Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sunday Comics

I think I read more comics this weekend than I have in...well, maybe ever. And with me, that's saying a whole heck of a lot. Add in the fact that I wasn't around for the majority of the weekend, and I think I can officially state that I read more comics on Sunday than I have ever read on a single day.


Times two.

And I'm not exaggerating here. I read a stupid amount of comics on Sunday. And it was wonderful. I'm all caught up on my DC books--which means that I've finally made it to the end of Blackest Night.

I'm now up to date on the whole...let's call it a situation...with Green Arrow, I'm current with the new incarnation of the Justice League, and I know who's dead and who's come back from the dead in the DCU.

I won't spoil anything here--especially since I know firsthand how hair-pullingly frustrating it can be trying to navigate the Internet during a comics event--but Blackest Night, issue eight, had a whole slew of reveals and deaths and un-deaths.

It was a great conclusion to the series, and the ending was satisfying and, yeah, I think it lived up to the continuous hype that DC propagated as the event was going on.

No small feat, that.

And I think that DC has a very focused plan for their line, and this time, I'm willing to bet that the fallout from the event will be just as good as the event itself was.

That's something DC has struggled with over the last decade or so. Sure, they can tell the big story--Identity Crisis pops immediately to mind--but they've continually underwhelmed in telling the story of what comes next.
But this time, I think things will be different. DC's firing on all cylinders lately, and I can honestly say that I've never enjoyed their books as much as I am enjoying them now.

It's like DC woke up and realized that they don't need 25 tie-in titles to make an event all event-y. The main book was all one really needed to know what was going on, and any added books just made the experience better. But those added books were by no means necessary to fully grasp the story.

As for the competition across the street, I can say pretty much the same thing. Marvel has been so good lately that it's hard to believe that both companies are putting out so much quality work at the same time. It's like when the Yankees and the Red Sox are both in the playoff chase--it just feels right, and it makes everything better.

Every book has more meaning, and every story needs to shine that much brighter.

Now, I'm not as caught up on my Marvel books as I am with DC--that's the plan for this weekend--but I did manage to get updated on a good number of their titles. What I read was good stuff, I'll say that. I read dozens of books on Sunday--probably around 50 comics from just the two companies, folks--and I can say that I didn't put one of them down and think, "meh."

And that's just from the two biggest companies, mind you.

There was plenty more to read, of course, and so I made a point of diving into my pile of independent titles. From Image Comics' Prohibition era vampire tale Turf, issue one, to IDW's new and intriguing Kill Shakespeare series (which pits the bard's heroes and villains against each other and against a common foe--the wizard Shakespeare), to Richard Moore's latest offering, Chip (about a pint-size gargoyle trying to find his scary), I was lost in comics goodness all day long.

There's just lots of high quality stuff coming out from publishers big and small these days, and all I could think about as I laid around all day reading, was how far comics have come even in the seven years that I've been reading them.

Sure, there are more titles than ever, and sure, there are more mediocre titles than ever. But there are also more flat-out good books than ever.

And that's good for comics. And not to mention, for you and me.

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