Will we are well on our way with the new century 2012 has been a great year for Super Hero and Sci-Fi comics and movies. The print media is primarily what we will review in this article starting with DC Comics the New 52 announced in January the canceling of titles BLACKHAWKS, HAWK AND DOVE, MEN OF WAR, MISTER TERRIFIC, O.M.A.C. and STATIC SHOCK, all of which will conclude with their eighth issues in April. Six new series would replace them BATMAN INCORPORATED – Writer: Grant Morrison. Artist: Chris Burnham, EARTH 2 – Writer: James Robinson. Artist: Nicola Scott. The greatest heroes on a parallel Earth, the Justice Society, WORLDS’ FINEST – Writer: Paul Levitz. Artists: George Perez and Kevin Maguire. Stranded on our world from a parallel reality, Huntress and Power Girl struggle to find their way back to Earth 2, DIAL H – Writer: China Miéville. Artist: Mateus Santoluoco. The first ongoing series from acclaimed novelist China Miéville, this is a bold new take on a cult classic concept, G.I. COMBAT – Writer: J.T. Krul. Artist: Ariel Olivetti. Featuring the return of a classic DC Comics series, and THE RAVAGERS – Writer: Howard Mackie. Artist: Ian Churchill. Spinning off from TEEN TITANS and SUPERBOY. DC Comics launched Smallville Season 11 new comic series for those who missed Smallville the TV Program which ended in 2011. The writer is Bryan Q. Miller, who was also a writer on the TV show.
Parallel worlds and alternate universes are alive and well at DC Comics, ACTION COMICS #9 sets up the multiverse with a standalone story of a Superman from another Earth, not to mention the EARTH 2 ties to WORLDS’ FINEST and the regular series EARTH 2 which began in April. This Earth 2 story arc included the changing of Green Lantern Alan Scott from Golden Age hero father of two to a Gay man who experiences the death of his male companion. Evidently they felt like they had to shake things up on Earth 2. They also eliminated Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman in the first issue of Earth 2. Altogether quite a different Earth 2 from the Pre-Crisis days. In Justice League #6 the mysterious lady in red who was introduced in Flashpoint #5 and help Flash merge the DC Universes to The New 52 is called Pandora. She is still to play a major role in the future of the DCU according the the DC Comics story tellers. After changing the marriage relationship of Clark Kent to Lois Lane to single in the New 52, from the writers in Justice League #12 Wonder Woman and Superman begin a romantic relationship, talk about shaking things up.
Superman is introduced as one of the most powerful of all the superheros then in SUPERMAN #14, written by Scott Lobdell and illustrateed by Kenneth Rocafort, the Man of will be forced to come face to face with a creature of unknown Kryptonian origin who is not only more powerful than Superman, but is also smarter than Supergirl and more lethal than Superboy. The series is called H’el on Earth and will be resolved in 2013. One of the best series in Batman was the Knight of the Owl series introducing a possible brother to Bruce Wayne. DC published the Batman: Earth One comic and the second Superman: Earth One in 2012. Also DC introduced the Before Watchmen series. Acting as a prequel to the 1986 12-issue Watchmen limited series by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons, the project will consist of seven limited series and an epilogue one-shot featuring all the favorite heroes and anti heroes of the Alan Moore series. This is just the highlights of things from DC Comics in 2012.
Valiant released four new series for the summer of 2012 — X-O Manowar, Harbinger, Bloodshot, and Archer & Armstrong — featuring brand new beginnings for some of comics’ most iconic characters! Originally founded in 1989, Valiant Comics quickly became one of the most successful comic book publishers by creating unique and compelling heroes and villains and focusing on storytelling. The art and stories look good but it remains to be seen if Valiant can bring back the popularity of the past.
IDW Publishing has brought some qualty in comics with titles like Star Trek, Transformers, the BBC favorate Doctor Who, True Blood, G. I. Joe. and cult favorate 30 Days of Night. They also put together a series crossover between DC Comics Legion of Superheroes and the original Star Trek Capt Kirk crew, plus a crossover with Star Trek the Next Generation and Doctor Who. Good stuff and a great read.
