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    You Choose The Best Comic Book of 2016

    Best comics of 2016

    A lot of amazing books have come out in 2016. With Marvel revitalizing their line, DC’s Rebirth, to so many independent and creator-owned books dominating the stands, 2016 has certainly been a comic book year to remember.

    With that in mind, the staff at TFAW took a look at sales numbers, fan buzz, and our personal favorites of the year to create a list of the 25 best comics of the year. Now we want you, our awesome customers, to vote on this list to decide definitively what the best books of 2016 are.

    Voting will take place from Jan 1st through Jan 31st, so head on over to our  Facebook page  and cast your vote. Let your voices be heard and recognize all these amazing creators and publishers for all their hard work.

    Superman Vol. 01 Son of Superman
    By: Peter J. Tomasi, Doug Mahnke, Patrick Gleason
    The New 52 Superman is dead, but hiding among us for years was the original Big Blue. Now, a world without a Superman is in desperate need for Clark to leave the good life on the farm with Lois raising their son. This story simultaneously brings Superman back to formula, but also takes him in a direction he’s never really been before.

    Bitch Planet Vol. 2: President Bitch
    By: Kelly Sue DeConnick, Valentine De Landro, Taki Soma
    Powerful and gut-wrenching, Bitch Planet continues to explore themes of patriarchy and non-compliance. A must read for SJWs, feminists, and people who truly appreciate comics as an artistic medium.

    Wonder Woman TPB Vol. 01 The Lies
    By: Greg Rucka, Liam Sharp, Matthew Clark
    Wonder Woman has been interpreted in many ways over her 75 year existence. Instead of trying to hide this, Greg Rucka’s approach is to embrace this to try and get to the real heart of who Wonder Woman is. Not just a great jumping on point for new readers, but a definitive take on the character that will hold true for years to come.

    Black Hammer Vol 1: Secret Origins
    By: Jeff Lemire, Dean Ormston, Dave Stewart
    Black Hammer is another in a long line of grand ideas by one of comics brightest stars, Jeff Lemire. This book has a unique take on superheroes and the art by Dean Ormston & Dave Stewart instantly ensnares the reader.

    Rough Riders Vol. 1
    By: Adam Glass, Pat Oliffe
    History in the making! Teddy Roosevelt, Jack Johnson, Annie Oakley, Harry Houdini and Thomas Edison make up an American dream team engaged in an epic shadowy war! Monsters and Mayhem folks!

    The Mighty Thor Vol 1: Thunder in Her Veins
    By: Jason Aaron, Russell Dauterman
    Marvel is changing things up by casting Dr. Jane Foster as the new Thor. The goddess of thunder shines in this series as she comes to grips with heroism and her own mortality. Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman are the perfect pairing. Also: Loki.

    Divinity II
    By: Matt Kindt, Trevor Hairsine, Jelena Kevic Djurdjevic
    After Abram came crashing home in Divinity vol 1. Spending his entire life in the depths of space, Divinity II tells the tale of Myshka. Still beliving in the Communist ideal. She intends to play a very real role in the return of Soviet glory

    Old Man Logan Vol 1: Berserker
    By: Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino
    What happens when an older, more gruff version of Wolverine comes to the main Marvel Universe? A whole lot of fighting. He’s on a mission to to prevent a terrible future from happening. Andrea Sorrentino’s art is breathtaking.

    Detective Comics Vol. 01 Rise of the Batmen
    By: James Tynion IV, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Alvaro Martinez, Raul Fernandez, Al Barrionuevo
    Batman is notorious for being a lone wolf (bat?), but he’s always had his family behind him. Now it’s time to take the Bat-Family to the next level. Lead by Batwoman, Batman puts together a team of Red Robin, Orphan (Cassandra Cain), Spoiler, and Clayface to be ready for whatever threat comes Gotham’s way.

    Vision Vol 1: Little Worse Than Man
    By: Tom King, Kevin Walsh, Mike Del Mundo
    Vision has the perfect family: a wife, two kids, and a dog. Look elsewhere for over-the-top nonstop heroics; this book proves it’s the little moments that matter. Truly impeccable dialogue and top-notch art await!

    March Book 3
    By: John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, Nate Powell
    The third and final installment in civil rights activist John Lewis’ story in the battle for civil rights in the United States. 1963 was an incredibly turbulent time in America’s history, and John Lewis was not only in the middle of it, but a leader in getting us out of it, long before becoming a congressman. March will remind you there are real heroes in this world.

