MrSotoMans: Top 7 Comics Growing Up!

We pretty much all watch the comic book movies, but did we as a kid actually read the comics prior to the movie? I happen to...well sort of. Here is my Top 7 Comics Growing Up into adulthood.

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By MrSotoMan - 4/25/2014

First off, before we start this article. I just want to say

YOU REALLY DO CARE =]
 

Now before I begin this top 7. I just want to point out a couple of things. First, when I was growing up, the first thing that I began to love that was comic superhero related, was the TV shows in the 90's. Those shows consisted of Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, X-Men, Fantastic Four, Silver Surfer at one point and some I would catch sometimes like Incredible Hulk. I didn't start where comics started first simply because I was more (as a kid) into the TV shows. When I heard an X-Men movie was being released, me and my brother were hooked onto that idea. I never did think it would happen, especially for one of my favorites growing up X-Men to be made into a movie. In June 2000, after watching it; me and my brother became hooked on the idea of superheroes being turned into movies. We knew about Batman Forever & Batman & Robin growing up as kids and the previous other Batman movies. We did know about all the Superman movies and watched them as well as children. As soon as X-Men did come out though, it was like the wait for the next superhero movie was too long. We were practically begging for them, our last hope to to keep up with this was to read the comics (which made the excitement waiting for another movie, worse.) and wait for any other movie was to be released. 

As you can tell comics seem to be the thing that many others have read first, but I am not ashamed to admit that my entire upbringing of comic books is because of the movies and TV shows regardless if they get it right or wrong. So without further ado, here are the top 7 comics I read growing up before I eventually stopped reading them.

7. ULTIMATE HULK
 
This one I remember sort of, but this specific comic I remember sort of is one of the first ones I read when Marvel first started digital comics on their sites. This one had Bruce Banner on the run for an unspeakable act he had comitted killing woman and children in a city. The whole comic run was depressing. Watching the show, than reading this comic made me realize how so far out there is book was. It was really somber, not to mention the comic was primarily more about Banner and him running away from the Army. When eventually caught (or I think he turns himself in) thw army puts Bruce Banner to sleep, killing him in the most depressing way. Mind you I have searched high & low for this comic online now and no avail, but if you find it please post the comic scan in the comment section. Overall it was a digital comic which at the time before Spider-Man came out i became highly aware of The Hulk movie and was excited to hear about that movie more than ever.


Then I read the other Ultimate Hulk where Hulk is flat out cannabalistic. Again, nothing like the show I watched but kind of expected from a monster, especially The Hulk. I remember even when Hulk ate the Abomination, which was crazy when looking at it. Lets just say it totally strained the idea more of what I thought Hulk was. Even though the comics to me were pretty good, it was just a little out there. I also was introduced to SHIELD a lot more since Banner had worked for SHIELD. Overall he was one of the first heroes I was introduced too that I really did enjoy reading and which I hope many of you have as well.

6. ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR

Ultimate Fantastic Four was already the first introduction I had to this new take and realizing it was a new take first hand. Hulk did have a new take, but the episodes I saw in the show were completely different from the comic. In the show of Fantastic Four though, it is mentioned of their origin a lot more and where they stood out as superheroes. This comic though was a lot different. Their origin made them look younger even though Reed was the oldest, here Reed was in his early 20's. The Thing had an enormous amount of strength, Sue Storm is even more annoying. The origin is completely different and a little like the movie where all 5 of them are all affected by the same experiment they were trying to achieve. This time it had Reed trying to transport an apple into the N-Zone where Doom recalculates everything assuming Reed brought up the wrong calculates. With that happening, the five of them are transformed through the N-Zone. 

I wouldn't call it THE BEST but it certainly wasn't horrible. I never liked the way Doom was handled, don't understand the need to give him goat legs nor did I like his personality. He seemed more like an asshole that liked to blame everybody else but himself. I also didn't care for the story after the first fight with Doom where he is firing rockets at the team because after that nothing really excitied me to go back and read more I never got a chance to read any of the 616 Fantastic Four comics till later on in high-school I read Fantastic Four The End. A one shot yes, but it does seem like a connection to the 616. Overall a very mixed opinion on this comic but nonetheless it wasn't terrible. 

