This is the season of superheroes. Batman v Superman, Captain America: Civil War, X-Men: Apocalypse, Suicide Squad, Dr. Strange and much more have fluttered the hearts of all superhero lovers.
This deluge of superhero films has also led to a piquing of interest in the actual source of these movies: the comics. If you too are looking for some great superhero comics to satiate your thirst for superhero fun, then have a look at the list below. These five comic books are absolute must-grabs in this superhero season.
Batman: The Killing Joke by Alan Moore: The best Batman comic by fair distance, primarily because it focuses on the origins of Joker. One of the most intriguing comic villains of all time, in ‘The Killing Joke’ we get to see Joker’s past; of him as a failed stand-up comedian and having a pregnant wife. It is interesting that the author chose this backstory for the Joker as it is bound to create some sympathy for this dreaded antagonist. Further into the story, we see Joker hell-bent on proving that any man can be pushed into insanity; ultimately wanting to prove his own story perhaps. For this, he kidnaps Commissioner Gordon and tries to drive him insane. But with the help of Batman, Gordon holds Joker off. This is a rampaging page-turner filled with pulsating moments culminating into a stunning climax. An absolute marvelous and unmissable Batman graphic novel.
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All-Star Superman by Grant Morrison: A quintessential Superman story, ‘All-Star Superman’ is a stunning achievement, both story and art-wise. Beautifully crafted, the book can be read at anytime without ever bothering to worry about a backstory or a connected episode. It’s just a standalone series than can be relished by superhero comic fans. The main theme of the story revolves around the idea that after extreme solar radiation, Superman’s powers have grown manifold and it is in effect killing him. Superman is informed by a prophecy from the future that he will complete 12 labors before his death. All these 12 labors – including telling Lois Lane is true identity and bidding farewell to his father – puts him in precarious situations and how Superman deals with it forms the rest of the story. An emotional and splendid Superman tale.
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Flashpoint by Geoff Johns: Arguably the best Flash story ever, ‘Flashpoint’ is a limited comic book series which shows us an alternate world in which only Barry Allen aka The Flash is the only one who is aware of the significant changes between the regular timeline and the altered one where he has woken up in. Basically, the world has been broken and it is all The Flash’s fault. In this series, we see that Bruce Wayne was murdered and his father is the brutal Batman instead. Superman is a test prisoner of the military while Wonder Woman and Aquaman are on the brink of tearing the world apart because of the fallen love between them. Mentioning anything more here would be spoiling the fun for you. ‘Flashpoint’ has brilliant artwork and an epic story that every superhero fan should enjoy.
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The Infinity Gauntlet by Jim Starlin: One of the best Marvel comics of all-time, this 1991 limited series by Jim Starlin, George Perez, and Ron Lim was absolutely epic by all standards. This book tells the story of Thanos, the greatest villain in the Marvel universe, who has finally collected all six Infinity Gems and after placing them into his gauntlet, has become a god-like being. He wishes to win over the woman he loves – the Embodiment of Death – and for that he must end all life in the universe. With the joint forces of the Mind, Soul, Power, Reality, Space, and Time gems, Thanos goes on a rampage; killing most of the X-Men, killing Daredevil and the Fantastic Four, as well as the Avengers. The remaining heroes attempt to stop him from attaining godhood, but in the end it is Thanos’ own offs-spring Nebula who repairs the damage and resurrects the dead. Of course, this isn’t the actual end and we get to see much more to the story. A classic superhero comic that will be relished by all.
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Secret Wars by Jim Shooter: While it is a common sight in comic books these days, ‘Secret Wars’ was the first superhero mega-crossover of its kind back in the day. A 12-issue series published in 1984, the story revolved around the Beyonder (a cosmic entity) picking off heroes and villains from Earth and onto “Battleworld”. As a result, we see Captain America, Captain marvel, Hawkeye, Iron Man (Rhodey), She-Hulk, Thor, the Wasp, the Fantastic Four (minus Invisible Woman), Spider-Man, Hulk, the X-Men, Magneto, Doctor Doom, Doc Octopus, Enchantress, Kang, Absorbing Man, Klaw, the Lizard, Volcana, Ultron, Titania, Molecule Man, and the Wrecking Crew, and many more, clash in a cutthroat battle. The series had superb battle scenes where a lot of characters kept switching sides and news ones kept getting added. An epic story told with a lot of fun. Classic superhero comics will be floored by it.
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