Since we started our podcast at the beginning of the Fresh Start initiative, I figured that for my first Top 5 list, I would pick my top Fresh Start books. Seems like a good starting point, right? Well, I’m glad you agree and I promise I will stop asking you so many questions in the future. So, here is my list…
5. West Coast Avengers
Written by: Kelly Thompson
Art by: Stefano Caselli
We don’t talk about this book much on the podcast and I have to admit, I feel behind on it, but after hunkering down and catching up, I’m all in. It’s funny, has a great cast of characters and looks great. Yea, it’s a bunch of castoffs from canceled series, but that’s a big part of its charm and where else am I going to get my land shark and Gwenpool fix?
Written by: Jeff Lemire
Art by: Kim Jacinto
The first mini (or is it?) on my list and while this series ended a bit more open-ended than I prefer, Jeff Lemire gave readers one of the best looks at the cost of being a superhero. Yea, there wasn’t a ton of fun going on, but the struggles felt real and I’d take this over another companies book that has their heroes in crisis. Extra kudos for Lemire for introducing me to the character and making me want to get off my lazy butt to learn and read more about him.
3. Immortal Hulk
Written by: Al Ewing
Art by: Joe Bennett
While I am not as high on this book as a lot of other readers (believe me, they have told me!), I have slowly come around. The nighttime is the Hulk’s time and relying on having to continuously kill Bruce Banner seemed like a crazy risk, but Al Ewing hasn’t overdone it and it’s lead to a cool back-and-forth with his characters. Yea, I want to know more about the Green Door and hopefully, Hulk’s little jaunt to Hell will clear up that and a lot of other questions.
2. Cosmic Ghost Rider
Written by: Donny Cates
Art by: Dylan Burnett
The second limited series on the list and first Donny Cates book (spoilers!), Cosmic Ghost Rider could and maybe should have been my #1. It was the first book that I read that really got me excited about doing our podcast and made me glad I decided to do this whole Marvel thing. Granted, I did have to look up and read some things to fully understand what was happening, but Donny Cates made it a ton of fun. The story of Frank Castle going back in time to snatch up Baby Thanos to raise the Mad Tyrant and hopefully make the Universe a better place had a ton of laughs, but also some unexpected feels by the end. If you haven’t read this series yet, I highly recommend it.
Written by: Donny Cates
Art by: Ryan Stegman
I’m sure I’m not the only one who was taken by surprise by this book. It will surely be on a lot of peoples Best of 2018 lists and it deserves all the accolades. Donny Cates has expanded the mythos of the symbiote but also has made me care so much about Eddie Brock and his plight. It doesn’t hurt that Ryan Stegman’s art is my favorite in all of comics right now, either. The best thing that I can say about this book is it was the one I was looking forward to the least when Fresh Start began and yet it site firmly as my #1 Fresh Start book.
If you are so inclined, I would love to hear what your top 5 books of Fresh Start are and tune into our Weekend Edition episode this week to hear me and Branden’s top picks for Best of 2018 – Fresh Start Edition.