2008. For every year older we get, it seems like the years get that much shorter. Years, as they say, just roll by like a broken down dam. But for us comics fans, a lot can happen in a year. A year that saw an invasion unfold and a crisis near finality, a year that gave us a new Captain America and a … um … RIP’d Batman, a year with 3 glorious issues of All-Star Batman & Robin, can feel like a very long time.
A year ago the New Avengers were still reeling from the Skrull discovery and we saw our first Secret Invasion tie-in banner. As 2008 began Spider-Man’s long-delayed “One More Day” finally ended. Since then, we’ve seen over 20 issues of Amazing Spider-Man. In March, James Buchanan Barnes took over as the new Captain America following Steve Rogers’ death and now, at years end, “Bucky” has a seat at the grown-up table as a member of the New Avengers. Hulk has been red for an entire year now but remains one of the most heavily-ordered titles every month. Meanwhile the X-Men, who had just met the mutant messiah baby at the start of ’08, have since disbanded, re-banded and relocated to San Fancisco.
Down the street, the DCU had a third of Countdown left to go. One year later, we’re just as far into Trinity and about the same portion of Final Crisis remains. Batman, who’s been busy RIP‘ing since June, was slowly tormented by Grant Morrison throughout 2008 – his second full year on the title. Geoff Johns wrote just about everything else, retelling Green Lantern’s Origin and setting up “Blackest Night”, making Superman relevant again in Action Comics, and merging Kingdom Come continuity into the DCU inJustice Society of America.
Robert Kirkman’s manifesto may not have saved comics for indie creators, but they didn’t have a bad year either. Kirkman took both Invincible and The Walking Dead past issue #50 in 2008. Y: the Last Man reached its dramatic conclusion and grabbed the Eisner Awards for “Best Penciler” and “Best Continuing Series”. The Eisner for “Best Limited Series” went to My Chemical Romance frontman, Gerard Way, who burst onto the comics scene with The Umbrella Academy. Ed Brubaker‘s creator-owned Criminal, helped him win the 2008 Eisner for best writer. Mark Millar, Jason Aaron, Jonathan Hickman and Rick Remender among others, also had big years working on creator-owned work.
Oh yeah … there were a few comic book movies in ’08 too.
Yessir faithful listeners, the end of 2008 is upon us and with it, the obligatory year-in-review specials and best-of lists. We’re certainly not above any of this so we look forward to compiling our “Best of ’08” list which we’ll present on Episode 008, in a cosmic numerological coincidence. We’re making our picks but we want to hear from you as well. Visit our forum and weigh in with your own “Best of 2008”. The categories are listed below but feel free to suggest one of your own
Near Mint Comic Show Best of 2008
- Best Ongoing Series
- Best Limited Series
- Best Single Issue
- Best Run or Story Arc
- Best Cover
- Best Comic Book Movie
- Best Character
- Best Writer
- Best Artist
- After the debut of Near Mint Comic Show’s debut, the second biggest event of 2008