Buying comics can be an expensive hobby. A lot of fans simply can’t afford everything they’re interested in, due to rising prices and the over-saturation of the market with superhero titles.
That’s why we’re here. Every week, the Multiversity staff is asked “What would you buy this week if you couldn’t go over $20?” and shares their reasons why, in order to help others who might have similar tastes make their own decisions in buying comics on a budget. Be sure to leave your own picks in the comments!
Zero #1 ($2.99) – Ales Kot is my favorite young writer. From “Wild Children” to his recent shortened run on “Suicide Squad”, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed everything he’s done. “Change”, his 4-issue apocalyptic miniseries from earlier this year, emotionally touched me in an extremely rare way. Needless to say, I’ll be there for whatever Kot does from now on. “Zero” stands to make him a very popular writer in this industry. Please check it out.
Justice League #23.3 – Dial E ($3.99) – In a “Villains Month” that I’ve largely found to be tedious and tossed off, “Dial E” sounds like the one concept that truly takes advantage of the special nature of the month. I say that as an admitted mark for China Mieville’s “Dial H”, but I also submit that 20 pages chock full of different artistic talent drawing a bunch of weird villains based off of some reverse hero dial is the sort of wonderful inventiveness that none of the other DC Comics books are even trying for right now. “Dial H” may be dead, but its fans get one last glorious go-round with it.
Dream Thief #5 ($3.99) – A really fine miniseries that has me more intrigued about what each creator is going to do next than how it’s actually going to end. “Dream Thief” was a nice display of raw talent and exciting possibilities. Jai Nitz’s twisty-turny plot couldn’t be pinned down over the course of 5-issues, leaving you trying but totally unable to guess where things were going to go. Greg Smallwood’s slick, bold-lined art and penchant for interesting layout work was perhaps the surprise of the year in comics.
Thor: God of Thunder #13 ($3.99) – In the same way that he does Wolverine, Jason Aaron absolutely owns Thor. Aaron is a writer that can play in many styles and write basically any character – but it really feels like he has Wolverine and Thor within his psyche. It’s kinda scary, but it’s scary good.
Superior Spider-Man #18 ($3.99) – I’ve been re-reading Dan Slott’s “Amazing Spider-Man” run post-Brand New Day and I have to reiterate my oft-spoken opinion that he’s the best Spider-Man writer after Stan Lee. Like great writers do, he accepts every bit of Spidey’s massive continuity and funnels it into his overall narrative in ways that both make sense and are entertaining. He pays attention to Spider-Man’s core themes, as established by Lee, Ditko, and Romita, more so than any other writer. He’s taken ‘Clone Saga’ characters and made them tolerable. He’s changed Spidey’s costume a dozen times, given him new equipment, made tons of nods to long-forgotten characters of the past, and it’s mostly all worked, if you ask me. Now he’s touching on “Spider-Man 2099” and I, for one, am stoked.
Thor: God of Thunder #13 ($3.99) – This past month, this book earned both the #1 and #2 spots on my best of the month list, and with good reason: this book kicks major ass. Now, Ron Garney joins the book as Malekith the Dark Elf is introduced to Marvel Now, and we’re certain to get one hell of a storyline.
Fables #133 ($2.99) – Once one of my all-time favorite comics, Fables is in a period of resurgence, as Bill Willingham and Mark Buckingham have brought it back to life through brilliantly told character stories with engaging high concepts. The last issue was the best in maybe 4 years. I can’t wait to see what’s next in this arc.Continued below
Zero #1 ($2.99) – Ales Kot is a really, really great guy, and one of the sharpest minds in comics. He teams with Michael Walsh, an incredible artist, in this new Image Comics book, and I think this could be the creator-owned book that makes him more of a household name.
Dream Thief #5 ($3.99) – One of the best minis of the year, Jai Nitz and Greg Smallwood take John Lincoln’s story to a close…for now. Here’s hoping the team and Dark Horse get us more from this world.
B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #111 ($3.50) – Ho hum. It’s B.P.R.D. You could say it’s getting underrated on my list because it finishes fifth here, but it’s mid-arc and it’s a metronome of quality. Still, great book, and Tyler Crook + Liz Sherman is a recipe to awesomeness.
Brother Lono #4 ($2.99) – Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso are both highly capable storytellers that can handle a lot of subjects, but this world, the one of 100 Bullets? This one is their sweet spot. This series kicks ass.
Total: $20.45 – I found a couple quarters after going under my $20 limit for the last while.
B.P.R.D. #111 ($3.50) – Another great issue of the most consistent ongoing series of the past decade. What more can I say?
Justice League #23.3 ($3.99) – I’m pretty sure MC pal Vince would attempt to destroy me at New York Comic Con if I don’t support buying this issue, so yeah.
Five Ghosts: The Haunting of Dorian Gray Vol. 1 ($9.99) – Now would be a great time to catch up on this fantastic Image series by Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham. You can’t go wrong with a $10 trade.
Zero #1 ($2.99) – This is hands down the Pick of the Week. I mean, I know it is also the official Multiversity POTW and everything but still. What Ales is starting here is going to catch a lot of attention, and deservedly so. And if you like this issue, I can confirm that it only gets better from here. I’ve gotten a look at the second issue and, oh man, you’re going to like what you see.
Morning Glories #31 ($3.50) – Of course this is on my list. Don’t be surprised. It always is. It always will be.
Adventure Time #20 ($3.99) – I always sort of forget to put this on my list, but it is actually one of my favorite comics. I really like Ryan North’s writing a lot as he includes both his own wry sense of wit and captures the show’s dynamism quite well, and Paroline and Lamb make an expert art team that brings the show to life with just enough flourishes to make it their own. Definitely a can’t miss book for fans of the show.
Five Ghosts v1 ($9.99) – This series has a ton of buzz and was expanded from a mini to an ongoing series. If you haven’t been reading it yet, maybe now is the time to check it out?
Total: $20.47 – BECAUSE I DON’T PLAY BY THE RULES
Buzzkill #1 ($2.99) – I’m quickly becoming a big advocate of Dark Horse’s super hero offerings, with great books like “Black Beetle,” “Brain Boy,” and “Catalyst Comix.” This week sees the debut of an unorthodox book about a superhero fueled by large amounts of alcohol. When Mark Waid is jealous of your comic book idea, you’re doing something right.
Justice League #23.3/ Dial E #1 ($3.99) – This would be worth recommending even if it was just the (real) final issue of the fantastic “Dial H.” Factor in an artistic smorgasbord, featuring the work of Jeff Lemire, Jock, Emma Rios, Mateus Santolouco, and 15 other stellar artists, and you have what is likely the best Villain’s Month has to offer.
Green Lantern #23.3/ Black Hand #1 ($3.99) As a Johns’ Green Lantern acolyte, I’m a sucker for a Black Hand story, especially one drawn by the master of weird concepts, Alberto Ponticelli.Continued below
Zero #1 ($2.99) It’s a new Ales Kot spy-book, if that doesn’t have you excited, you should get your head checked.
Uncanny X-Men #12 ($3.99) Obligatory statement about how awesome “Batlle of the Atom” is and how all of you should be reading it.