5. ASTONISHING X-MEN & ULTIMATE X-MEN

Now I ranked them both at the same time due to the fact that they are X-Men and growing up watching the shows than watching the movies knowing very well in advance they were different did show me that it did have its differences. Now the one comic that I actually felt deserved to be needed to be told into a movie was the stories of Astonishing X-Men. It was such a well made comic book. The art, the action and the story of the first 3 Volumes were on point. Especially using the cure for mutants in X3, it didn't do a good job in putting the story in a well balanced way since you also had the story of Dark Phoenix which had the Gifted storyline taking up the majority of the movie. I also loved the story to come after where the X-Men battle the Danger Room, a crazy story that I hope one that that movie does happen where they have to battle an enemy like that. 

This comic Ultimate X-Men wasn't my cup of T. It was probably one of the first comics. I really disliked due to how weird it had gotten to the point where I almost forgot while doing this list. Now me and my brother caught this on Marvel.com where they had digital comics of the comic. So when it did pop up online. I read the one comic that weirded me out and kind of seemed like how unoriginal the comic was becoming and far out it was. Mind you, I was a young age and I became critical towards this which was Sabretooths 4 claws....yea...brilliant idea guys..what a way to show that Sabretooth can one up Wolverine. Cyclops is a jealous teenager, Jean Grey is sort of a slut. Everything is pretty much changed from what I knew from the show. Its decent though and was probably one of the last comics I read before moving to Florida from New Jersey.

4. WOLVERINE: ORIGINS
 
Probably one of my favorite or my top 10 favorites is the Wolverine Origin story. This story was the first time I ever became introduced to the idea of Wolverine having bone claws. To me this was a pivitol and but yet awesome moment to me the moment the bone claws came out. This was another comic that was released in digital format that I eventually picked up in Florida. It blew me away, not to mention how Wolverine teamed up with Captain America in World War II, or the depiction of the scene in the movie where Logan or James Howlett lets out the claws was pretty amazing too. Some of the characters are forgettable, like Dog & Rose which I pretty much showed no care in. 

I really liked it growing up, because at the height of the X-Men movies even before than, I always felt that Wolverine was the coolest looking member of the group. His hair, his costume, the claws. Forget about who he is or anything like that. His style and the approach of the character is what drew me in, Origins was the one that really got me to understand Wolverine. The episodes I saw of X-Men never showed Wolverines healing ability that I remembered, nor did it show his past. So reading this comic pretty much showed a different side of Wolverine. Even though it was short since it was a miniseries, it was a worthy miniseries to me to own as a graphic novel when I moved to Florida. I liked Wolverine as a kid due to how he looked, but this comic made me love the character even more despite the notable differences from the movie.

3. SUPERMAN (ALMOST ALL OF THEM)

Superman. Superman was the one character growing up, that I kinda stopped caring about at one point and kind of gave up on than rekindled my love for him. He was a character that when watching the movies and watching the TV shows I felt had no type of character development that made me seem like can do no wrong as a kid, where as other heroes with conflicts building to the idea that they are a hero meant to me that they were a lot more interesting. Which is why I read Hulk, Spider-Man, X-Men and what not. Than I read Superman Birthright...than All Star Superman, than the Death of Superman, so many comics I read of him where it just rekindled the flame for me when it came to him. The most obvious reason to me on why sometimes I do not like him is that he is an over-powered character in all of comics where writers had to think of creative ways to create ridiculous scenarios where Superman can test his strength. At the core of it though which many Superman fans look at the feats he had accomplished and what he can do, they miss the core message and idea of him a lot more.

