Wednesday, December 10, 2008

When Words Collide: Best of 2008 Collected Editions

Thus, it begins.

My 2008 "Best of" lists, that is. In this week's "When Words Collide," I count down the Top 20 Collected Editions of 2008.

Why do it before the end of the year? (1) I've looked at the release schedule and I don't think anything else will dethrone these 20 in the next two weeks, and (2) You'll soon be absolutely bombarded with "Best of" lists -- they've already started to trickle out -- and that means it's time to act!

As the CBR blurb states, I have kind of an eclectic list. Not REALLY eclectic, as it's still Marvel/DC heavy, relatively speaking, but I do throw in a few choices that, while obvious to some, might make the mainstream crowd scratch their heads.

And since writing the list last week, I did read one other collected edition that might have had a chance to crack the Top 20: American Elf Vol. 3. But even that would have landed just outside the 20 best, so no worries -- the list is still accurate! Admit it, you were a little worried, right?

Anyway, enjoy the list and buy all the collected editions and read 'em up.


Anonymous said...

Did you wind up with the Hellboy Library Edition Volume 1 after having your arm twisted into it by James? And by "arm twisted into it," I of course mean, "Did James persuade you with his wonderfully awesome skills of persuasion," by which I of course mean, "Did he beg and plead with you to buy it, so he'd have the money to feed his fictional and unwanted children?"

I know I love mine. The second volume, too.

Otherwise, funds permitting, I want to pick up the Punisher omnibus at some point, and possibly take a look at the Elektra one. And maybe the Daredevil one. You know, maybe I should look into some other superheroes.

...Or I should just give up and descend fully into independent madness.

seth hurley said...

I found the Elektra Omnibus to have a fairly poor, scanned reproduction & as you said, shrinking Lives Again by a third doesn't do it any favors.

On the other hand, I think blowing up Mignola's art on the Hellboy Library editions unintentionally abstracts it.

I thought it was funny that you point out the paper quality of JLI while not mentioning the same about the Kirby collections. The paper is pretty much what JLI was originally printed on, so it's not a downgrade & one of the only complaints (that I have read) of the Kirby books is the paper.

The American Flagg! book though, wow. Comparing it to the old issues is like comparing 2nd generation vhs to blu-ray dvds. Well worth the wait.

Timothy Callahan said...

The paper quality on the Kirby editions is far superior to the Justice League books. In the Kirby volumes we get thick matte paper, in the Justice League books we get much thinner paper.

Matt Jacobson said...

You know how most "supherhero epics", the main story is all their on the page, with bits of character and backstory slipping through the cracks? Omega is like the opposite of that - all character, backstory, day-to-day life, with bits of a cosmic epic sliiping through the cracks. It's like a Charlie Kaufman film as a superhero comic - surreal & fantastic elements rubbing up with banal normality, tied together with atmosphere. I loved Omega. It is awesome.

Timothy Callahan said...

I know! (I mean, I didn't know how much you loved it, but I know it's awesome!)

Volt said...

Agreed on the Omega. Also, it's probably the most independent-feeling project Marvel has put out in quite awhile, and it's under their main imprint even. I'm glad to see that it has fans (I always had this feeling I was the only one reading it when it was coming out, like a secret book only I could see on the comic racks).

The final issue was forcibly jarring -- after waiting a month to find out what the big, exciting conclusion is, you find out it already concluded and now it's just a silent epilogue. It's an effect that's lessened by being in trade format, and I'm not sure if that's good or bad, hah.

Also: Doktor Sleepless has to be up there as one of my favorite collections of the year.

Matt Jacobson said...

I actually got Omega on eBay a few months ago in its entirety; I missed it when it came out. I kind of wish I had been buying it, to have ten months of trying to figure out what was going on, but I think it read really well all at once.

Greg said...

Berlin's second trade paperback came out this year, and that automatically means it's #1. If you haven't read Berlin, I'll forgive you, but you might want to pick up the two trades and marvel at the goodness.

Timothy Callahan said...

Jason Lutes!?!? Really??? That guy is a total hack!

Kidding! Actually, I have not read Berlin, and I will rectify that. Buy me the books for Christmas!