Under Appreciated Comic Book Artists

What if I told you the artist that co-created the following characters:

Black Widow
Wonder Man
The Swordsman
The Mandarin
Crimson Dynamo
Titanium Man
The Collector
Count Neferia
Mr. Hyde
Power Man (would later become Goliath, then Atlas)
Living Laser
The Porcupine
The Living Pharaoh/The Living Monolith
The Rainbow Raider
Happy Hogan
Pepper Potts
Alex Summers (would become Havok)
Lorna Dane (would become Polaris)
Dr. Bill Foster (would become Black Goliath)
Captain George Stacy

…is perpetually viewed as a lesser creator?

Don HeckDon Heck doesn’t get the respect he deserves. People often compare Heck to Kirby, Ditko and other creators that were working at Marvel during the 1960s and I think that’s really unfair. I get people look at their respective art/storytelling and prefer Kirby, Ditko, etc.. to Heck and find him the lesser of the bunch.

My argument is regarding his ability to co-create popular, long lasting characters. Many creators have tried to do this, be it for Marvel, DC, or somewhere else. Most attempts fail at reaching the level of success that any of the above list of characters. It’s really, really hard to come up with a character that other writers want to use in shared universe, that in the hands of other creators are entertaining enough that readers will be satisfied enough with the comic they purchased and buy the next one. It’s not like you can tick off a series of boxes in a ‘create a popular character’ manual and get guaranteed success. Don Heck came up with a bunch of those characters, collaborating with a variety of writers and did it for damn near 20 years.

I think if you were to look at his accomplishments and instead of comparing him against Kirby and Ditko, and instead compare them against everybody else who worked in the comic industry from the late 1930s to today, you’ll find that there are only a tiny handful of creators that have done more in that regard than Don Heck has. Many who’ve done less get a more respect than Don Heck does and I’m not saying they don’t deserve their respect, I’m just saying Don Heck gets a lot less than he deserves. Heck gets compared to Kirby and Ditko and he is the only artist that gets compared that way. Nobody looks at say, Jim Starlin or Walt Simonson and decides they are lesser creators because they weren’t Jack Kirby. Nor should anybody do that and they shouldn’t also do that to Don Heck.

Iron CrossAlso, please note that list above is only a partial list of characters Don Heck created. Earlier today I was researching who created a character named Iron Cross. The character made its debut in Invaders #35, but wikipedia said he appeared in issue #36. Checking on Grand Comics Database and reading the actual comic made it clear the character first appeared in #35. Wikipedia also says Frank Robbins was his co-creator despite not having drawn either comic. Don Heck was the artist who drew the first appearance of Iron Cross.











So I reached out the writer/editor of the comic and co-creator of Iron Cross, Roy Thomas and asked him who co-created Iron Cross with him. Below is his response to my e-mail (reprinted with permission):

Hi Jamie —

The artist who designed and first drew Iron Cross was Don Heck, fitting since he was also the first story-drawing Iron Man artist. Much of THE INVADERS #35 is taken from the abortive LIBERTY LEGION #1 that was prepared but then never published as a stand-alone comic; I had Alan Kupperberg add the sequence at the start of the issue, which of course doesn’t feature Iron Cross.

Thanks for the kind words,

So add Iron Cross to that list of characters that Don Heck co-created. I recognize that the character is not very well known or popular compared to the list of characters above, but he has very occasionally been used by other creators since his creation. The last appearance (outside of reprints) that I could find was a 2011 mini series called Invaders Now! done by Alex Ross, Christos Gage, Caio Reis, Vinicius Andrade and Simon Bowland. A new version of the character was created by James Robinson and Steve Pugh for a 2014 New Invaders series.

Something that’s a part of the Eisner Awards that I really like is the Bill Finger Award. It’s for comic book writers who were under appreciated and is given to a deceased and living creator every year. I wish there was a similar award for under appreciated artists. Personally I think it ought to be named after Harry G. Peter, who we have proof co-created Wonder Woman but is not officially recognized as such. All American editors at that time really didn’t like Harry’s work and didn’t want him drawing the title and only got the job at the insistence of Wonder Woman’s co-creator William Moulton Marston. Among the artists I think should be considered for such an award is Bob Brown, Dick Ayers, Paul Ryan, Alan Kupperberg and Don Heck.

* Image of Don Heck comes from League of Comic Geeks.

The Combined Best Comics & Graphic Novels of 2020!

Over the last 5 months there have been many, many websites with “Best of 2020” lists concerning comic books, manga and graphic novels. If you’ve looked at a few, you may have noticed some of the same books on different lists and seen some unique to only that list.

I went through 235 different URLs with “Best Of” Lists regarding comics and combined them into a spreadsheet. There are over 3,500 different listings of books from these websites. I should note that I’ve included books that were given honorable mentions. In short, if somebody thought it was a good book that you should check out, it’s on here.

This year I made a more of an effort to find best of lists with Manga on them. I find it odd that Manga in North America is as large as traditional comics publishers but there are much fewer ‘Best of Manga’ lists out by Manga reviewers. I did find some which likely lead to a particular Manga publisher getting more titles on the list this year.

Gene Luen Yang

Gene Luen Yang


The big story this year is Gene Luen Yang whose books were the #1 (Dragon Hoops) and #2 (Superman Smashes the Klan) books on the list. This is the first time an author took the first two spots with different books in a year. ComicsBeat picking him as the Comics Industry Person of the Year is very fitting.



Pivot tables have been created to show which books appeared on the number of lists. Here are the books with 5 mentions or more:

Book Title Count Writer Artist Publisher
Dragon Hoops 38 Gene Luen Yang Gene Luen Yang First Second
Superman Smashes the Klan 36 Gene Luen Yang Gurihiru DC Comics
The Magic Fish 34 Trung Le Nguyen Trung Le Nguyen Random House Graphic
When Stars Are Scattered 32 Victoria Jamieson, Omar Mohamed Victoria Jamieson, Iman Geddy Dial Books
The Immortal Hulk 31 Al Ewing Various Marvel Comics
Daredevil 30 Chip Zdarsky Marco Checchetto, Francesco Mobili, Jorge Fornes, Nolan Woodard, Rachelle Rosenberg, Mattia Iacono Marvel Comics
The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist 29 Adrian Tomine Adrian Tomine Drawn & Quarterly
The Department of Truth 29 James Tynion IV Martin Simmonds Image Comics
Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen: Who Killed Jimmy Olsen 29 Matt Fraction Steve Leiber, Nathan Fairbairn DC Comics
Far Sector 28 NK Jemisin Jamal Campbell DC Comics
X-Men 28 Jonathan Hickman Leinil Francis Yu, R.B. Silva, Matteo Buffagni Marvel Comics
Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio 26 Derf Backderf Derf Backderf Harry N. Abrams
Snapdragon 25 Kat Leyh Kat Leyh First Second
Class Act 24 Jerry Craft Jerry Craft Quill Tree
Blue in Green 21 Ram V Anand RK, John J. Pearson Image Comics
Wonder Woman: Dead Earth 21 Daniel Johnson Daniel Johnson, Mike Spicer DC Comics
John Constantine: Hellblazer 21 Simon Spurrier Aaron Campbell, Jordie Bellaire DC Comics
Pulp 20 Ed Brubaker Sean Phillips, Jacob Phillips Image Comics
Marauders 20 Gerry Duggan, Vita Ayala Stefano Caselli, Matteo Lolli, Mario Del Pennino, Edgar Delgado, Federico Blee, Erick Arciniega Marvel Comics
Twins 20 Varian Johnson Shannon Wright Graphix
Dracula, motherf**ker! 19 Alex de Campi Erica Henderson Image Comics
Hellions 19 Zeb Wells, Tini Howard Stephen Segovia, David Curiel, Carmen Carnero Marvel Comics
Something Is Killing The Children 19 James Tynion IV Werther Dell’Edera BOOM! Studios
Paying the Land 19 Joe Sacco Joe Sacco Metropolitan Books
Flamer 19 Mike Curato Mike Curato Henry Holt and Co
Batman: The Three Jokers 18 Geoff Johns Jason Fabok, Brad Anderson DC Comics
Strange Adventures 18 Tom King Mitch Gerads, Doc Shaner DC Comics
Bitter Root 18 David F. Walker, Chuck Brown Sanford Greene, Sofie Dodgson Image Comics
Thor 18 Donny Cates Nic Klein, Aaron Kuder, Matthew Wilson Marvel Comics
Almost American Girl: An Illustrated Memoir 18 Robin Ha Robin Ha Balzer + Bray
Go with the Flow 18 Lily Williams, Karen Schneemann Lily Williams First Second
The Sky is Blue with a Single Cloud 17 Kiniko Tsurita Kiniko Tsurita Drawn & Quarterly
Once & Future 17 Kieron Gillen Tamra Bonvillain, Dan Mora BOOM! Studios
Slaughterhouse-Five: The Graphic Novel 17 Kurt Vonnegut, Ryan North Albert Monteys BOOM! Studios
Fire Power 16 Robert Kirkman Chris Samnee, Matthew Wilson Image Comics
Billionaire Island 16 Mark Russell Steve Pugh, Chris Chuckry Ahoy Comics
Familiar Face 15 Michael DeForge Michael DeForge Drawn & Quarterly
Wendy: Master of Art 15 Walter Scott Walter Scott Drawn & Quarterly
Banned Book Club 15 Kim Hyun Sook, Ryan Estrada Hyung-Ju Ko Iron Circus Comics
Sports is Hell 15 Ben Passmore Ben Passmore Koyama Press
Jack Kirby: The Epic Life Of The King Of Comics 14 Tom Scioli Tom Scioli Ten Speed Press
Stillwater 14 Chip Zdarsky Ramón K. Pérez, Mike Spicer Image Comics
A Map to the Sun 14 Sloane Leong Sloane Leong First Second
Dancing at the Pity Party: A Dead Mom Graphic Memoir 14 Tyler Feder Tyler Feder Dial Books
Dark Nights: Death Metal 13 Scott Snyder Greg Capullo, Jonathan Glapion, FCO Plascencia DC Comics
The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott 13 Zoe Thorogood Zoe Thorogood Avery Hill Publishing
Hedra 13 Jesse Lonergan Jesse Lonergan Image Comics
Long Way Down 13 Jason Reynolds Danica Novgorodoff Atheneum
X of Swords 12 Various Various Marvel Comics
Dancing After TEN 12 Vivian Chong, Georgia Webber Vivian Chong, Georgia Webber Fantagraphics
X-Men: Marvels Snapshots #1 12 Jay Edidin Tom Reilly, Chris O’Halloran Marvel Comics
You Brought Me the Ocean 12 Alex Sanchez Julie Maroh DC Comics
Vision 12 Julia Gfrörer Julia Gfrörer Fantagraphics
Year of the Rabbit 12 Tian Veasna Tian Veasna Drawn & Quarterly
The Man Without Talent 11 Yoshiharu Tsuge Yoshiharu Tsuge New York Review Books
Chasin’ the Bird: Charlie Parker in California 11 Dave Chisholm Dave Chisholm, Peter Markowski Z2 Comics
The Contradictions 11 Sophie Yanow Sophie Yanow Drawn & Quarterly
Displacement 11 Kiku Hughes Kiku Hughes First Second
Ice Cream Man 11 W. Maxwell Prince Martin Morazzo, Chris O’Halloran Image Comics
Stepping Stones 10 Lucy Knisley Lucy Knisley, Whitney Cogar Random House Graphic
X-Factor 10 Leah Williams David Baldeon Marvel Comics
Moms 10 Yeong-shin Ma Yeong-shin Ma Drawn & Quarterly
Spy x Family Vol. 1 10 Tatsuya Endo Tatsuya Endo VIZ Media
DCeased: Dead Planet 10 Tom Taylor Trevor Hairsine, Gigi Baldissini, Stefan Guadiano, Rain Beredo DC Comics
Maids 10 Katie Skelly Katie Skelly Fantagraphics
X-Force 10 Benjamin Percy Dustin Weaver, Joshua Cassara Marvel Comics
Big Black: Stand at Attica 10 Frank “Big Black” Smith, Jared Reinmuth Améziane Archaia
The Other History Of The DC Universe #1 9 John Ridley Giuseppe Camuncoli, Andrea Cucchi, Jose Villarrubia DC Comics
The Deep and Dark Blue 9 Niki Smith Niki Smith Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Ice Cream Man Presents: Quarantine Comix Special #1 9 Various Various Image Comics
Black Widow 9 Kelly Thompson Elena Casagrande. Jordie Bellaire Marvel Comics
Don’t Go Without Me 9 Rosemary Valero-O’Connell Rosemary Valero-O’Connell Shortbox
Becoming Horses 9 Disa Wallander Disa Wallander Drawn & Quarterly
Suicide Squad 9 Tom Taylor Bruno Redondo, Adriano Lucas DC Comics
Chainsaw Man 9 Tatsuki Fujimoto Tatsuki Fujimoto VIZ Media
Excalibur 9 Tini Howard Various Marvel Comics
AdventureMan 9 Matt Fraction Terry Dodson, Rachel Dodson Image Comics
Heartstopper 9 Alice Oseman Alice Oseman Graphix
Batman 9 James Tynion IV Jorge Jimenez, Tomeu Morey DC Comics
The Low, Low Woods 9 Carmen Maria Machado Dani, Tamra Bonvillain DC Comics
Paul at Home 9 Michel Rabagliati Michel Rabagliati Drawn & Quarterly
Portrait of a Drunk 8 Florent Ruppert, Jerome Mulot, Olivier Schrauwen Florent Ruppert, Jerome Mulot, Olivier Schrauwen Fantagraphics
S.W.O.R.D. 8 Al Ewing Valerio Schiti, Marte Gracia Marvel Comics
J&K 8 John Pham John Pham Fantagraphics
Skulldigger and Skeleton Boy 8 Jeff Lemire Tonci Zonjic Dark Horse Books
Goblin Girl 8 Moa Romanova Moa Romanova Fantagraphics
Alienated 8 Simon Spurrier Chris Wildgoose, Andre May BOOM! Studios
Shadow of the Batgirl 8 Sarah Kuhn Nicole Goux DC Comics
Undone by Blood or the Shadow of a Wanted Man 8 Zac Thompson, Lonnie Nadler Sami Kivelä, Jason Wordie AfterShock Comics
Crisis Zone 8 Simon Hanselmann Simon Hanselmann Web Comic
We Only Find Them When They’re Dead 8 Al Ewing Simone Di Meo BOOM! Studios
Venom 8 Donny Cates, David Michelinie Various Marvel Comics
Check, Please!, Book 2: Sticks & Scones 8 Ngozi Ukazu Ngozi Ukazu First Second
Beetle & the Hollowbones 8 Aliza Layne Aliza Layne, Natalie Riess, Kristen Acampora Atheneum
Fights: One Boy’s Triumph Over Violence 8 Joel Christian Gill Joel Christian Gill Oni Press
Seven Secrets 8 Tom Taylor Daniele Di Nicuolo, Walter Baiamonte, Katia Ranalli BOOM! Studios
Guardians of the Galaxy 8 Al Ewing Marcio Takara, Federico Blee Marvel Comics
Usagi Yojimbo 8 Stan Sakai Stan Sakai, Tom Luth IDW Publishing
Coffin Bound 8 Dan Watters Dani Image Comics
Breakwater 8 Katriona Chapman Katriona Chapman Avery Hill Publishing
Bowie: Stardust, Rayguns & Moonage Dreams 8 Steve Horton, Michael Allred Michael Allred, Laura Allred Insight Comics
Crossover 7 Donny Cates Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe Image Comics
Séance Tea Party 7 Reimena Yee Reimena Yee Random House Graphic
Donut Feed the Squirrels 7 Mika Song Mika Song Random House Graphic
Ex.Mag 7 Various Various Peow Studios
Empyre 7 Al Ewing, Dan Slott Valerio Schiti, Marte Gracia Marvel Comics
The Dreaming: Waking Hours 7 G. Willow Wilson Nick Robles, Mat Lopes DC Comics
The Green Lantern: Season Two 7 Grant Morrison Liam Sharp, Steve Oliff DC Comics
Pea, Bee, & Jay Vol. 1 7 Brian “Smitty” Smith Brian “Smitty” Smith HarperAlley
Killadelphia 7 Rodney Barnes Jason Shaw, Luis NCT Image Comics
All Together Now 7 Hope Larson Hope Larson, Hillary Sycamore, Katrina Edwards Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Come Home, Indio: A Memoir 7 Jim Terry Jim Terry Street Noise Books
Basketful of Heads 7 Joe Hill Leomacs, Dave Stewart DC Comics
Gideon Falls 7 Jeff Lemire Andrea Sorrentino, Dave Stewart Image Comics
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 7 Sophie Campbell Sophie Campbell, Ronda Pattison IDW Publishing
I Know You Rider: A Memoir 7 Leslie Stein Leslie Stein Drawn & Quarterly
Black Heroes of the Wild West 7 James Otis Smith James Otis Smith TOON Graphics
Astronauts: Women on the Final Frontier 7 Jim Ottaviani Maris Wicks First Second
Lightfall: The Girl and the Galdurian 7 Tim Probert Tim Probert HarperAlley
My Hero Academia 7 Kōhei Horikoshi Kōhei Horikoshi VIZ Media
Solutions and Other Problems 7 Allie Brosh Allie Brosh Simon and Schuster
Primer 6 Jennifer Muro, Thomas Krajewski Gretel Lusky DC Comics
Ping Pong 6 Taiyo Matsumoto Taiyo Matsumoto VIZ Media
Arlo & Pips: King of the Birds 6 Elise Gravel Elise Gravel HarperAlley
Umma’s Table 6 Yeon-Sik Hong Yeon-Sik Hong Drawn & Quarterly
A Man and His Cat 6 Umi Sakurai Umi Sakurai Square Enix Manga
The Swamp 6 Yoshiharu Tsuge Yoshiharu Tsuge Drawn & Quarterly
Glass Town: The Imaginary World of the Brontës 6 Isabel Greenberg Isabel Greenberg Harry N. Abrams
Noisemakers: 25 Women Who Raised Their Voices and Changed the World 6 Various Various Knopf Books for Young Readers
Wynd 6 James Tynion IV Michael Dialynas BOOM! Studios
Decorum 6 Jonathan Hickman Mike Huddleston Image Comics
Redfork 6 Alex Paknadel Nil Vendrell, Giulia Brusco TKO Studios
Kill A Man 6 Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Steve Orlando Al Morgan AfterShock Comics
Bang! 6 Matt Kindt Wilfredo Torres, Nayoung Kim Dark Horse Books
Parable of the Sower:  A Graphic Novel Adaptation 6 Octavia E. Butler, Damian Duffy John Jennings Harry N. Abrams
Witch Hat Atelier 6 Kamome Shirahama Kamome Shirahama Kodansha Comics
Money Shot 6 Tim Seeley, Sarah Beattie Rebekah Isaacs, Kurt Michael Russell Vault Comics
November 6 Matt Fraction Elsa Charretier, Matt Hollingsworth Image Comics
Shirley and Jamila Save Their Summer 6 Gillian Goerz Gillian Goerz Dial Books
Black Stars Above 6 Lonnie Nadler Jenna Cha, Brad Simpson Vault Comics
Die 6 Kieron Gillen Stephanie Hans Image Comics
The Times I Knew I Was Gay 6 Eleanor Crewes Eleanor Crewes Scribner
Green Lantern: Legacy 6 Minh Lê Andie Tong DC Comics
Reckless 5 Ed Brubaker Sean Phillips, Jacob Phillips Image Comics
Avengers 5 Jason Aaron Various Marvel Comics
What We Don’t Talk About 5 Charlot Kristensen Charlot Kristensen Avery Hill Publishing
Catherine’s War 5 Julia Billet, Claire Fauvel Claire Fauvel HarperAlley
Blood On The Tracks 5 Shuzo Oshimi Shuzo Oshimi Vertical Comics
Child Star 5 Box Brown Box Brown First Second
A Cat Story 5 Ursula Murray Husted Ursula Murray Husted Quill Tree
Hotell 5 John Lees Dalibor Talajić, Lee Loughridge AWA Studios
Lost Soldiers 5 Aleš Kot Luca Casalanguida, Heather Moore Image Comics
Sex Criminals 5 Matt Fraction, Chip Zdarsky Chip Zdarsky Image Comics
Boston Corbett 5 Andy Douglas Day Andy Douglas Day Sonatina
Lonely Receiver 5 Zac Thompson Jen Hickman AfterShock Comics
We Served the People: My Mother’s Stories 5 Emei Burell Emei Burell Archaia
Plunge 5 Joe Hill Stuart Immonen, Dave Stewart DC Comics
The Dark Matter of Mona Starr 5 Laura Lee Gulledge Laura Lee Gulledge Amulet Books
Iron Man 5 Christopher Cantwell C Cafu, Frank D’ARMATA Marvel Comics
Giga 5 Alex Paknadel John Le, ROSH Vault Comics
Titan 5 François Vigneault François Vigneault Oni Press
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin 5 Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird, Tom Waltz Esau Escorza, Isaac Escorza, Luis Antonio Delgado, Kevin Eastman, Samuel Planta IDW Publishing
Consent (for Kids!): Boundaries, Respect, and Being in Charge of You 5 Rachel Brian Rachel Brian Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Be Gay, Do Comics 5 Various Various IDW Publishing
The Plot 5 Michael Moreci Tim Daniel, Kurt Michael Russel Vault Comics
Kodi 5 Jared Cullum Jared Cullum Top Shelf Productions
Justice League Dark 5 Ram V Various DC Comics
The Phantom Twin 5 Lisa Brown Lisa Brown First Second
Undiscovered Country 5 Scott Snyder, Charles Soule Giuseppe Camuncoli, Daniele Orlandini, Matt Wilson Image Comics
Amazing Spider-Man 5 Nick Spencer, Matthew Rosenberg Various Marvel Comics
Fence 5 C.S. Pacat Johanna the Mad BOOM! Studios
Fangs 5 Sarah Andersen Sarah Andersen Andrews McMeel Publishing
The Butcher Of Paris 5 Stephanie Phillips Dean Kotz, Jason Wordie Dark Horse Books
Eight-Lane Runaways 5 Henry McCausland Henry McCausland Fantagraphics
Bug Boys 5 Laura Knetzger Laura Knetzger Random House Graphic
Teen Titans: Beast Boy 5 Kami Garcia Gabriel Picolo DC Comics
Dead Day 5 Ryan Parrott Evgeniy Bornyakov, Juancho Velez AfterShock Comics
Excellence 5 Brandon Thomas Khary Randolph, Emilio Lopez Image Comics
The Last Halloween: Book 1 5 Abby Howard Abby Howard Iron Circus Comics

