New to Comics?

So back in our C4F days we had TONS of newbie guides that helped you ease into the world of comics the best we can. So I figured it was time to get something up to help you understand some abbreviations, why their are multiple spider-mans and anything else I can think of. With that lets get to the Table of Contents 😛

 

Table of Contents

1. Common words and abbreviations

  • TPB – Trade Paperbacks is what it stands for. It is a collection of Issues of a particular series of Comics. (I.E. Spider-Man Vol 1 (TPB)(2016) might collect Spider-Man Issues #1-6 published in 2016.)
  • OMNIBUS – Simply put, it is a shitload of comic issues collected in one big ass book.
  • GN – Its a graphic novel, likely a one time run of a comic that will have no other issues. Think of it like a book that doesn’t have subsequent books.
  • Story Arcs – These are issues that meld numerous characters from a particular publisher, mostly Marvel, into one main Story premise over weeks or months. Good example is Civil War movie brought a lot of comic characters to one movie and is based off the Story Arc named Civil War.
  • Weekly Packs – Collects all comics released that Wednesday from a particular publisher.
  • 0-Day Releases –  It’s a term generally used loosely to refer to very recent items but not necessarily ones that were strictly disseminated on or before the retail date.

2. Downloading Comics

Use JDownloader!

JDownloader is a free, open-source download management tool with a huge community of developers that makes downloading as easy and fast as it should be. Users can start, stop or pause downloads, set bandwith limitations, auto-extract archives and much more. It’s an easy-to-extend framework that can save hours of your valuable time every day!

DOWNLOAD

 

HOW TO USE

Now that you have it installed and open on your screen, watch the video below to see how to easily set it up.

Settings we are using are Max Chunks per Download set to 20.
Simultaneous downloads set to 3 or less depending on your internet speeds.

HOW TO VIDEO

3. Reading Comics

I HIGHLY recommend using YacReader if you are using IPad, IPod, OSX or Windows.

For Android I really love Perfect Viewer for Free or ComiCat if you don’t mind spending $3.

4. How to read Story Arcs

So you want to read a Story Arc, but there are like 5 billion comics in that Arc? I have read a ton of Story Arcs and unless you just want to dig into the weeds of things, you can just read the main issues of that Story Arc and get the full gist of everything. What I mean is, if you want to read Secret Wars just read only comics Secret Wars #1, #2 etc..anything else is just extra stuff often of the same thing you have read, but from a different comic characters perspective.

5. Best Comics for New Readers

Hawkeye by Matt Fraction, David Aja, and Annie Wu

Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Marvel Comics masterpiece is well worth the brief moment of wondering whether Hawkeye could truly have one of the best comics for new readers.

The 2012 Hawkeye series is brilliant, fun, and largely avoids complicated continuity questions present in most Marvel comics. All of this makes it a great pick-up for new fans who want to see Marvel at its best.

Rat Queens Volume One

Rat Queens is a wonderfully foul-mouthed spin on sword and sorcery, taking the standard Tolkein fantasy realm and invigorating the story with a bad@$$ gang of girls who punch first, and talk later. Note that this Image Comics series is most assuredly for mature readers only!

Gotham Academy

There are all sorts of Batman comics I would recommend to new readers, such as New 52 Batman, Dark Knight Returns, or any of the many selections in Comic Book Herald’s Batman reading order.

For brand new comic fans, though, I’d point you to DC’s all-ages Gotham Academy, which sets the boarding school ethos of Harry Potter novels inside the universe of Gotham’s Dark Knight.

Ms. Marvel

Kamala Khan, Marvel’s Ms. Marvel since 2014, restores the high school drama, romance, and heroism of the best 1960’s Spider-Man comics. While I’d recommend any serious Marvel comic reader explore the 60’s Amazing Spider-Man work of creators Steve Ditko and Stan Lee, those comics are clearly of an era over 60 years removed.

Ms. Marvel is far more modern, and represents one of the Big 2 (Marvel and DC) superhero publisher’s most diverse comics. Best of all, creators G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona have made Ms. Marvel one of the best Marvel comics since its inception, and a great starting place for new comic book fans.

