Welcome to Comic Bastards’ yearly “Best of” list. We have so many contributors on the site now that we actually had to break the list up into parts this year. This is part one which will cover “Best Book of 2012 We’re Still Talking About”, “Best Revival”, “Best Movie/TV or Video Game Comic Adaptation” and “Best Comic Related Property Outside of Comic Books.” You can find Part 1, Part 2 and Part 4 by clicking on the previous links. Also be sure to check out this week’s podcast to hear Kevin and Dustin read and have fun with everyone’s list! Thanks for reading! (Hey Creators and Publishers! If you want a champ belt graphic contact us on Twitter or through the site and we’ll make you one!)
Best Book of 2012 We’re Still Talking About
James – Swamp Thing (DC Comics)
Yes, I am a poser, but Swamp Thing has always been my favorite. Scott Snyder breathed life back into this legendary title and now Charles Soule is building from it. It was the New 52 Swamp Thing that brought me back to comics, so I have a nice place for it in my heart still.
Jeff – Batman Inc. #1 (DC Comics)
Although anything by Grant Morrison is bound to flit across my brain every so often.
Dustin – Friends With Boys (First Second Books)
This was an easy pick for me. Friends With Boys is still one of my favorite books of all time and is definitely a book I haven’t stopped thinking about since last year. There were a ton of great graphic novels last year (more than this year in my opinion), but Faith Erin Hicks’ Friends With Boys stuck with me and became a book I could recommend to just about anyone.
Samantha – Friends With Boys (First Second Books)
I’ll go with Dustin on this one. After his review, I picked this book up, and it told such a beautiful story. My hope is that we will see a second book.
Kevin – The Red Ten (ComixTribe)
If you haven’t picked up an issue of the series, you are truly missing out. There’s a reason that Comic Bastards have been following this book from the get go. It rules the school.
Carl – Godzilla: Half Century War (IDW Publishing)
Great Godzilla book that hopeful foreshadows the movie in 2014.
Steve – The Manhattan Projects (Image Comics)
It made the list last year and it continues to be rock-solid awesome each issue.
Jordan – Hawkeye #1 (Marvel Comics)
The one that started it all and reintroduced fun back into the big 2.
Adam – Revival #1 (Image Comics)
I have the Image Firsts reprint of this to lend to friends who’ve never gave comics a fair shake. That issue will always be one of my favorite in any comic.
Erik – Conan the Barbarian (Dark Horse Comics)
This is one of the few books that started in 2012 that’s still in my pull list. And now that the book will be taken over by Fred Van Lente in February, my excitement level will stay the same.
Samantha – The Mask of the Red Panda (Monkeybrain Comics)
The writing is so fun to read, and the black and white art adds to that fun play of detective storytelling.
Steve – Quantum and Woody (Valiant Comics)
Admittedly, I never read the original, but now I never miss an issue of this! Hilarious, hyper writing with a great artistic direction.
Dustin – Quantum and Woody (Valiant Comics)
This was actually a difficult decision to make. I thought long and hard about everything that DC and Marvel have rebooted before ruling them all out. Really it came down to Valiant and Dark Horse, but Quantum and Woody edged out their reboots by an inch. This book is funny, its heartfelt and entertaining as shit. It’s also one of Valiant’s best titles period, so check it out if you haven’t and see why so many are happy to have the duo back in the world of comics.
Jordan – Quantum and Woody (Valiant Comics)
I just recently realized the Q&W was a revival, and while I’m not overly familiar with the originals, I do know that Quantum and Woody is one of the funniest and funniest books out there right now.
James – Quantum and Woody (Valiant Comics)
It’s fun, exciting, and a revision that really makes the characters relevant. I had never known anything about them until I started this one. It’s an addictive run.
Erik – Brain Boy (Dark Horse Comics)
I love everything about this book. There’s my man, Fred Van Lente writing it. That already puts it in my pull list. Also, the art by R.B. Silva is phenomenal. I’m definitely in for the long haul. I don’t think that this series would have been able to impress the way that it has without this creative team. I can honestly say that I wouldn’t have been interested in this reboot if the circumstances were any different.