The full spreadsheet with pivot tables for books, writers, artists, publishers and more is available here.

Regarding Publishers:

DC Comics was again the most popular publisher with 122 different titles.

Marvel was again 2nd place with 90 different titles.

Image stayed at 3rd place with 76 different titles.

VIZ improved to 4th place with 50 different titles.

Dark Horse Books dropped to 5th place with 36 different titles.

There were also 49 Self-Published books that made the list.

The most popular web comics were Simon Hanselmann’s Crisis Zone (8)
Olivia Jaimes’ Nancy (4) and Rachel Smith’s Quarantine Comix (3)


The vast majority of books are listed under their imprint names, not their head publisher names.

Where a reviewer/writer wrote ‘best of’ lists for multiple websites, I’ve cross referenced their lists and removed books that were named twice. I did not think it would be fair if those writers could tip the popularity scale by naming the same book(s) over and over again on multiple websites. Sadly, there was an increase of websites publishing lists with no credit to who (or whom) created the list. In those cases I marked them as either n/a or various but the practice of not crediting writers is a shameful one.

If a writer wrote for multiple sites, but one of those sites picks was a group effort, I did not remove books that are listed twice.

I generally did not include lists that were a mixed of prose books and graphic novels unless there were a significant number of graphic novels on the list.

I did not use lists where the website was not in English and the books appeared to be translated versions.

With inkers and colourists I often, but not always included them within the Artist section. Where there were multiple (usually more than 5) involved in a book, or in the title’s run over the course of the year, various was used instead of listing them all. In some cases I combined those involved even if they worked on the title for different issues.

For simplicity sake, if a list named a specific comic book issue or specific volume of a graphic novel, I removed those specifics and just listed the series title, with rare exceptions. The same goes with issue #s. My apologies to the reviewers of those books.

Some reviewers included books that were published in 2019 or earlier. Normally the amount of times these books were mentioned isn’t significant but I found this year there were a lot more 2019 and earlier books mentioned in these lists. I suspect reviewers having more time on their hands due to Covid were reading unread books from previous years and including them on their lists.

Most of the lists were general ‘best/favourite books’ of 2020, but I also included lists dedicated to young readers, manga, LGBTQ+, etc… What type list is noted on column B in the spreadsheet.

A small number of lists also had rankings and those are included in Column C.

This list of websites this list is compiled from:

A.V. Club https://aux.avclub.com/the-best-comics-of-2020-1845983246
ALA http://www.ala.org/yalsa/2021-great-graphic-novels-teens
Alu https://twitter.com/WSJ_manga/status/1339453430876794882?s=19 (also: https://alu.jp/article/TLPEf6L0gNgxNdmaC81c)
Amino https://aminoapps.com/c/anime/page/blog/top-10-romance-manga-of-2020/3YtB_upP6Zg1prg8LJvbmwL0WDNG5
Amino https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/my-top-30-comics-of-2020-guidelines-honorable-mentions/wPio_uB8WGLQKWZn6VxvpZ8raJjB6v
Amino https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/my-favorite-comics-of-2020-part-1-30-21/NxiM_u3MgM5Q4E3bEZ6DzMke8QKBkX
Amino https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/my-favorite-comics-of-2020-part-2-20-11/aai0_uK1aZqY01e06vYMXDb0KJlwMo
Amino https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/my-top-10-comics-of-2020/baio_uBDZkjGm7qoYLZJ3Dv6d63GbL
Between the Shelves https://between-the-shelves.com/2020/12/2020-yearly-wrap-up/
Big Comic Page https://bigcomicpage.com/2020/12/23/bcps-best-of-2020-ceej-edition/
Big Comic Page https://bigcomicpage.com/2020/12/22/bcps-best-of-2020-mark-edition/
Big In Japan Grayman https://biginjapangrayman.wordpress.com/2020/12/30/top-reads-of-2020/
Bleeding Cool https://bleedingcool.com/comics/james-hepplewhites-top-6-comics-of-2020/
Book by Book https://bookbybook.blogspot.com/2021/01/best-books-read-in-2020.html
Book Riot https://bookriot.com/best-childrens-books-of-2020/
Book Riot https://bookriot.com/queer-comics-and-manga/
Borg https://borg.com/2020/12/18/borgs-best-of-2020-the-best-comics-and-games/
Boston Globe https://apps.bostonglobe.com/arts/graphics/2020/12/best-books-of-2020/
But Why Tho? https://butwhythopodcast.com/2020/12/17/year-in-review-top-comics-of-2020/
But Why Tho? https://butwhythopodcast.com/2020/12/18/year-in-review-top-manga-of-2020/
Canada Live https://canadalive.news/2020/12/30/comics-the-best-of-2020/
CBC https://www.cbc.ca/books/the-best-canadian-comics-of-2020-1.5840897
CBC https://www.cbc.ca/books/the-best-canadian-ya-and-middle-grade-books-of-2020-1.5831743
CBR https://www.cbr.com/best-dc-comics-2020-gift-guide/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/best-indie-comics-2020-gifts-holidays/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/marvel-best-2020-comics-for-gifting/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/best-comics-2020-cbr-editor-picks/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/cbr-editor-picks-the-best-manga-of-2020/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/marvel-comics-best-stories-releases-2020/
CBR https://www.cbr.com/dc-must-read-comics-2020/
Comic Attack https://comicattack.net/canet-top-5-of-2020-fan-poll-results/
Comic Attack https://comicattack.net/ca-top-5-of-2020-fan-poll-results-pt-2/
Comic Book Herald https://www.comicbookherald.com/best-comics-of-2020/
Comic Book Lounge https://comicbooklounge.com/2021/01/05/best-of-2020/
Comic Book Revolution https://www.comicbookrevolution.com/best-of-2020-manga-series/
Comic Book Revolution https://www.comicbookrevolution.com/best-of-2020-comic-book-single-issues/
Comic Book Revolution https://www.comicbookrevolution.com/best-of-2020-comic-book-storylines/
Comic Book Revolution https://www.comicbookrevolution.com/best-of-2020-comic-book-series/
Comic Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/reading-lists-archive/best-single-issue-comics-2020
Comic Booked https://comicbooked.com/comic-bookeds-best-of-2020/
Comic Frontline https://comicfrontline.com/2020/12/13/best-comic-books-of-2020-best-male-female-character-villain-indie-title-1/
Comic Watch https://comic-watch.com/news/comic-watchs-top-dc-comics-picks-of-2020
Comic Watch https://comic-watch.com/news/comic-watchs-top-indie-comic-picks-of-2020
Comic Watch https://comic-watch.com/news/comic-watchs-top-marvel-comics-picks-of-2020
Comic Years https://comicyears.com/comics/the-best-non-superhero-comics-of-2020/
Comicon https://www.comicon.com/2020/12/28/comicons-7-best-ogns-of-2020/
Comicon https://www.comicon.com/2020/12/28/comicons-7-best-comic-series-of-2020/
Comicon https://www.comicon.com/2020/12/28/comicons-7-best-single-issues-of-2020/
Comicon https://www.comicon.com/2020/12/30/comicons-7-best-digital-webcomics-of-2020/
Comics Beat https://www.comicsbeat.com/the-50-best-comics-of-2020/
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/reading-lists-archive/best-comics-2020-comics-bookcase-staff
Comics bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/reading-lists-archive/ariel-baska-2020-comics
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/best-comics-2020-top-5
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/best-comics-2020-6-to-11
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/best-comics-2020-16-to-25
Den of Geek https://www.denofgeek.com/comics/the-best-comics-of-2020/
Dennis Vogen https://dennisvogen.com/2020/12/31/best-comics-of-2020/
Diverse Tech Geek https://www.diversetechgeek.com/anthonys-2020-graphic-novel-picks/
Doom Rocket https://doomrocket.com/best-comics-2020/
Entertainment Weekly https://ew.com/books/the-best-comics-of-2020/
Forbes https://www.forbes.com/sites/robsalkowitz/2020/12/18/the-best-graphic-novels-of-2020/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2021/01/06/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-original-graphic-novels/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2021/01/05/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-contemporary-collections/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2021/01/05/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-vintage-collections/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2020/12/28/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-ongoing-series/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2020/12/24/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-single-issues/
Four Color Apocalypse (Ryan Carey) https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2020/12/29/four-color-apocalypse-2020-year-in-review-top-10-special-mentions/
Geek Cast Radio https://www.geekcastradio.com/comics/top-100-comics-of-2020/
Geek Hard https://geekhardshow.com/2021/01/andrews-picks-ten-best-comics-of-2020/
Geek Tyrant https://geektyrant.com/news/tommys-favorite-things-of-2020
Globe and Mail (behind Paywall) https://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/books/article-the-globe-100-our-favourite-books-of-2020/
God Hates Geeks https://godhatesgeeks.com/the-geeeek-awards-best-comics-of-2020-joker-war-vs-x-of-swords/
GoodReads https://www.goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-graphic-novels-comics-2020
Grovel https://www.grovel.org.uk/category/best-of/best-graphic-novels-of-2020/
Hipinion https://forums.hipinion.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=142718
IGN https://www.ign.com/articles/best-comic-book-series-2020
IGN https://www.ign.com/articles/best-limited-comic-books-graphic-novels-2020
Jenn Haines https://www.facebook.com/jenn.haines.3/posts/10164546654750635?__cft__[0]=AZWbL9duRQcp5LkcAfaDKpK2ILQBaBDmcTZpODGRsZEX0e7PfEFsWPIF9ca8Z4TdwG0EGPOBdrx2WbhsAm_H_FF5mYSw
Library Journal https://www.libraryjournal.com/?detailStory=best-books-of-2020-graphic-novels
Literary Hub https://lithub.com/the-best-reviewed-graphic-literature-of-2020/
London Free Press https://lfpress.com/entertainment/local-arts/graphic-novels-dan-browns-top-picks-of-2020
Looper https://www.looper.com/302819/best-comics-of-2020/
Los Angeles Public Library https://www.lapl.org/books-emedia/lapl-reads/book-lists/best-2020-graphic-novels
Madison Public Library https://www.madisonpubliclibrary.org/reading-and-viewing/book-lists/graphic-novels-2020
Medium https://cryptoscatology.medium.com/the-top-ten-graphic-novels-of-2020-da089f7c6f81
Medium https://level.medium.com/level-chops-it-up-about-the-best-comics-of-2020-c5866e219e95
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-ogn/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-ongoing/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-new-series/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-completed-series/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-one-shot/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-manga/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-webcomic/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-best-digital-first/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2020-yir-single-issue/
Nerdist https://nerdist.com/article/best-comics-of-2020/
New York Public Library – Adults https://www.nypl.org/books-more/recommendations/best-books/adults?f%5B0%5D=terms%3AGraphic%20Novels
New York Public Library – Kids https://www.nypl.org/books-more/recommendations/best-books/kids?f%5B0%5D=terms%3AGraphic%20Novels
New York Public Library – Teens https://www.nypl.org/books-more/recommendations/best-books/teens?f%5B0%5D=terms%3AComics
New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/09/books/review/best-graphic-novels.html?partner=IFTTT
New York Times – Children’s Books https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/02/books/review/best-childrens-books.html
NPR https://apps.npr.org/best-books/#reset=true&tags=comics+%26+graphic+novels&year=2020
Nunes Magician https://www.nunesmagician.com/2020/12/31/22198138/tniaams-top-comic-books-of-2020-marvel-comics-ranking-recommendations
Panel Platter http://www.panelpatter.com/2020/12/seans-favorite-comics-of-2020-long.html
Panel Platter http://www.panelpatter.com/2020/12/james-favorite-comics-for-2020.html
Panel Platter http://www.panelpatter.com/2020/12/mikes-favorite-comics-of-2020.html
Panel Platter http://www.panelpatter.com/2021/01/robs-favorite-comics-of-2020-part-1.html
Panel Platter http://www.panelpatter.com/2021/01/robs-favorite-comics-of-2020-part-2.html
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/best-indie-and-small-press-comics-2020-50-41/
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/best-indie-and-small-press-comics-2020-40-31/
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/best-indie-and-small-press-comics-2020-30-21/
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/best-indie-and-small-press-comics-2020-20-11/
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/best-indie-and-small-press-comics-of-2020-10-2/
Pipedream Comics https://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/the-winner-of-best-indie-and-small-press-comics-2020-is/
Polygon https://www.polygon.com/comics/22179033/best-comics-2020
Pop Culture Squad https://popculturesquad.com/2020/12/22/year-in-review-best-new-comics-of-2020/
Pop Matters https://www.popmatters.com/best-books-2020-fiction-2644659425.html?rebelltitem=23#rebelltitem23
Pop Matters https://www.popmatters.com/best-books-2020-non-fiction-2644659215.html
Portsmouth NH Libraries https://portsmouth.bywatersolutions.com/cgi-bin/koha/opac-shelves.pl?op=view&shelfnumber=1056
Portsmouth NH Libraries https://portsmouth.bywatersolutions.com/cgi-bin/koha/opac-shelves.pl?op=view&shelfnumber=1053
Powells https://www.powells.com/post/lists/the-best-scifi-fantasy-horror-and-graphic-novels-of-2020
Powells https://www.powells.com/post/lists/best-of-kids-and-ya-2020
Publisher Weekly https://best-books.publishersweekly.com/pw/best-books/2020/comics#book/book-1
Publishers Weekly https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/comics/article/85141-kent-state-on-top-of-pw-s-2020-graphic-novel-critics-poll.html
Publishers Weekly https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-book-news/article/85201-children-s-publishers-choose-their-favorite-reads-of-2020.html
Rate Your Music https://rateyourmusic.com/list/mrlackadaisical/favorite-comics-2020/
Review Fix https://reviewfix.com/2020/12/2020-graphic-novel-year-in-review/
Right Stuf https://www.rightstufanime.com/post/Best-Manga-Of-2020
Scary Mommy https://www.scarymommy.com/booked-mindy-kaling-scary-mommy-book-club/
School Library Journal https://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/?detailStory=best-graphic-novels-2020-slj-best-books
School Library Journal https://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/?detailStory=SLJ-Top-10-Manga-of-2020
School Library Journal https://blogs.slj.com/afuse8production/2020/12/19/comics/
Screen Rant https://screenrant.com/2020-best-new-comics-marvel-dc-launched/
Screen Rant https://screenrant.com/best-marvel-dc-comics-missed-overlooked-in-2020/
Seattle Public Library https://www.spl.org/books-and-media/books-and-ebooks/staff-picks/graphic-novels-we-love-2020
Sequential Planet https://sequentialplanet.com/best-comics-of-2020-best-limited-series/
Sequential Planet https://sequentialplanet.com/best-comics-of-2020-best-single-issues/
Sequential Planet https://sequentialplanet.com/best-comics-of-2020-best-new-series/
100 Scope Notes https://100scopenotes.com/2020/12/19/top-20-books-of-2020-the-full-list/
411 Mania https://411mania.com/movies/the-2020-411-comic-book-awards-winners/
Adventures in Poor Taste https://aiptcomics.com/2021/01/03/aipt-comics-podcast-episode-104-best-in-comics-2020/
ALA GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMICS ROUND TABLE http://www.ala.org/rt/gncrt/best-graphic-novels-adults-reading-list
AutoStraddle https://www.autostraddle.com/67-of-the-best-queer-books-of-2020/#comics
Book Riot https://bookriot.com/best-books-of-2020
Broken Frontier https://www.brokenfrontier.com/celebrating-2020-ten-small-press-comics-need-own/
Broken Frontier https://www.brokenfrontier.com/broken-frontier-awards-2020-zoe-thorogood-shazleen-khan-avery-hill-gosh-comics/
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200121216_chipublib_teens/1769533449_best_teen_graphic_novels_and_manga_of_2020
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200049033_chipublib_kids/1772749279_best_fiction_for_younger_readers_of_2020
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200049033_chipublib_kids/1772060709_best_fiction_for_older_readers_of_2020
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200049033_chipublib_kids/1772725699_best_informational_books_for_older_readers_of_2020
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/199702383_chipublib_adults/1772946599_best_books_of_2020
Comic Watch https://comic-watch.com/news/comic-watch-presents-the-2021-annual-watchie-awards-nominees
ComicBook https://comicbook.com/anime/news/2020-comicbook-golden-issue-awards-best-manga-my-hero-academia/
ComicBook https://comicbook.com/comics/news/2020-comicbookcom-golden-issue-awards-best-graphic-novel-dracula/
ComicBook https://comicbook.com/comics/news/2020-comicbookcom-golden-issue-awards-best-ongoing-comic-xmen/
ComicBook https://comicbook.com/comics/news/2020-comicbookcom-golden-issue-awards-best-limited-series-supermans-pal-jimmy-olsen-dc/
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/best-graphic-novels-2020
Cybils http://www.cybils.com/2021/01/2020-finalists-graphic-novels.html
Denver Library https://teens.denverlibrary.org/booklist/best-brightest-teen-graphic-novels-2020
Free Library of Philadelphia https://libwww.freelibrary.org/blog/?action=post&id=4442
Glaad https://www.glaad.org/blog/glaad-announces-nominees-32nd-annual-glaad-media-awards
Gosh! https://goshlondon.com/gosh-best-of/adult-2020/
Gosh! https://goshlondon.com/gosh-best-of/kids-2020/
Gotham Calling https://www.gothamcalling.com/2020s-books-year-part-1/
Gotham Calling https://www.gothamcalling.com/2020s-books-year-part-2/
Gotham Calling https://www.gothamcalling.com/2020s-books-year-part-3/
Gotham Calling https://www.gothamcalling.com/2020s-books-year-part-4/
Gotham Calling https://www.gothamcalling.com/2020s-books-year-part-5/
Graphic Novel Resources https://graphicnovelresources.blogspot.com/2021/01/my-favorite-books-of-2020.html
Graphic Policy https://graphicpolicy.com/2021/01/01/logans-favorite-comics-of-2020/
Graphic Policy https://graphicpolicy.com/2021/01/01/bretts-favorite-comics-of-2020-and-a-reflection-on-the-past-year/
Horn Book https://www.hbook.com/?detailStory=fanfare-2020-booklist
Horror DNA https://www.horrordna.com/features/james-top-10-horror-comics-of-2020
Horror News Network http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/2020-horror-comic-award-winners/
Imagination Soup https://imaginationsoup.net/best-middle-grade-chapter-books-2020/#anchor-4
Iowa City Public Library https://www.icpl.org/books-more/staff-picks/lists/icpl-top-picks-2020-sci-fifantasy-graphic-novels
Kinder Comics https://www.kindercomics.org/blog/25-favorite-print-comics-of-2020
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/best-of/2020/nonfiction/books/
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/best-of/2020/middle-grade/books/
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-lists/best-graphic-ya-books-of-2020
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-lists/best-ya-romance-of-2020/
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-lists/best-ya-biography-and-memoir-of-2020
Level up Entertainment https://levelupentertainment.com/news/2020/12/16/2020-didnt-completely-suck-awards
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-anna
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-pick-2020-teddy
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-arizona-oneill
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-saelan-twerdy
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/2020-s-picks-catherine
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-alyssa-favreau
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-chantal
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-rachel
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-francine
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-mara
Libraririe D+Q https://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2020-gigi
LRM Online https://lrmonline.com/news/best-comics-of-2020-the-comic-source-awards-part-1/
LRM Online https://lrmonline.com/news/best-comics-of-2020-the-comic-source-awards-part-2/
Multnomah County Library http://bestof.multcolib.org/2020/#/tag/comics-graphic
Nerdy Book Club https://nerdybookclub.wordpress.com/2020/12/29/the-2020-nerdies-graphic-novels-announced-by-katherine-sokolowski/
New Retro Wave https://newretrowave.com/2020/12/31/top-10-comics-graphics-novels-of-2020/
Now Read This! https://www.comicsreview.co.uk/nowreadthis/2020/12/18/wins-top-ten-best-and-most-enjoyable-must-read-this-list-2020/
Omaha Public Library http://topshelf.omahalibrary.org/
Rad Raptor https://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/12/30/jeff-conollys-top-10-comic-books-of-2020/
Rad Raptor https://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/12/27/andrews-top-ten-comics-of-2020/
Read Brightly https://www.readbrightly.com/best-books-of-2020-tweens/
Ready Steady Cut https://readysteadycut.com/2021/01/01/the-best-and-worst-comics-from-2020/
Skokie Library https://skokielibrary.info/lists/2121/2020-staff-picks-graphic-novels/
Skokie Library https://skokielibrary.info/lists/2087/2020-staff-picks-2020-grades-4-5/
Skokie Library https://skokielibrary.info/lists/2088/2020-staff-picks-grades-6-8/
Skokie Library https://skokielibrary.info/lists/2119/2020-staff-picks-teen/
Smash Pages http://smashpages.net/2021/01/04/our-favorite-comics-of-2020/#more-26391
Solrad https://solrad.co/solrads-the-best-comics-of-2020
Sora News https://soranews24.com/2020/12/31/10-amazing-manga-to-read-over-the-winter-holidays/
Sputnik Music https://www.sputnikmusic.com/list.php?listid=194593
Syfy https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/comics-wire-best-comics-of-2020-this-weeks-hot-reads
TCJ https://www.tcj.com/the-best-comics-of-2020/
Texas Library Association https://txla.org/news/2021-little-maverick-reading-list-announced/
Texas Library Association https://txla.org/tools-resources/reading-lists/maverick/current-list/
The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/nov/28/best-comics-and-graphic-novels-of-2020
The Guardian (author Pick – Sophie Yanow) https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/dec/06/the-best-books-of-2020-picked-by-our-acclaimed-guest-authors
The Hearld https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/18960140.best-graphic-novels-2020-according-metaphrog-edward-ross-ricky-miller/
The Hollywood Reporter https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/the-best-comics-of-2020
The Indianapolis Public Library https://indypl.bibliocommons.com/list/share/1652485239/1788894799
The Oklahoman https://oklahoman.com/article/5679827/word-balloons-comics-fight-back-despite-challenging-year
The Sun Daily https://www.thesundaily.my/buzz/10-mangas-to-read-before-the-end-of-2020-YN5348818
The Turnaround Blog https://theturnaroundblog.com/2020/11/27/turnarounds-2020-staff-picks-graphic-novels/
The Young Folks https://www.theyoungfolks.com/books/150210/12-best-graphic-novels-of-2020/
Today https://www.today.com/shop/25-best-kids-books-2020-t203124#anchor-GraphicNovels
Toledo Library https://www.toledolibrary.org/blog/great-comics-of-2020
University of Pennsylvania https://www.gse.upenn.edu/news/educators-playbook/best-books-young-readers-2020
Waking Brain Cells https://wakingbraincells.com/2021/01/13/
Washington Post https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/2020-graphic-novels/2020/11/16/f8c1c876-242c-11eb-952e-0c475972cfc0_story.html
What Culture https://whatculture.com/comics/10-best-comic-books-of-2020-2
Why So Blu? https://whysoblu.com/the-best-comics-of-2020/
Xavier Files https://www.xavierfiles.com/2020/12/17/xavier-files-best-comics-of-2020/
Yuricon https://okazu.yuricon.com/2020/12/29/okazu-top-yuri-manga-of-2020/

The Combined Best Comics & Graphic Novels of 2019!

Over the last few months there have been many, many websites with “Best of 2019” lists concerning comic books, manga and graphic novels. If you’ve looked at a few, you may have noticed some of the same books on different lists and seen some unique to only that list.