    Star Wars: Poe Dameron Vol 1: Black Squadron
    By: Charles Soule, Phil Noto
    With crisp and clean art by Phil Noto, Poe Dameron is one of the most beautiful of Marvel’s new Star Wars comics. Charle Soule explores Dameron’s uncanny skills and matching bravado.

    Paper Girls Vol. 2
    By: Brian K. Vaughan, Cliff Chiang
    Continuing where Vol. 1 left off, the misfit group of paper girls from 1988 find themselves transported to present day. Our main characters are forced to look at who they are, and who they may…or may not become. This superstar team continues to tell one of the craziest sci-fi stories currently on the shelves, while staying focused on the heart of any good story, the characters.

    All New Wolverine Vol. 01 Four Sisters
    By: Tom Taylor, David Lopez, Bengal
    With the death of Logan, clone daughter Laura Kinney (X-23) steps up to be Wolverine and the best she is at what she does. This book is bloody, emotional, hilarious, and beautiful. This is one of those unique books that can present adult subjects in a way that people of all ages can understand. Clone or not, All-New Wolverine definitely has soul.

    Dept. H Vol. 1: Pressure
    By: Matt Kindt, Sharlene Kindt
    Not your average murder mystery! An in depth(see what I did there) story taking place on a deep sea research station. Family, lies, secrets and creatures make for a spectacular, well-paced adventure.

    Steven Universe & Crystal Gems Vol. 01
    By: Josceline Fenton, Chrystin Garland, Kat Leyh
    They are the Crystal Gems. They always save the day! If you think they can’t. Here is proof that they always find a way!

    Monstress Vol. 1
    By: Marjorie Liu, Sana Takeda
    A fascinating look at an alternate 1900’s Asia where monsters of god-like power are normal. Witness the journey of one teenage girl struggling to survive while trying to tame her own MONSTER.

    Black Panther Vol. 01 Nation Under Our Feet
    By: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian Stelfreeze
    Wakanda under the microscope. On the brink of civil war, treason and terrorist attacks ensue in T’Challa’s homeland. Witness Black Panther fight to save his country from all fronts.

    Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Vol. 01
    By: Kyle Higgins, Jorge Corona, Goni Montes
    “It’s Morphin Time!” This fantastic new series starts after the Green with Evil Saga. Takes us through a different path from the show, one that keeps it at the top of my reading every month. Perfect for fans new and old.

    Saga Vol. 6
    By: Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples
    Set three years after the end of Vol. 5, our story opens with Hazel in kindergarten. For a story that’s followed a family on the run through space since issue 1, Vol 6 shows them living a domestic and stationary life for the first time…and it doesn’t go too well for them. Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples continue to be a dominating power tag team.

    Sheriff Of Babylon Vol. 01 Bang Bang Bang
    By: Tom King, Mitch Gerads, John Paul Leon
    Currently known for his fantastic work on Batman, Tom King and Mitch Gerad’s The Sherriff of Babylon, is a suspenseful crime noir tale set in Bagdad circa 2003. King’s CIA experience in addition to Gerad’s life-like art style gives this series the accolades it deserves.

    Beauty Vol. 01
    By: Jason Hurley, Jeremy Haun
    The first STD that people actually WANT! In this world, The “Beauty”, transforms your body into its most beautiful version. People are literally dying to get it but the public is unaware of the side effects. Detectives Vaughn and Foster are on the case.

    Faith Vol. 01 Hollywood & Vine
    By: Jody Houser, Francis Portela, Jele Kevic-Djurdjevic
    Starting off as a side character in Harbinger back in 2014, we were given a full ongoing series of Faith Herbert this year. Written by the wonderful Jody Houser. This is a series meant for Fan-boys/girls, as Faith herself is as much of a geek as we are.

    Gotham Academy Vol. 03 Yearbook
    By: Brenden Fletcher, Moritat, Mingjue Helen Chen
    Our favorite students go back after their adventures last year, telling tales before everything went to chaos. Gotham Academy is an all-ages series perfectly suited for those wanting to move to Gotham, but are not old enough to drive there.

    Legend of Zelda Legendary Ed GN Vol. 01 Ocarina Time
    By: Akira Himekawa
    Viz does it again. While this is a reprint, if you’ve never read the Manga adaptation of the celebrated N64 game Ocarina of Time, this is a perfect time. Collecting vol 1 and 2, You get the complete tale.

    DON’T FORGET TO VOTE BY THE 31ST

    Honorable Mentions

    2016 had so many amazing titles that it was nearly impossible for us to narrow it down to 25. With that in mind, here are some honorable mentions of books that you should definitely check out. Odds are they made your own personal top 25.