The message to me growing up was always Truth, Justice & The American Way, but in a lot of ways people always seem to think of him as this perfect being, where everyone constantly sometimes feels jealous of him (lets admit, Batman) or constantly look up to him. In spite of all that, he really is a guy that is conflicted with who he is on this planet. I mean the guy has no parents, he is practically brought on this Earth to find out years later his planet was destroyed and that he is an alien at such a young age. Than you get the idea that he is just someone who wants to do the right thing. I'm not going to mention Man of Steel here, but that is who I saw in Superman is a character that feels he was someone who wants to do the right thing even though he has above and beyond but sometimes doesn't feel like he has yet fulfilled what he has done. There is some comics I read where he thinks he can do better, Birthright was one of them where he just wanted to help and in a lot of ways I think a the core of that people mislead and go into misdirection when they think of Superman in that light. He is someone that just wants to be there in case the shit goes down or something goes terribly wrong, he wants to save us and in a lot of ways we got that Superman inside of us that hopes to be there to do the right thing. A subtle yet moral message I have heard all my life from my father was "Do the right thing" so to me, Superman stood for that. Not because of his powers that are unbelievable, but really the core of who he is to me that is more important..Something my brother constantly always wants to leave for last when he talks about his love for Superman which he constantly brings up how extremely strong he is rather than the actual love of the character. I love and hate you Superman, I really do =]

2. BATMAN (ALL OF THEM)

He is one of my favorite superheroes of all time, probably my number one superhero but he isn't the number one comic book to me but probably one of the ones I read where I really just fell in love with. As a kid the movies I watched growing up was Batman Forever & Batman & Robin. As a kid I never thought much of it other than the fact that its Batman, Robin, Mr. Freeze, Batgirl, explosions, action I mean who gives a shit? Growing up of course my whole perspective of him changed once I saw Batman Begins. This was the movie I knew was going to be awesome, I had such high hopes, I skipped school, took the bus to watch it and ended up getting in trouble BUT WORTH IT! After Begins I started to read the comics when I moved to Florida. I read Batman Hush, which I thought was a great read and sometimes still read when I take a shit in the toilet (I know, TMI), Batman The Long Halloween, Batman: Venom, The Killing Joke, Batman & Superman and my favorite, Batman: Dark Victory.

I always felt the story of Robin was told an odd way in the movies compared to the TV show when I watched it. It is often retold in movies, comics and in TV including with All Star Batman, but I think was the one comic where I felt the origin and the necessity of him became clearer and clearer to me. I always felt that these comics just had better writing than a lot of other comics out there. Specifically my favorite was when Bruce talks to Dick about how his feelings towards his parents death. It was a great moment in the comic, and most importantly one of my favorites cause of how deep the whole conversation got, but when Dick begins to realize that him and Bruce are both orphans when Alfred tells him why is probably a moment that his it deep with the character as well.  I always loved Batman because of the writing and all the different villains he had faced. You had a villain that Batman inadvertanly created, a villain who feels he is completely smarter than Batman, a villain who brought the idea of sympathetic to the table, I mean there is a lot of them that make them seem more than what they are. They are incredibly interesting, more interesting than villains like The Leader, Sabretooth, hell even Brainiac. I think that is one of the biggest reasons I loved so much about Batman but more importantly also is his character. I mean this is a guy that became an orphan but decided to use this rage, anger, and frustration and channel it through fighting crime. I mean he was one of the godfathers of having the origin of losing both your parents and probably the one that got it the worse since he witnessed it. His costume, his image and the symbol, its just iconic to me, not to mention he doesn't even have a super power which makes him the more interesting since he could die at any moment in his career. He ranks, as probably my favorite superhero, but the one hero I felt had the best comic books growing up....is....

1. ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN

THIS! Was just awesome growing up. Remember, I didn't grow up reading the comics first. I grew up watching the show, watching the movies and playing the games, specifically the Playstation One game. I loved him! He was just a great looking character, his name was just so easy to love as well, SPIDER-MAN! It just had this ring to it that I recognized better and felt a little more connected to growing up. When the movie came out, I fell more in love with Spider-Man, he was just awesome in every way. When I moved to Florida, I saved up money to buy the Ultimate Spider-Man volume collection, to get a heads up in comics since thinking back than foolishly if you didn't read the comics, you didn't know jack-shit. Even though I knew the obvious deviations from the original, the movie and characters. The whole comic grew on to me. The volumes it came with went all the way up with Venom, but after readin it, I started buying them as regular comics.

All the villains and characters felt more modern and realistic or better yet made more sense than the 616. For example the re-telling of Venom was a lot better to me. Instead of being found during the Secret Wars, the symbiote was man-made by Peters father, Richard Parker and Eddie Brocks father (which in a hilarious way look a lot more like 616 Peter & Eddie), Rhino has a mech suit instead of being altered to the suit. Electro is written like a hit-man working for Kingpin, Nick Fury is introduced wanting to take Spider-Man into SHIELD, but can't cause of his age. Mary Jane was written better and the fact that she knew his identity and even bossed him around to be a superhero was quite funny, but even though it did have deviations, it was such a great read. Spider-Man was always a character I felt connected to growing up here in Florida. I was bullied, I was picked on or name-called and felt at times my high-school life had no purpose but to just study hard and do what I gotta do. Like Parker, a moment in my life changed everything where I had a big responsibility to take rather than just walk away from it, being a father. It was a hard moment in my life, but I always stood by the idea that I need to take responsibility seriously and believe it or not Spider-Man was that responsibility. So he kind of stuck with me as a teen and how I felt personally with him. As one stated, he is an everyman in such a big world and a lot of ways we are all that everyman who will one day take up a huge responsibility on par to what Spider-Man has. Not crazy like being bitten by a spider, but maybe its becoming a CEO, maybe its becoming a parental figure or hell a police officer. 

As I grew up, as I stand at my age of being 21, I have stopped reading comics. Changes happen, comics get weirder or rebooted and I grow up. Than again, I never really grew up reading the comics. I had my love for superheroes because of their powers, their personality and their characteristics. You don't have to be an avid comic-reader to be in love with these characters which a lot of die-hard comic fans believe if you like the X-Men movies or the idea of Fantastic Four, I mean it you just really don't. I grew up with the characters a lot differently than most others and saw differently about them. I love superheroes for the different stories that have come out through the years; the different villains, the different alter-egos, love interests, all of it. It all resonated to me. We all have the beginning of what got us into comics, so I thought it would be cool to share this and to show that I was never a huge comic book reader like most of you have been, but it is a labor of love for superheroes in general that I have grown with since I was 5. I have read a bunch of comics, these were just the comic stories I did follow a lot. Some I remember fondly, some I do not, overall I am a fan.

THANK YOU FOR READING, NOW IF YOU EXCUSE ME

THUMBS UP AND COMMENTS APPRECIATED!
 

 
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32 Comments
TheAbaryMan369 - 4/25/2014, 9:39 AM
The Ultimates are a poor man's 616
Tainted87 - 4/25/2014, 9:57 AM
Sort of, but they're condensed for people who don't want to read years and years of comics to understand what the hell is going on.

Out of all the Ultimate comics, I think Ultimate Spider-man was the best. Mark Bagley did a terrific job with the art (very consistent), and Bendis made Spider-man fun.
I love the Ultimates, especially the second volume with the Chitauri. They're all "movie trailer" style, however, because Bryan Hitch took ten years and a day to get anything out. I certainly can't blame him - his artwork is great, and I have the exact same problem (which is why I don't do commissions unless they're for a friend)... but there's a certain level of minimalism that makes the comics drag.

