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Dec 13

The Homies 2021

Posted on Monday, December 13, 2021 by Al in Podcast

I say! You there! You, boy! What day is it?

It’s Homies Eve? Then I haven’t missed it! Go to the content mines, bring me your finest views on comics from the calendar year 2021! The ones as big as you, yes, come on, be quick about it, you children today, you don’t know you’re born, a short spell of National Service would sort you out.

Anyway. It’s time for your nominations for the 2021 House to Astonish Homies awards.

As always, Paul and I will individually be choosing a winner for each category, but there’s the usual proviso – we want YOU to help, so you all name your picks in the comments, and Paul and I each choose our own, and we talk a bit about each of the three on our awards show.

We’re likely to be recording at the beginning of the new year, so we’re giving you until midnight UK time (7pm Eastern, 4pm Pacific) on December 31 2021 to make your choice. When you list your picks, don’t just name names either, because we’ll be reading out the best comments on the show, so let us know your thinking!

BEST NEW SERIES

This one’s pretty self-explanatory – any comic whose first issue was published between 1 January and 31 December 2021 is eligible. What new series got your attention the most this year?

BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

This one’s a little less self-explanatory – what series, again first published during 2021, did you think was best, with the proviso that it has to be something where the property wasn’t in existence prior to the start of 2021. We’re counting re-use of titles as well as concepts, so Eternals or The Swamp Thing wouldn’t be eligible, but (for example) The Good Asian or Primordial would.

BEST CONTINUING SERIES

The counterpart to the categories above, which covers books whose first issue was published in 2020 or before. They’ve been around the block, but they’ve still got what it takes.

BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

These are explaining themselves by this point, right? We’re looking for OGNs, one-shots and minis published in 2021 (or partially in 2021, in the case of minis).

FAVOURITE WRITER

FAVOURITE ARTIST

FAVOURITE COLOURIST

Each of these three is pretty self-explanatory – whose name on the cover or credits box of a book makes you want to pick it up? Whose work do you most look forward to seeing?

MOST WANTED

This is for the comic, series or graphic novel that saw print this year which you’d want to see more of, whether that be a book that was cancelled before its time, a one-shot or mini that just begs for a follow-up, or an OGN that you’d love to see a sequel to.

MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

It may have seemed unappealing when you read about it online, and those preview pages may have looked unremarkable, but when you finally got the winner of this category in your hands you were ready to eat your words. What comic, series or graphic novel did you find yourself enjoying much more than you thought you would?

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

This is exactly what it says – which creator, creative team, publisher or other contributor to the world of comics really knocked it out of the park this year?

Let us have your picks in the comments thread below, along with your thinking on each one – we’ll read out a range of the responses on our big end-of-year show. Happy nominating!

Bring on the comments

  1. Michael says:

    Time Before Time for best new series.

  2. Si says:

    A that wonderful annual event that reminds me that these days I mostly read shitty old Marvel comics on Unlimited rather than buy interesting new stuff.

    That said, I do have a nomination for for Most Wanted. I want to see a long form story about X-Men Green. I know not everyone liked it, and while the plot was ropy in places, I found all of the characters fascinating. Who could ask for more than a demented Greta Thunberg supervillain and her sick little metalhead sidekick?

  3. Si says:

    And yeah, even though she was the POV protagonist, Nature Girl was definitely the bad guy. She’s not much like Greta really, except she’s short and those antlers are a bit like weaponised plaits.

  4. Derek Moreland says:

    BEST NEW SERIES

    I’m gonna be the weird one and say Duggan’s X-Men (volume 5). Its just really landing with me.

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    Nocterra. It’s the first unabashedly, unfailingly *good* thing that Snyder’s written, and easily the best thing Tony Daniel’s ever drawn.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    For the last time I’ll ever be able to nominate this, IMMORTAL HULK.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    Monsters, Barry Windsor-Smith

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    Leah Williams. Even with X-Factor being cancelled out from under her. Gerry Duggan’s had a hell of a year, too, but Williams has never stopped impressing me.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Gotta give it up to Daniel Warren Johnson.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Tomeu Morey

    MOST WANTED

    Once again, have to point at Williams’ and Baldeon’s X-FACTOR.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    Look, I know Kieron Gillen and Essad Ribic are super talented creators, but seriously, who had money on “the *5th Volume* of the ETERNALS being such a compelling page turner of a comic?

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    Barry Windsor-Smith put out MONSTERS. That’s the be-all, end-all for me.

