Help a newbie with comic reccomendations

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#1 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2118 posts) -

Hi all. My interest in comics has seen a resurgence recently after a brief stint a couple years back and a few years in my childhood. I'm looking for some advice and reccomendations.

What am I looking for?

Trade paperbacks. Not a fan of actual comic books, they are a little too flimsy and piecemeal for my tastes.

Would prefer the comic to be finished or nearly finished. Don't wanna be starting with volume 1 and having to wait 1 - 3 years for the thing to be finished and readable, unless you absolutely reccomend it. For example, vol 1 of Coda looks right up my street but I'm going to leave it to flourish before going in.

Not a massive superhero fan. Or at least I think I'm not. During my childhood years I read alot of Spiderman and some amount of X men but superhero comics just seem like they don't fit the bill of what I'm looking for, which I'll get to in a moment. Maybe I could be wrong, let me know if there are some you reccomend based on what I'm about to say.

Ok, to give you an idea of what I like..... I LOVE Saga. It has everything I want in a comic (or nearly, more on that in a sec) - great artwork, great writing, witty stuff that leaves you grinning ear to ear whilst reading. Compelling story and likable characters, with loads of twists and turns and moments that just make you pop the book down for a second and say "holy shit". The one thing I want that Saga doesn't really have is that impact and weight that leaves a deep mark and impression on you for weeks afterwards. (Think like watching Grave of the Fireflies for the first time). Other than Saga, I have the first vol of Y The Last man which I enjoyed, I'm currently reading Upgrade Soul and enjoying it and I've just won a copy of The Punisher MAX VOL 1 from eBay cheap as owt. I love fantasy, Sci fi, anything unique or different, things that leave lasting impressions.

Other comics I'm looking at getting are the Baldurs Gate series (love d&d... also, Minsc!!), Prophet and Sandman. Would love to hear some suggestions from long time comic fans that know much more about this stuff than me. If you can use what little info I've given you and reccomend me things great! Thanks.

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#2 Posted by Rorie (5912 posts) -
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#4 Posted by doombot13 (353 posts) -

Must second both Planetary and Transmet, both are phenomenal (and finished so no waiting). Sandman is fantastic as well.

I'm a big fan of Grant Morrison. Invisibles, The Filth, and We3 are my favorites of his non-superhero work (though I think you might enjoy his take on the Doom Patrol).

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#5 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2118 posts) -

Thanks for the suggestions, please keep them coming.

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#6 Posted by Rejizzle (1147 posts) -

If you don't mind buying digital then Marvel always has some kind of sale tying in to their current movie lineup. There's some really cheap Spiderman and Infinity war stuff.

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#7 Posted by WMoyer83 (1051 posts) -

Invincible. Best comic book ever, hands down.

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#8 Posted by arcadefire (38 posts) -

If you're a fan of the Avengers Endgame movie then consider reading Jonathan Hickman's Avengers: Time Runs Out. Avengers, space, time travel, etc. It was a fun read.

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#9 Edited by captain_max707 (675 posts) -

I recently finished Descender, a fairly short science fiction series with gorgeous watercolor art. I enjoyed it quite a bit.

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#10 Posted by stantongrouse (243 posts) -

I would heartily recommend The Goon series, a good blend of silliness and pathos along with some great art. The Hellboy, BPRD and Lobster Johnson spin offs are great too with plenty of volumes out there (and not too pricy with some of the omnibus volumes)

As someone who's also not really into the more standard superhero comic, Powers is a good side step from traditional format by showing a superhero world from the pov of homicide detectives.

If you like fantasy tropes (but not necessarily hard fantasy) you might like Jeff Smith's Bone. It's a pretty epic closed story and the comic I reread more than any other.

Also, anything by Jason Shiga is worth a look. He does some great things playing around with the medium - fracturing narratives, using colour themes as story devices and puzzles incorporated into graphic novels.

Could go on for days but with some of the really good stuff already suggested on this thread it's easy to get swamped in choice!