I didn't read a whole lot of comics when I was a kid. Heh, there's a dumb story behind all that. Back when Waldenbooks was on Fletcher and Dale Mabry (it's a Fed-Ex now), I used to buy an issue of Spider-man every time we'd go there. Back then, it was Identity Crisis, where he can't be Spider-man because Osborn's declared war on him, so he takes on Dusk, Prodigy, Ricochet, and the Hornet. I never got to the conclusion.
My mother wasn't exactly crazy about it, considering she was trying to get me to read novels, not picture books, and I was already obsessing over the cartoon re-runs. I recorded em all on tape, every episode. And they did not air in chronological order, oh no. Anyways, my baby sister (at the time) got pissed off at me and raided my comics. She LITERALLY ATE CARNAGE! It was the What-If issue where the Carnage symbiote takes over the Silver Surfer, and we get Cosmic Carnage. She tore my comics to pieces, and I got so SO upset. Basically after that, my parents decided it was time to stop buying me comics. I never got into DC when I was little. I definitely watched Batman TAS, and the movies but that was it.
WYLEEJAY - 4/25/2014, 10:50 AM
I got into comics at the same time the nineties cartoons were on. Me and my cousin were watching X Men and Spider Man, and he told me to follow him. He was about six years older than me. He opened this drawer, and it was filled to the top with X Men comics. That's all he had. He let me dig in and I have been hooked since. I still follow the X men. I quit on Dan The Mole Man Slot, he ruined Spider Man for me. I started liking Iron Man more and more. Not so much the Avengers until Spidey and Wolverine joined. Then I was hooked on Avengers. Point is, I liked the comics before the movies. When the movies came out I liked every single one. Except Spider Man 3 and Ghost Rider SoV so far. Yeah I even enjoyed Elektra. X men 3 dropped the ball with the Phoenix, but it didn't bother me as much as what they did to Venom. Plus that horrible emo Parker scene. Im currently reading digitals now, been to busy to go to the comic shop.
CorndogBurglar - 4/25/2014, 10:52 AM
Wow Soto, how old are you to have grown up with these books?

Here's mine.

7. Cable

6. X-Factor

5. Wolverine

4. X-Force

3. Batman (All Batman titles, but Shadow of the Bat was my favorite.)

2. Uncanny X-Men (Gold Team)

1. X-Men (Blue Team)

I grew up as an X-Men fan. They are what got me into comics when I was 5. Most of my childhood was spent with them.
CorndogBurglar - 4/25/2014, 10:54 AM
@ Tainted

Fletcher and Dale Mabry?

Ha! I live in Tampa too.
MrSotoMan - 4/25/2014, 11:01 AM
@CorndogBurglar- I'm 21, 22 in December.

YOU LIVE IN TAMPA TOO!?!? I live in Riverview! 20 minutes away from Channelside!
MrSotoMan - 4/25/2014, 11:05 AM
@Tainted87- See my cousin did the same thing, he had been collecting straight up Marvel comics, he had 2 boxes full of them. He even had the comic where Spider-Man had fought Hulk and The Death of Gwen Stacey....till he sold them......=[ but I was too young to understand the value of them, I mean when I saw them I was like 7 or 8 I believe, back when Playstation 2 was being released and it was the hottest thing out there. He even still had Super Nintendo.

I agree Ultimate Spider-Man is the best of the Ultimates since it really took Spider-Man to a whole new level!
BenjiWest - 4/25/2014, 11:20 AM
Man I feel old, started collecting around Death of Superman and Batman Knightfall. Stopped shortly, then got right back in with Morrison's JLA. Hook hand Aquaman and Electric Blue Supes, and still Morrison made one helluva series. Ultimate line was the only Marvel line I ever got...lost me at Ultimates Vol. 3. Loeb, that crazy...
Tainted87 - 4/25/2014, 11:29 AM
If you call someone from Africa "African", Asia "Asian", Australia "Australian", Canada "Canadian", Mexico "Mexican", Puerto Rico "Puerto Rican", Cuba "Cuban"....

What do you call someone from Tampa?