  5. Chris V says:

    I have been reading less comics that ever during 2021, quickly losing interest in most comics.
    2022 is going to be a “scorched earth” policy for me with comics, as I pare my comic reading down to a few choice reads.
    So, I don’t have picks for a lot of these different catergories.

    Best Actually New Series:
    MazeBook by Jeff Lemire-I don’t know if this a mini or an ongoing, but I like it and it’s getting nominated.
    It reminds me greatly of the dark and depressing comics of the 1980s which I love so much and which back-issue collecting kept me interested in comics after superhero comics had (temporarily) left me behind.
    So, yes, I do mean this description as a very positive thing.

    Best Mini:
    Good Asian-The other best new comic to come along in a few years. A very well-told historical-political comic series which is about far more than simply preaching an overt message, while still very clearly getting its message across through an engaging story.

    Best Writer:
    Al Ewing.
    Immortal Hulk was one of the remaining linchpins keeping me interested in Marvel Comics (alongside Hickman’s X-Men work).
    Immortal Hulk’s ending is one of the reasons leading to my disenchantment with Marvel heading in to 2022, after DC already lost my attention by 2019.

    Most Wanted:
    Si Spurrier returning to Hellblazer.
    One of the final nails in the coffin for my reading of DC books is the abrupt cancelation of Spurrier’s HB.
    This was one of the best iterations of John Constantine since the absolutely classic Jamie Delano days.
    So, of course it is canceled before lasting even as long as the prior disappointing attempt at a revamp of the character before Spurrier.
    I doubt it will happen, but I’d like to see Spurrier return to tell the type of stories he was telling in this title.

  6. Jeff says:

    I haven’t been reading as much this year and the stuff I did read tended to be big two stuff. So with my limited exposure:

    Best New Series
    X-Men vol. 5 by Duggan and Larraz.
    Kind of by default since I didn’t start too many new series this year.

    Best Continuing Series
    X-Men vol. 4 by Hickman et al.
    It was uneven but the hits really hit for me. I loved all the stuff with the Children of the Vault and Mystique.

    Best Mini
    Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow by Tom King and Bilquis Evely.
    I’ve really loved “True Grit” in space. I hope King can stick the landing.

    Favorite Writer
    Jonathan Hickman.
    Again, a little uneven, but looking back at the year, I think his books have had my most memorable moments.

    Favorite Artist
    Pepe Larraz for making the X-Men look cool as hell.
    Bilquis Evely and Clay Mann deserve mentions.

  7. Skippy says:

    This year I went on a quest to read every Defenders comic. I’ve not yet succeeded, but I’ve enjoyed the journey.

    Reading digitally, it has become very easy to wait to hear what’s good before picking it up. That means a lot of “new” things I read are actually from previous years. But I think I did read more actually new things this year than last year, all the same.

    Best Not Actually New Series: The Ewing/Rodriguez DEFENDERS book was my favourite Big Two launch this year, I think.

    Best Actually New Series: Unfortunately I haven’t read The Good Asian yet. I’ll go with DIRTBAG RAPTURE for this.

    Best Continuing Series: SWORD didn’t have any surprise antisemitism in it, so I’ll go with that.

    Best Mini, One-Shot, or OGN: Lots of competition for this one, most things I really enjoyed this year were minis. Let’s say THE SIX SIDEKICKS OF TRIGGER KEATON, though.

    Favourite Writer: prrrobably KIERON GILLEN, for Once & Future, Eternals, and Die

    Favourite Artist: PHIL JIMINEZ for Wonder Woman Historia, I reckon; though there might be some recency bias.

    Favourite Colourist: TAMRA BONVILLAIN’s colours in Once and Future really impressed me, now that I’ve gotten around to reading it.

    Most Wanted: Leah Williams and David Baldeon were treated poorly this year. I hope they work together again, whether in the X-office or elsewhere.

    Most Pleasant Surprise: THE FINAL GIRLS. A tremendous debut, and a major contender for Best Mini.

    Outstanding Achievement: IMAGE COMICS UNITED, for making the attempt and hopefully lighting the spark.

  8. Gareth says:

    Best New Series – I’m enjoying the new Moon Knight

    Best actually new series – Nice House on the Lake

    Best mini – The many deaths of Laila Starr

    Best continuing series – I loved Hellions (although its done now)

    Best writer – Al Ewing never has a bad issue

    Best artist – Filipe Andrade on the afore-mentioned Laila Starr knocked my socks off

    Best colorist – Bellaire for Nice House mostly

    Most wanted – IDW’s Transformers v2 to be binned and the bin shot into the sun.

