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GOC Comics: Top Marvel Comics of 2017

Welcome back, True Believers! We’ve commiserated the best indie and non-Big 2 comic book releases that 2017 had to offer, so now it’s time to see what the giants in this crazy industry brought to the table.

First, let’s look at Marvel. The publisher had a rather… interesting year, to say the least. But despite all its controversies – from newly appointed editor-in-chief CB Cebulski’s Asian mask scandal to the recent cancellation of numerous diverse solo titles, among other grievances extensively recounted here – we can’t deny that Marvel had a pretty solid year of great comic books. But don’t just take our word for it; check out our list of this year’s top Marvel comics and see for yourself!


Written by Saladin Ahmed
Art by Christian James Ward

What It’s About:
Black Bolt imprisoned! But by who? And where exactly? To find some answers, Black Bolt must first fight for his survival against longtime enemies and gain new allies among his fellow captives. However, not every prisoner is as they seem, nor are they ready to trust the hero-turned-inmate. There are those who would see him fall… and they are more than happy to push.

Why You Should Read It:
If you’ve ever wondered if a prose author can make a successful transition to comic book writing, Saladin Ahmed’s celebrated run on Black Bolt is all the proof you need. Ahmed beautifully revitalizes the Inhumans mythology while offering thoughtful ruminations on literal imprisonment, the metaphorical prisons we find ourselves in, and the sacrifices we make to find freedom. Even if these timely social themes aren’t your cup of tea, the stunning art certainly should attract you to this series.


Written by Kelly Thompson
Art by Leonardo Romero and Jordie Bellaire

What It’s About:
Remember Hawkeye? No, not that Hawkeye – your favorite Hawkeye, the former Young Avenger, the butt-kicking hero who had to save that other Hawkguy all the time and basically keep his life in some semblance of order. Yup, we mean the dazzling Kate Bishop, making her solo comics debut! Kate is heading back out west and returning to Los Angeles, with her bow and arrow and P.I. badge in tow. There are crimes to solve and she’s the best archer to handle ’em! The City of Angels has a new guardian angel. This is Kate Bishop like you’ve never seen her before, in a brand-new saga that really hits the mark!

Why You Should Read It:
Hawkeyes are perhaps the greatest underdog superheroes Marvel has in its modern arsenal. We fell in love with Clint Barton when Matt Fraction and David Aja tackled the character, and Kelly Thompson has absolutely shined with her take on junior superhero Kate Bishop. This latest Hawkeye series has been a fresh and witty roadtrip for the hero-in-training, which succeeds in honoring the legacy mantle while firmly establishing Kate as an important hero for a new age. We’re sad to learn of the series’ cancellation, but we absolutely adored the run while it lasted.


Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by Steve McNiven, Jay Leisten, and David Curiel

What It’s About:
This high-action sci-fi series centers on Kid Kaiju, Aegis, Slizzik, Hi-Vo and Mekara – monstrous and monstrously massive do-gooders. Teaming up with vampire-hunter Elsa Bloodstone, this dysfunctional new team is trying its best to fight against equally gargantuan creatures and protect the planet from ruin and disaster. But will these new heroes be accepted by the rest of the Marvel Universe and allowed to help, or will they be deemed just as dangerous as the monsters they’re trying to destroy?

Why You Should Read It:
Monsters Unleashed is a bright little gem that mixes all the best elements of Ben 10, Power Rangers, and Aaahh!!! Real Monsters. Strange as this premise may seem, especially as a Marvel property, these monstrous heroes surprisingly work well within the larger superhero universe, mostly by providing a much-needed sense of levity. It’s the kind of fun, easily accessible read even the most serious comic fan needs every once in a while.


Written by Daniel Slott
Art by Michael Allred and Laura Allred

What It’s About:
The Silver Surfer, sentinel of the cosmos, is often alone on his quest to defend space. All that changes when Surfer meets earthling Dawn Greenwood, a young woman determined to push the Surfer’s boundaries. As Surfer tries to return Dawn home, he finds himself caught in his strangest battles yet with newfound foes!

