Monday, 3 August 2015

Atoll Comics Round 21

Or changes to my Top-Ten comics

Due to having an entertainment budget and an urge to buy better comics, I have decided to be selective about which superhero comics I read. Harnessing the Awesome Power of Maths, I have determined that I can afford to read 10 ongoing titles. So I get to read 10, and only 10, titles published by either Marvel or DC as well as one trade paperback a week of my choosing.

A complication of this is that I am forced to drop an on-going title if I want to try reading a new on-going title, an act of very tough love. Being financially responsible is the worst.

I will be adding Black Canary and dropping Hawkeye.

Why Black Canary: DC comics seems to be committed to telling fun, idiosyncratic comics that I actually want to read. Black Canary is pretty much a poster child for this movement: fusing talented, fresh creators with a fun new direction and the freedom to tell a new story. Specifically, this iteration of Black Canary sees the sonic-voiced, martial artist as the lead singer of a rock band on the run from thugs from Canary's past and nefarious forces who would abduct their enigmatic lead guitarist. It's the kind of concept that is absolutely perfect in theory. In practice, the comic is still a little uneven in the plot and clearly still finding its legs. Fortunately Annie Wu and Lee Loughridge are on art since they are super talented favourites whose partnership is seemingly perfect for the hijinks and character interaction featured in the comic. Between the promise of the concept and strength of the art, Black Canary is worth giving a chance.

Why not Hawkeye: Because Hawkeye is over. Hawkeye is a comic, that for me, epitomizes what can be done with episodic, mainstream comics. It was wildly original, technically brilliant, and thoroughly entertaining. It was built of complete episodes that locked together to tell a tense, emotionally riveting, and extremely fun story built around it's own culture of in jokes, catch phrases, and long reaching pay offs. Hawkeye is a comic that was just about perfect from its effortless feeling first issue to it's clinic of a final issue; pound for pound the best comic that either Marvel or DC published during the time I've been writing this blog. So much so that Hawkeye changed the way I read and write about comics and what Atoll Comics has become. It's also, I think, a comic that made room for the movement towards idiosyncratic, styllish comics like, well, Black Canary. I am love this comic, and I'm going to miss it. Bro. 



  1. I tried the first couple issues of Black Canary but it just wasn't clicking for me. If the reviews are good I may give the first trade a try. (Also psst, you called her Black Widow a couple times!)

    Hawkeye was amazing and I will miss it so much. ='(

    1. Thanks for the heads up! Homebase is a bit chaotic right now so things are finding cracks.

      Yeah, I'm still not 100% on Canary, but I think it maybe just needs some time to find its voice.