    Most pleasant surprise – Grant Morrison returning, however briefly, to Superman

  9. Team Zissou says:

    Best Actually New Series
    Batman: Urban Legends by various
    There’s way too many Bat books out there but this is the only one that I think justifies its own existence by focusing on the Bat Family and incorporating a wide range of creators. The quality can be rather hit or miss – with the Jason Todd and Tim Drake stories being the best so far – and the inclusion of some spotlighted Bat characters being questionable (Black Canary? KATANA?), but it’s a series that does more good than bad.

    Best Continuing Series
    Runaways by Rowell/Genolet
    It’s over now, but while it lasted it felt like a miracle of a series. I’m very glad that it existed as long as it did.

    Best Mini
    Silk by Goo/Miyazawa
    It felt so good to finally have another solo Silk comic – especially after all the pandemic delays – and it more than delivered. I’m glad that another one is coming up with the same artist, but I’ll miss Maurene Goo’s take on the series as I thought she nailed it perfectly.

    Best One-Shot
    DC Festival of Heroes: The Asian Superhero Celebration
    As an Asian American comics reader, I was overjoyed that the Big Two each put out their own themed specials spotlighting Asian superheroes. Both were strong offerings, but DC’s had a slightly stronger creator lineup with a more prestigious presentation.

    Favorite Writer
    Zeb Wells
    The X-line pretty much cratered for me this past year, but Hellions was the one series that managed to consistently deliver and then stick the landing. His two initial issues of the Beyond era of Amazing Spider-Man were incredible too. He’s underrated one of the best modern Spidey writers out there.

    Favorite Artist
    Dustin Nguyen
    Robin & Batman has only released a single issue so far, but I find myself returning to it often just so I can gaze at the jaw-dropping line work and watercolors. I think it’s the best work of his career and that he’s grown a lot while doing Descender/Ascender over the years.

    Most Pleasant Surprise
    Heroes Reborn by Aaron, McGuinness, et. al
    I seem to enjoy Aaron’s Avengers series more than most commentators and even then I don’t think it’s a complete home run. I thought that this mini-series / event was the best thing he’s done in this run so far though. The tie-ins were really good too!

  10. Chris V says:

    Sloppy-Oh, yes. I forgot the Ewing Defenders comic when discussing Ewing as my pick for “top writer”. I knew Ewing had another comic I loved this year other than Hulk, but couldn’t remember at that moment.

    I’ve read every Defenders comic. They’re one of my favourite teams in comics, and tend to always end up with fun, above-average series.
    The Steve Gerber run from the 1970s is really amazing.

  11. Mark Coale says:

    I’ve read so few new comics this year, I will have to do some research about what actually came out this year.

    However, if there were retro Homies for 1978, I’d be all over it.

  12. Skippy says:

    Chris V – yes, Gerber’s run is an all-timer, and the Kraft run that follows it is no slouch either. Though I much prefer Gerber’s interpretation of Valkyrie as a magical creation over the Asgardian stuff that came later.

    I have still to read issues 76-91 of the original run, which are currently uncollected. I’ll probably cave and read them in single issues at some point.

    For clarity: I realise now that the organisation I meant to name for MPS is called “Comic Book Workers United”. I should double check things before posting.

  13. Allan M says:

    For what it’s worth, Defenders v1 #76-91 is the nadir of the series, in my view. It begins with a “conclusion” to Omega the Unknown that might as well have been titled “screw you, Steve Gerber”. And then there’s the Ed Hannigan run as writer, which endlessly features his pet idea, the not-very-inventive fantasy world of Tunnel World, where you’re basically just seeing the Defenders being generic protagonists in Hannigan’s D&D campaign. And it never seems to end. I genuinely need to take time to think of a worse Bronze Age Marvel run. So you haven’t missed much, Skippy.

  14. Col_Fury says:

    re: Derek Moreland

    I had no idea Barry Windsor-Smith put out anything new. I’m now in the middle of reading Monsters, and it’s pretty darn great. Thanks for the heads-up!

  15. Mark Coale says:

    When I had JM Dematteis on our pod, he talked about his fondness for his defenders run, including the Dr Sue’s issue.

  16. Mark Coale says:

    Years ago, when JM DeMatteis was on our pod, he talked fondly about his Defenders run, esp the Dr Suess issue.

  17. Brian says:

    Oh boy, I seem to find myself reading less and less new comics. Not because of a lack of appetite for new material but moreso due to having less free time than ever before. I think there’s one particular title that probably deserves to win most of the best series-type awards but that also strikes me as a particularly boring way to submit my choices so I will try to avoid doing so. I’ll crack on here and see what I can come up with
    .

