Best Publisher of 2008: Marvel or DC?

Here we are. The final post in the 2008 year-end wrap-up. We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our picks and pans from the past year, and now we leave you with the main event. We at Doomkopf tend to stick to superhero comics, with capes, tights, spandex, and a healthy dose of crazy powers, so the ultimate matchup doesn’t include independent publishers, since they’d probably not get mentioned in a best publisher discussion anyway. We’re admittedly blunt about it.

So it comes to this:

marvel vs dc

Jim Doom says: DC!

I was disappointed with Secret Invasion, but I don’t really think Marvel had a bad year necessarily. I just enjoyed what I read from DC more, particularly the great Batman RIP stories in Batman and the easily-overlooked Heart of Hush in Detective, plus the great string of Superman stories in Action and then the New Krypton crossover. Along with Trinity, DC seems to be really trying to return a focus to their core characters. It’s strange to think that 2008 was also the year of Countdown, the end of DONG and the stumbled start of Final Crisis. But FC seems to be gaining its footing, and Trinity seems to be a vast improvement over Countdown. DC appears to be learning from its mistakes.

I’m excited about where both publishers are going to go in 2009. I like the groundwork Marvel has laid with Dark Reign, returning a focus to good guys fighting bad guys, rather than two years of good guys fighting good guys. DC also has plenty of intriguing things lined up, not the least of which is the conclusion to Final Crisis.

Doom DeLuise says: DC!

Let me say this. My pick between Marvel and DC is DC, yes, but it’s with a pretty huge caveat. I really hated a lot of what DC has peddled this past year. Their big crossover stuff has been dreadful since the conclusion to 52, really, with Countdown sucking harder than anything I’ve ever read. Not to mention the crapfest that is Final Crisis.

But, unlike Marvel and DC from years past, in 2008, it seems like DC finally came to the realization that those crossovers don’t need to tie into every single other weekly series. I think that Countdown might be to thank for that lesson learned. In 2007, when the series started, it tried to be the “spine of the DC Universe,” and when it became apparent that it was failing miserably, DC switched tactics and didn’t have much tying in through the rest of the series.

They’ve stuck to that formula with Trinity, which, by the way, looks like awful shit, no matter what anybody says, and Final Crisis, which hasn’t tied into any main monthly ongoing comics that I can think of, other than Batman, which makes sense considering who’s writing them.

I’ll echo Jim Doom’s sentiments on everything that DC’s done right this year, but I want to make sure I’m clear when I say that DC has also done some really, truly awful stuff, too.

I suppose, in the end, it’s just a little less crappy than Marvel, who has raised their prices nearly across the board, added fifty new Avengers titles, spread Wolverine even more thin than he’s been in years past, and put out one of the most unsatisfying turds of a crossover I’ve ever read.

So, there it is. DC by default.

Here’s who we picked in years past:

Fin Fang Doom: Marvel
Doom DeLuise: DC
Jim Doom: Marvel
Doominator: None! Fantagraphics

Doom DeLuise: DC
Fin Fang Doom: DC
Doominator: DC
Jim Doom: Marvel

That’s all for 2008. Join us as we continue into the next year of crappy and not-so-crappy comics, right here at Doomkopf.