Adam – Deadworld: Restoration (IDW Publishing)
I was almost negative 10 years old when the original series started in 1986, but I was totally blown away by the first issue of Restoration. So much so that I’m reading through crappy scans of the old issues and am trying to get my hands on the back issues of the newer series since they’re split up into different volumes. I’m a huge fan of underappreciated and overlooked works in any medium really, so the fact that this was doing things that The Walking Dead rips off almost twenty years earlier is incredible to me. I can’t wait to see how this goes, definitely one of the most original ideas I’ve ever encountered in the zombie genre.
Best Movie/TV or Video Game Comic Adaptation
Adam – The Last of Us – American Dreams (Dark Horse Comics)
I love that this story spanned across two of my favorite entertainment mediums and excelled in both. The Last of Us sums up everything I love about video games, and the comic did a great job of telling a prequel to the game. I believe that story with Riley is actually going to be fleshed out in the DLC which should be cool. Shout out to Dustin for getting quoted in the back, I went in the comic store to pick up the book that week and was like “Yo I write for that guy, peep our dual review of Revival #14 on Comic Bastards if you know what’s good for you!” (I don’t actually talk like that)
Dustin – The Last of Us – American Dreams (Dark Horse Comics)
90% of the time comic books based off of video games suck. They suck a lot. I think Dark Horse knew this and so when they took on creating a story that took place before the events of Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us they decided to get a top talent on the book; enter Faith Erin Hicks. She not only delivered a great story with fantastic art, but she got you hyped for the game in a good way. If the comic could be so good how could the game suck? Well I think a lot of people will tell you that the game didn’t suck. This was a great video game adaptation and hopefully other publishers and creators will use it as a guideline on how to do it correctly.
James – The Last of Us – American Dreams (Dark Horse Comics)
Pure and simple, this one kicked ass. Super good.
Jordan – The Last of Us – American Dreams (Dark Horse Comics)
The rest of the Bastards say it all.
Kevin – The Art of BioShock Infinite (Dark Horse Comics)
I love anything with Bioshock related. Fucking gorgeous.
Steve – The Star Wars (Dark Horse Comics)
Don’t read much of these; heard Last of Us and Django were pretty great, but of the ones I’ve seen, this is the most interesting and well done, both conceptually and artistically. If nothing else, a great “elseworlds” style book.
Best Comic Related Property Outside of Comic Books
Erik – Batkid
It showed me that some people do still care. And how awesome did that kid look in the Batsuit?
Jeff – DC Animated Shorts/Features (Cartoon Network/WB)
More stylish and daring than any of the DC shows they seem to love canceling, makes you wish they’d give up the TV show structure all together and just produce a grab bag of longer versions of their animated shorts.
Steve – DC Animated Shorts/Features (Cartoon Network/WB)
Flashpoint and DKR were pretty great, but the little shorts over on their site, like the one featuring Shade: The Changing Man were AMAZING!
Carl – DC Animated Shorts/Features (Cartoon Network/WB)
I’m siding with Jeff and Steve on this one.
James – Avatar: The Legend of Korra – Book 2 Spirits (Nickelodeon)
This thing started way slow, but beginning with the origin episodes “Beginnings”, it got serious and I put the finale up there as a classic.
Samantha – TMNT: The Animated Series (Nickelodeon)
So much fun, and brings the Turtles back with a bang.
Jordan – Arrow – Season 2 (CW)
The CW managed to shatter their melodramatic and airbrushed shackles and deliver what is truly a groundbreaking comic book television show. Featuring good action, nice handling of lore and more DC roster appearances and shout-outs than you can shake a bow at.
Adam – Progression of the CBMFP (Comic Bastards)
The wiener jokes are getting more sparse, keep up the good work guys! But seriously, I love listening to it every week and it’s gotten more and more professional while still feeling like you’re just chilling at your friends’ house talking comics. I’m saying that as a fan before a contributor to the site, year of the CBMFP!
Kevin – Fables: The Wolf Among Us (TellTale Games)
Engrossing gameplay that brings the world to life.
Dustin – Fables: The Wolf Among Us (TellTale Games)
This was a harder category than I ever imagined this year, but ultimately I went with the only thing that didn’t disappoint the hell out of me. This was a fantastic game even if it was only one chapter. The storytelling was great and interacting with the story and affecting the outcome was even better. It’s a must play for any fan of Fables or just anyone that enjoys a great story that they can interact with.
Keep going with our “Best of 2013″ list by checking out Part 1, Part 2 and Part 4! Thanks for reading and please leave us a comment below!