    BEST NEW SERIES: The Many Deaths of Laila Starr is my undisputed world champion of 2021. I think Ram V’s talent had been evident for a while before Laila Starr but this is the title that cemented him as a real top end talent to my mind. My only previous experience with Filipe Andrade’s work was on Kelly Sue DeConnick’s run on Captain Marvel. I felt he was a bit miscast on that to be honest but his work on Laila Starr is just gorgeous.

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES: So Laila Starr is obviously the real winner here but as I’ve gone for that in the previous category I’ll plump for Way of X which I quite enjoyed. Having said that, what a bizarre book. I seem to recall this being promoted as a book about Nightcrawler exploring a mutant religion but what we got was the return of Onslaught and I’m not quite sure why it ended so abruptly. Presumably something to do with changes in the overall X-line? Still, I enjoyed reading it each month and I had just recently finished reading Si Spurrier’s run on Legion from a while back so this worked for me.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES: I’ll go for Once & Future here which continues to be a lot of fun.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN: Again, I could choose Laila Starr but as one-shots are eligible I will choose DC Pride which was lovely.

    FAVOURITE WRITER: Between Die and Once & Future, I have to choose Kieron Gillen for this category.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST: I’ll opt for Stephen Segovia here as I’ve very much enjoyed his work on Hellions.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST: Tamra Bonvillain for her work on Once & Future.

    MOST WANTED: The Jed MacKay run on Black Cat has been one of my favourite Marvel titles of the past few years. It’s just wrapped up and I found the conclusion satisfying so its probably for the best that MacKay left on a high note. Having said that, MacKay did leave the character with a nice supporting cast and I’d quite like to see Marvel give the character another try with a new creative team.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE: Had to wrack my brain for an answer to this but the Star Wars crossover event War of the Bounty Hunters ended up being a lot more enjoyable than I had first expected.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: Part of me wants to choose Paul for reading all those Wolverine comics so we don’t have to! I’ll go for Al Ewing for his run on Hulk which felt character defining to me.

  18. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    My first child was born this year, so I’m behind on most everything (except for mutants because I can’t help myself) and I’ve missed a ton of stuff completely.

    With that in mind…

    BEST NEW SERIES
    I’m having trouble coming up with a series that qualifies here, so let’s go with The Joker, which is apparently the second ongoing with that title.

    And it is a very pleasant surprise. (This is foreshadowing).

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES
    The Good Asian is very good indeed.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES
    I don’t think Zdarsky’s Daredevil had a single poor issue. (Though reading on Unlimited, I’m a few issues behind).

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN
    Six Sidekicks of Trigger Keaton was great fun.

    FAVOURITE WRITER
    Al Ewing

    FAVOURITE ARTIST
    Bruno Redondo on Nightwing is amazing.
    But also shout-out to Dan Mora on Detective Comics.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST
    Jordie Bellaire. Nice House on the Lake looks stunning.

    MOST WANTED
    More Zeb Wells on mutant-related titles.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE
    After a Batman run that reads like an 8-year old telling you their story ideas, I’m pleasantly surprised that Tynion’s ‘Joker’ is a very solid character piece on Gordon.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
    Let’s go with Al Ewing finishing his Immortal Hulk run with aplomb.

  19. Mike Loughlin says:

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES
    Nice House on the Lake
    BEST NEW SERIES
    Nice House on the Lake
    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN
    Nice House on the Lake

    NHonL is original, compelling, and beautifully-illustrated. I hope it ends as strongly as it began.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES
    Hellions

    Seriously, how is it possible that Nanny, Orphan Maker, and Greycrow are some of my favorite X-Characters?

    FAVOURITE WRITER
    Al Ewing

    FAVOURITE ARTIST
    Bruno Redondo (Nightwing)

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST
    Adriano Lucas (Nightwing)

    The regular Nightwing art team has produced some of the prettiest, bounciest, most innovative art on a mainstream super-hero comic this year.

    MOST WANTED
    More Hellions

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE
    I really liked how Al Ewing wrote Cable in that one-shot and SWORD. I don’t have a problem with the character, but he’s never been a favorite. Now, I want a Cable series written by Ewing.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
    The formation of the Comic Book Workers Union.

  20. Josie says:

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE: The Batman Long Halloween Special, and more specifically, that Jeph Loeb is still able to write a perfectly good comic. It just captured everything I loved about the two original maxi-series and almost made me forget how awful Loeb’s output has been in the past two decades. And I stress, it wasn’t merely a competent script that succeeded in not offending. It was enjoyable!

