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The end of the year is a great time to look back at important moments from the previous year. Along those lines, Entertainment Fuse will be publishing “Best of 2015” for the Comics section. However, the end of the year is also a good time to look forward with anticipation to the new year. With that in mind, here are five comic book series/graphic novels to be excited about in 2016.
This is actually a series that has already begun, but it’s only had two issues so the real story will be revealed in 2016. The new All-New, All-Different Avengers will be written by Mark Waid with art from Mahmud Asrar and Adam Kubert. It is set (like all the new Marvel Comics series) in a post-Secret Wars Marvel continuity. That means that Miles Morales, the artist formerly known as Ultimate Spider-Man, now gets to be an Avenger, along the heavy weights of the main Marvel Universe. However, as the series name implies, this isn’t the Avengers of old. There is an interesting mix of characters besides Miles: Captain Americal (Sam Wilson), Thor (Jane Foster), Iron Man (Tony Stark), Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), Nova (Sam Alexander), and Vision. With Waid’s recent track record of outstanding writing and this intriguing line-up, Avengers could once again be one of Marvel’s best series.
It’s true that Dan Slott and Michael Allred have already done one Silver Surfer series. It was quite good, even managing the make a compelling story out of the necessary Secret Wars tie-ins. Now, Slott and Allred get to return to Norin Radd and Dawn Greenwood, telling a new story. The first series was a great mix of fun sci-fi adventure, charming romance, and philosophical themes. If those elements emerge in the new Silver Surfer (along with others, no doubt), it should make for great reading.
It’s not often you get Marvel Comics and National Book Award in the same sentence, but the upcoming Black Panther series will be written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, who won the 2015 Nation Book Award for Nonfiction for his book Between the World and Me. Having a writer as talented as Coates, who also been awarded a 2015 MacArthur Foundation fellow (often called the “genius grant”), is a coup for Marvel, though it’s not always easy for non-comic book writers to make the transition. Coates is a longtime Black Panther fan, so that bodes well for his 2016 series, which will feature art from Brian Stelfreeze. With a starring role in the movie Captain America: Civil War, 2016 is shaping up to be a big year for Black Panther. Seeing Coates’ take on T’challa will certainly be a must-read book.
As I discussed in a recent news story about the return of Nowhere Men, from Image Comics, this was a quite good series that flew under the radar in 2013. Due to delays and problems with the original artist, Nowhere Men seemed to be in limbo forever. However, it will be returning in January 2016 with new artist Dave Taylor on Nowhere Men #7. It is a complex story with interesting characters and creative science fiction elements, so I’m really looking forward to new issues of Nowhere Men. It is the type of series that is probably best served by being familiar with the original story, so check out a trade paperback of the first six issues of Nowhere Men on sale from Image before digging into the new issues.
Paul Dini has long been a big name in Batman lore, both for his writing on Batman comics for DC and for his producing/writing on the landmark cartoon series Batman: The Animated Series. However, this will be a different take on Batman. Dark Night: A True Batman Story will be an autobiographical graphic novel chronicling how Dini was attacked on the street by strangers. Shaken by the incident, Dini gathered strength from his long connection to Batman, using the character as a way out of difficult time. This looks to be an emotional and harrowing tale, something that mainstream comics don’t always offer. To be published by DC imprint Vertigo in June, with art from Eduardo Risso (100 Bullets), Dark Night: A True Batman Story could be the next great Batman story.
What do you think? Are there other upcoming comics for 2016 that have you really exciting? Leave a comment and let me know your picks.