I know a lot of people find these list exhaustive and repetitive but I love them. Most of the year I stick to my personal tastes and recommendations but at the end of the year when all the lists come out I find so much that I missed or hadn’t even considered. Every year I find an album or a comic I hadn’t heard of that completely blows my mind or makes me rethink the possibilities of what is capable in that medium. Stand outs from previous years would be the comic Daytripper or the album Sonic Mass by Amebix.
The other reason I love these lists is it gives people the chance to share all the wonderful things they saw, read or heard that year. There is no end to the awesome stuff that comes out every year and that stuff was made to be seen, heard and read. The idea is that maybe some of these things are new to you and you may find the same enjoyment in them as I did.
With that being said these lists are a collection of my favorites from comics, webcomics, movies and music from 2012. I am not going to take a stance and say these are the best things of 2012 because I don’t believe I have the authority or knowhow to proclaim that. These are simply lists of things that affected me in some way or the other or I just simply enjoyed the heck out of in 2012.
5. Ninjasaur (ninjasaur.com) Ninjasaur by Jason Horn caught my attention as an iPad app. I am always curious to see when a comic makes its own stand alone app and I guess the key to Ninjasaur’s appeal for me was the awesome app. It has one story featured with the ability to swipe two fingers down to reveal the artwork in different states from pencils all the way to completed page while leaving the word balloons intact so you can still read the comic no matter which state you prefer. As if that wasn’t enough the comic ends by taking you to a game that is part of the plot. It is clever beyond belief and so well executed. Based on that I sought the comic out and was still impressed. Ninjasaur is a fun, well designed comic with great characters and a silly premise. Easy to read and get caught up on great for all ages.
4. Frankenstein Superstar (frankensteinsuperstar.com) – Frankenstein Superstar by John Hazard came to me via recommendation and it was one of those comics I couldn’t believe I hadn’t seen before. It was right up my alley. The Frankenstein monster and his bride are alive and well and living in New York. The design on this comic is incredible, a bit of Bruce Timm mixed with old pinup style art with a little Coop thrown in for good measure and you can already start to see the kind of story it is. Adult only humor but a great read all around.
3. King of the Unknown (kingoftheunknown.com) – King of the Unknown by Marcus Muller hits me on two fronts. It is a horror comic and the main character is Elvis. How could I not like this? Throw in a bit of BPRD and a wicked sense of humor and you have one awesome comic. Not to mention the art is jaw droopingly stunning. If you like quirky characters and high concept story telling you may just like King of the Unknown.
2. The Graveyard Gang (graveyardgang.com) Rich Clabaugh’s The Graveyard Gang reminds me of reading comics as a kid and how much fun it was. The Graveyard Gang is like The Little Rascals and the Monster Squad mooshed together with some Hammer creepiness drizzled on top. The story is faced past, adventurous and all over fun. Rich’s Art perfectly compliments the story and with each post blows my mind with his beautifully captured panels and pacing. All that and Rich is one heck of a nice guy to boot. Comics done right folks.
1. Thrillbent (thrillbent.com) I have never been the biggest Mark Waid fan. I like his work but he mostly worked on titles that didn’t interest me. Once I heard he was starting a digital comics outlet I was immediately interested. Mark took the position that he isn’t trying to do away with print books but try and think of a new way to approach comics in the ever increasing digital world. He has been up front about this being an experiment and seeing what works and what doesn’t. Digital comics and digital distribution is something that is extremely interesting to me and I applaud Mr. Waid for taking that leap and seeing if it floats. I think he is paving the way for the future of comics and his (and many others) Thrillbent comics are a prime example of what is possible within the comics medium.