    I’m sorry, but I really don’t buy people’s praise for the conclusion of Immortal Hulk, or the run as a whole. Ewing is certainly a capable writer who clearly has a goal in mind with his scripts, but perhaps appropriately for a Hulk comic, it meanders endlessly without any particular goal in mind, much like a Peter David comic. It succeeds in creating a deliberately macabre tone and conveying body horror, but what was it about? What actually happened? Can anyone actually clarify what happened in the final issue? Why was Bruce Banner magically back to life and not trapped in hell?

  21. Chris V says:

    The final issue of Immortal Hulk was a disappointment.
    That was why I didn’t nominate it for “best series”.
    It seems that it fell afoul of the nature of serial storytelling, much as I’m sure happened with Hickman’s X-Men.
    It seemed like the book was building up to a status -redefining ending, but the final issue came across as a writer putting his “toys back in the box” while simultaneously ignoring what had come before.

    Peter David’s final issue of his run was far superior to Ewing’s playing-it-safe finale.

  22. Josie says:

    Not to mention, Peter David was writing Hulk in an era where long-winded meandering stories were the norm (but that was still his style with his return to X-Factor, when approaches to storytelling had changed). Also, the last year or two of his run were terribly detailed by Heroes Reborn and the repeated destabilization of the Hulk and any semblance of a status quo. Still, those last two issues were superb.

  23. Josie says:

    *derailed, not detailed

  24. Si says:

    Al Ewing’s work is nearly always a guaranteed hit, but I can’t help feeling that the Hulk story has been dragging for some time. I haven’t read the conclusion, but the concepts just seemed to keep inflating, without much payoff. The wow factor that Ewing usually brings with his giant concepts wore thin here for me.

    And to be honest, I think at the end of the day it was a mistake to change Hulk from an atomic rage monster to a mystical devil creature. They made the same mistake with Spider-Man. I have no problem with Lovecraftian horror, but I question the wisdom of fundamentally changing a character who is so thoroughly part of the broader culture. Especially since there’s going to be decades of writers on Hulk who don’t have Ewing’s skill, messing with concepts they don’t really get.

  25. Adam says:

    BEST NEW SERIES
    Defenders. It’s Al Ewing paired with Javier Rodriguez, and it somehow surpasses expectations. Should’ve been an ongoing.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES
    Runaways. I wish Marvel would stop cancelling my favorite Marvel Comics, but I guess in saying that, I’m just saying “I wish more people had my excellent taste.” And I do wish that.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN
    Fantastic Four: Life Story surpassed Chip’s Spider-Man: Life Story series by the end of the first issue, and I’m a big Chipman (Chipsman?) from way back. Mark Russell should write all of these Life Story stories from now on. He cracked the code.

    FAVOURITE WRITER
    Between Second Coming: Only Begotten Son and Fantastic Four: Life Story, it’s got to be Mark Russell this year. The masterful colon placement in the series’ titles alone would be enough, but he managed to tell riveting stories filled with heart and humor, showing us beloved, outlandish fictional characters (the Fantastic Four, Jesus of Nazareth) in a new light.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST
    Chris Samnee is drawing the hell out of Fire Power. It really feels like he’s stretched himself, and somehow learned new tricks (and I wish he’d use those tricks on a series with characters I cared about more?).

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST
    Muntsa Vicente. The atmosphere she creates in every issue of Friday is like nothing else.

    MOST WANTED
    I’m sad about Runaways, I’m looking forward to She-Hulk, and I wish Marvel would ask Rainbow Rowell what else she’d like to write.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE
    I thought I’d be annoyed at the Brubaker and Phillips team for ending the Criminal monthly and making a series of OHCs, but every time I sit down with one of those books, I’m delighted and I appreciate the format.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
    Three genuinely excellent Brubaker/Phillips OGNs in the space of a year feels like a gift none of us has earned, but I’ll take it.

  26. Adam says:

    BEST BRAND-NEW SERIES

    I prefer to give this award to new ongoings but I can’t think of any I adore that started in 2021. So: NICE HOUSE ON THE LAKE, by Tynion IV and Bueno.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    ONCE & FUTURE, by Gillen and Mora.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    FAR SECTOR, by Jemisin and Campbell.

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    James Tynion IV

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Chris Samnee on IRON FIST DONE RI—… I mean, FIREPOWER.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Tamra Bonvillain of ONCE & FUTURE.

    MOST WANTED

    More FAR SECTOR, by N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell, preferably another complete-in-and-of-itself maxi.