    Batman Vol. 1 I Am Gotham
    By: Tom King, David Finch
    Gotham City has two new heroes, Gotham and Gotham Girl. With these super powered saviors doing what Batman can’t, is he really what Gotham City needs anymore?

    The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Vol. 04 Kissed Squirrel Liked It
    By: Ryan North, Erica Henderson
    I an age of dark and gritty superheroes, The Unbeatable Squirrel decides to have fun with the universe it lives in instead. Be prepared to smile.

    Dark Knight: A True Batman Story
    By: Paul Dini, Eduardo Risso
    Legendary Batman writer, Paul Dini, was beaten within an inch of his life. This autobiographical tale shows just how these iconic characters like Batman can get us through the darkest of times.

    Serenity: No Power in the ‘Verse
    By: Chris Roberson, Georges Jeanty, Karl Story, Wes Dzioba, Dan Dos Santos
    Set after the events of the previous series, Leaves on the Wind, No Power in the ‘Verse continues the tale of our favorite Browncoats

    I Am a Hero Omnibus Volume 1
    By: Kengo Hazawa
    A slightly crazy artist, and one of the few people in Japan that actually owns a gun, is neck deep in the zombie apocalypse.

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    Review: Civil War II #4 – Explosive Verdict in Banner Murder Trial

    Review of Civil War II #4

    Civil War II #4Some time has passed since the death of Bruce Banner at the hands of his friend and ally, Hawkeye. She-Hulk finally wakes up from her coma, and the first news she hears is that Hawkeye has been acquitted in the trial for Banner’s murder.

    In Civil War II #3, when the majority of the Marvel Universe arrived on Bruce Banner’s doorstep to demand answers after precognizant Inhuman Ulysses predicted that The Incredible Hulk would kill them all, Banner was understandably upset. Banner’s eyes flashed green for a moment before an arrow was loosed by Hawkeye to end his life. Clint Barton’s defense was that the arrow was designed by Banner, and that he was following a pact he had made with Banner himself.

    At the end of the last issue, Tony Stark has successfully replicated Ulysses’ power from the map he acquired (by mild torture) of the young Inhuman’s brain. Stark sees the future and is terrified.

    Civil War II #4 sees Iron Man explaining the science and math behind Ulysses’ visions to a group of assembled superhuman leaders. The visions are not exactly what they initially appeared to be. He succinctly expresses his continued belief that following these visions blindly is misguided and potentially hazardous to the freedom and safety of law-abiding citizens.

    There are difficult questions raised on both sides of the fence. Are Ulysses’ visions accurate predictions of the future, or mathematical equations of probability? Does it matter? If there’s a high enough probability that someone will commit a crime, does it make sense to detain and at least question them? How high does that probability need to be? What if acting on the probability of a future crime being committed causes a different tragedy to occur, like the deaths of Rhodie and Bruce Banner?

    It was easy to choose sides in the first Civil War event. Both of the team leaders had solid, persuasive arguments, I was on Cap’s side from the start. This issue is a little less clear for me. I was initially firmly in Iron Man’s camp, then may have been swayed to Captain Marvel’s for a minute. I landed back in Stark’s yard after this entry.

    Civil War II #4, Marvel Comics, released July 27, 2016, written by Brian Michael Bendis, art by David Marquez, colors by Justin Ponsor, letters by VC’s Clayton Cowles, cover by Marko Djurdjevic, variant covers by Kim Jung Gi, Michael Cho, and Phil Noto, $4.49

    Review by Brendan Allen

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    Review: Hawkeye #5

    all new hawkeye #5As a part of Marvel Comic’s “All-New, All-Different” comics imprint, the Avengers’ Hawkeye is given a fresh interpretation. Writer, Jeff Lemire has made a career out of breathing new life into well-established characters. Previously working for DC Comics, he retooled tent pole DC characters such as Teen Titans, Superboy, Atom and Green Arrow to much critical acclaim. He brings this experience with him to Marvel Comics and applies it to Hawkeye of the Avengers, a character that has traditionally been portrayed as a supporting member of an ensemble and who has infrequently been given a solo title.

    In the current series, Lemire takes the reader into the inner-life of the Hawkeye (and his protégé, Kate Bishop, also known as Hawkeye) when he’s off-duty from the Avengers. Lemire’s Hawkeye takes on the persona of a hard squabble everyman. He is divorced, deaf/hearing impaired and finds the most mundane of human interactions challenging, in a manner that strongly implies that Hawkeye falls somewhere on the Asperger’s spectrum.

