2020 looks like it’s shaping up to be a very promising year in the world of comics with there being a large number of upcoming comic books grabbing my interest and while I plan on writing up a piece on the comic books I’m most looking forward to in 2020, today I’m taking the opportunity to look back on 2019 and write about my five favourite comic books from the past year and why I enjoyed them so much.
These comics didn’t have to start in 2019, but as long as a book was being published throughout the year, it’s eligible for inclusion.
5. The Flash: Year One
Writer: Joshue Williamson Art by: Howard Porter
The Flash: Year One takes us back to Barry Allen’s first year as the scarlet speedster and is a fresh, new take on his origin story. As is the case with the majority of Williamson’s run on The Flash, he writes Barry perfectly as a superhero, but first and foremost, a family man who struggles with his own personal demons. His use of Turtle, an often-overlooked character, as the main antagonist also felt fresh and gave us an exciting new look on how Barry came to grips with his new found speed and how he took down the villain and became the superhero he is today.
4. Doomsday Clock
Writer: Geoff Johns Art by: Gary Frank
While it suffered all year long with each of its four scheduled issues released in 2019 pushed back significantly, it proved that the conclusion of Doomsday Clock was worth the wait. Showcasing what made Geoff Johns one of DC’s greatest writers of all time, Doomsday Clock felt like it closed the book perfectly on the Watchmen universe, but also left the door open to do more if DC wanted to. I might be slightly biased as Superman is my all time favourite superhero, but the way the book played up on Superman’s importance to the DC universe didn’t feel over the top to me and it felt like a role the man of steel had earned in his illustrious 80+ year run. I also really loved the little ‘previews’ of the future of the DC universe at the end of the book with hints at a potential Marvel crossover somewhere down the line. Not that I believe that a crossover will happen anytime soon, but one can dream! P.S the art throughout this book was sensational and some of my favourite in any comic I’ve ever read.
3. Last Knight on Earth
Writer: Scott Snyder Art by: Greg Capullo
Serving as what seems like the final Batman book Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo will work on, Last Knight on Earth was a fitting farewell to definitively the best Batman creative team of my lifetime. Set in an apocalyptic alternate reality, Last Knight on Earth has Batman wake up in a world in ruins, run by a new super villain named Omega. Featuring older versions of Wonder Woman, Dick Grayson and even the decapitated head of the somehow still wise cracking Joker, the book provided an interesting look in how the dark knight would handle discovering the world in ruins. I personally loved the surprise reveal of who was behind the Omega persona and will for sure miss Snyder and Capullo producing fantastic Batman content!
2. Spider-Man Life Story
Writer: Chip Zdarsky Art by: Mark Bagley
As is probably quite obvious by now, I read far more DC properties than I do anyone else. To be fair, one of my new years resolutions this year was to read more comics from other publishers, but from the little I did read from Marvel, I fell in love with this book. Probably one of my favourite ever Spider-Man books, I absolutely adore the way the series follows Peter Parker’s entire life as Spider-Man. Starting with him becoming Spider-Man in the 1960s, when Spider-Man first debuted in the comics, each issue of the six issue mini series took place in a different decade, showing how Peter dealt with being Spider-Man as he aged into the old man we were left when the series reached the 2010s. What I really enjoyed about this book as that the different decades showed Peter dealing with some of his most famous storylines including Secret Wars, Kraven’s Last Hunt and The Clone Saga. Including all of these well-known storylines, gave the series a sense of credibility to me. With quite an emotional ending the book pretty much had everything I love in a comic book.
Writer: Tom Taylor Art by: Trevor Hairsine
My absolute favourite comic book of 2019 was Tom Taylor’s DCeased. While the zombie apocalypse trope felt tired and over done going into this series, DCeased found a way to make it feel fresh and having the anti-life equation play a part in kicking off the virus was pretty awesome! Having the story take place outside of regular continuity gave Taylor the chance to let the reins loose and we saw that with a huge list of DC main stays killed off fairly quickly. The book had the perfect balance of action and emotion, and genuinely gave off the feeling that none of it’s characters were safe. Also the crowning of a new Green Lantern in the book was one my favourite moments and I can’t wait to see what Tom Taylor does with this elseworlds universe in 2020 with DCeased: Unkillables focusing on the villains in the DC universe due to release in February!
Well, there we have it. Those were my five favourite comic books in 2019. Now I’m in no way saying they were the best comics of 2019, but they were for sure my favourite ones. I hope you enjoyed reading this and feel free to let me know your thoughts and what some of your favourite books in 2019 were.