What comic next?
January 4, 2021 2:15 AM   Subscribe

My partner loves Jarvis/Vision from the MCU movies so I bought her the Vision comic anthology by Tom King for Christmas and she's loving it. I don't know much about comics but would love to get some recommendations about what other works might be great for her if she's interested in more such works in the future.

Generally I think what would work best is similar collections of comics, given our conversations I don't think she'd appreciate a bunch of individual issues yet or want a subscription. Almost all of her exposure to the world of comics comes through the MCU as well, so she's mentioned her interests align with characters already present in that canon.

I know she loves Iron Man the most out of the Avengers, and is a huge fan of Spider-Man as well, so any great anthologies from those characters would be great. She also mentioned that with the Vision book she loved that it didn't require too much prior knowledge about a comic universe to understand, so things that are too inside baseball might not be a hit.
posted by Carillon to Society & Culture (6 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Hawkeye by Matt Fraction and David Aja?
Spider-Man Kraven's Last Hunt by DeMatteis and Zeck?

Vision was a fairly unique series so if that's her first experience then I don't know if she'd go for something more Super-heroey.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 5:45 AM on January 4, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I found the recent runs of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl to be both accessible and tied into the world of the Avengers. Doreen Green takes a different approach to superheroing than most, and Ryan North keeps things interesting and fun. They are collected in paberback, and there's a standalone graphic novel.
posted by rikschell at 6:09 AM on January 4, 2021 [3 favorites]

Best answer: I was going to say Squirrel Girl, which has lots of drop-ins from other comics and might help her find other titles she's interested in.

Other, non-Marvel books that are amazing and come in compilations: Saga, Love and Rockets.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 7:19 AM on January 4, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: There's a mini-series called WandaVision about Scarlet Witch and Vision debuting January 15th on Disney+ starring Paul Bettany and Elizabeth Olsen from the MCU movies. It looks awesome.
posted by jamaro at 10:20 AM on January 4, 2021

Best answer: Seconding Fraction's Hawkeye run (I think it's about 27 issues?) as well as Ryan North's Squirrel Girl (60ish issues).

If it turns out she likes Squirrel Girl then I'd recommend Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder's Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur (just shy of 50 issues) as well and Kate Leth's Hellcat (15ish issues).

Also, if she liked Tom King's Vision then I'd also recommend his Mister Miracle 12 issue series. It takes a lot of the energy behind Vision and turns it up to 11.

And then for me, because I love She-Hulk, I'd also recommend Javier Pulido and Charles Soule's She-Hulk run (about a dozen issues?)
posted by jaybeans at 1:31 PM on January 4, 2021

Best answer: Iron Man is my fave! Keeping in mind that comics Iron Man and movie Iron Man are two fairly different people, here is brief list of some Iron Man runs/series that can probably be appreciated without much comics knowledge, in no particular order:

Iron Man: Extremis: This is my top pick for someone interested in reading relatively-modern Iron Man comics; it's the first six issues of a run from 2006 and it can be appreciated without knowing too much about comics. It features a reimagining of Tony's origin story in a way that will probably look a little more familiar to someone with only MCU knowledge than a lot of the other iterations of his origin story. A large portion of the storyline here ended up in the movie Iron Man 3. Also the art's very nice.

Iron Man: Fatal Frontier: A standalone miniseries where Tony becomes sheriff of the moon and makes friends with a Communist robot. It's wacky and a lot of fun. Worth reading digitally rather than on paper because it was designed as an "infinite comic," which is an interesting artistic experiment in which each panel takes up one digital page and there are minimal changes from panel to panel in order to bring different elements into focus, sort of like reading a very slow flipbook.

Iron Man: Season One: You might actually like a lot of the Season One books, which are standalone graphic novels intended to provide modern reworkings of various heroes' and teams' origin stories, presupposing no comics knowledge whatsoever. The art here is gorgeous, although if you are a comics purist you should probably be aware that none of the Season One line is in continuity with the main comics line.

Iron Man Noir: This is a miniseries from the Marvel Noir line, which puts a lot of the superheroes in a 1930s universe (you may be familiar with Spider-Man Noir from the movie Into the Spider-Verse). Most of the Noir miniseries are dark and gritty, but Iron Man here is basically Tony Stark as Indiana Jones. Requires zero previous knowledge of anything.

Iron Age: A miniseries in which Tony time-travels through his own past and encounters a lot of old friends and enemies, revisiting some of his weirdest and/or saddest greatest hits.

Iron Man: Legacy: A two-arc miniseries meant to fill in some of the gaps of earlier canon, but I don't think you need to know much to enjoy reading this.

There are also a lot of classic, definitive Iron Man stories that are well-regarded and don't need a whole lot of context -- the ones that come to mind immediately for me are Doomquest and Demon in a Bottle, maybe also Armor Wars -- but I don't know what your partner's tolerance level for older comics is like; the art style has definitely evolved over the years, and the pacing and style of narration is very different. They can often be a bit of an acquired taste for people who have started with modern comics.

(For example, my personal favorite Iron Man comics arc is #160-200, by Denny O'Neil, in which Tony falls off the wagon (after the events of Demon in a Bottle, the more famous drinking arc), featuring Obadiah Stane, whom you will remember as the villain of the first Iron Man movie, but it's from the early 80s and is also not entirely available in paperback, unfortunately.)

I also second Squirrel Girl (which has some good Iron Man cameos) and possibly G. Willow Wilson's Ms. Marvel, as really good recent comics I would rec to just about anyone.

Also, I know you said "no subscriptions" but I really must put in a plug for Marvel's digital comics subscription service, Marvel Unlimited, which is basically Netflix but for Marvel Comics. For a monthly fee, you can read (on phone, tablet, or computer) almost every single issue that Marvel has published, provided it's more than three months old. (So not current comics and probably not book-length graphic novels -- so none of the Series One line, as far as I know, but yes to everything else I mentioned, and probably yes to everything Marvel everyone else has mentioned above.) There are a few gaps in the collection, but almost everything you could want to read is there, and they even have recommended reading guides by character if you're looking for a place to start. It's a very polished reading experience on a tablet, especially, and it's definitely cheaper than buying a bunch of comics in paper, because this hobby gets expensive fast.
posted by sineala at 8:16 PM on January 4, 2021 [1 favorite]

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