CorndogBurglar - 4/25/2014, 12:07 PM
@ Soto

haha, you're kidding. I live right off Bloomingdale and Kings.
MrSotoMan - 4/25/2014, 12:09 PM
@CorndogBurglar- What!?! Thats crazy! I live off of Balm & Big Bend, I'm like 15 minutes away from Bloomingdale and Kings.
cipher - 4/25/2014, 12:17 PM
Good read, man. My grandfather got me into this stuff when I was about five years old or so, but by the time I was in my teens I kinda just drifted away from it for a good while before slowly working my way back in. But, yeah.. these days, it's mostly digital for me. I mean, I've got a few trades laying around, sure, but I used to move around a lot and I love to travel, so digital just makes my life easier. I've kinda just gotten used to not having physical copies of stuff anymore.

Anyway, when I was a kid, I remember going through my Grandfather's old comics (he had boxes of the stuff going back for a few decades), and what REALLY hooked me was the X-Men and Spidey shit. There was a few issues of the Proteus stuff in there, a little of the Phoenix saga, some Rhino stories, some Green Goblin, and some more stuff that I can't really remember. There was a lot of Batman, too, so yeah. But, like I said, I kinda drifted away from comics once I hit my teens.

It wasn't until a few years ago that I started to slowly get back into this stuff and catch up on some things, but I'm familiar with a lot of the comics you listed, especially Batman and Superman.

Good stuff, man. Oh, and I'm 25, by the way.. since we're doing the whole age thing.
Tainted87 - 4/25/2014, 12:18 PM
I'm so far away from you guys, it's not even funny. I went to Sickles.
cipher - 4/25/2014, 12:19 PM
Benji- I loved Morrison's JLA. Remember Rock of Ages? That's one of my favourites.
Tainted87 - 4/25/2014, 12:21 PM
Hmmmm, I think I got back into comics (well, trades) back when The Last Stand came out. My ex was a huge X-man fan, and her uncle had a SHIT LOAD of comics - we're talking the 80s and 90s. She got me reading em, and I think with the movies coming out like they were, I just kept exploring.
WesleyGibson - 4/25/2014, 12:40 PM
I'm 21 if that counts for anything. I don't have any favorites besides Origin and most of Batman's stories. I basically read any comic I get my hands on.

Great article by the way! =)
DEVLIN712 - 4/25/2014, 12:55 PM
I always feel so young when I hear you people's ages. I'm only 16...
DEVLIN712 - 4/25/2014, 12:58 PM
I grew up watching reruns of the 90s cartoons along with things like X-Men Evolution, that lead me into comics. I went back and read The Amazing Spider-Man #1 to #43 (Rhino's first appearance) digitally. Absolutely loved it. I have a really long read list I need to get around to but school is a bitch at the moment. Really want to read Kingdom Come and The Winter Soldier
CorndogBurglar - 4/25/2014, 1:39 PM
@ Devlin

lol, i'm twice your age
cipher - 4/25/2014, 2:17 PM
DEV- Heh, yeah, but.. I'm only 5'9'' and you're, what.. a little over 6 ft. if memory serves? You tower over me. Makes me feel like I'm about to be stepped on.
BenjiWest - 4/25/2014, 2:22 PM
@ciph - Rock of Ages was the pinnacle of Morrison's run. I even went out and re purchased that entire story arc. Just Rock of Ages
Starkasm - 4/25/2014, 4:01 PM
I'm very similar to you. I grew up on the 90's spidey, xmen and hulk cartoons. I always loved the characters and in retrospect, don't understand why I didn't make the leap to comics sooner. I'm 22 and have been reading them for around 5 or so years.
Starkasm - 4/25/2014, 4:03 PM
Dev

WS is possibly my all time favorite. Such a beautifully structured comic, packed with emotion and action.
ManCalledSting - 4/25/2014, 6:31 PM
Someone's either extremely new to comics, or pretty young. Dark Victory is awesome though. My mom bought me it a number of years back in single issue form, with the #0 included. I was always a huge fan of Elseworlds stories. DC vs Marvel was a good one, as was Almalgam comic. DC 1,000,000 was damn good too!
MrSotoMan - 4/25/2014, 11:36 PM
@UltimateWarrior- I am pretty young, I am 21 years old turning 22 to this year but I feel I have matured through these years rather sporadically due to having a child at a young age and taking responsibility. I fall under the category of a teen parent, but a statistic that hopes to one day prove wrong that not all fathers are deadbeats.