    Yet, Hawkeye’s strong sense of ethics compels him to do “the right thing”. Lemire takes every opportunity to fully explore the dynamics and consequences of heroic actions and inactions in a way the exploits nuance for a compelling storyline.

    Issue 5 follows the Hawkeyes (Clint and Kate) as they try to save a group of children from being exploited by Hydra. Interspaced with the A-story line, is an extended flashback to the childhood of Kate Bishop. The artwork of Ramón Pérez fills the panels nicely, even changing from a sharp realism in the main story to softer, muted pastels for Kate Bishop’s flashbacks. Pérez utilizes bright, solid backgrounds which draws the eye to the contrasting imagery of the figure drawing.

    The result is that the action of the panel appears vivid and free flowing.

    Lemire creates in “All-New Hawkeye” a character driven comic book that borrows heavily from the noir tradition of hard-boiled detective novelists like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler. Hawkeye stays grounded in the humanity of its “superhero” and offers a familiar, yet unique alternative to the traditional superhero comic book.

    Hawkeye #5, published March 23, 2016. Writer: Jeff Lemire. Artist: Ramón Pérez. Colors: Ian Herring with Ramón Pérez. Lettering: Joe Sabino. Cover: Ramón Perez. Variant Cover: Phil Noto.

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    New Comic Book Day — Reviews for the Black Panther, Escape From New York & Poe Dameron

    This week for New Comic Book Day we’re giving you two new great titles to start on, and saying goodbye to a fantastic run. Check out our other blog articles so see our thoughts on other books. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you like our articles!

    SPOILER ALERT — We try to keep from posting spoilers, but one may sneak through to our reviews now and again. Read with caution, true believers.

     Black Panther comics at TFAW.com Black Panther #1
    By: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian StelfreezeThe King is Dead! Long Live the King! T’Challa has returned as the Black Panther and the King of Wakanda. Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian Stelfreeze, and Laura Martin deserve a round of applause. The writing and art had me on the edge of my seat and color palette was nothing short of fantastic! This may be the most intense 1st issue of a series that I have read all year!

    We get plenty of action in this, the premiere issue of the new Black Panther comic. However, we also get an in depth look at Wakanda. Of course, the Black Panther is the star but there are quite a few characters to keep your eyes on! Politics, inner turmoil, love, and the possibility of war are all in play here and I love it! [Sean W. at Milwaukie TFAW

    Star Wars Poe Dameron #1
    By: Charles Soule, Phil Noto

    Thirty years after the evil Empire fell to the rebel forces lead by Luke, Han, and Leia, a military force known as the First Order is pushing to overthrow the new republic. General Organa has recruited Poe Dameron, the best pilot in the galaxy and his helpful droid BB-8, to get any information on the location of Lor San Tekka, the person with the whereabouts of the Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker.

    In this first exciting issue of the new ongoing Star Wars Poe Dameron comic book series you get to see the forming of Poe’s brave team of rebels — the Black Squadron; Kare Kun, L’ulo, Jess Pava, Snap Wexley, and technician Oddy Muva. What traps await Poe and BB-8 when they go to find Lor? Find out as the new team works together on their first mission: a mission that will hold the fate of the galaxy in its hands. Also in this first issue, you get a amazingly cute minicomic all about the misadventures of BB-8 and the ways in which he interacts with all the rebels on base.

    Charles Soule (Death of Wolverine and She-Hulk) does a brilliant job again, with the beautiful art of Phil Noto following up his run on Chewbacca. You’ll love this new adventure in the ever-growing Star Wars comic book universe.

    [Steve M. at Milwaukie TFAW]

     Escape From New York comics at TFAW.com Escape From New York #16
    By: Christopher Sebela, Maxim Simic, Jason Copland

    Well this is it. After 16 Escape From New York issues, we’ve arrived at the last adventure we’ll see of Snake Plisskin for awhile. I’ve got to say, Christopher Sebela did it. He wrote a final issue that ended not only the Escape From Cleveland (I don’t know if that’s what is called, but that’s what I’m calling it.) story arc and left the series as a whole on a rather satisfactory note.

    Throughout this series Sebela has done a fantastic job of giving us story arcs that were fun, creative, and felt natural to the John Carpenter’s EFNY world. Maxim Simic and Marissa Louise both did a grand job from beginning to end. I’m sad to see this story end, but glad I had a seat on the ride. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    What did you think of these books? What should we review next week? Let us know below!

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