Darkhorse had it’s share of quality titles. DarkHorse Comics was the home for Star Wars, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth, Hellboy in Hell by Mike Mignola, Conan The Barbarian, The Goon comic from Eric Powell, and many more. Image Comics was number three in sales this year behind Marvel and DC Comics with titles like the very popular The Walking Dead, Todd McFarlane’s creation Spawn, superheros like you never seen them in It Girl and the Atomics, Marc Silvestri returned to Image with his creation Cyber Force, and so many more.
Dynamite Entertainment has brought back the great creations of Jack Kirby in KIRBY: GENESIS has revived Captain Victory, Silver Star, Dragonsbane and much more from Kirby. Also Kevin Smith is writing the Bionic Man as only Kevin can do and so many other titles I can’t list them all.
Marvel lead the way this year with Movies and comics but we will speak of only comics right now. Type Movies in the search and see what we had to say about all the movies of 2012. In March Amazing Spider-Man 682 began a story arc called ‘Ends of the Earth’ it involved the last days of Doctor Otto Octavius one of the most deadly foes that Spider-Man ever faught. The story is to celebrate 50 years of Spider-Man and would end in Amazing Spider-Man 700 with the ending of that title. Written by Dan Slott it is possibly the biggest story in Marvel since 1962 and changes Peter Parker’s life forever. A must read for Spider-Man fan’s.
This year writer Jason Aaron finished in the Incredible Hulk but not before he spit the Hulk and Dr. Banner into two people and the Hulk wadged war against Banner with Banner seemingly dieing in a nuclear explosion only to re-surface as part of the Hulk again merged back into his being as the Hulk and Banner learn to coexist as they never have before.
Mark Waid continued to make Daredevil a good read in 2012 one that you may have missed. Waid’s Daredevil can always be counted on to deliver great and exciting adventures. Matt Fraction finished writing the Defenders series. The art is by Terry Dodson and Rachel Dodson, it looks very good and the story is too.
Spider-Men, a five-part miniseries by the Ultimate Comics Spider-Man team of writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Sara Pichelli, namely that it’s the first-ever meeting between the classic Spider-Man, Peter Parker, and the recently debuted Ultimate Spider-Man, Miles Morales — and the first interaction of any kind between their two fictional universes.
In 2012 Jonathan Hickman ended his great run on Fantastic Four and FF about the premier family in the Marvel Universe. Jonathan Hickman sums up why this comic book has become relevant again on the Final Fantastic Four Fan Page, “It Was love. Boundless, unconditional, to the end of time and back, lift you up from death itself, LOVE. And what’s not fantastic about that?” He made the Fantastic Four a great read again.
The Ultimates in the Ultimate Universe was a wonderful series again wrtten by Jonathan Hickman it’s been a comic where anything can happen and does with every issue out doing the other in surprises. Thor is de-powered and the Asgardians are destroyed Thor’s son turns against him. The DC capital is detroyed and America has been decimated the government all but destoyed, war breaks out and lawlessness is everywhere. Captain America is elected president and the rest is history in the great story in the Ultimate Comics: Ultimates.
But the biggest series of the year was ‘Avengers vs. X-Men’ all other storys dwarfed in magnitude of effect on the Marvel Universe. The Story involved the return of the Phoenix Force and the subsequent war between the Avengers and the X-Men. The 12 issue bimonthly event first published in April 2012 featured a storyline by Jason Aaron, Brian Michael Bendis, Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman and Matt Fraction and a rotating team of artists including John Romita, Jr., Olivier Coipel and Adam Kubert.
This series changed the face of the Marvel Universe and envolved just about every character at Marvel and most of the writers. It was the culmination of many story lines in the last decade involving the X-Men and Avengers. It ended in death and life and the changing of heart of many. It gave new direction of the Marvel Universe that will last through 2013 I am sure. A must read for the marvel fan and comic reader.
All things considered it was a great year to read comics. I hope this review is a help to those who are wanting to spend the dollars wisely. Pick up the trade paper issue of these stories and save some money. We are looking out for you here at Comics Talk. Talk to us, let us know what you think. Stay tuned comic faithful for more. 🙂 Walt