I went through over 208 different URLs with “Best Of” Lists regarding comics and combined them into a spreadsheet. There are almost 3,200 different listings of books from these websites. I should note that I’ve included books that were given honorable mentions. In short, if somebody thought it was a good book that you should check out, it’s on here. Pivot tables have been created to show which books appeared on the number of lists. Here are the books with 5 mentions or more:

Book Title Count Writer Artist Publisher
House of X/Powers of X 61 Jonathan Hickman Pepe Larraz, R.B. Silva, Marte Gracia Marvel Comics
Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me 55 Mariko Tamaki Rosemary Valero-O’Connell First Second
The Immortal Hulk 42 Al Ewing Joe Bennet Marvel Comics
The Hard Tomorrow 34 Eleanor Davis Eleanor Davis Drawn & Quarterly
They Called Us Enemy 31 George Takei, Justin Eisinger and Steven Scott Harmony Becker Top Shelf Productions
Die 31 Kieron Gillen Stephanie Hans Image Comics
Rusty Brown 28 Chris Ware Chris Ware Pantheon
Guts 28 Raina Telgemeier Raina Telgemeier Graphix
These Savage Shores 26 Ram V Sumit Kumar Vault Comics
Little Bird 25 Darcy Van Poelgeest Ian Bertram Image Comics
New Kid 24 Jerry Craft Jerry Craft Quill Tree Books
DCeased 24 Tom Taylor Trevor Hairsine, Neil Edwards DC Comics
Are You Listening? 23 Tillie Walden Tillie Walden First Second
When I Arrived At The Castle 22 Emily Carroll Emily Carroll Koyama Press
The River at Night 22 Kevin Huizenga Kevin Huizenga Drawn & Quarterly
Once & Future 21 Kieron Gillen Dan Mora, Tamra Bonvillain BOOM! Studios
Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen 20 Matt Fraction Steve Lieber DC Comics
Clyde Fans 20 Seth Seth Drawn & Quarterly
Spider-Man: Life Story 19 Chip Zdarsky Mark Bagley Marvel Comics
Daredevil 19 Chip Zdarsky Marco Checchetto, Lalit Kumar Sharma, & Jorge Fornes Marvel Comics
Criminal 19 Ed Brubaker Sean Phillips Image Comics
Stargazing 19 Jen Wang Jen Wang First Second
Green Lantern 18 Grant Morrison Liam Sharp DC Comics
Hot Comb 18 Ebony Flowers Ebony Flowers Drawn & Quarterly
Bloom 18 Kevin Panetta Savanna Ganucheau First Second
Is This How You See Me? 17 Jaime Hernandez Jaime Hernandez Fantagraphics
Gender Queer 17 Maia Kobabe Maia Kobabe Lion Forge
BTTM FDRS 17 Ezra Claytan Daniels Ben Passmore Fantagraphics
Silver Surfer: Black 16 Donny Cates Tradd Moore & Dave Stewart Marvel Comics
Middlewest 16 Skottie Young Jorge Corona Image Comics
Gideon Falls 16 Jeff Lemire Andrea Sorrentino Image Comics
Kid Gloves 16 Lucy Knisley Lucy Knisley Fantagraphics
This Was Our Pact 16 Ryan Andrews Ryan Andrews First Second
Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations 15 Mira Jacob Mira Jacob One World
Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass 15 Mariko Tamaki Steve Pugh DC Comics
Naomi 14 Brian Michael Bendis, David F. Walker Jamal Campbell DC Comics
Pumpkinheads 14 Rainbow Rowell Faith Erin Hicks First Second
Queen of the Sea 14 Dylan Meconis Dylan Meconis Walker Books
Bitter Root 14 David F. Walker, Chuck Brown Sanford Greene Image Comics
Crowded 14 Christopher Sebela Ro Stein, Ted Brandt Image Comics
Mister Miracle 13 Tom King Mitch Gerads DC Comics
Making Comics 12 Lynda Barry Lynda Barry Drawn & Quarterly
Batman: Last Knight On Earth 12 Scott Snyder Greg Capullo DC Comics
The Wicked + The Divine 12 Kieron Gillen Jamie Mckelvie, Matt Wilson Image Comics
Invisible Kingdom 11 G. Willow Wilson Christian Ward, Christian Ward Dark Horse Comics
Pittsburgh 11 Frank Santoro Frank Santoro New York Review Books
Paper Girls 11 Brian K. Vaughan Cliff Chiang, Matthew Wilson Image Comics
Best Friends 11 Shannon Hale LeUyen Pham First Second
Witch Hat Atelier 11 Kamome Shirahama Kamome Shirahama Kodansha Comics
Giant Days 11 John Allison Max Sarin BOOM! Studios
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man 10 Tom Taylor Juan Cabal Marvel Comics
Lois Lane 10 Greg Rucka Mike Perkin DC Comics
Something Is Killing the Children 10 James Tynion IV Werther Dell’edera, Miquel Muerto BOOM! Studios
Assassin Nation 10 Kyle Starks Erica Henderson Image Comics
Superman Smashes The Klan 10 Gene Luen Yang Gurihiru DC Comics
Murder Falcon 10 Daniel Warren Johnson Daniel Warren Johnson Image Comics
X-Men 9 Jonathan Hickman Leinil Francis Yu Marvel Comics
Batman: Curse of the White Knight 9 Sean Murphy Sean Murphy DC Comics
Second Coming 9 Mark Russell Cayetano Valenzuela, Richard Pace Ahoy Comics
This Woman’s Work 9 Julie Delporte Julie Delporte Drawn & Quarterly
White Bird 9 R.J. Palacio R.J. Palacio Knopf Books for Young Readers
Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt 9 Kieron Gillen Caspar Wijngaard Dynamite
Our Dreams at Dusk: Shimanami Tasogare 9 Yuhki Kamatani Yuhki Kamatani Seven Seas Entertainment
Blackbird 9 Sam Humphries Jen Bartel Image Comics
The Plot 9 Tim Daniel, Michael Moreci Joshua Hixson Vault Comics
The White Trees 9 Chip Zdarsky Kris Anka Image Comics
Kiss Number 8 9 Colleen AF Venable Ellen T. Crenshaw First Second
Doomsday Clock 9 Geoff Johns Gary Frank, Brad Anderson DC Comics
I Was Their American Dream 9 Malaka Gharib Malaka Gharib Clarkson Potter
Coda 9 Simon Spurrier Matias Bergara BOOM! Studios
Nancy: A Comic Collection 8 Olivia James Olivia James Andrews McMeel Publishing
Absolute Carnage 8 Donny Cates Ryan Stegman Marvel Comics
Mooncakes 8 Suzanne Walker Wendy Xu Oni Press
Clue: Candlestick 8 Dash Shaw Dash Shaw IDW Publishing
Leaving Richard’s Valley 8 Michael DeForge Michael DeForge Drawn & Quarterly
Captain Marvel 8 Kelly Thompson Lee Garbett, Carmen Carnero, James Stokoe, Annapaola Martello Marvel Comics
Ascender 8 Jeff Lemire Dustin Nguyen Image Comics
Ice Cream Man 8 W. Maxwell Prince Martin Morazzo Image Comics
Batman 8 Tom King Various DC Comics
Blank Canvas: My So-Called Artist’s Journey 8 Akiko Higashimura Akiko Higashimura Seven Seas Entertainment
Cats Of The Louvre 8 Taiyo Matsumoto Taiyo Matsumoto VIZ Media
The Okay Witch 8 Emma Steinkellner Emma Steinkellner Aladdin Books
Grass 8 Keum Suk Gendry-Kim Keum Suk Gendry-Kim Drawn & Quarterly
Bad Gateway 8 Simon Hanselmann Simon Hanselmann Fantagraphics
Buffy the Vampire Slayer 7 Jordie Bellaire Dan Mora, Raul Angulo BOOM! Studios
Harleen 7 Stjepan Sejic Stjepan Sejic DC Comics
Marauders 7 Gerry Duggan Matteo Lolli Marvel Comics
Road of Bones 7 Rich Douek Alex Cormack IDW Publishing
Sentient 7 Jeff Lemire Gabriel Walta TKO Studios
Frogcatchers 7 Jeff Lemire Jeff Lemire Gallery 13
Runaways 7 Rainbow Rowell Various Marvel Comics
Conan the Barbarian 7 Jason Aaron Mahmud Asrar, Gerrardo Zaffino and Garry Brown Marvel Comics
A Fire Story 7 Brian Fies Brian Fies Harry N. Abrams
The Handmaid’s Tale 7 Margaret Atwood Renée Nault Nan A. Talese
Dial H for Hero 7 Sam Humphries Arist Devn, Joe Quinones DC Comics
Sobek 7 James Stokoe James Stokoe Shortbox
Venom 7 Donny Cates Ryan Stegman, Mark Bagley, Iban Coello Marvel Comics
Justice League 7 Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV Jorge Jimenez, Francis Manapul DC Comics
In Waves 7 A.J. Dungo A.J. Dungo Nobrow
Waves 7 Ingrid Chabbert Carole Maurel Archaia
Komi Can’t Communicate 6 Tomohito Oda Tomohito Oda VIZ Media
Ironheart 6 Eve Ewing Lucian Vecchio Marvel Comics
The Batman Who Laughs 6 Scott Snyder Jock, David Baron DC Comics
Money Shot 6 Tim Seeley, Sarah Beattie Rebekah Isaacs Vault Comics
King Thor 6 Jason Aaron Esad Ribić, Ive Svorcina Marvel Comics
Snow, Glass, Apples 6 Neil Gaiman Colleen Doran Dark Horse Comics
Sabrina the Teenage Witch 6 Kelly Thompson Veronica Fish Archie Comics
Cannabis: The Illegalization of Weed in America 6 Box Brown Box Brown First Second
Bradley of Him 6 Connor Willumsen Connor Willumsen Koyama Press
The War of the Realms 6 Jason Aaron Russell Dauterman Marvel Comics
Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy: A Graphic Novel 6 Rey Terciero Bre Indigo Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Fearscape 6 Ryan O’Sullivan Andrea Mutti Vault Comics
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 6 Kevin Eastman, Bobby Curnow, Tom Waltz Various IDW Publishing
East of West 6 Jonathan Hickman Nick Dragotta Image Comics
Thor 6 Jason Aaron Mike del Mundo Marvel Comics
The Walking Dead 6 Robert Kirkman Charlie Adlard, Cliff Rathburn Image Comics
Off Season 6 James Sturm James Sturm Drawn & Quarterly
Copra 6 Michel Fiffe Michel Fiffe Image Comics
Sara 6 Garth Ennis Steve Epting, Elizabeth Breitweiser TKO Studios
The Drifting Classroom HC 5 Kazuo Umezz Kazuo Umezz VIZ Media
Outer Darkness 5 John Layman Afu Chan Image Comics
Angel 5 Bryan Edward Hill Gleb Melnikov, Gabriel Cassata BOOM! Studios
Internet Crusader 5 George Wylesol George Wylesol Avery Hill Publishing
X-Force 5 Benjamin Percy Joshua Cassara Marvel Comics
Far Sector 5 N.K. Jemisin Jamal Campbell DC Comics
Commute: An Illustrated Memoir of Female Shame 5 Erin Williams Erin Williams Harry N. Abrams
For Real 5 James Romberger James Romberger Uncivilized Books
Bezimena 5 Nina Bunjevac Nina Bunjevac Fantagraphics
How I Tried To Be A Good Person 5 Ulli Lust Ulli Lust Fantagraphics
Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: Crisis in a Half Shell #6 5 James Tynion IV Freddie E. Williams I, Jeremy Colwell, Kevin Eastman IDW Publishing
Meet the Skrulls 5 Robbie Thompson Marcos Martin Marvel Comics
Kramer’s Ergot #10 5 Various Various Fantagraphics
Faithless 5 Brian Azzarello Maria Llovet BOOM! Studios
Bury the Lede 5 Gaby Dunn Claire Roe BOOM! Studios
Excellence 5 Brandon Thomas Khary Randolph, Emilio Lopez Image Comics
Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival 5 Various Various Harry N. Abrams
The Unstoppable Wasp 5 Jeremy Whitley Gurihiru Marvel Comics
Cannonball 5 Kelsey Wroten Kelsey Wroten Uncivilized Books
Usagi Yojimbo 5 Stan Sakai Stan Sakai IDW Publishing
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Vol 4: The Tempest 5 Alan Moore Kevin O’Neill Top Shelf Productions
Amazing Spider-Man 5 Nick Spencer, Clay Chapman, Zeb Wells, Keaton Patti Various Marvel Comics
Reincarnation Stories 5 Kim Deitch Kim Deitch Fantagraphics
Penny Nichols 5 M.K. Reed, Greg Means Matt Wiegle Top Shelf Productions
Grip 5 Lale Westvind Lale Westvind Perfectly Acceptable Press
Wasted Space 5 Michael Moreci Hayden Sherman Vault Comics
I Know What I Am: The Life and Times of Artemisia Gentileschi 5 Gina Siciliano Gina Siciliano Fantagraphics
American Carnage 5 Bryan Hill Leandro Fernandez DC Comics
Beastars 5 Paru Itagaki Paru Itagaki VIZ Media
Alienation 5 Inés Estrada Inés Estrada Fantagraphics
Swimming In Darkness 5 Lucas Harari Lucas Harari Arsenal Pulp Press
Monstress 5 Marjorie Liu Sana Takeda Image Comics
Operatic 5 Kyo Maclear Byron Eggenschwiler Groundwood Books
Skip 5 Molly Mendoza Molly Mendoza Nobrow
Creation 5 Sylvia Nickerson Sylvia Nickerson Drawn & Quarterly
Pilu of the Woods 5 Mai K. Nguyen Mai K. Nguyen Oni Press
Black Hammer: Age of Doom 5 Jeff Lemire Dean Ormston, Dave Stewart Dark Horse Comics
King of King Court 5 Travis Dandro Travis Dandro Drawn & Quarterly
Cosmoknights 5 Hannah Templer Hannah Templer Top Shelf Productions
Marvel Comics #1000 5 Various Various Marvel Comics
Friendo 5 Alex Paknadel Martin Simmonds Vault Comics
The Wild Storm 5 Warren Ellis Jon Davis Hunt DC Comics
Canto 5 David M. Booher Drew Zucker IDW Publishing

The full spreadsheet with pivot tables for books, writers, artists, publishers and more is available here.

Regarding Publishers:

This year DC Comics was the most popular publisher with 97 different titles.

Marvel was 2nd place with 83 different titles.

Image dropped to 3rd with 78 different titles.

Dark Horse had 43 different titles.

Fantagraphics  had 41 different titles.

55 Self-Published books made the list too.


One thing I tried be more consistent with this year was using the imprint name with publishers. In the past I would put EG Raina Telgemeier’s books under the umbrella company name Scholastic instead of it’s imprint name Graphix, then I would put First Second books under imprint name First Second and not their umbrella company name of Macmillan. Now they are all under the imprint name and that applies to comic book publishers as well.

Where a reviewer/writer wrote ‘best of’ lists for multiple websites, I’ve cross referenced their lists and removed books that were named twice. I did not think it would be fair if those writers could tip the popularity scale by naming the same book(s) over and over again on multiple websites. Sadly, there was an increase of websites publishing lists with no credit to who (or whom) created the list. In those cases I marked them as Unknown but the practice of not crediting writers is a shameful one.

If a writer wrote for multiple sites, but one of those sites picks was a group effort, I did not remove books that are listed twice.

I generally did not include lists that were a mixed of prose books and graphic novels unless there were a significant number of graphic novels on the list.

I did not use lists where the website was not in English and the books appeared to be translated versions.

With inkers and colourists I often, but not always included them within the Artist section. Where there were multiple (usually more than 5) involved in a book, or in the title’s run over the course of the year, various was used instead of listing them all. In some cases I combined those involved even if they worked on the title for different issues.

For simplicity sake, if a list named a specific comic book issue or specific volume of a graphic novel, I removed those specifics and just listed the series title, with rare exceptions. The same goes with issue #s. The vast majority of reviewers listed House of X and Powers of X as one series. There were a few odd cases of a reviewer picking a single issue or only one of those series, I’ve listed them as the combined House of X/Powers of X. Also, 4 people chose Bad Weekend: Criminal – I changed it to just Criminal as that’s what most reviewers picked. My apologies to the reviewers of those books.

Some reviewers included books that were published in 2018 or earlier. Normally the amount of times these books were mentioned isn’t significant but this year one book is. Mister Miracle which was popular on last years list (when it was running as a comic book) is also popular on this years list when it was collected and published as a graphic novel.

Most of the lists were general ‘best/favourite books’ of 2019, but I also included lists dedicated to young readers, manga, LGBTQ+, etc… What type list is noted on column B in the spreadsheet.

A small number of lists also had rankings and those are included in Column C.