    Honorable mention goes to HELLIONS by Zeb Wells and Stephen Segovia.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    James Tynion IV’s BATMAN this year. We haven’t had so many new characters since Morrison.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    Image staffers’ unionization drive. God bless ‘em.

  27. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    Wait, Far Sector is eligible this year? I thought it finished last year. In that case I change my Best Mini vote to Far Sector. I got the TPB as an early Christmas gift, it’s fantastic.

  28. Mike Loughlin says:

    Sorry to be “that guy,” but Far Sector started in 2019. The trade was released this year. I agree that it was excellent, and I’d love to read more.

  29. Mike Loughlin says:

    Oh wait, never mind, Far Sector finished in June 2021. This is what happens when you’re “that guy.” I’ll still vote Nice House on the Lake, but Far Sector is a very close second.

  30. Josie says:

    Out of curiosity, is there a good reason the book is titled “Far Sector”? I skipped it when it came out, because calling something “Far Sector” is basically DC telling us they don’t think anyone will buy it, so why bother saddling it with an interesting title.

    Definitely interested to read it now after all the praise it’s getting though.

  31. Chris V says:

    It was a far better title than Naomi.
    Then again, that was just DC testing to see if people will buy any Brian Bendis, no matter the title.

    It was a surprisingly enthralling Green Lantern comic book.
    I wouldn’t say the book is an absolute classic, but it is a stand-out Green Lantern series.

    It read better than most of Jemisin’s short fiction, in my opinion, which was surprising as prose fiction writers coming to comics usually take quite some time for a transition between the two mediums.
    Jemisin seems like a natural.

  32. Skippy says:

    Far Sector was a great book. The kind of story I wish was normal for Green Lantern comics; one lone Earther with no backup navigating weird alien culture and politics. If I had to criticise it, I would say it features an approach to cliffhangers that novelists-turned-comics-writers often take, which is to treat the end of an issue more like a chapter break. Which just means it will probably read better collected than it did monthly.

    Other than the cliffhanger thing, I agree with Chris V – Jemisin seems to have grasped the form immediately, and I hope she writes more comics.

  33. Skippy says:

    Oh, and I think it’s called Far Sector because DC wants to keep the Young Animal imprint distinct from their more mainstream books.

  34. Josie says:

    I get why it wasn’t called “Green Lantern,” likely not to detract from Morrison’s series at the time (which . . . look, I love Morrison, but I have no idea wtf he was doing with that series).

    But “Far Sector” is just an uninformative and unappealing title. “Green Lantern: Far Sector”? Eh, better. I wonder if DC was afraid to acknowledge it as a “true” Green Lantern title, though it seems the character is one of the leads of the current Green Lantern series, so perhaps DC finally came around.

  35. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    Just piping up to say that I caught up with the recent issue of Joker and the Annual and my vote of ‘guess I’ll put in Joker since it fits the category’ went up to ‘Joker really is a great not actually new series’.

  36. PsychoAndy says:

    BEST NEW SERIES
    Red Sonja by Mirka Andolfo has been a surprising amount of fun. Much better than the last volume.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES
    Captain Marvel by Kelly Thompson. It’s the only Marvel book I’m still buying monthly.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN
    It’s not done yet, but Static: Season One

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST
    ChrisCross

    MOST WANTED
    I know it’s been three years, but I still really miss More than Meets the Eye.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE
    The return of Milestone Comics.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
    Again, the return of Milestone Comics.

  37. Pasquale says:

    BEST NEW SERIES: Defenders by Ewing
    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES: Way of X by Spurrier
    BEST CONTINUING SERIES: Runaways by Rowell
    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN: Far Sector by Jemisin
    FAVOURITE WRITER: Chip Zdarsky
    FAVOURITE ARTIST: Javier Rodriguez
    FAVOURITE COLOURIST: Javier Rodriguez
    MOST WANTED: More Grant Morrison on Wonder Woman!
    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE: Grant Morrison sticking the landing on Wonder Woman Earth One
    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles by Sophie Campbell continues to knock it out of the park

  38. Joseph S. says:

    In 2020 I didn’t really keep up with new books enough that I had many strong opinions, content to re-read old stuff, especially due to the publishing pause. But I actually managed to read quite a bit of new material, digitally and in collections, throughout 2021, certainly enough to make some informed decisions for this list.

