So the guys at Multiversity recently listed what they called “The Ten Best Marvel Comics Books, Right Now,” and I hate to say it but they’re wrong more than they’re right. Actually, that’s a lie. I don’t hate to say it. I love to say it. So much that I made my own list of the ten Marvel comics it’s worth having on your pull list.
And I should say: Marvel’s roster has declined in quality significantly over the past year. Brian Michael Bendis’ inspired beginning on the X-titles has become rote, and it’s hard to tell why we need two X-books by him—or what the difference is between them. Even worse, there are at least eight Avengers books coming out every month and many of them seem pointless and convoluted, and never seem to go anywhere.
So, what’s worth reading at Marvel these days?
Let’s start with what made Multiversity’s list, but shouldn’t have:
- Superior Foes of Spider-Man (Multiversity’s #10 pick). Nick Spencer and Steve Lieber are having fun with this book, but with two recent fill-in issues, it’s too uneven to crack the top ten. Top twenty, definitely.
- Fantastic Four (#9). A team member loses his powers! The team breaks up! Big extradimensional threats are coming! This is nothing we’ve not seen before, done better, by many other FF creators. This is not a top 10 book.
- Miles Morales: the Ultimate Spider-Man (#6). If this were 2013, I’d agree, but the entire Ultimate Universe is a mess right now—including this, the best Ultimate title (and the only one still worth reading).
- Captain Marvel (#4). I loved Kelly Sue DeConnick’s first reboot of Ms. Marvel into Captain Marvel, but this cosmic-hopping one? Not so much. Gone are the great character moments from the first series, replaced by a weird (and gratuitous) fling with James Rhodes and an attempt to crowbar her into the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise.
- Secret Avengers (#3). No. I know lots of folks sing the praises of this book, but no. The art is awful, and the stories (a SHIELD Modok?) seem driven just to be silly for silliness’ sake. No.
- Thor, the God of Thunder (#1). Really? The best book on the market is a bombastic comic that doesn’t shed any new light on the main character or portray him differently than countless other previous portrayals? Again, no.
That’s why they’re wrong. Here’s why I’m right….