Either way, I grew up with comics at a young age, but the comics that everyone seems to love are the one with superheroes, and despite my love for them with TV shows and movies, I still garnered the courage to actually pick up and read a comic. I read more than just those 7 I have posted, but those 7 I remember more than ever. I mean I remember Watchmen, but I would not say I loved it better than Ultimate Spider-Man.
staypuffed - 4/26/2014, 2:13 AM
I'm not going to give away my age but I started reading comics when I was around 10. I think I used to read children's magazines with Spider-Man and stuff, as well as Jeff Smith's Bone (an incredibly good series, bw). The very first actual superhero comic I read was Batman: Year One, and will always be one of my favourites.

Interesting list, especially considering most of it is Ultimates.
marvel72 - 4/26/2014, 5:26 AM
chris claremont's uncanny x-men is the reason i got into comics,i did enjoy reading my dads comics as a kid.

5th the incredible hulk

4th the amazing spider-man

3rd fantastic four

2nd the avengers

1st the uncanny x-men
Vortigar - 4/26/2014, 11:54 AM
Growing up I only read Spider-Man really.

Beyond that almost only European comics. Douwe Dabbert, Storm, Asterix, that stuff.

It was only relatively recently (ten years ago) that a car and disposible income allowed me to get into comics for real. Got bookshelves full of collected editions.

Currently busy finally completing my Doc Strange collection. (The old stuff I only have as Marvel Masterworks Editions.)
121 - 4/26/2014, 4:49 PM
I got back into reading comics after 2002's Spider-Man film hit screens, so I've read all of these and this is a great list....but I started in 1975.....so my frame of reference for the BEST "OVERALL' is a little different. Let me give MY top seven in NO particular order.

7. Ultimate Spider Man 1

You can DO this??? You just re-did the holy grail of origin stories....and did it...arguably BETTER? Actually, I wouldn't call this origin story better, but I would say that the attempt to make Pete's origin story contemporary succeeded. The final splash page of an upside-down Peter Parker (with an Einstein observing said events) works because of the angst that leads to it.....namely the everlasting-truth that there will ALWAYS be socially awkward teens who reach a point of choice. We know that although Pete will go through some trials and tribulations, he'll be alright...and so will WE for believing in him.




6. The Ultimates Vol. 1 and 2

THE foundation for the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it....and WHO'S complaining? Yes...Marvel HAD to throw the '616' into the pot for some New Millennium seasoning, but the casserole that emerged was tasty indeed. Sorry, but I prefer 'Apesh88 Hulk VS Freddie Prinze Jr.' over Herb Trimpe's version (although I LOVE Herb Trimpe) and I always knew that the Cap I knew NEVER respected the pacifism of the French. Although further installments of the Avengers Re-TOLD would errantly drift from the heart and soul of the core team, Millar and Hitch's version would make it's permanent mark upon the Marvel landscape as arguably the most 'Marvel' series of all time.





5. Fantastic Four 1-55

NUFF said. If you haven't read the first half of Stan And Jack's first novel (because that's what this is), you can't be considered a Marvelite, much LESS a 'True Believer.' THIS laid it ALL out: The shift in comic book lore from a team to a FAMILY dynamic, 'episodic' from 'issue-to-issue' storytelling, overlapping and continuous themes that would play out over months (and years in the case of Johnny Storm and Crystal's romantic connection). THIS is where you start. The fact that I left out the culmination of this worthwhile reading (The Galactus Saga) means I left it out for a REASON. Other than 'the Catcher In The Rye', I can't think of any more important Post-WWII fiction that should be consumed. GOD BLESS THE CHILD that owns this:



