Nominees for this year’s Harvey Awards have been announced—with the winners to be picked at the September Baltimore Comic-Con—I go every year.   And, every year I comment on a few of the award nominations….This year’s picks are strangely skewed towards Marvel.  Unusual.

See my thoughts after the break.

My picks are starred.  My predicted winners are double-starred.

Best New Series

Angel & Faith, Dark Horse.
Last Mortal, Top Cow.
Animal Man, DC Comics.
Ozma Of Oz, Marvel Comics.
Daredevil, Marvel Comics. **
Rachel Rising, Abstract Studio.*

WHO SHOULD WIN: The comic book Buffyverse doesn’t do it for me—I don’t really get why that’s here, other than to throw a bone to Dark Horse.  The first few issues of Animal Man were strong, but it quickly deteriorated into a slow-moving, wannabe Grant Morrison mess of tepid  go-nowherism.  I don’t really understand how this new 52 title gets nominated here (I thought all the new 52s were ineligible, frankly), when the best new 52 series is clearly either Batman or Wonder Woman.  There can be no question about that.  Ozma is a solid nomination; Shanower’s Oz books have been good, so I can get with this one.  I’ve sung Daredevil’s praises for months now.  But Rachel Rising is the one to beat.  It is one the creepiest, most interesting comics I have read since…Terry Moore’s last series.  I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it should beat Daredevil.

WHO WILL WIN: Daredevil.  An extremely good series and the best thing Marvel is publishing now (or has published in the last few years), this will win for showing the world that mainstream, commercial superbooks can have quality and artistic sense.

Most Promising New Talent

Nick Bradshaw, Astonishing X-Men, Marvel Comics.
Nathan Edmondson, Who Is Jake Ellis?, Image Comics.
Laura Lee Gulledge, Page By Paige, Amulet Books.
Justin Jordan, The Strange Talent of Luther Strode, Image Comics.
Sara Pichelli, Ultimate Spider-Man, Marvel Comics.*, **

WHO I’D PICK: Caveat: I haven’t read Page by Paige.  Here, I’d go with Edmondson, for writing a really great, suspenseful spy series, or Sarah Pichelli, who is the first artist on Ultimate Spider-Man who didn’t make me miss Mark Bagely.  But Justin Jordan is a good pick, too.

WHO WILL WIN:  I was going to go with Jordan, whose book was probably the best reviewed I’ve seen all year and is the most original of all the candidates.  But Pichelli’s a girl, and girls never get to win this.  Of course, that would mean two Marvel titles winning big awards…This is a tough call!

Best Cover Artist

John Tyler Christopher, Artifacts, Top Cow
Marcos Martin, Daredevil, Marvel Comics**
Paolo Rivera, Daredevil, Marvel Comics*
Mark Simpson (Jock), Detective Comics, DC Comics
J.H. Williams, Batwoman, DC Comics

WHO I’D PICK: Williams’ best work seems to be behind him these days.  Rivera is a solid choice, but I’m going with Marcos Martin.

WHO WILL WIN: I’m thinking Rivera, based on the fact that he just quit Marvel to go creator-owned.  The Harvey folks love that kinda political shit.

Best Continuing Or Limited Series

Atomic Robo And The Ghost Of Station X, Red 5 Comics
Daredevil, Marvel Comics**
Diary Of A Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever, Amulet Books
Echoes, Top Cow
Rachel Rising, Abstract Studio*

MY PICK: How does Daredevil get to be both “new” and “continuing?”  Anyway, I’m picking Rachel Rising whenever possible because I cannot say enough about this book. I’m buying it loose and in trade, and I’m going to lend it out to everyone I know.

WHO WILL WIN: If DD doesn’t win best series, it’ll win here.

Best Writer

Joshua Fialkov, Echoes, Top Cow
Laura Lee Gulledge, Page By Paige, Amulet Books
Jeff Lemire, Animal Man, DC Comics
Jason Shiga, Empire State: A Love Story (or Not), Abrams Comicarts
Mark Waid, Daredevil, Marvel Comics*, **

MY PICK: I can’t believe how many Marvel awards I’d hand out this year.  And I can’t believe they’re all Daredevil!  Mark Waid is my pick.  Everyone knows about Grant Morrison and Brian Michael Bendis, but nowhere near enough people talk about Waid.

WHO WILL WIN:  I’m going with Daredevil again…

Best Artist

Paolo Rivera, Daredevil, Marvel Comics*, **
Chris Samnee, Captain America and Bucky, Marvel Comics
Jason Shiga, Empire State: A Love Story (or Not), Abrams Comicarts
Craig Thompson, Habibi, Pantheon Books
J.H. Williams, Batwoman, DC Comics

MY PICK/WHO WILL WIN: Is Williams even drawing Batwoman anymore? Seems like the few issues I picked up had a different artist—which is why I dropped the book.  Anyway, who do I pick?  Who will win?  Do I have to keep saying Daredevil?

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