This list of websites this list is compiled from:

411 Mania https://411mania.com/movies/the-2019-411-comic-book-awards-house-of-x-batman-conan-more/
Adventures In Poor Taste https://www.adventuresinpoortaste.com/2020/01/07/aipts-favorite-comics-of-2019/
Advocate https://www.advocate.com/books/2019/12/23/best-lgbtq-graphic-novels-2019
Affino https://www.affino.com/blogs/my-blog–stefan/best-of-entertainment-for-2019—albums-songs-movies-tv-and-graphic-novels
Already has another list? https://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/01/03/rad-raptors-top-ten-comics-of-2019/
Amazon https://www.amazon.com/b/ref=amb_link_7?ie=UTF8&node=17296227011
Amazon.ca https://www.amazon.ca/s?i=stripbooks&bbn=17932503011&rh=n%3A916520%2Cn%3A2418666011%2Cn%3A2418668011%2Cn%3A3034670011%2Cn%3A17932503011%2Cn%3A13932641&dc&fst=as%3Aoff&qid=1575173553&rnid=927726&ref=sr_pg_1
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-guidelines-and-honorable-mentions/Q8iX_ulXVbYbYn2klkjBn8dL6l3JMd
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-50-41/zqix_uDpgp2mB2qxBoEQXQb2w2wMGg
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-40-31/NxiM_u3eDBa4Dxl7LWkBYboq2VmL43
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-30-21/EJiP_uvZ5dKDvM4n8QGPamd6Y2zNj
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-20-11/k2iG_upYKGdmrrBwYvGE6LWKjWeGWx
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/kitemans-top-50-comics-of-2019-10-1/xxi2_u38ger2wGYJpPww7abw5W0DEo
Animo Apps https://aminoapps.com/c/comics/page/blog/comics-best-of-2019/Q8iX_ulo3PnoQPB3g1BRBdqXndLJ0l
Austin Texas Library https://library.austintexas.gov/recommended/whats-hot/721800
AutoStraddle https://www.autostraddle.com/55-of-the-best-queer-books-of-2019/
AV Club https://aux.avclub.com/the-20-best-comics-of-2019-1840464630
Berkeley Place https://berkeleyplaceblog.com/2019/12/11/my-favorite-comics-of-2019/
Big Comic Page https://bigcomicpage.com/2019/12/17/bcps-best-of-2019-mark-edition/
Big Comics Page https://bigcomicpage.com/2019/12/17/bcps-best-of-2019-ceej-edition/
Big Shiny Robot https://bigshinyrobot.com/editorial/the-wizeguy-best-of-2019/
Black Sci-Fi https://blacksci-fi.com/top-black-comics-of-2019/
Booklist https://www.booklistonline.com/Top-10-Graphic-Novels-2019-Sarah-Hunter/pid=9722377?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
Booklist https://www.booklistonline.com/Top-10-Graphic-Novels-for-Youth-2019-Sarah-Hunter/pid=9722320
Bookriot https://bookriot.com/2019/12/06/2019-graphic-memoirs/
Borg https://borg.com/2019/12/29/borgs-best-of-2019-the-best-in-comics/
Broken Frontier http://www.brokenfrontier.com/broken-frontier-awards-2019-announcing-winners/
Brooklyn Public Library https://www.bklynlibrary.org/
But Why Tho? https://butwhythopodcast.com/2019/12/25/top-comics-of-2019/
But Why Tho? https://butwhythopodcast.com/2019/12/27/year-in-review-top-comic-issues-of-2019/
CBC https://www.cbc.ca/books/the-best-canadian-comics-of-2019-1.5382861
Chicago Public Library https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200121216_chipublib_teens/1526338949_best_teen_graphic_novels_and_manga_of_2019
Comic Attack https://comicattack.net/canet-2019-fan-poll-results-pt-1/
Comic Attack https://comicattack.net/canet-2019-fan-poll-results-pt-2/
Comic Book Herald https://www.comicbookherald.com/the-best-comics-of-2019/
Comic Book Lounge https://comicbooklounge.com/2020/01/01/2019-books/
Comic Book Revolution https://www.comicbookrevolution.com/top-10-comic-books-of-2019/
Comic Front Line https://comicfrontline.com/2019/12/02/best-comic-books-of-2019-cover-artist-event-one-shot-cover/
Comic Frontline https://comicfrontline.com/2019/12/23/best-comic-books-of-2019-best-1-under-the-radar-series-mini-series-shocking-moment-new-series/
Comic Frontline https://comicfrontline.com/2019/12/30/best-comic-books-of-2019-best-writer-penciler-ongoing-series-publisher-single-issue/
Comic Frontline https://comicfrontline.com/2020/01/06/best-comic-books-of-2019-winners/
Comicbook https://comicbook.com/comics/2019/12/31/the-2019-golden-issue-nominees/#10
ComicBooked https://comicbooked.com/comic-bookeds-best-of-2019/
Comicon http://www.comicon.com/2019/12/31/comicons-most-progressive-comics-of-2019/
Comicon http://www.comicon.com/2019/12/27/comicons-7-best-comic-series-of-2019/
Comicon http://www.comicon.com/2019/12/27/comicons-7-best-ogns-of-2019/
Comicon http://www.comicon.com/2019/12/31/comicons-5-best-digital-webcomics-of-2019/
Comics and More https://comics-and-more.blogspot.com/2020/01/top-ten-comics-of-2019.html
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/24/best-comics-of-2019-contributor-picks
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/27/best-single-issues-of-2019-house-of-x-superman-and-the-walking-dead
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/27/best-new-comics-series-of-2019-vault-comics-undiscovered-country-dawn-of-x-and-more
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/28/best-comics-of-2019-16-25
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/28/best-comics-of-2019-6-15
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2019/12/29/best-comics-of-2019-1-5
Comics Bookcase https://www.comicsbookcase.com/updates/2020/1/6/best-graphic-novels-of-2019-bttm-fdrs-guts-the-replacer-rusty-brown-and-more
Comics Bulletin http://comicsbulletin.com/comics-bulletins-best-of-2019-part-1-the-series/
Comics Bulletin http://comicsbulletin.com/comics-bulletins-best-of-2019-part-2-the-stories/
Comics The Gathering https://www.comicsthegathering.com/blogs/stephengervais/13342/our-favorite-books-2019
ComicsBeat https://www.comicsbeat.com/the-best-comics-of-2019/
Cosmic Comics https://www.cosmiccomics.vegas/reviews/reviews-comics/top-comic-books-of-2019/
Cybils http://www.cybils.com/2020/01/2019-finalists-graphic-novels.html
Den of Geek https://www.denofgeek.com/us/books/284857/best-comics-of-2019
Denver Library https://kids.denverlibrary.org/booklist/best-brightest-graphic-novels-2019
Doom Rocket https://doomrocket.com/best-comics-2019/
Drawn & Quarterly Bookstore http://mtl.drawnandquarterly.com/posts/staff-picks-2019-flore
Entertainment Weekly https://ew.com/books/2019/12/20/the-best-comics-of-2019/
Entropy https://entropymag.org/best-of-2019-comics-graphic-novels/
Fantagraphics http://fantagraphics.com/flog/whats-in-store-best-comix-of-2019/
Folio https://www.foliomag.com/books-print-people/
Forbes https://www.forbes.com/sites/robsalkowitz/2019/12/13/the-best-graphic-novels-of-2019/#702938ab584d
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/08/four-color-apocalypse-year-in-review-top-ten-original-graphic-novels/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/08/four-color-apocalypse-2019-year-in-review-top-ten-special-mentions/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/07/four-color-apocalypse-2019-year-in-review-top-ten-collected-editions-contemporary/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/06/four-color-apocalypse-2019-year-in-review-top-ten-collected-editions-vintage/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/04/four-color-apocalypse-2019-year-in-review-top-ten-ongoing-series/
Four Color Apocalypse https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2019/12/01/four-color-apocalypse-2019-year-in-review-top-ten-single-issues/
Fox Force Five News http://www.foxforcefivenews.com/top-10-comics-of-2019-featuring-invisible-kingdom-sentient-these-savage-shores/
Free Library of Philadelphia https://libwww.freelibrary.org/blog/post/3972
Fully Booked https://www.fullybookedonline.com/books/best-books-of-2019/graphic-novel-and-manga.html
Gamespot https://www.gamespot.com/gallery/the-best-comics-and-graphic-novels-of-2019/2900-3330/
Geek Cast Radio https://www.geekcastradio.com/comics/top-100-comics-of-2019/
Geek Hard Show https://geekhardshow.com/2020/01/andrews-picks-ten-best-comics-of-2019/?doing_wp_cron=1578192893.4391438961029052734375
Geekade https://geekade.com/staff-picks-best-book-or-comic
Gizmodo https://io9.gizmodo.com/our-favorite-comics-of-2019-1840377374
Glaad https://www.glaad.org/mediaawards/31/2020%20nominees
Good Reads https://www.goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-graphic-novels-comics-2019
Gosh! https://www.goshlondon.com/blog/2019/11/13/the-gosh-best-of-2019-kids
Gosh! https://www.goshlondon.com/blog/2019/11/13/the-gosh-best-of-2019-adult
Graphic Novel Resources https://graphicnovelresources.blogspot.com/2020/01/my-favorite-graphic-novels-of-2019.html
Graphic Policy https://graphicpolicy.com/2020/01/01/alexs-best-comics-of-2018-2/
Grovel http://www.grovel.org.uk/category/best-of/best-graphic-novels-of-2019/
Heroic Girls http://www.heroicgirls.com/the-20-best-graphic-novels-of-2019/
Hipinion https://forums.hipinion.com/viewtopic.php?t=132816&p=8225146
Hipinion https://forums.hipinion.com/viewtopic.php?p=8245968#p8245968
Hollywood Reporter https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/best-comics-2019-1265254
Horror DNA https://www.horrordna.com/features/james-top-10-horror-comics-of-2019
Horror News Network http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/horror-news-networks-comic-awards-2019-best-anthology/
Horror News Network http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/horror-news-networks-comic-awards-2019-best-one-shot/
Horror News Network http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/horror-news-networks-comic-awards-2019-best-mini-series/
Horror News Network http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/horror-news-networks-comic-awards-2019-series-of-the-year/
Huffington Post India https://www.huffingtonpost.in/entry/best-graphic-novels-of-2019_in_5ddf7e5ee4b0d50f329ca1f2
Hyperallergic https://hyperallergic.com/531363/best-of-2019-our-top-25-books/
IGN https://www.ign.com/articles/2019/12/05/best-comic-book-series-2019
IGN https://www.ign.com/articles/2019/12/05/best-limited-comic-book-mini-series-2019
IGN https://www.ign.com/articles/2019/12/05/best-original-graphic-novel-2019
Imagination Soup https://imaginationsoup.net/best-childrens-nonfiction-books-2019/
Imagination Soup https://imaginationsoup.net/2019-best-middle-grade-chapter-books-graphic-novels/
Inside Pulse https://insidepulse.com/2019/12/20/the-column-top-10-comics-of-2019/
Iowa City Public Library https://www.icpl.org/books-more/staff-picks/lists/icpls-favorite-books-2019-graphic-novels
Jenn Haines Picks https://www.facebook.com/jenn.haines.3/posts/10162725101695635
John Lees https://www.patreon.com/posts/my-top-ten-of-32576302
Kinder Comics https://www.kindercomics.org/blog/2019favorites
Kirkus https://www.kirkusreviews.com/lists/best-middle-grade-graphic-novels-of-2019/new-kid-craft/
Levelup Entertainment https://levelupentertainment.com/blog/2019/12/13/2019-didnt-completely-suck-awards-best-game-t62g5
Library Journal https://www.libraryjournal.com/?detailStory=best-graphic-novels-2019-best-books
Los Angeles Public Library https://lapl.org/collections-resources/lapl-reads/book-lists/best-2019-graphic-novels
Manga Worth Reading https://mangaworthreading.co/manga-worth-reading-2019/
Monkeys Fighting Robots https://monkeysfightingrobots.co/best-comic-book-single-issues-of-2019/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-year-in-review-anthology/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-translated/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-reprint/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-digital-first/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-webcomic/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-ongoing/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-ogn/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-limited-series/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-one-shot/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-best-single-issue/
Multiversity Comics http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2019-in-review-new-series/
Multnomah County Library http://bestof.multcolib.org/2019/
Nerdy Book Club https://nerdybookclub.wordpress.com/2019/12/30/the-2019-nerdies-graphic-novels-announced-by-katherine-sokolowski/
New Retro Wave https://newretrowave.com/2019/12/15/top-ten-comics-of-2019/
New York Public Library https://www.nypl.org/bestbooksadults2019
New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/02/books/review/best-childrens-books.html
New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/17/books/review/best-comics-of-the-year-hillary-chute-ed-park.html
Newsarama https://www.newsarama.com/48427-best-shots-the-best-of-2019.html
Nijomu http://www.nijomu.com/reviews/comics-i-enjoyed-in-2019/
NPR https://apps.npr.org/best-books/#tags=comics+%26+graphic+novels&view=covers&year=2019
Omaha Public Library http://topshelf.omahalibrary.org/
Outright Geekery https://www.outrightgeekery.com/2019/12/27/family-comic-friday-best-2019/
Outright Geekery https://www.outrightgeekery.com/2019/12/26/best-new-comic-series-of-2019/
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2019/12/seans-favorite-comics-of-2019.html
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2019/12/james-favorite-comics-of-2019.html
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2019/12/mikes-25-favorite-comics-of-2019.html
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2019/12/neils-favourite-comics-of-2019.html
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2020/01/robs-favorite-comics-of-2019-part-1.html
Panel Patter http://www.panelpatter.com/2020/01/robs-favorite-comics-of-2019-part-2.html
Paste https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2019/12/holiday-gift-guide-comic-book-readers-2019.html
Paul’s Picks https://paulspicks.blog/2019/12/23/paulspicks-best-graphic-novels-of-2019/
Pipe Dream Comics http://pipedreamcomics.co.uk/indie-comic-of-the-year-2019-50-41/
Pipeline Comics https://www.pipelinecomics.com/my-top-10-favorite-bd-albums-of-2019/
Polygon https://www.polygon.com/comics/2019/2/8/18215983/best-comics-2019-dc-marvel-image-collections
Pop Matters https://www.popmatters.com/best-books-2019-fiction-2641548365.html
Pop Matters https://www.popmatters.com/best-books-2019-non-fiction-2641136347.html
Powells https://www.powells.com/post/lists/best-science-fiction-fantasy-horror-and-graphic-novels-of-2019
Publisher’s Weekly https://best-books.publishersweekly.com/pw/best-books/2019/comics
Publisher’s Weekly https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/comics/article/81991-they-called-us-enemy-tops-pw-s-graphic-novel-critics-poll.html
Publisher’s Weekly https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-book-news/article/82038-children-s-publishers-choose-their-favorite-reads-of-2019.html
Rad Raptor https://radraptor.com/index.php/2019/12/21/andrews-top-ten-comics-of-2019/
Rad Raptor http://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/01/01/jeff-conollys-top-10-comics-of-2019/
Rad Raptor https://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/01/03/rad-raptors-top-ten-comics-of-2019/
Rad Raptor https://radraptor.com/index.php/2020/01/06/tims-top-ten-comics-of-2019/
Ranker https://www.ranker.com/list/new-manga-2019/anna-lindwasser
Read Brightly https://www.readbrightly.com/middle-grade-books-2019/
Reading with a flight ring https://readingwithaflightring.weebly.com/my-best-books-of-the-week/my-best-books-for-2019
Readings https://www.readings.com.au/news/our-favourite-graphic-novels-and-comics-for-kids-in-2019
Ready Steady Cut https://readysteadycut.com/2020/01/01/the-best-comics-of-2019/
Salon https://www.salon.com/2020/01/04/5-must-read-graphic-novels-you-missed-last-year/
Sam Noir Picks https://www.facebook.com/sam.noir.90/posts/1344224295749268
School Library Journal https://www.slj.com/?detailStory=best-graphic-novels-2019-slj-best-books
School Library Journal http://blogs.slj.com/afuse8production/2019/12/19/31-days-31-lists-2019-comics-graphic-novels/
School Library Journal https://www.slj.com/?detailStory=top-10-manga
Screen Rant https://screenrant.com/best-indie-comics-miniseries-2019/
Screen Rant https://screenrant.com/best-marvel-comics-2019-miniseries/
Screen Rant https://screenrant.com/best-dc-miniseries-2019/
Shortlist https://www.shortlist.com/lists/best-books-roundup-401608
Skokie Library https://skokielibrary.info/lists/1531/2019-staff-picks-graphic-novels/
Sliver of Ice https://sliverofice.com/comics/the-best-and-the-worst-of-2019-comic-books?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SheHulk-67AndGreen-AComicBlog+%286%277%22+and+Green+-+A+Comics+Blog%29
Soda and Telepaths https://sodaandtelepaths.com/staff-picks-top-comic-book-releases-of-2019/
SyFy https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/year-in-review-best-new-comic-books-2019
Syfy https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/syfy-fangrrls-favorite-comics-of-2019
Texas Library Association https://txla.org/tools-resources/reading-lists/maverick/current-list/
Texas Library Association https://txla.org/tools-resources/reading-lists/little-maverick/current-list/
The Comics Journal http://www.tcj.com/the-best-comics-of-2019/
The Globe and Mail https://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/books/article-the-globe-100-books-that-shaped-2019/ (paywall)
The Good Men Project https://goodmenproject.com/all-things-geek/all-things-geek-best-books-of-2019-gift-guide-xela/
The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/nov/30/best-comics-and-graphic-novels-of-2019
The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/dec/08/best-graphic-novels-of-2019-seth-chris-ware
The Herald https://www.heraldscotland.com/arts_ents/18106162.graphic-content-choice-best-graphic-novels-year/
The Herald https://www.heraldscotland.com/arts_ents/18085772.graphic-content-cartoonists-choose-best-year/
The Irish Times https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/the-best-comics-of-2019-stunning-debuts-canon-revamps-and-more-1.4109568
The London Free Press https://lfpress.com/entertainment/books/brown-ruinworld-tops-my-list-of-the-best-graphic-novels-of-2019
The Oklamian https://oklahoman.com/article/5650625/word-balloons-top-10-comics-series-of-2019?custom_click=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+newsok%2Fhome+%28NewsOK.com+RSS+-+Home%29
The Oklamian https://oklahoman.com/article/5651313/word-balloons-top-10-graphic-novels-of-2019
The Quietus https://thequietus.com/articles/27603-behold-2019-comics-best-of-review
The Strand https://www.strandbooks.com/strand-blog?utm_content=buffer28c09#/entry/entry262-best-of-comics
The Turnaround Blog https://theturnaroundblog.com/2019/11/28/turnarounds-2019-staff-picks-graphic-novels/
Thrillist https://www.thrillist.com/entertainment/nation/best-graphic-novels-comic-books-2019
Villain Media https://villainmedia.com/jorge-solis-top-10-comic-books-of-2019/
Waking Brain Cells https://wakingbraincells.com/2020/01/09/best-graphic-novels-2019/
Washington Post https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/the-best-graphic-novels-memoirs-and-story-collections-of-2019/2019/11/20/447e7f76-0722-11ea-8292-c46ee8cb3dce_story.html
What Culture http://whatculture.com/comics/10-best-comic-books-of-2019
Why So Blu? https://whysoblu.com/the-best-comics-of-2019/
Wired https://www.wired.com/story/best-comics-2019/
YA Book Nerd https://yabooknerd.blogspot.com/2020/01/top-ten-graphic-novels-of-2019.html?m=0
YALSA http://www.yalsa.ala.org/thehub/2020/01/02/2020-great-graphic-novels-for-teens-list-announced/
YALSA http://www.ala.org/yalsa/2020-great-graphic-novels-teens
Yuricon http://okazu.yuricon.com/2019/12/29/okazu-top-yuri-manga-of-2019/


