Hello, my name is Kali, and I have a comic book addiction.
...No, really. I do.
For as long as I can remember, I have been reading comic books and graphic novels. And up until recently, I've shrouded this pastime in secrecy. If asked to describe one thing about myself that nobody could guess, this would be one of the first responses to pop into my head.
Growing up, society had me believe that only nerds and geeks read comics. That it was uncool or lame. Only recently, with the rise in popularity of comic book characters (thank you, Marvel movies), is it acceptable to read comics; cool even, in some cases. While this widespread acceptance is gratifying as an adult, for those of us who were vilified all through our school years, it is also somewhat annoying.
Regardless, here are my top five comic series/graphic novels (in no particular order, I love them all equally).
1. The Runaways, by Brian K. Vaughan
This series follows five teens who discover that their parents are actually the
world's most powerful super-villains. Caught between doing what's right
morally and staying loyal to their families, they must decide between
good and evil. Beautiful artwork, snappy dialogue, and a girl who has a
mental link with a velociraptor. What's not to love?
2. Journey into Mystery: Fear Itself, by Kieron Gillen
JiM: Fear Itself is a sub-arc of Thor's storyline. The premise is Thor's younger brother Loki has sacrificed himself to stop the end of all worlds and has been reborn as Serrure, a French street urchin with no memory of his past life. Thor must find his brother and return his memories so that Kid Loki may repent for his former self's mistakes. Two words: utterly heartbreaking. This arc is essentially a glimpse at what Loki could have been if circumstances hadn't lead him to become a villain. Gillen did a fantastic job of ripping my heart to shreds with this one.
3. Iron Man, by Marvel Comics
I cannot even begin to explain how much I love the Iron Man series. I am currently working my way through the entire series, from start to finish and am loving it all. Tony Stark is such a complex, layered character. I think the reason I like him so much is that I can relate to him. Unlike other Marvel characters, he doesn't claim to be a hero; hell, he doesn't even try. That is a very refreshing thing to see in comics nowadays. Plus, what I wouldn't give to be able to wear his suit, even for just one day!
4. Sailor Moon, by Naoko Takeuchi
The very first manga I ever read. Gosh, that just practically throws me down memory lane. My brother and I would spend countless summer nights reading the entire series online. My favorite character, hands down, has to be Sailor Mercury. She was intelligent, level-headed, and had the neatest power (water and ice), in my opinion. This series was a such an empowerment for girls while I was growing up. Needless to say, I still love this series and am currently in the process of watching the original Japanese version of the anime.
5. SuicideGirls, by IDW Publishing
SuicideGirls is a mini-series centered around a group of female freedom fighters looking to liberate the world from Way
Of Life, a religious organization that holds the internet in an iron
These girls are not tongue-in-cheek parodies, nor misguided attempts at
taking naked pin-up models seriously in a comic book. The Suicide Girls
come across as real personalities; their piercings, tattoos and
half-naked bodies the bonus and not the focus. That fact alone makes it
such a refreshing read.
What are some of your favorite comics/graphic novels? Care to share?