Comeback”):

Here’s a creepy and atmospheric mini-comic by burgeoning talent Gavin Fullerton – “Slime Tunnel.”

Steve Orlando (“Commanders in Crisis,” “Wonder Woman”):

“Blue in Green,” “Lost Soldiers,” “Department of Truth,” “Once and Future.”

Jason Loo (“Afterlift,” “The Pitiful Human-Lizard”)

The political sci-fi series “Far Sector.” Also, anything Jamal Campbell is working on. He’s a modern-day comic art master.

Richard Starkings (“Elephantmen 2261,” founder of Comicraft)

“Bad Weekend” (was that 2020?) and “Pulp” by Brubaker/Phillips. They are really doing some of their best work.

Michael Avon Oeming (“Powers,” “Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye”):

“Happiness Will Follow” by Mike Hawthorne!

Deniz Camp (“Maxwell’s Demons,” “Ice Cream Man Presents”)

“Ice Cream Man,” “King of Nowhere,” “GIGA,” “RedFork,” “Undone By Blood,” “Blue In Green,” “Jimmy Olsen,” “November,” “One Story,” “Knock ‘Em Dead,” and many, many more that I’m no doubt forgetting.

Wes Craig (“Deadly Class,” “The Gravediggers Union”):

“Land of Sons” by Gipi. That was one of the best things I read this year.

Sam Maggs, (“Rick and Morty: Ever After,” “Marvel Acton: Captain Marvel”)

Trung Le Nguyen’s “The Magic Fish,” Kami Garcia’s “Beast Boy,” Sarah Kuhn’s “Shadow of the Batgirl,” Marieke Nijkamp’s “The Oracle Code,” and Steenz’s “Heart of the City”

Michael Moreci (“Wasted Space,” “The Plot”):

“Money Shot!”

Tom Scioli (““Jack Kirby: The Epic Life of the King of Comics,” “Transformers vs G.I. Joe”):

Working on “Transformers vs GI JOE” got me hooked on “GI JOE” comics. I’ve been enjoying the current “GI JOE” comics, both the Hama and Allor-written ones.

Daniel Warren Johnson (“Extremity,” “Murder Falcon”):

“King in Black” is pretty damn spectacular!

Liana Kangas (“She Said Destroy,” “BLACK (AF): Devil’s Dye”):

One comic is really hard. I’ll have to say my new book, “Seeds of Eden” BY TKO! Just kidding! Or am I? But seriously, I really enjoyed “The Department of Truth” and “Home Sick Pilots!” I was lucky to get an early sneak peak at both and I can’t express how much I adore the works as a whole. “Something is Killing the Children” also ruled. They’re all so incredibly unique and original and it’s a great way to cap off 2020 in comics!

Dean Haspiel (“The Alcoholic,” “The Red Hook”):

For all ages, I recommend “Nico Bravo and the Cellar Dwellers” by Mike Cavallaro, “Almost American Girl” by Robin Ha, “Black Heroes of the Wild West” by James Otis Smith, and “Unrig: How to Fix Our Broken Democracy” by Daniel G. Newman and George O’Connor

For adults, it doesn’t get any better than “Pulp” by Ed Brubaker & Sean Phillips.

And, please check out my New Brooklyn saga on Webtoon starting with 1) The Red Hook 2) War Cry 3) StarCross, and then 4) Blackout. Read The Purple Heart, and The Brooklynite, too.

Brian Joines, (“Backtrack,” “Krampus”)

Given the year 2020 has been, “Department of Truth” feels like the book of the year. On the superhero side, Cantwell and Cafu’s “Iron Man” reads the way superhero books should be done. And, of course, “Backtrack.”

Continued below

Eliot Rahal, (“The Vain,” “Hot Lunch Special”)

Honestly. DC’s Black Label book, “The Question: The Deaths of Vic Sage”. I love Jeff Lemiere. Him and Sienkiewicz together is something special.

Matt Smith (“Folklords,” “Young Hellboy”)

There’s this wild horror comic by Mister Reusch, “Home for Little Conjurors.” The first volume came out in 2019 I think, but there’s more of it in progress now so. It’s like what I was talking about in the last question–just this wonderfully creepy, fun, dark, story that could only come from that guy. It’s pretty damn great and I can’t wait to see where it goes because I have no idea. That’s another good sign for me–reading something, loving it and having zero guesses of where the story is going to go next because there is nothing typical about it.

Karen Schneeman (“Go With the Flow,” “The Mean Magenta”)

“This Was Our Pact” by Ryan Andrews was a really fun and imaginative adventure about friendship.

Erica Schultz (“Forgotten Home,” “Swords of Sorrow”)

I would recommend “Forgotten Home” and “Legacy of Mandrake.” Sorry…self promotion. I’d also recommend “Dash” by Dave Ebersole, Vinnie Rico, and Delia Gable.

Jim Zub (“Stone Star Season 2,” “Skullkickers”)

“We Only Find Them When They’re Dead” and “Resonant” are well worth diving into.

Johnnie Christmas (“Crema,” “Sheltered”)

The collection for “First Knife,” “Dragon Hoops” and for younger readers “Real Friends.”

Christian Carnouche (“The Resurrected”):

Hmmmm so only one right? In that case, I’d recommend Lucy Sullivan’s graphic novel “Barking,” which brilliantly tackles the themes of trauma and mental health. You can buy it here:

Lily Williams (“Go With the Flow,” “My Endometriosis Story”

I loved “Snapdragon” by Kat Leyh!

Tristan Jones (“Ghostbusters,” “Tales of the TMNT”)

“Venus in the Blindspot,” hands down. “No Longer Human” was also stunning. I’ve really liked “Gigant,” “Raw Hero,” “Hell’s Paradise,” and the new “Ghost in the Shell: Human Algorithm.” Like I said, it’s been a lot of manga. I think American comics have been largely pretty stagnant across the board, but that’s just my tastes I guess. There’s great stuff out there and I know a lot of folks putting together some really cool things while this whole mess has been upon us, but they’re my picks for this year, for sure.

Jason Piperberg (“Raising Dion,” “Spaceman and Bloater”):

I haven’t read many comics that came out this year, unfortunately. Most of what I know has come from seeing various pages that some of the artists I follow have been posting on Instagram and Twitter. However, and I know this isn’t exactly the question, I can tell you that I’m very excited about Christine Larsen’s upcoming book “Orcs!” It’s being published by BOOM! and coming out in February 2021. Christine is a former teacher of mine and I absolutely love her work, so I’m very much looking forward to that book!

EJ Su (“Transformers,” “Tech Jacket”)

Everyone should check out more indie comics, they are not getting enough support, but they are fueled by their passion. A little more support goes a long way.

Everyone should check out this Taiwanese artist’s work that I have been following. It’s about an Opera Singer turned superheroine, Unfortunately, there’s no English version of the book, but I personally think the artwork is worth just flipping through it. It’s free online too, so there’s no price to pay.

//TAGS | 2020 Year in Review

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