4. Howard The Duck 1-31

Steve Gerber. Google him. HE is the reason we can take Marvel to the next level of seriousness. HE is the reason those who don't "GET" 'Iron Man 3' DON'T GET IT. HE is the reason we can even TALK about a 'Phase 2' in a MCU. HE is the reason things like the absurdity of NSA watches can be a plotline in a Captain America movie sequel can even make it to the table. He is ALSO the reason those with less aptitude to even APPROACH his ideas are saddled with failed films like 'Howard The Duck' and 2004's straight-to-DVD 'Man-Thing' have nowhere else to go. Steve Gerber. If you don't remember Anything else, remember Steve Gerber.



3. The Amazing Spider-Man 39-122

Gwen Stacy was intro'd in 'Ditko'd' ish #33, but this lengthy chapter in Pete's life expanded on that intro and fleshed Peter Parker out to be the man we know and love. Thicker and more secure in his manhood, John Romita's 'Pete' handled the price of being Spidey more eloquently than Ditko's version....and placed Pete securely amongst the times he (and the reader) faced: Student protest, crime and most importantly, the DEATH of a loved one. I need not say how the death of his girlfriend affected Pete, but let's just say that the decision to end Gwen's life will always have repercussions for him...and US, the reader. No more needs to be said than

SNAP.



2. Dr. Strange Vol. 1 1-5

DEEP. If you weren't on drugs and a 'Mighty Marvel' reader in 1974, you might have MISSED Stephen Strange's descent into the realm of DEATH when he was mortally wounded at the outset of his newly minted series. Yes, he DIED. But he came back....because writers Steve Englehart (he wrote the 1970's Cap Storyline that is the foundation for 'The Winter Soldier')knew that 'Death' doesn't necessarily mean the 'END." Through a few issues, we see that Strange simply had a fear of dying...and once he was able to OVERCOME that fear, he would live forever. THAT's why he's still here and that's why we don't know who's been CAST as 'The Master of the Mystic Arts' in the MCU'S "Phase 3."

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MightyZeus - 4/26/2014, 10:37 PM
Great list of comic book's you've read. Some of those comic book's would have been placed on my list. I liked the Ultimate Universe as to when it started. I read Ultimate Spider-man, Ultimate X-men and Ultimate Fantastic Four. I also loved reading through all the Batman comics eg. Dark Knight Returns, Dark Victory, Batman Knightfall. I also loved reading through GOTG 2008 and onward. Age of Apocalypse was a great read. Iron Man Extremist was a great read and is my favourite Iron Man comic. I know a lot of people hated Civil War but i love the fact that it pushed boundaries and i felt it was a serious and heavy.

I started reading comics when i was 12 and it was a hobby i got in to as a kid to distract myself from when my father had passed away and getting into comics helped me with what i was going through at the time.
AlphaAndDecima - 4/27/2014, 7:08 PM
I HATE the Ultimate line-up, but I give Marvel credit for creating a more condense universe for the next generation of readers, no matter how old the person is, because he/she can be introduced to the Marvel universe for the first time. That's really what The Amazing Spider-Man film series is about too, and that's catering to a new generation of viewers that are either starting with the Ultimate comics or just don't read comics and want to see a younger Peter Parker/Spider-Man on screen once more. I have a feeling that's what FOX is aiming to do with their Fantastic Four reboot as well. That's not a terribly bad thing either, but just not my cup of tea(speaking of the Ultimate comics as well as Sony and possibly FOX's new tactic for CBMs).
case - 4/28/2014, 5:46 AM
So young... Good topic and good conversation starter dude.

I religiously collected The Savage Sword of Conan and Conan Saga when younger. All because my grandfather happened to leave one lying around when he stayed once. It just clicked - I'd seen them before but this one read got to me. Savage Sword #160 it was.. Great read. The only Marvel comic worth getting :)

Previous to that it had been mostly silver age/golden age stuff that appealed to me because of the mix of simplicity and awesomeness. Mainly the exploits of Hal Jordan for me...

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