I didn’t get a chance to finish any graphic novels this month. I started on The Shade during my flight to New York but I found it hard to care about a character that couldn’t die and was having an adventure mostly for the sake of having an adventure. It’s sort of the same reason why I’ve never been able to get interested in watching Dr. Who (sacrilege, I know. And if you think that’s bad, I’ve never watched an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation or Buffy the Vampire Slayer either). So this month I have a relatively short list of comics that I had a chance to read and really enjoy over the first two or three weeks of the month. I missed out on more than usual. I never got my hands on Daredevil or East of West or Time Warp or any of the other great books that came out near the end of March so hopefully you and your fellow readers checking out this article can add to the list in the comments section below. That’s what this monthly segment is about after all, getting word out about great books! I know I certainly have a lot to get caught up on.
The Best March Comics (that I read)
Green Arrow #18
Talk about dense! This is one of the wordiest issues of any comic I’ve seen in some time, but I’m not complaining. The artwork still shines with some stylish layouts and brilliant coloring and the story Jeff Lemire is telling is quite large in scope so all the exposition is understandable. Plus, you have to consider just how bad this book was and how much Jeff Lemire has to do to pull it out of the gutter. I’m glad to see he’s taking it so seriously. I think everybody should be giving Green Arrow a chance right now. Some really interesting things are happening here as we dive deep into the character’s origin while at the same time shaping a bold new future for the character. And the villain, Komodo, is proving to be more unique than I originally thought and quite formidable. If you want a comic that takes more than 5 minutes to read, then this is your boy.
All-New X-Men #8
I’m liking this comic more and more every month. Not only does it have likeable characters and a great sense of humor, but it has heart and a really captivating story. Seeing the past-selves of all the X-Men confront their future selves has created some really emotional scenes that stuck with me long after I put the book down. And this issue in particular had a moment with Kitty Pride and Ice Man that made me laugh aloud while a following scene with Jean Grey was absolutely haunting. This is going to make one hell of a TPB. X-Men fans have to be happy with this, I don’t see how they couldn’t be.
Daredevil: End of Days #6
It’s a book that I can’t even talk about anymore without spoiling any of it. Just promise me you’ll pick it up when it’s a TPB. It’s a great mystery so far and if it’s ending in issue #8 pays off then it might just be a masterpiece.
Lost Vegas #1
Our hero is a gambler who has been working a debt off as an indentured servant aboard a space casino for the past five years. He’s had enough of it and is ready to break out while pulling a major heist. It’s a cool concept and good sci-fi all around.
This was a pretty bad-ass read. It’s a dark viking adventure where the stakes are raised on every single page. Sixth Gun writer Cullen Bunn could very well have another hit series on his hands because this is a comic that as soon as I put it down I immediately wanted part 2 in my hands. JoElle Jones’ art is fantastic too. She drew one of the best looking comics I read from tihs particular week. I highly recommend you get on board with this brand new series. Vikings, zombies, and witchcraft!
Sledgehammer ’44 #1
I’m a sucker for any TV show, movie, or comic book where the heroes fight Nazis and this story by Hellboy creator, Mike Mignola, is no exception. It’s like seeing Iron Man in WWII and it’s beautifully illustrated by Jason Latour with great colors by Dave Stewart. It makes for a fun and rather straight forward war story. This is a comic you read if you just want to relax and enjoy some really cool action sequences.
The New Ghostbusters #2
The Real Ghostubsters are trapped in limbo and it’s up to Janine Melnitz and the New Ghostbusters to pick up the slack in Manhattan. I think it’s fresh and exciting. Unlike the usual replacement characters you’ve seen in other books, movies, and TV shows that try too hard to be cool and always come off as totally annoying, these new Ghostbusters feel rather natural and don’t try to fill the boots of Peter, Ray, and the rest of the gang. Not only do you get some funny scenes in which the new team (comprised almost entirely of females) is forced to wear skimpy outfits for a photo shoot, but you also get some great ghost hunting action with a surprisingly dark phantasm who wields a blade. And for those of you who have been reading these comics since the very beginning, when did Janine become a lesbian? I thought she was going to stick with Louis Tully for sure after Ghostbusters 2! If you’re a fan of the movies, you should give this series a chance.
X-O Manowar #11
The conquered becomes the conqueror. Having suffered invasion by the Romans in his own time and just beaten back a fleet of aliens attempting to overtake Earth in the 21st century, Aric the Visigoth has had enough. Wielding the most powerful weapon in the universe, The Manowar Armor, Aric has flown across space and time once again only this time he’s not on the run. He’s on the offensive and bringing war to the home planet of the aliens who once held him captive. This new arc goes far beyond what you’d expect from any other superhero comic. This isn’t heroics, this isn’t vengeance, it’s a holocaust. The title Planet Death seems quite fitting.
The Private Eye #1
You can pay what you want for this new online comic by Brian K Vaughn (Saga, Y: The Last Man) and Marcos Martin (Batgirl: Year One, Dr. Strange: The Oath). This story follows a private eye character in a futuristic Hollywood where there is no internet. It’s more complicated than that, but I don’t want to spoil it for you. After all, since you can read it without paying a dime, there’s really no reason for you to not check this comic out! Click here to download it and name your own price. I think it’s definitely going to be a fun and energetic comic and the artwork is sleek and colorful. I get a Cowboy Beebop vibe from it for some reason. I can’t explain why, but I heard jazz while reading this one.
Judge Dredd Year One
You won’t see him without the helmet and you wont’ even get a glimpse at how Dredd became a Judge in the first place. Heck, it doesn’t feel like a Year One story at all! But it’s still a gritty tale about Judge Dredd trying to figure out why all the kids in Mega City are suddenly waking up with super powers. After reading the great Batman/Judge Dredd Collection, I’ve been eager to find a good jumping on point for a Dredd series and this looks to be it.
Thor: God of Thunder #6
The origin of the God Butcher. It’s an alright jumping on point for new readers, but it’s far more rewarding if you read issues #1-5. The artwork isn’t as stunning anymore either now that there’s a new artist, but it’s still a great looking book. You won’t be seeing any Thor here, though so unless you’re really curious about how this new villain came to be you may be disappointed. Thor: God of Thunder is an awesome series that I recommend everyone check out starting with the first chapter. Really epic storytelling at its finest.