    I quite enjoyed the art in POST AMERICANA. MAN-EATERS: THE CURSED continued the book’s formal experimentation in interesting ways with a story that made each issue worthwhile. 3W3M hasn’t really begun yet, but the art and stories we’ve seen so far have been promising, and the interviews with Grant Morrison and BKV were really fun. Phil Jimenez’s art on WONDER WOMAN HISTORIA is mindblowing. I’m looking forward to seeing where ADVENTUREMAN goes. STILLWATER has kept it interesting. DIE finished pretty strongly. KARMEN definitely has some issues, but I enjoyed it. I also found Gillen’s PETER CANNON to be a real achievement, but that finished in 2020 right? I loved the Slaughterhouse-Five OGN, but that too came out in 2020. So let’s see…

    BEST NEW SERIES

    This one has been the hardest to pin down. X-MEN is good, I’m enjoying it, but can’t properly say it’s “best.” So, let’s say DEFENDERS then, in the spirit of this category.

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    I’m really on the fence about this one, so many of my fav books of the year have been ‘actually’ new minis or ongoings. NICE HOUSE ON THE LAKE has kept me interested, lots to like going on there. I think I’ll give it to TIME BEFORE TIME. It’s hard to make a time travel story interesting, but the concept holds, it feels pretty fresh, the story and art are both great, we even got an issue with Shalvey on art, and I consistently look forward to the next installment. That’s what serialized storytelling is about, right?

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    I can’t find a way out of giving this to IMMORTAL HULK, which was so consistently good throughout. I was not disappointed by that ending. It’s the nature of comics. As with Thor, I have no interest in what Cates is doing with the follow up title. But that oversized ending, and GAMMA FLIGHT as well, were really satisfying endings to the character arcs as well as to the broader themes that have driven the series. Not much more to add to what others have said so far. Ewing really has a way of working with continuity and meta-level superhero tropes that is just the gold standard. I have a folder of screenshots and notes and perhaps will write something about it sooner or later.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    STRAY DOGS. I’m not sure who the intended audience was for this exactly, but I would have skipped it if not for Al and Paul’s review. I read all of and found the series to be really clever and moving. I’ll also echo what so may others have said about THE MANY DEATHS OF LAILA STARR.

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    Al Ewing.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Marcos Martin and Muntsa Vicente are doing fabulous work on FRIDAY. Technically it began in 2020 or I might have listed it in other categories. I think only issue 4 was released in 2021, though the physical collection of the first 3 issues was only released this year. Either way, another fantastic Brubaker story, absolutely elevated by the great art.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    I already mentioned Muntsa Vicente, who I would easily vote for in this category as well. But I also have to mention Jacob Phillips. He colored three Reckless OGNs published in the past 12 months, that alone an incredible feat, but he also draws and colors THAT TEXAS BLOOD and NEWBURN. After 2020 I really wasn’t trying to get into a book about a cop, and yet… it’s good. He’s, what, in his mid-late 20s? Maybe it’s a generational thing, I can only speculate, but he seems to have his work flow down, using techniques suited to digital drawing and coloring that are aesthetically interesting and still allow for a reasonable production schedule. We’ve only had one issue of his book with Zdarsky so far, but another lovely work there.

    MOST WANTED

    Runaways by Rainbow Rowell ended very strongly, certainly the best Runaways since BKV/Alphona no doubt. I’m all for things running their course, but I could have done with another year of this book.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    Without overthinking it, I’ll say the arc Ewing and Spurrier gave to Fabian Cortez, especially Spurrier’s resolution. They actually made me interested in the character. Who woulda thunk it? (ETERNALS isn’t my favorite, but worth mentioning just because it’s so much better than I expected.)

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    Brubaker/Phillips/Phillips released three RECKLESS OGNs, they’re all really great, and christ if that isn’t a lot of material for one year. PULP wasn’t even that long ago. They’ve a well-oiled machine at this point, it’s not even fair, but honestly, big respect for pulling this off. Best team in comics.

  39. Adam Farrar says:

    BEST NEW SERIES: Kyle Starks & Chris Schweizer’s 6 Sidekicks of Trigger Keaton
    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES: Kyle Starks & Chris Schweizer’s 6 Sidekicks of Trigger Keaton
    BEST CONTINUING SERIES: Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo
    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN: Barry Windsor-Smith’s Monsters
    FAVOURITE WRITER: Al Ewing, Immortal Hulk, Gamma Flight, Defenders, Guardians of the Galaxy, SWORD, Venom, We Only Find Them When They’re Dead
    FAVOURITE ARTIST: JH Williams III, Echolands
    FAVOURITE COLOURIST: Dave Stewart, Echolands
    MOST WANTED: Al Ewing & Javier Rodriguez’s Defenders
    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE: …sadly nothing.
    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: Barry Windsor-Smith’s Monsters

  40. Mo Walker says:

    BEST NEW SERIES

    Eternals (Marvel Comics) – Never been an avid reader of Eternals books, minus the Neil Gaiman & John Romita Jr. series.