Saga

Saga is the romantic comedy space opera (classic genre!) from creators Brian K. Vaughn (Y: The Last Man, The Private Eye) and Fiona Staples. Saga manages to feel innovative and fresh, infusing modern sarcasm and eye-opening world-building into the well-worn cluster of Space stories.

More than anything, Saga feels like a story for “adults,” and this Image Comics series is definitely for mature readers only. If you’ve long held the suspicion that comics are junk media for kids, Saga is the type of sophisticated yet fun adventure that can go a long way towards changing minds.

Nailbiter

Every time someone asks for a comic to read this is almost always my first recommendation. A mix of “Silence of the Lambs”, “Hannibal”, “Dexter” and probably a bunch of other things, will provide a creepy story for the winter months, and in my case, all year-round. It is gruesome, and as such, not to everyone’s taste, but it deserves at least a quick look through, there is beauty to be had in the pages, even if they are disgusting and gut wrenching.

6. Reading the DC Universe

DC New 52 + DC You Comics

So lets explain The New 52 first, it was the 2011 revamp and relaunch by DC Comics of its entire line of ongoing monthly superhero comic books. Following the conclusion of the “Flashpoint” crossover storyline, DC cancelled all of its existing titles and debuted 52 new series in September 2011 with new first issues.

Ok so what is DC You? DC You followed the end of Convergence story arc, its more of a rebranding of New 52 with the same continuity, but also adding a few new comics.

DC Event Timeline

So this is a fairly complete list of all most of the DC Events in order. It is a work in progress as we are putting together the comics, but it will eventually be completed.

7. TOP COMICS OF 2017

 

#1 – BLOODSHOT SALVATION

A BLOCKBUSTER NEW ONGOING SERIES!

From New York Times best-selling writer Jeff Lemire (BLOODSHOT REBORN, Moon Knight) and extraordinary artists Lewis LaRosa (BLOODSHOT REBORN) & Mico Suayan (BLOODSHOT REBORN), a bloody and vengeful new era for Bloodshot begins this September as Ray Garrison escapes his violent past to build the one thing he never thought he’d earn: a family. But when a hateful secret from his true love’s past threatens their fragile peace, Bloodshot will be forced to run headlong into a barrage of blood, bullets, and broken bones for a revenge-fueled assault that will have crushing consequences for those he holds most dear…

 

 

#2 – MISTER MIRACLE

Scott Free is the greatest escape artist that ever lived. So great that he escaped Granny Goodness’ gruesome orphanage and the dangers of Apokolips to travel across galaxies and set up a new life on Earth with his wife, the former female fury known as Big Barda. Using the stage alter ego of Mister Miracle, he has made a career for himself showing off his acrobatic escape techniques. He even caught the attention of the Justice League, which counted him among its ranks.

You might say Scott Free has everything…so why isn’t it enough? Mister Miracle has mastered every illusion, achieved every stunt, pulled off every trick—except one. He has never escaped death. Is it even possible? Our hero is going to have to kill himself if he wants to find out.

 

 

#3 – MS MARVEL

The internationally-beloved, butt-kicking, smack-talking, most adorable super hero makes her triumphant return. Look out world, Kamala Khan is back and officially an Avenger! Yup, the dream to end all dreams has happened for Kamala. She’s toe to toe with the best of the best, but will being one of Earth’s mightiest heros be everything she imagined? Is being a celebrity hero as wonderful as Kamala has hoped?

 

 

 

 

#4 – I HATE FAIRYLAND

Superstar SKOTTIE YOUNG (Rocket Raccoon, Wizard of Oz) makes his Image debut with an ALL-NEW SERIES! The Adventure Time/Alice in Wonderland-style epic that smashes its cute little face against Tank Girl/Deadpool-esque violent madness has arrived. In an adventure that ain’t for the little kiddies, (unless you have super cool parents, then whatever), you’ll meet Gert—a six year old girl who has been stuck in the magical world of Fairyland for thirty years and will hack and slash her way through anything to find her way back home. Join Gert and her giant battle-axe on a delightfully blood soaked journey to see who will survive the girl who HATES FAIRYLAND.

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The Rickest Rick
Editor

Thank you for recommending Saga, isn’t it just the best?!