2019 Guelph Comic Jam & 15th Annual Joe Shuster Awards

Brenden Fletcher @ 2019 Guelph Comics Jam

Brenden Fletcher @ 2019 Guelph Comics Jam

Last weekend I went to Guelph to go to the Guelph Comic Jam. It was sponsored by The Dragon, a 3 chain store owned and run by Jennifer Haines. The Dragon is an Eisner Award winning comic shop that is different from other shops as it is very family friendly store. There are two stores in Guelph and one in a nearby Milton, Ontario. I witnessed one comic creator beg Jennifer to open a 4th store near where he lived saying he would happily work there. I could write a lot more about the all the wonderful work that Jennifer does for the comics community but I think she’d rather I focus on the event she just put on.

The Comics Jam was held in the Old Quebec Street Shoppes @ 55 Wyndham St N, Guelph, ON where the Dragon’s flagship store is. It was free to attend and the Jam was in the isles of the mall. I had a good time chatting with a lot of creators, among them Sam Noir, Jay Stephens, Brenden Fletcher & Andy Stanleigh. I also enjoyed a few conversations with Robert Haines too. I took photos which you can see here.

On the night of the 14th, I also attended the 15th Annual Joe Shuster Awards. Kevin Boyd did the presenting of the ceremony, except for Jennifer Haines who presented the The Dragon Award (Comics for Kids). Robert Haines also presented a surprise T.M. Maple Award to his wife Jennifer. My audio recording and pictures of the ceremony are here. It was particularly nice to see Gerhard, who was the background artist on Cerebus get inducted to the Hall of Fame.

Gerhard gets inducted to the 2019 Joe Shuster Awards Hall of Fame

I left fairly early on Sunday as I had a long drive ahead of me and I wanted to visit The Dragon in Milton on my way home. The Guelph Art Museum did have a Exhibition on Seth’s work and I did stop by the museum late Sunday morning, but it was closed. For those that don’t know Seth is a popular cartoonist who created a number of critically acclaimed graphic novels.

Regarding The Dragon stores, they are all brightly coloured stores with a dedicated kids  area with a small table and chairs and nearby small bookshelves with age appropriate books. They focus on graphic novels but do have some comics and pop culture products there. A nice touch was a healthy diversity of stuffed animals for kids, which gave the stores a fun atmosphere. The graphic novels were broken down by genre with books going alphabetically by title. They also had a comic book section and place for gaming too. The staff were all very friendly as well.

I spent more money than I was expecting. Below is my haul from the show and the Dragon store shopping.

Guelph Comic Jam & Dragon Haul

Toronto Comicon 2019

Rhino. Toronto Comicon 2019

Rhino. Toronto Comicon 2019

Over the weekend I went to Toronto Comicon. I used to attend this con regularly but stopped going back in 2013. I won’t go into the details as to why, but I will say it was nice to go back and see some people whom I haven’t seen in many years. Compared to San Diego Comic Con and TCAF, this con was ‘light’ work for me in terms of recording panels and didn’t require me to take days off work to get my stuff online quickly. I audio recorded 5 panels and took some pictures.

Two of the panels were spotlight panels of creators I’ve recorded before at San Diego (Steve Englehart & Ron Wilson) but I learned some new stuff about the creators at both of them. I’ve recorded Denny O’Neil at other panels, but not a spotlight panel. I also learned that some colourists really don’t like working on Green Lantern books and that Marvel’s current Editor in Chief C. B. Cebulski really appreciates it when a creator makes a very difficult deadline.

All of the panels were in the same room and it was easy to find the comic guests. Having a laptop with me instead of a tablet made a huge speed difference in terms of preparing audio and pictures. As usual with this convention, there was a lot of cosplay and one could spend all their time just taking photos of cosplayers and still not get them all. I used to take a lot more photos but between going to panels, taking photos of pros’s, chatting with friends and doing some shopping for myself I no longer have the time to devote to it.

I did take a couple of short videos showing some of the fun of happening at the convention with cosplayers.

The only thing that disappointed me about the trip was the handy and close to the convention public parking lot I used to use was no longer there. It’s been replaced by large half-built condo sky scrapper, which meant finding a new place to park and going for a longer walk.


King Con 2019

So I went to King Con, a local convention in Kingston, Ontario, Canada that was able to bring in a surprising number of comic book creators, a prose writer, a magician and even a celebrity. The event was held at Sydenham Street United Church and Chalmers United Church as the Kingston Public Library was not yet finished it’s renovations.

David Lloyd Sketch, King Con 2019.

David Lloyd Sketch, King Con 2019.

As usual I mainly stuck to the comic books portion of the show but I did spent some time watching the magician James Harrison do magic and even teach some simple magic. I  took a number of pictures, audio recorded some panels and got to speak with a number of creators which was nice.

I almost never get sketches, but David Lloyd got me to pay for a sketch and I got a nice V for Vendetta from him. David’s sketch also came with a free issue of Aces Weekly, an online comics anthology he puts together. Georgia Webber, Chip Zdarsky, Allison O’Toole & Jason Loo signed their books for me. I got to take pictures of some cosplayers, including several from the 501 Legion, but unfortunately was unable to wait for the cosplay contest as they were running late and I was exhausted.

I did attend but did not record a Group Cosplay Panel which was really well done. I have attended a number of cosplay related panels this was the first one on this particular topic I’ve seen and those on the panel did a great job highlighting the benefits of doing group cosplay. Among the reasons were combining resources, using each others unique skill set  and inspiring each other to work on their costumes.

I had a good time at the convention, but I’m looking forward to it being back at the newly renovated library next year.


Will Eisner Week

A bunch of my friends on facebook are calling this Will Eisner week to celebrate the man.

In going over some old notebooks I came across some notes I took the one time I met and saw Will Eisner talk on a panel. This was at the 2004 Paradise Comics Toronto Comic Con. I was not yet recording panels so I only have the notes I scribbled down. The notes are faded and will be illegible soon so I’m putting them here to preserve them.

The title of the panel was Graphic Novel Pioneers. On it was Will Eisner, Dave Sim and Chester Brown.

2004 Paradise Comics Toronto Comic Con - Graphic Novel Pioneers panel. Will Eisner, Dave Sim, Chester Brown

2004 Paradise Comics Toronto Comic Con – Graphic Novel Pioneers panel. Will Eisner, Dave Sim, Chester Brown

Will Eisner starts off telling Dave Sim “We have to be very careful about what we say, there is an audience.”

Eisner thinks a Graphic Novel is about the content, not page numbers.

He thought readers were older and wanted to read something other than 2 mutants smashing each other.

Eisner said the President of Ballantine Books was very impatient.

Chester now accepts the Graphic Novel name. He didn’t before.

Eisner calls some books graphic narrative.

Al Capp told Eisner in 1945 he’d never make it, said he was to normal.

Rube Goldberg told Eisner that comics wasn’t nothing but vaudeville and jokes.

Spirit got 5 million in circulation, that was considered nothing then.

Eisner talked about how comic strips had huge cultural impact among immigrants.

Eisner said Superman had the same costume as strong man in circus.

Eisner said the Spirit was supposed to be short stories. Eisner did Splash pages to get attention.

Dave did Cerebus because of the direct market, the retailers took all the risk. He did things in Cerebus that he knew couldn’t do in Marvel/DC. He had almost complete freedom and he pushed boundaries.

Dave said he and the people in Beguiling (Popular Indy focused Comic Book store) thought Louis Riel was career suicide.

Eisner thought undergrounds was literature because Denis Kitchen introduced him to them.

Eisner sold his company and went into doing Graphic Novels.

Dave said Cerebus + Star Reach was called Ground Level Comics.

Eisner credits the undergrounds for the Graphic Novel.

Eisner thinks the Editor should be the reader surrogate, tell him what doesn’t work and Eisner will fix it himself. He doesn’t want advice.

Chester uses Seth as his “editor” to give him advice. Sim did it all himself.

Eisner used Dave Shiner, a friend, as an editor, he died recently. He now uses his wife Ann who never read comics prior to this.

Eisner said doing comics is like sex. He doesn’t like talking about it while he’s doing it. After he’s finished, then he goes through it.

Eisner starts writing with the ending. He writes a timeline, not the story.

With Louis Riel, Chester did his work on panels with dialog at first, did stick figures if he didn’t think he would remember.

Will Eisner

Will Eisner

Dave Sim

Dave Sim

Chester Brown

Chester Brown

Will Eisner and Chester Brown

Will Eisner and Chester Brown

Will Eisner talks to media

Will Eisner talks to media

TCAF & Doug Wright Awards 2018

TCAF 2018 – Brigitte Findakly, Lewis Trondheim, Ananth Hirsh, Yuko Ota, Eddie Campbell and Audrey Niffenegger

I went to Toronto Comics Arts Festival and audio recorded 14 panels and the Doug Wright Awards.

TCAF had a different feel this year. One of the major Canadian publishers, Drawn & Quarterly was not there. They put less tables on the main floor which made the convention more bearable to walk around and browse. In the past few years TCAF had several  popular Image Comics creators, but not so much this year. I haven’t compared numbers but friends of mine believe there were more international creators than usual.

Also different was the spaces outside of the Library being used. The Masonic Temple that normally hosted the Image creators was not utilized and the empty upstairs area of a mall across the street was. Within that space was a Zine Fest which I did not visit, but I understand it was popular. I also couldn’t help but notice the Friday Night kick off event was also less popularly attended than usual. Even the Doug Wright awards were put into a smaller room and was done in an hour.  I’m not suggesting that any of these changes were bad, some of them were quite welcome, but it gave the show an ‘off’ feeling. It will be curious to see what happens with next years show to see if this is a trend or not.


The Combined Best Comics & Graphic Novels of 2017!

Over the last few months there have been many, many websites with “Best of 2017” lists concerning comic books and graphic novels. If you’ve looked at a few, you may have noticed some of the same books on different lists and seen some unique to only that list.

I went through over 136 different “Best Of” Lists regarding comic books and graphic novels and combined them into a spreadsheet. There are over 2,100 different listings of books from these websites. I should note that I’ve included books that were given honorable mentions. In short, if somebody thought it was a good book that you should check out, it’s on here. Pivot tables have been created to show which books appeared on the number of lists. Here are the books with 5 mentions or more:


Book Title Count Writer Artist Publisher
My Favorite Thing Is Monsters 64 Emil Ferris Emil Ferris Fantagraphics
Mister Miracle 45 Tom King Mitch Gerads DC Comics
The Best We Could Do 36 Thi Bui Thi Bui Harry N. Abrams
Boundless 32 Jillian Tamaki Jillian Tamaki Drawn & Quarterly
Batman 27 Tom King Mikel Janin DC Comics
You & A Bike & A Road 26 Eleanor Davis Eleanor Davis Koyama Press
Spinning 24 Tillie Walden Tillie Walden First Second
Black Hammer 21 Jeff Lemire Dean Ormston, David Rubin Dark Horse Comics
My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness 20 Nagata Kabi Nagata Kabi Seven Seas
Shade The Changing Girl 19 Cecil Castellucci Marley Zarcone DC Comics
Anti-Gone 19 Connor Willumsen Connor Willumsen Koyama Press
The Mighty Thor 17 Jason Aaron Russell Dauterman Marvel Comics
Songy Of Paradise 16 Gary Panter Gary Panter Fantagraphics
Hostage 15 Guy Delisle Guy Delisle Drawn & Quarterly
Everything Is Flammable 14 Gabrielle Bell Gabrielle Bell Uncivilized Books
The Flintstones 13 Mark Russell Steve Pugh, Rick Leonardi DC Comics
Paper Girls 13 Brian K. Vaughan Cliff Chiang Image Comics
Monograph 12 Chris Ware Chris Ware Rizzoli
Real Friends 12 Shannon Hale Leuyen Pham First Second
Giant Days 12 John Allison Max Sarin, Liz Fleming, Whitney Cogar BOOM! Studios
Crickets No. 6 12 Sammy Harkham Sammy Harkham American Comics
Mirror Mirror II 11 Various Various 2dcloud
One More Year 11 Simon Hanselmann Simon Hanselmann Fantagraphics
Saga 11 Brian K. Vaughan Fiona Staples Image Comics
Doom Patrol 11 Gerard Way Nick Derington DC Comics
Roughneck 11 Jeff Lemire Jeff Lemire Gallery 13
The Customer Is Always Wrong 10 Mimi Pond Mimi Pond Drawn & Quarterly
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 10 Ryan North Erica Henderson Marvel Comics
Batman / Elmer Fudd Special #1 10 Tom King Lee Weeks DC Comics
Sex Fantasy 10 Sophia Foster-Dimino Sophia Foster-Dimino Koyama Press
Rock Candy Mountain 9 Kyle Starks Kyle Starks Image Comics
Silver Surfer 9 Dan Slott Michael Allred And Laura Allred Marvel Comics
Pretending Is Lying 9 Dominique Goblet Dominique Goblet New York Review Comics
Redlands 9 Jordie Bellaire, Vanesa Del Rey Jordie Bellaire, Vanesa Del Rey Image Comics
Uncomfortably Happily 9 Yeon-Sik Hong Yeon-Sik Hong Drawn & Quarterly
My Brother’s Husband 9 Gengoroh Tagame Gengoroh Tagame Pantheon
God Country 9 Donny Cates Geoff Shaw Image Comics
4 Kids Walk Into A Bank 9 Matthew Rosenberg Tyler Boss Black Mask Studios
Sticks Angelica, Folk Hero 8 Michael Deforge Michael Deforge Drawn & Quarterly
Spill Zone 8 Scott Westerfeld Alex Puvilland First Second
Wonder Woman 8 Greg Rucka Nicola Scott, Liam Sharp, Romulo Fajardo Jr. DC Comics
Iceland 8 Yuichi Yokoyama Yuichi Yokoyama Retrofit/Big Planet
Aliens: Dead Orbit 8 James Stokoe James Stokoe Dark Horse Comics
Brave 8 Svetlana Chmakova Svetlana Chmakova Yen Press
Black Bolt 8 Saladin Ahmed Christian James Ward Marvel Comics
Dark Nights: Metal 8 Scott Snyder Greg Capullo DC Comics
Pope Hats #5 7 Ethan Rilly Ethan Rilly Adhouse Press
Now #1 7 Various Various Fantagraphics
All’S Faire In Middle School 7 Victoria Jamieson Victoria Jamieson Dial Books
The Complete Strange Growths, 1991-1997 7 Jenny Zervakis Jenny Zervakis Spit and a Half
Crawl Space 7 Jesse Jacobs Jesse Jacobs Koyama Press
Secret Weapons 7 Eric Heisserer Raul Allen, Patricia Martin Valiant
Motor Crush 7 Brenden Fletcher, Cameron Stewart Babs Tarr, Cameron Stewart Image Comics
Extremity 7 Daniel Warren Johnson Daniel Warren Johnson, Mike Spicer Image Comics
Mis(H)Adra 7 Iasmin Omar Ata Iasmin Omar Ata Gallery 13
The Girl From The Other Side: Siúil, A Rún 7 Nagabe Nagabe Seven Seas
Everyone’s A Aliebn When Ur A Aliebn Too: A Book 7 Jomny Sun Jomny Sun Harper Perennial
Deathstroke 7 Christopher Priest Diogenes Neves DC Comics
Hawkeye 7 Kelly Thompson Leonardo Romero, Michael Walsh, Jordie Bellaire Marvel Comics
The Wild Storm 6 Warren Ellis Jon Davis-Hunt DC Comics
How To Read Nancy: The Elements Of Comics In Three Easy Panels 6 Paul Karasik, Mark Newgarden Fantagraphics
Fante Bukowski Two 6 Noah Van Sciver Noah Van Sciver Fantagraphics
The Black Monday Murders 6 Jonathan Hickman Tomm Coker, Michael Garland, Rus Wooton Image Comics
Bitch Planet 6 Kelly Sue Deconnick Valentine De Landro, Taki Soma Image Comics
Language Barrier 6 Hannah K. Lee Hannah K. Lee Koyama Press
Providence 6 Alan Moore Jacen Burrows Avatar Press
Nightlights 6 Lorena Alvarez Lorena Alvarez Nobrow Press
Poppies Of Iraq 6 Brigitte Findakly And Lewis Trondheim Lewis Trondheim Drawn & Quarterly
Imagine Wanting Only This 6 Kristen Radtke Kristen Radtke Pantheon
The Wicked + The Divine 6 Kieron Gillen Jamie Mckelvie, Matt Wilson Image Comics
Pashmina 6 Nidhi Chanani Nidhi Chanani First Second
America 6 Gabby Rivera Joe Quinones, Ramon Villalobos Marvel Comics
House Of Women 6 Sophie Goldstein Sophie Goldstein Fantagraphics
Ms. Marvel 6 G. Willow Wilson Adrian Alphona, Takeshi Miyazawa Marvel Comics
The Stone Heart: The Nameless City 6 Faith Erin Hicks Faith Erin Hicks, Jordie Bellaire First Second
I’M Not Here 6 GG GG Koyama Press
Venice 5 Jiro Taniguchi Jiro Taniguchi Fanfare/Ponent Mon
Royal City 5 Jeff Lemire Jeff Lemire Image Comics
Batman Annual #2 5 Tom King Lee Weeks, Michael Lark, Elizabeth Breitweiser, June Chung, Deron Bennett DC Comics
Aquaman 5 Riccardo Federici, Dan Abnett Stjepan Sejic, Various DC Comics
Savage Town 5 Declan Shalvey Philip Barrett, Jordie Bellaire Image Comics
Mech Cadet Yu 5 Greg Pak Takeshi Miyazawa BOOM! Studios
Education 5 John Hankiewicz John Hankiewicz Fantagraphics
Sunburning 5 Keiler Roberts Keiler Roberts Koyama Press
To Laugh That We May Not Weep: The Life And Art Of Art Young 5 Art Young,‎ Art Spiegelman,‎ Frank Young Art Young Fantagraphics
Farmer Ned’S Comic Barn 5 Gerald Jablonski Gerald Jablonski Fantagraphics
As The Crow Flies 5 Melanie Gillman Melanie Gillman Iron Circus Comics
The Interview 5 Manuele Fior Manuele Fior Fantagraphics
Bolivar 5 Sean Rubin Sean Rubin Archaia
The Tea Dragon Society 5 Katie O’Neill Katie O’Neill Oni Press
The Wendy Project 5 Melissa Jane Osborne Veronica Fish Papercutz
Mighty Jack And The Goblin King 5 Ben Hatke Ben Hatke First Second
Black Panther 5 Ta-Nehisi Coates Various Marvel Comics
Black 5 Various Various Black Mask Studios
The Unworthy Thor 5 Jason Aaron Olivier Coipel Marvel Comics
Kill Or Be Killed 5 Ed Brubaker Sean Phillips Image Comics
Monstress 5 Marjorie Liu Sana Takeda Image Comics
Spy Seal 5 Rich Tomasso Rich Tomasso Image Comics
Where’s Halmoni? 5 Julie Kim Julie Kim Little Bigfoot
The Abominable Mr. Seabrook 5 Joe Ollmann Joe Ollmann Drawn & Quarterly
Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop The Reign? 5 Geof Darrow Geof Darrow Dark Horse Comics
Fire!! The Zola Hurston Neale Story 5 Peter Bagge Peter Bagge Drawn & Quarterly
Baking With Kafka 5 Tom Gauld Tom Gauld Drawn & Quarterly
Voices In The Dark 5 Marcel Beyer, Ulli Lust Ulli Lust New York Review Comics
5 Worlds, V.1: The Sand Warrior 5 Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel Mark Siegel, Xanthe Bouma, Matt Rockefeller, Boya Sun Random House
Tenements, Towers & Trash 5 Julia Wertz Julia Wertz Black Dog & Leventhal

Also of note, a handful of reviewers included a webcomic within it’s best books lists. Tilly Walden’s On A Sunbeam got the most (4) mentions this year, which is remarkable as she tied for the most mentions last year. Like last year The Nib got 2nd place as a general site and Nib hosted specific comics Sarah Glidden’s The Art of War and Jess Parker’s Who Was The Somerton Man were also mentioned. Tied for 2nd with 3 mentions is Michael DeForge’s Leaving Richard’s Valley.  It should be said that several Self-Published and very small press comics were both web comics and printed books. I did not do a through check, but it’s possible that some of those books are available as web comics and vice versa.

The full spreadsheet with pivot tables for books, writers, artists, publishers and more is available here.

Regarding Publishers:

Image was the most popular with 74 different titles.

DC was 2nd with 54 different titles.

Fantagraphics and Marvel are tied for a close 3rd with 53 different titles.

Dark Horse has 30 titles.

First Second did well with 24 titles.

58 Self-Published books made the list too.


Where a reviewer/writer wrote ‘best of’ lists for multiple websites, I’ve cross referenced their lists and removed books that were named twice. I did not think it would be fair if those writers could tip the popularity scale by naming the same book(s) over and over again on multiple websites.

If a writer wrote for multiple sites, but one of those sites picks was a group effort, I did not remove books that are listed twice.

I generally did not include lists that were a mixed of prose books and graphic novels.

I did not use lists where the website was not in English and the books appeared to be translated versions.

I did not use nominations/winners for awards.

With inkers and colourists I often, but not always included them within the Artist section. Where there were multiple (usually more than 5) involved in a book, or in the title’s run over the course of the year, Various was used of listing them all. In some cases I combined those involved even if they worked on the title for different issues.

For simplicity sake, if a list named a specific comic book issue or specific volume of a graphic novel, I removed those specifics and just listed the series title, with rare exceptions. Apologies to the reviewers of those books.

Some writers included books that were technically published in 2016 and at least 1 just listed best books they read that year, but the vast majority of those lists were 2017 books. The number of non 2017 books in the spreadsheet is very tiny and insignificant to the overall list.

Most of the lists were general ‘best/favourite books’ of 2017, but I also included lists dedicated to young readers, manga, etc… What type list is noted on column B in the spreadsheet.

