Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Best of 2007 - Mini-Series

This is an inexact listing at best. This year I have not kept the type of records that I should and I may have forgotten some deserving candidates (as I type this Green Arrow Year One springs to mind). So this is more based on pure remembrance, but that is not a bad way to judge best of as long as I get the year right. Also some "mini-series" are a series of mini-series and I classified them in this grouping as opposed to ongoing series because they had to go one place on the other.

The numerical order of the books is really a non-event to me after the first five, 6-10 are all in the same category. Also some series are still ongoing and that puts a different light on them and makes it really hard to break into my top five.

1)Left on Mission - This book as I have stated many times before is one hell of a series. I mean who the hell is the writer Chip Mosher (I now know) and artist Francesco Francavilla. This book had so much thought put into it that it was amazing. A spy thriller, with a tragic love story and a little political thought all put into one great novel. The pacing was a revelation. Each page, each issue had its own rhythm and I can't wait for the trade. Without a doubt the best mini-series for 2007.

2)Alien Pig Farm - This book was another fantastic mini-series and like Left on Mission the trade already has a place in my home, before it is published. Raw Studios produced the comic and Steve Niles, Thomas Jane and Todd Farmer are the writers and the art was by Don Marquez. This book was so much fun. An alien invasion occurs in the backwoods of America and some good old boys defend the Earth and save the day. It was so frelling hilarious that I smile just writing about it. So many of the independent creators have remembered that comics are suppose to fun at times also. The big plus is not only is it fun it is well written, drawn, colored and produced.

3) Nightly News - For a first project Jonathan Hickman knew how to push all of my buttons. This is a straight up conspiracy book loaded with additional information that sends up much of corporate America, our government and the major media. It never fails to tell an entertaining story while making a point. The style of the book is based on design work and not your standard panel grids. Great work and right up my alley as I dislike big government and the state of our global corporations. And major media for news, why bother.

4)Atomic Rob0 - The highest rated mini-series that is not completed. The simple reason is all about fun. This book defines the term. It tells a great story, it is an easy read, it has really nice clean lines, it has great coloring and outstanding production values. It also has all six issues drawn before #1 was every solicited and the people who produce Red 5 Comics are just out and out nice people. A winner from Brian Clevinger (writer) and Scott Wegner (artist).

5)Mouse Guard - Okay the first mini-series is over and the second mini-series has only two issues produced so far, so is it a mini-series or an ongoing book broken into a series of mini-series. It has to be somewhere and it has to be a top book, so I included it here. Mouse Guard is everything I want in a modern day fairy tale. It has characters that you care about, it has an epic feel to it, beautiful art and it tells a story. What I think it really is, is one of the best books to read with your kids ever. I almost regret that my children have grown or else I would be reading this book to them at bedtime with Gwen on my left and Jamie on my right. Gwen urging me to go faster and Jamie telling me to do different voices for each character.Instead now we all read it separately but all three of us have enjoyed this story immensely. Story and art by David Peterson.

6)Wormwood Gentleman Corpse - Okay another one that maybe in the wrong category and has hardly had any material produced this year, but this is Ben Templesmith's seminal creation. A worm that animates a corpse to go around and drink beer, watch strippers and fight monsters and extra dimensional menaces to keep our world safe. The complete opposite of Mouse Guard. This is a book I would have hid from my daughters when they were younger, but now they can enjoy the out and out gross out humor and brilliant artwork from Ben Templsemith. I love this book and always enjoy seeing another issue.

7)Black Adam - Yes a mini-series from the big two made it onto my list. This book has not finished yet, but it is a book that has done a great job of giving us the full complexities of Black Adam. A villain and an evil man, but as all great villains, he does not see himself as a villain. What is even better is we know how this story ends, but the journey to get there has been a great story by Peter Tomasi and Doug Mahnke.

8) Killer - What a fantastic book from Arachaia Studios Press. A story from a Killer's point of view. Also surprising instead of a dark and moody colored book it is relatively bright with clean line work. This book gives a portrait of a Killer who is going in a downward spiral and never once tries to makes us like him, just understand him. Can't wait to see how this ends. By Matz and Luc Jacobson.

9)Cover Girl - Another BOOM studio book and one that is coming out in trade very soon. If Left on Mission is a high octane thrill ride, this is a high octane tongue in cheek thrill ride. Characters you care about, a little tragedy, great dialogue, improbable events and a good time. A book that makes you laugh, shake your head with the improbable events and keep turning the pages to see what happens next. Written by Andrew Crosby ands art by Kevin Church.

10)Bad Planet - Still ongoing this is a another Raw Studios book by Steve Niles and Thomas Jane with art by Lewis Lasrosa and Tim Bradstreet. A madcap romp of invading aliens, an alien warrior, military might, great looking women and just outstanding art and production values. For one issue they even did some outstanding "3-D" work.

The overall theme is excellence, passion and a desire to actually work on these books. I can not know for sure, but I believe that each creator on these books actually believes in what they are doing and their energy and passion shines in each book.

Next year I may just do one list of the best books, whether, mini-series, ongoings, hybrids, graphic novel or whatever.

1 comment:

  1. I've been wondering about that Alien Pig Farm title.

    Of course at my shop the don't get many comics form the non-big boys so it's hard to sample.