Cool Comics Picks (and Zombies!)

Afterlife with ArchieHello again, my dear Hubbers!  I’m back again for a round-up of my favorite new-ish comics to share with you!  Yes, I know, I was supposed to do a post on the newest topic in my SuperMOOC comics series, but to tell you the truth, I am super behind on my MOOC.  Who knew that this “Summer Reading” thing would take up so much of my time?  Ha!  So, instead, I’m happy to give you a list of a few of my new favorite titles that will definitely appeal to a whole gamut of comics readers.  From weird Guardians to zombies to our (well, my, I guess) favorite, Mr. Batman, himself, I hope that you’ll be excited to jump into the deep end of the comics pool.  Join me, won’t you?  As always, we start with Batman!

Batman, Volume 4:  Zero Year – Secret City by Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo & Danny Miki:  Zero Year is a fun place for both Batman fans and non-fans alike to jump into the current story line that Scott & Greg have created.  Zero Year is going way, way back to how poor little rich boy, Bruce Wayne, not only became Batman, but what that first year was like for him after he decided to don the cape and cowl.  A nefarious group calling themselves the Red Hood Gang have descended on Gotham, determined to take the city down, no matter what it takes.  They also wear these red cone like things on their heads – very amusing, if you ask me.  But they are deadly and will stop at nothing to bring the city to its knees.  However, one thing they didn’t count on was Batman – well, he isn’t known as Batman yet.  So, they weren’t counting on a guy in a suit that looks like a bat.  A fun and fast paced story that readers can jump right into and get hooked – and, trust me, they will get hooked.  Plus – bonus!  Early Edward Nygma, and we all know who he turns in to, right?  (It’s the Riddler, by the way!).

Afterlife with Archie:  Book One by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa & Francesco Francavilla:  If you’re anything like me, you love zombies.  Zombies are the best!  Hilarious and sad and utterly terrifying.  Now imagine if two award-winning comics people took your favorite kids from Riverdale and zombified them!  Well, your dreams have come true.  Unfortunately, the zombie plague has hit Riverdale after some sorcery involving Jughead and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.  Also, unfortunately, Archie and his pals have had to escape for their lives all the way to Veronica’s house.  The 3rd unfortunately is that Jughead is the new leader of the zombie army, and he and his zombie followers know just where to go for maximum brain consumption – yup, you guessed it – Veronica’s house.  This is a wonderfully creepy take on our favorite teens.  I loved it, and I don’t even like Archie!

Avengers Assemble by Brian Michael Bendis & Mark Bagley:  So, I guess I kind of like the Avengers.  I mean, I really liked the movie, and all, but I haven’t taken a lot of time to read the associated comics.  I decided to pick up this new-ish title because I heard it was good.  And, it is – it’s funny and action packed and it has a guest appearance by the newest (or soon to be, at least) Marvel movie stars – the Guardians of the Galaxy!  This is basically a star filled mash-up of the Avengers and Guardians trying to defeat the dreaded Thanos.  For fans of the Avengers, this is the perfect book that displays the same sort of hilarious hijinks and Hulk/Iron Man bromance that the movie fans will love.  For readers who’d like to get some Guardians of the Galaxy action, this book brings them to hilarious life on Earth and beyond.  C’mon – it’s got a talking raccoon in it.  What more do I have to say?

maraMara by Brian Wood, Ming Doyle & Jordie Bellaire:  In a future where sports and war are what is most important in the society, volleyball player, Mara, is the star that shines the brightest.  She’s beautiful, plays an awesome game and inspires her country and teammates alike.  She is beloved throughout the world until, one day, the world gets a look at superpowers that she would rather stay hidden.  With her brother off fighting in dangerous war zones and those who once embraced her now pushing her away, Mara is isolated and alone.  But, she won’t let them forget who she is.  She’ll make the world notice her now, and if they thought she was powerful before, the world is in for a big surprise.  A great futuristic read with an interesting and intriguing main character, Brian Wood really brings Mara to life, and readers will root for her every step of the way.

Well, I hope this list of my new faves will whet your appetite for graphic literature.  And, don’t give up hope – I might catch up on my SuperMOOC in the time being so as to get back on track with my examination of those themes.  But… I might not!  That doesn’t mean that I won’t be back to give you more of my comics and graphic novel recommendations, though, whether you want them or not!  See you next time – same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel!

P.S. For more graphic novel reading pleasure, check out YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels for Teens lists.

–Traci Glass, currently reading The Perfectionists by Sara Shepard