A small number of lists also had rankings and those are included in Column C


A Reading Life – https://areadinglife.com/2017/11/28/best-of-2017-books-for-adults/
A Reading Life – https://areadinglife.com/2017/11/29/best-of-2017-books-for-young-adults/
A Reading Life – https://areadinglife.com/2017/11/30/best-of-2017-books-for-children/
Adventures in Poor Taste – http://www.adventuresinpoortaste.com/2018/01/02/the-year-in-queer-the-top-10-lgbtq-comics-of-2017/
Advocate – https://www.advocate.com/arts-entertainment/2018/1/03/best-lgbt-graphic-novels-2017
All The Wonders – http://www.allthewonders.com/podcasts/some-of-the-top-middle-grade-graphic-novels-of-2017-books-between-episode-40/
Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=17388344011
Anime News Network – https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/feature/2017-12-29/best-manga-and-light-novels-of-2017/.125750
AV Club – https://www.avclub.com/the-best-comics-of-2017-1820879242
Bam! Smack! Pow! – https://bamsmackpow.com/2017/12/31/top-comic-books-2017/
Barnes and Nobel – https://www.barnesandnoble.com/blog/sci-fi-fantasy/best-comics-graphic-novels-2017/
Barnes and Nobel – https://www.barnesandnoble.com/blog/sci-fi-fantasy/best-new-manga-series-2017/
Ben Towle – http://www.benzilla.com/?p=6266
Booklist Online – https://www.booklistonline.com/Top-10-Graphic-Novels-2017-Sarah-Hunter/pid=8966988
BookList Online – https://www.booklistonline.com/Top-10-Graphic-Novels-for-Youth-2017-Sarah-Hunter/pid=8964161
Bounding Into Comics – http://boundingintocomics.com/2017/12/27/the-10-best-comic-books-of-2017/
CBC – http://www.cbc.ca/books/the-best-canadian-comics-and-graphica-of-2017-1.4453579
CBR – https://www.cbr.com/tag/bestcomics2017/
Chicago Public Library – https://chipublib.bibliocommons.com/list/share/200121216_chipublib_teens/1058615227_best_teen_graphic_novels_and_manga_of_2017
ComicBook.com – http://comicbook.com/comics/2018/01/01/the-10-best-indie-comics-of-2017/#1
Comicon.com – http://www.comicon.com/2017/12/26/comicons-8-best-comic-series-of-2017/
Comicon.com – http://www.comicon.com/2017/12/26/comicons-8-best-original-graphic-novels-of-2017/
Comicon.com – http://www.comicon.com/2017/12/26/comicons-8-best-single-comic-issues-of-2017/
Comicon.com – http://www.comicon.com/2017/12/28/comicons-8-best-webcomics-of-2017/
Comicon.com – http://www.comicon.com/2017/12/29/comicons-most-progressive-comics-2017/
Comicosity – http://www.comicosity.com/best-of-2017-graphic-novel/
Comicosity – http://www.comicosity.com/best-of-2017-series/
Comicosity – http://www.comicosity.com/best-of-2017-single-issue/
Comics Alternative – http://comicsalternative.com/young-readers-reviews-of-good-night-planet-the-dam-keeper-and-misfit-city-as-well-as-a-look-back-at-2017/
Critical Hit – https://www.criticalhit.net/comics-toys/20-best-comic-books-2017/
Cryptoscatology – http://cryptoscatology.blogspot.com/2017/12/the-cryptoscatology-top-ten-best-comic.html
Daniel Elkin – http://www.danielelkin.com/2017/12/top-13-small-press-comics-i-reviewed-of.html
Den of Geek – http://www.denofgeek.com/us/books-comics/best-comics-of-2017/269562/best-comics-2017-comicbooks
Denver Public Library – https://kids.denverlibrary.org/booklist/best-brightest-graphic-novels-2017
Entropy – https://entropymag.org/best-of-2017-comics-graphic-novels/
EPL (Edmonton Public Library) – https://epl.bibliocommons.com/list/share/664197898_comicsprof/1032066367_best_graphic_novels_2017
EW – http://ew.com/books/best-comics-2017/best-comics-of-2017/
Fantagraphics – http://fantagraphics.com/flog/whats-store-top-comix-2017/
Fantom Comics – http://fantomcomics.tumblr.com/post/169268628241/fantoms-favorite-comics-of-2017
Forbes – https://www.forbes.com/pictures/5a2aaf04a7ea432f2e756465/best-graphic-novels-of-20/#262f8e171d9b
Forbidden Planet – http://forbiddenplanet.blog/2017/best-year-2017-matts-picks/
Forbidden Planet – http://forbiddenplanet.blog/2017/best-year-2017-richmonds-picks/
Forbidden Planet – http://forbiddenplanet.blog/2018/best-of-the-year-2017-joes-picks/
Forbidden Planet – http://forbiddenplanet.blog/2018/best-year-2017-richard-begs-forgiveness-tardiness/
Free Library of Philadelphia – https://libwww.freelibrary.org/blog/post/3168
Fresh Toast – https://thefreshtoast.com/culture/best-comic-books-from-each-major-publisher-in-2017/
Gamespot – https://www.gamespot.com/gallery/the-10-best-comics-of-2017/2900-1711/
Geeks – https://geeks.media/best-comics-of-2017-for-fans-of-every-genre
Good OK Bad – http://goodokbad.com/index.php/about/2017comics
Good Reads – https://www.goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-graphic-novels-comics-2017
Gosh London – https://www.goshlondon.com/blog/2017/11/17/the-gosh-best-of-2017-kids
Gosh London – https://www.goshlondon.com/blog/2017/11/9/the-gosh-best-of-2017
Graphic Policy – https://graphicpolicy.com/2018/01/04/alexs-best-2017/
Guide Live – https://www.guidelive.com/comic-books/2017/12/14/perfectpanels-10-best-comic-books-2017
Hell Machine Jog (Joe McCulloch) – https://twitter.com/snubpollard/status/947651965797961728
Herald Scotland – http://www.heraldscotland.com/arts_ents/15784889.Graphic_Content__From_werewolves_to_cross_dressing__our_choice_of_books_of_the_year/
Herald Scottland – http://www.heraldscotland.com/arts_ents/15783879.Graphic_Content__Cartoonists_choose_their_comics_and_graphic_novels_of_the_year/
Heroic Girls – http://www.heroicgirls.com/best-graphic-novels-2017-kids-teens/
Hipinion – http://forums.hipinion.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=115077
Hollywood Reporter – https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/best-comics-2017-1070417
i09 – https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-15-best-comics-of-2017-1821292444
ICPL – http://blog.icpl.org/2017/12/30/icpl-top-staff-picks-for-2017-graphic-novels/
ICV2 – https://icv2.com/articles/columns/view/39263/the-10-best-graphic-novels-2017
ICV2 – https://icv2.com/articles/news/view/39211/top-10-kids-graphic-novels-2017
Infinite Earths – https://iearths.blogspot.ca/2017/12/the-top-10-best-comics-of-2017.html?m=1
Inverse – https://www.inverse.com/article/39420-best-comics-2017-writers-ninjak-batgirl-kaijumax-flintstones
IVC2 – https://icv2.com/articles/news/view/39236/top-10-manga-2017
Kevin Huizenga – https://kevinh.blogspot.com/2017/12/2017-time-capsule.html
Kirkus – https://www.kirkusreviews.com/lists/best-middle-grade-graphic-novels-2017/
Kitsap Regional Library – http://www.krl.org/blog/best-graphic-novels-teens-2017
Large Hearted Boy – http://www.largeheartedboy.com/blog/archive/2017/12/favorite_graphi_6.html
Lars Ingebrigtsen – https://lars.ingebrigtsen.no/2017/12/14/the-best-comics-of-2017/
Leo Weekly – https://www.leoweekly.com/2017/12/leo-looks-back-best-comic-books-2017/
Let’s Talk Picture Books – http://www.letstalkpicturebooks.com/2017/12/best-graphic-novels-of-2017.html
Library Journal – http://lj.libraryjournal.com/bestbooks2017/graphic_novels.php
Lisa Hanawalt – https://twitter.com/lisadraws/status/946879618551726080
Matt Seneca – http://mattseneca.tumblr.com/post/169372094107/2017-a-fuck-ass-year
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-best-miniseries/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-best-new-series/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-best-ongoing-series/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-best-single-issue/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-graphic-novel/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/news-columns/2017-in-review-webcomic/
Multiversity Comics – http://www.multiversitycomics.com/reader-poll/2017-readers-choice/
Newsarama – https://www.newsarama.com/37961-best-of-best-shots-2017-our-review-crew-picks-the-best-of-the-year.html
NJ – http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2018/01/what_was_the_best_comic_book_series_of_2017_comic.html
NPR – http://apps.npr.org/best-books-2017/#/tag/comics-and-graphic-novels
Observation Deck – https://observationdeck.kinja.com/comic-books-2017-1821374651
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2017/12/james-2017-favorites-in-17-ridiculous.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-m-favorite-sci-fi-and-fantasy.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-ms-favorite-anthologies-of-2017.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-ms-favorite-horror-comics-of-2017.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-ms-favorite-horror-comics-of-2017.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-ms-favorite-indie-books-of-2017.html
Panel Platter – http://www.panelpatter.com/2018/01/rob-ms-favorite-superhero-style-comics.html
Paste – https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/12/the-10-best-kids-comics-of-2017.html
Paste – https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2017/12/the-25-best-comics-of-2017.html
Pierce County Library – http://www.piercecountylibrary.org/books-materials/pierce-county-favorites/Default.htm
Polygon – https://www.polygon.com/comics/2017/12/22/16807870/comics-2017-marvel-dc
Publisher Weekly – https://best-books.publishersweekly.com/pw/best-books/2017/comics
Publishers Weekly – https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/comics/article/75675-my-favorite-thing-is-monsters-tops-annual-pw-graphic-novel-critics-poll.html
Readings – https://www.readings.com.au/news/graphic-novels-and-comics-we-loved-in-2017
Ryan C’s Four Colour Apocalypse – https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2017/12/07/2017-year-in-review-top-10-single-issues/
Ryan C’s Four Colour Apocalypse – https://fourcolorapocalypse.wordpress.com/2017/12/13/2017-year-in-review-top-10-collected-editions-contemporary/
School Library Journal – http://blogs.slj.com/afuse8production/2017/12/20/31-days-31-lists-day-twenty-2017-comics-for-kids/
School Library Journal – http://www.slj.com/2017/11/reviews/best-of/top-10-graphic-novels-2017/
Scifi Pulse – http://www.scifipulse.net/comic-books-2017-the-year-in-review/
Sequential State – https://sequentialstate.com/blog/comics-challenged-2017-complete-list/
Slackjaw Punks – http://slackjawpunks.com/top-5-comics-of-2017/
Spy – http://spy.com/2017/entertainment/books-music-movies/best-graphic-novels-2017-comics-72376/
Super Skull – http://www.superskullshow.com/episodes-all/2017/12/7/super-skulls-best-graphic-novels-of-2017
SyFy – http://www.syfy.com/syfywire/syfy-wires-best-ongoing-genre-comics-of-2017
The Beat – http://www.comicsbeat.com/the-beats-best-comics-of-2017/
The Comics Journal – http://www.tcj.com/the-best-comics-of-2017/
The Comics Reporter – http://www.comicsreporter.com/index.php/fff_results_postr_491_books_of_2017/
The Guardian – https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/dec/03/rachel-cooke-best-graphic-novels-2017-joff-winterhart-driving-short-distances-grandville-talbot
The Hundreds – https://thehundreds.com/blogs/content/best-2017-graphic-novels
The Irish Times – https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/living-colour-favourite-comics-and-graphic-novels-of-2017-1.3324716
The Smart Set – https://thesmartset.com/comic-countdown/
The Verge – https://www.theverge.com/2017/12/22/16807260/best-comics-of-2017
Turnaround – https://theturnaroundblog.com/2017/12/21/top-comic-books-of-2017/
Under The Radar – http://www.undertheradarmag.com/blog/under_the_radars_holiday_gift_guide_2017_part_9_books_and_graphic_novels/
Unwinnable – https://unwinnable.com/2018/01/03/the-best-comics-of-2017/
Uproxx – http://uproxx.com/hitfix/best-comics-2017/
Vice – https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/paqaxk/the-ten-best-comics-of-2017
Villain Media – https://villainmedia.com/jorge-solis-top-10-comic-books-2017/
Vulture – http://www.vulture.com/2017/12/10-best-comics-2017.html
Washington Post – https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/the-10-best-graphic-novels-of-2017/2017/11/10/ded1688c-af85-11e7-9e58-e6288544af98_story.html?utm_term=.74d0cde5c002
Waukegan Public Library – https://www.waukeganpl.org/2017-review-graphic-novels/
WhatCulture – http://whatculture.com/comics/10-best-comic-books-of-2017
WhatCulture – http://whatculture.com/comics/10-best-comic-books-of-2017-so-far
Why So Blu? – http://whysoblu.com/best-comic-books-2017/
Wired – https://www.wired.com/story/best-comics-2017/
Women Write About Comics – http://womenwriteaboutcomics.com/2018/01/03/small-press-bites-faves-of-2017-edition/
Women Write About Comics – http://womenwriteaboutcomics.com/2017/12/30/wwacs-favorite-big-press-comics-of-2017/
Zainab Akhtar – https://twitter.com/comicsandcola/status/941346392492167168

Azad Interview

Azad at HobbyStar Toronto Fan Expo 2004Originally posted in August of 2004. Comic books were starting to enter a golden age around 2004, not only was there a lot of good stuff coming out from major publishers, a lot of great stuff from the past was being reprinted. Suddenly the standard of “average” went way up and what was better than average even 5 years prior had a difficult time finding an audience. Azad’s Sammy was one of those books.


Azad Interview

Azad is an Image creator, one of many that is doing a great book that you probably never heard of. It’s called Sammy, about a cat burglar and his cat Lucky. With this interview we talk about Azad’s background, his book, using computers to make comics, Marvel Comics, Image Comics and more.


Jamie: Okay lets start getting some background info from you. Where are you from?

Azad: I’m a born and milk-fed Montrealer. After doodling and taking art classes for years, I resigned to taking Illustration and design at Dawson College. I worked for a world renowned animation company, then apparently, went nuts and decided to draw funny books.


Jamie: What jobs did you have before you finally decided to do comic books?

Azad: I wish I had an interesting string of crummy jobs to complain about, but all my jobs prior to comics were drawing or print related. Graphic design, desktop publishing, and pre-press film outputing. Most notably, I was a storyboard artist for 4 years at CINAR animation working on such artistic paragons as Caillou and Arthur.


Jamie: You do everything for your book and it all looks very nice and professional. Did you have a mentor that taught you the ropes?

Azad: For drawing, I have a cousin named Haig Bedrossian (co-plotter on Sammy: Tourist Trap) who turned me on to the arts and encouraged me from a very early age to draw comic books. He’s now teaching animation at Max the Mutt animation school in Toronto and living a far more lucrative life than that of a comic artist.

As far as the technical side of things go, my sister (a desktop publisher) was my digital guru. She taught me how to use Photoshop, Illustrator, QuarkXpress, and all other computer related aspects of art.

But mostly, I was left to my own devices to figure Everything else out on my own. I’m not a “gifted” artist by any means. I’m a studied, learned artist. I work really hard trying not to make a fool of myself.


Jamie: So why did you want to do stories about a cat burglar named Sammy and his pet cat Lucky?

Azad: I deliberately wanted to make a book that was both FLEXIBLE and FUN. I have dozens of crazy adventures I want to tell, and the only binding factor between them are these two characters. And it works. I wanted to be able to stick Sammy into any situation and any genre. With that said, there IS a balance, and I know where to draw the line. I can’t really verbalize it, but I know it when I see it. For example, I could have sci-fi elements in a story, but not so far as having Sammy go into an inter-dimensional portal. He could encounter a superhero, but not gain powers of his own.


Jamie: Okay, Sammy is a cat burglar with a pet Cat. Why is he not dressed up as Halle Berry?

Azad: Hey, great idea!! I could do stories about Sammy being involved in Hit and Runs, and doing bad movies! A goldmine, I tells ya! Thanksabunch!


Jamie: Do you even own a cat? Cause there is no way a cat would do the shit you have “Lucky” do in the comic.

Azad: Funny you should ask. I think of Lucky as a cat with a dog’s personality. He’s still aloof, but actually useful.

I used to think I was a cat person. I never owned one, but my best friend has three. I would go over, pet them, scratch them under the chin. They were okay… kind of cold, kept to themselves and meowed when they wanted food and swiped at me once in a while… “Hey, its a dumb animal” I told myself… these things happen, right?


Then, my buddy goes and buys a DOG. Holy cow! Big difference! Dog’s are playful, they can take orders, and are genuinely happy to see you when you come home. By comparison, the dog makes the cats look like strutting turds that do nothing but sleep, shit and turn their nose up at the food you bought them. You could feed a dog its own crap, and it’ll still look at you with love in its eyes.

Fuck cats!


Jamie: A significant part of the Sammy: Tourist Trap mini series is done in Spanish with no English translation. Why?

Azad: Sammy is a fish out of water… he’s in a country where he doesn’t understand what is being said around him. If HE can’t understand Spanish, and we the audience are supposed to be in his shoes, then logically WE shouldn’t be able to understand, either. It’s that way to heighten the tension. Putting the translations at the bottom of the panel would have defeated the purpose.

With that said, I fully realize that there are readers out there who just skip past the balloons, or groan at the plot device… but it’s MEANT TO BE READ! Perhaps I’m asking too much of the reader, but to me it was important to do it that way.


Jamie: Do you think you can keep doing Sammy forever or do you have an overall plan for the character?

Azad: As long as I can continue to keep publishing the character, yes. I do have other ideas I’m working on, but I’ve got dozens of stories already written for Sammy. Literally! I have the scripts on my computer as I write this.

Keep in mind, much of the Sammy stories (even Tourist Trap) aren’t so much about the character.. it’s about the situation. He’s just the excuse (or the vehicle) to tell the story.


Jamie: Y’know, in the late 90’s comic books sucked so bad that Sammy would have been considered a GREAT book. Today it’s considered very good for a non- Marvel/DC comic. As such, the bar has been raised. You are now competing against Bendis, Millar, Ellis and Morrison on big name books and they’re selling like mad. How does that affect you?

Azad: If anything, I’m going head to head with indy books and smaller press. Sammy is in B&W, so immediately it’s ordered more conservatively by retailers because B&W tends to sell less than color. Plus the content is hardly spandex friendly.

As for the Big Two, I don’t see Sammy in direct competition with Marvel and DC. Different readers for different types of books. I don’t suspect I share the same readership as Hawkman lovers or Ultimate X-Men, so I don’t really worry about that.

The way I AM affected by Marvel is some of their crummy business practices. Namely trying to gobble up market share by dumping piles of unreadable books they know wont succeed into the marketplace, knowing retailers have to buy it for the rabid Marvel Zombies, all the while stretching the retailers’ purse strings until they order fewer copies of smaller press titles (including my own). THAT affects me. That affects everyone, and from the retailers I’ve spoken to, they’ve reached their boiling point.

Shit! I just killed my potential for freelance Marvel work didn’t I…Dang!


Jamie: Sammy is one of many Image books that is suffering the same problem of being good, but not getting any major promotion. What do you think has to be done to fix that?

Azad: Well, the responsibility is on US, the creators, to do our own promotion. Image Comics does what it can. We are treated as equal separate companies publishing under the banner of Image, thus, it’s up to us to take care of ourselves. For its part, Image gives us ad space, does our press releases and gives us a forum on their site to help gain a footing online. That’s about as much they can do for the fee they take.

The rest is up to us. I personally, did everything in my power to get the word out on “A VERY SAMMY DAY” this past May. I had a Press Release, Did 10 interviews on the net, started an ongoing online original Sammy serial called Subway Stories, and flooded internet forums with announcements and promos.

In the end, it didn’t amount to much. I’ve learned that online buzz doesn’t always translate into real world buzz. Sometimes, it’s having good word of mouth, sometimes it’s luck. You just have to keep going to cons, and plugging away until someone notices. It’s a lot of hard work.

I’m not sure what ELSE to do. Buying ads in trade papers? Calling retailers ahead of time? Emailing and mailing retailers previews ahead of time? It all costs more and more money. You can buy your way into Wizard with ads, but I don’t know if that makes a difference. I’m guessing it depends on your material. In my case, I doubt it.


Jamie: On your website, Guerrilla-Comics.com you use some online comics to promote your comics. Has that helped?

Azad: Marginally. In fairness, I haven’t used the site to its potential. I could have brought in other online cartoonists, maybe had some contests and promotions to go along with the website…Part of the original intent of the site was to have some activism. To get people pumped about doing comics. But life has gotten in the way of myself and my webmaster. We’d like to change that. We’re having a major Pow-Wow for a week this August. Hopefully, we’ll get things up there that should have been up last year. 3D animation, web docs, more comics, more features… hopefully, it’ll build some interest in Sammy and other future projects.


Jamie: I’m surprised I haven’t seen you offering Sammy: Tourist Trap as a TPB yet. Are you planning on doing this?

Azad: SALES! Sales dictate everything. The book is still a bit in the red. With that said, I’ve got a great TPB planned for it with TONS of extras. I just hope I get the green light. We’ll see.


Jamie: You mentioned in the back of Sammy: Tourist Trap #4 that using computers does not speed up the process of making comic books, instead it slows it down. If that’s the case, why do you use computers?

Azad: In all honesty, it’s become a bit of a crutch for me. I like the way my stuff looks better with it than without it. But it has afforded me the ability to make my artwork look as good as it is. It would NOT have been so otherwise. I’d like to change that though. J.Bone has challenged me to do a computer-less comic one day. We’ll see.


Jamie: How has Image changed for you since Erik Larsen took over as head honcho?

Azad: Not in any obvious way, so far. All my contracts and such were signed under Jim Valentino, so they had to honor them. Hell, I have no idea if Erik even likes my work or would have signed me at all, for that matter. I guess we’ll see how this affects me when I ask for a TPB or a sequel.


Jamie: When you get a fan following and respectable Sales, will you drop everything and work for Marvel or DC when they offer you lots of money and a title?

Azad: A title with the Big Two would not change my plans for world domination. Especially considering the fact that I’d want to WRITE, not draw for the Big Two. I can write fast. Real fast! Drawing takes forever and I’d never be able to maintain a monthly schedule. But then again, who wants to write pajama-boys when I get to find new ways to abuse kitties on my own book?!

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