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    Radiant Black (Image Comics). It’s Ultraman (Japanese superhero) meets Power Rangers.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    Crossover (Image Comics) – This title started a the tail end of 2020. It is insane the amount of independent comic characters are featured in this book. Plus fictionalized versions of current comic creators being murdered.

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    Planet-Size X-Men #1 – First the mutants got an island nation, now a planet?! Plus the Hellfire Gala was so fabulous!

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    Jonathan Hickman – X-Men and Inferno (have not read his Substack work).
    Hickman is setting things ablaze before taking a Krakoan gate to his next project.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Pepe Larraz – Planet-Size X-Men and X-Men

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Tomeu Morey (Batman, Batman/Catwoman, Nocterra). Morey excels at lightning effects and infusing scenes that occur at night/in darkness with warmth.

    MOST WANTED

    Dark Horse to publish additional installments of The Orville. Each mini-series is comprised of 2-separate 2-part stories that really capture the show’s spirit.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    Tom Taylor and Bruno Redundo on Nightwing, the title has rebounded following that horrendous Ric Grayson storyline.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    Issue 1 of Wonder Woman: Historia finally coming out. Phil Jimenez’s artwork is exquisite.

  41. Paul F says:

    BEST NEW SERIES

    The new Moon Knight series

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    Time Before Time

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    Spy x Family

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    Far Sector

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    Mariko Tamaki

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Bruno Redondo

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Tamra Bonvillain

    MOST WANTED

    I want Runaways back, again.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    Suicide Squad: Bad Blood by Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo was one of the only runs on the book I’ve ever really loved. Picked the HC up on a whim, and wish there was more of it.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    The Immortal Hulk run

  42. Karl_H says:

    BEST NEW SERIES

    Moon Knight

    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    The Nice House on the Lake (a popular choice around here it seems)

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    Hellions. Give Wells another team book!

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    I suspect Die isn’t in the running despite being a limited series, since it’s maxi- and not mini-. So instead, Kaiju Score. Loved the genre mashup — a classic heist caper taking place during a kaiju rampage.

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    Kieron Gillen for Die, Eternals, and Once & Future. A writer whose attention to detail makes every panel and speech balloon significant.

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Stephanie Hans for Die.

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Can I give this one to Stephanie Hans too? I rarely pay a lot of attention to colourists.

    MOST WANTED
    I really want more Uber from Kieron Gillen, but I don’t think an issue came out last year. I do want more good X-Men comics that address the central premise and plot of Hickman’s Krakoa set-up — Inferno was cathartic because it finally got back to the damn story. But after reading all the comments here, I think I’ll go with more Runaways by Rowell.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    I wish I could think of something here… I did warm up to Savage Avengers once I realized that it was mainly just a Conan comic set in the MU, and his taking over the abandoned Hellfire Mansion was amusing…

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
    Since I didn’t manage to work Immortal Hulk or Al Ewing in anywhere, this goes to them. I still want someone to explain all the metaphysics, especially around the ending…

    On a side note to Allan M: Defenders was one of my favorite titles in high school — I started collecting it during the great DeMatteis run — and I took Tunnel World full circle by using it in my own D&D campaign. I know it was not a good run, but I do not apologize.

  43. Martin Smith says:

    Favourite artist: Jamal Igle for The Wrong Earth: Night & Day and Joe Quinones for Batman 89.

  44. Martyn W says:

    BEST NEW SERIES
    BEST ACTUALLY NEW SERIES

    The Many Deaths of Laila Starr for both of these.

    BEST CONTINUING SERIES

    Die

    BEST MINI, ONE-SHOT OR OGN

    In by Will McPhail

    FAVOURITE WRITER

    James Tynion IV
    (What a year! Something is Killing The Children, Nice House on The Lake and Department of Truth)

    FAVOURITE ARTIST

    Tyler Jenkins

    FAVOURITE COLOURIST

    Matt Hollingsworth

    MOST WANTED

    I hope both That Texas Blood and Stillwater keep going.

    MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE

    Firepower – Kirkman doing Kung Fu wasn’t something I thought would be as much fun as it is.

    OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

    The cigarette issue of Laila Starr

  45. Karl_H says:

    Two questions really:

    1. How about adding a category for “Best Concluded Series” to next year’s Homies?

    2. Do you even see replies to old posts like this?

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