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#11 Posted by BladeOfCreation (1433 posts) -

The Baldur's Gate series is great. I think there's 4 trades in that series at this point. Each trade tells a pretty self-contained story. They're fun and pulpy as hell--pretty much what you'd expect from a D&D comic.

If you like Star Wars, check out Vader Down. It's a six-part "event" series (pretty sure they sell this as a trade) that was a cross over between the Star Wars and Darth Vader series from 2015. You don't really need to know the story up to that point. Vader gets shot down and the Rebellion goes all in on trying to kill him. Vader's badassery (think that final Vader scene in Rogue One, turned up to 11) really comes through.

I read the first trade of Saga and need to get back to it.

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#12 Posted by sawtooth (623 posts) -

I second the Goon reccomendation. I don't read many comics even after multiple attempts to get into various series. The Goon is the only one I've stuck with. Still hoping they get to make that movie....

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#13 Edited by FrodoBaggins (2118 posts) -

@sawtooth: @bladeofcreation: @stantongrouse: @captain_max707: Descender was something I was looking into! It looks right up my street. Thanks to your reccomendstion I'll definatly pick it up!

I've just added The Goon to my Amazon list so thanks!

And yes the Baldurs Gate series looks great, especially since I love DnD. Not a massive star wars fan, though I do enjoy it. Will take a look.

Keep em coming!

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#14 Posted by fisk0 (6964 posts) -

It's hard to go wrong with comics from Belgium or France. Thorgal by Jean Van Hamme and Grzegorz Rosiński was something I read a lot as a kid, and found that it still holds up when I went back to it last year. A good fantasy mashup of Norse mythology and occasional sci-fi elements (think Elder Scrolls' Dwemer rather than Marvel's Thor).

I also just started reading the Metabarons series by Alejandro Jodorowsky, Juan Giménez and Das Pastoras, and it seems great so far. It's basically the results of Jodorowsky's failed project to make a Dune movie, so has a lot of the Dune atmosphere. Metabarons was completed in 2003, so that's something you can get the complete collection of, though I started off buying the first 4 albums (out of 8).

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#15 Posted by NTM (11898 posts) -

The only stuff I really read a bunch of was Judge Dredd and some of The Darkness.

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#16 Posted by MerxWorx01 (890 posts) -

Gotta say, I'm surprised by a number of very solid comic suggestions here. I love Planetary, and Metabarons has some of the best art in comics imo(the story is a lurid space opera that they don't make anymore) . If you like also like stuff in the vein and style of Neil Gaiman I would suggest Lucifer and House of Mystery.

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#17 Posted by FrodoBaggins (2118 posts) -

@fisk0: wow just looked at Thorgal and it looks right up my street, added to the wishlist thanks!

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#18 Posted by Otien (2 posts) -

Locke & Key , it has finished it's run the first trade Welcome to Lovecraft is free if you have Amazon Prime. I have recommended this to several people and all of them end up bingeing the whole series.

The Sixth Gun , it is a post civil war western about magic guns and the end of the world. The original run is done, but there is an ongoing series called Shadow Roads that picks up after the sixth gun ends.

The wikipedia links are kinda spoilery.

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#19 Posted by wollywoo (323 posts) -

I really like comics based on real-life experiences. Like

- Logicomix by Apostolos Doxiadis, Christos Papadimitriou about Bertrand Russell and logic in the early twentieth century

- Fun Home by Alison Bechdel about dealing with her father's death

- Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi about her life growing up in revolutionary Iran

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#20 Posted by jewunit (1183 posts) -

For sci-fi, I would recommend Black Science. It wrapped up two years ago with 8 volumes. It's sort of a dark Fantastic Four meets Quantum Leap. Brian K. Vaughn, the guy who wrote Saga, made a comic with a vaguely similar premise called Paper Girls. However, it is an ongoing series.

Shutter shares some of the adventurous spirit of Saga in a slightly more terrestrial environment. It has wrapped up and has 5 volumes.

It was part of DC's New 52, but Demon Knights is a stand-alone series with 3 volumes. It has superheroes in it, but they fit into the action fantasy genre smoothly.