Why You Should Read It:
The celestial adventures of the Silver Surfer finally came to an end this year, which means we can easily declare this series as one of the best comic runs ever produced by Marvel. Silver Surfer was a dreamy joyride into the heart of a previously enigmatic character, and we commend Slott’s steady and purposeful humanization of the Surfer after all these years. Additionally, our comics editor called this series “the most romantic comic he’s read this year,” and this writer wholeheartedly agrees.


Written by James Robinson
Art by Hugo Petrus, Rachelle Rosenberg, and ACO

What It’s About:
The world is a dangerous place – and when S.H.I.E.L.D. needs a lone agent to infiltrate, capture and remain anonymous, there’s no one better than him. An all-new era for the super-spy begins, as Fury is sent on a top-secret mission to the French Riviera. He’ll need to outmaneuver the enemy as the complex dance of espionage begins once more. But will Fury meet his match in the mysterious Frankie Noble? Just cling on to the edge of your seat as you find out – and don’t let go!

Why You Should Read It:
We’re still waiting for Idris Elba to take his rightful place as the new James Bond, but in the meantime check out Marvel’s take on super sexy, Bond-style spy thrillers with this year’s Nick Fury series. Fury Jr. finally gets some serious facetime as the newest secret agent on the job for S.H.I.E.L.D., and it’s a delight to follow his attempts to live up to – and ultimately surpass – his father’s iconic footsteps. Plus, the art is a gorgeously funky homage to the 1970s.


Written by Tom Taylor
Art by Juan Cabal, Nolan Woodard, and Cory Petit

What It’s About:
X-23 was created to be a weapon and for a time, that’s all she was. But with the help of her mentor, Logan – the original Wolverine – she escaped that dark past. Tragically, Logan has fallen, but Laura will continue in his footsteps as a hero. Recent events have her doing everything in her power to keep those around her alive, as violent forces are hell-bent on mutual destruction. If anyone can stop them, it’s Laura. She is the best there is at what she does. She is… the All-New Wolverine!

Why You Should Read It:
After the cinematic masterpiece that was Logan, we’ve been craving some new stories about Wolverine and the extended Snikt family – especially if those stories focus on Laura, the film’s breakout star and Logan’s clone/surrogate daughter. Look no further than All-New Wolverine, which has been exploring Laura’s origins and her relationship with the superhero community with a surprising amount of heartfelt writing and character development. It’s a consistently cool series that new and longtime fans alike can enjoy.

Ms. Marvel

Written by G. Willow Wilson
Art by Various, incl. Takeshi Miyazawa, Adrian Alphona, Marco Failla, Diego Olortegui, Ian Herring, and VC’s Joe Caramagna
What It’s About:
A brand new chapter for Kamala Khan has begun! But it’s lonely out there for a superhero when her loved ones no longer have her back, especially when an enemy from Ms. Marvel’s past resurfaces and targets those closest to her. Who can Ms. Marvel trust when everyone in Jersey City is against her? Can anyone help her save the day? And if not, is she confident and capable enough to save herself? It’s time for Kamala to find out exactly who she is when she is on her own… not just as a superhero, but as a human being.

Why You Should Read It:
Geeks of Color has been rooting for Kamala Khan since her powerful debut in 2013. Her story as a Muslim American superhero, as well as a young teen girl in a wonderfully diverse neighborhood, reminds us of the importance of dynamic and respectful representation in the media. In this vain, the Ms. Marvel series is ending 2017 with another strong year of witty, compassionate, and insightful storylines that we desperately need in times like these. We look forward to what G. Willow Wilson has in store for next year, and we hope that this iconic run continues for many years to come.

No matter how extensive our list of top Marvel comics is, we’re sure you have some recommendations of your own. Let us know which comic books you think deserve some love, and check back tomorrow for our final look at the best comic books of the year!

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