Comics to get new fans flying

With legendary comic book companies Marvel and DC Comics setting cinemas alight with big budget blockbusters on what appears to be a regular basis, the once obscure world of comics is becoming much more mainstream. 

By only watching the movies, film fans are missing out on the vast world of comics. 

Since the 1930s, comic books have been delighting fans with story arcs such as the “Batman Detective” comics and “Marvel’s Civil War.” With digital comics and nifty smartphone and tablet apps, comic books have never been more accessible, making now the best time to go back to sneaking comics in class. 

“The Amazing Spider-Man”

Teenage genius Peter Parker has been slinging webs since the 50s, long before Andrew Garfield donned the iconic skin-tight suit. Spider-Man was created to appeal to the teenage crowd and the famous friendly neighborhood wall crawler has been through a lot since being bitten by that radioactive spider. Most recently he swapped bodies with his nemesis, Doctor Octopus, and ended up nearly dead. Now Peter is back in his suit and ready to once again defend his world. 

The newest rendition, created by Dan Slott, Humberto Ramos, Victor Olazaba and Edgar Delgado, comes with a lot of refreshers into Spider-Man’s origin story making it a great place for newer Spidey fans to start. 

— Commentary by Courtney Combs

“Hawkeye”

“The Avengers” made quite the splash when it hit theaters back in 2012. Now, with “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” in the works, fans of the films might do well to check in on one of the Avengers who doesn’t have his own films. “Hawkeye” premiered in August 2012 and was an instant hit among critics and fans everywhere.

The comic tells the story of what Clint Barton, the greatest sharpshooter known to man, does while he isn’t helping the Avengers save the world. The series features stories by Matt Fraction and the art of David Aja and includes swift introductions to the major players of Clint’s entourage including the other Hawkeye, Kate Bishop, while not delving too far into Clint’s long and complicated past.

— Commentary by Courtney Combs

“Batman”

While Bat fans may be two years away from seeing Ben Affleck don the cowl in “Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” the wait can be eased by picking up a copy of the current Batman run. With stories by Scott Snyder and pencils by Greg Capullo, the series has gotten the attention of fans as one of the most well executed, ongoing titles today. The reason Batman is consistently in the top five selling comics every month has to do with the way in which Snyder is faithful to the history of Batman while still taking risks and exploring stories never before told, all of which is impressive for 75-year-old character. 

The series is a perfect starting point for new readers and a new six-issue arc, “End Game,” will begin with Batman #35 in October. 

— Commentary by Adam Mathieu

“Rocket Raccoon”

This summer, the “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie stood out as the generally unheard of heroes became the highest grossing film of 2014. The Guardians are easy to adore and it is hard to pick a favorite, but the aggressive and foul Rocket Raccoon surely got the most laughs. The current series, written and penciled by Skottie Young, manages to work in the same light and humor-heavy tone as the film, while skipping origins and thrusting readers into the bright-colored, fast-paced alien high jinks of Rocket. While other Guardians make cameos, it is Groot’s supporting role that contributes to the joy of picking up the series. 

The humor and colorful art of the book allows the series to be enjoyed even by those who have never picked up a comic and want to escape into a fun space adventure with the gun-wielding raccoon they enjoyed in “Guardians of the Galaxy.” 

– Commentary by Adam Mathieu

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