Jim Doom says: New Avengers!
Going back through my weekly reviews, it is clear that no comic was more exciting for me to read each month than New Avengers. And as I managed to explain nearly every month, the irony of this is that I was really close to dropping it a little more than a year ago. But when Civil War came, the New Avengers were split, and the book became a series of solo stories about how the Civil War was affecting the team’s heroes. Another change that happened at that time was the addition of Leinil Yu as regular artist. I have absolutely loved that guy’s work since he developed his own style, and it was a huge treat to have him start on a book that I was already reading.
So the big story of 2007 involved the New Avengers becoming an underground team of renegades and it was also the launching point for some of the first pieces of the Skrull invasion. Bendis employed several different storytelling styles – for example, one issue was entirely structured around a posthumous letter from Echo to Matt Murdock, and another issue was structured within a conversation between the increasingly-paranoid Luke Cage and his increasingly-frustrated wife Jessica Jones. Doing things other than “fight for 22 pages” seems to rub some readers the wrong way, but each week, something internal or external was developing and the story was advancing in an exciting way that made me eager to come back.
There are few comics that can effectively encompass a wide spectrum of emotions while still managing to tell superhero comics stories. New Avengers nails it each month. Other comic books are pleasant surprises when I see they came out that week; New Avengers actually makes me look forward to sitting down and reading.
I wrote this back in May: “It reminds me of the experience of watching Lost – it doesn’t matter if certain things are obviously coming; theres not a lot of point in anticipating other things because some are going to be completely out of the blue; the joy is in how we’re going to get there.”
The only asterisk to this selection is the awareness that Leinil Yu is leaving the book in 2008, but at least it’s to move on to the Skrull invasion series.
Doominator says: undecided!
I honestly don’t know. I kind of wained on comics this year, though two of my favorites released new issues this year: Love & Rockets and Hate. I really enjoyed Astonishing X-Men and All-Star Superman, but they are about as regular as a famine victim. And Batman – my Batman was pretty unreliable this year. Regular series, you lose this year.
Fin Fang Doom says: Captain America!
Despite the death of the title character, Captain America kept going strong in 2007. Elevating supporting characters like Winter Soldier, The Falcon and Agent 13 to the main event level worked so well that I hardly even realized that Cap wasn’t in the book anymore. Moving Black Widow and Tony Stark in as the new supporting cast was great, even if the only thing I can ever think when I see Tony Stark is “dick.” The story in CAptain America continues to be as deep and engrossing as it’s ever been. Cap is one of those series like The Walkiing Dead, where you have no idea where the story is going to head next, and that’s what I love about it.
Doom DeLuise says: Nova!
I considered Criminal, as well as Green Lantern and Captain America, but I can’t choose any of those, since Nova has been so ridiculously goddamned entertaining. It’s the best superhero comic I’ve read this year, and I read a lot of stuff with capes in it.