Volume 3, Issue 49
“Top Nerd Things of 2014!”
2014 is drawing to a close, which means it’s time to do the one thing that nerd columns are best at: LISTS!
That’s right, it’s time for the annual “Top Nerd Things of 2014”, where I look at all of the nerdy stuff that hit this past year in comics, TV, Movies, and more! SO let’s not waste any time, here’s the “Top Nerd Things” list for the year 2014!
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Days of Future Past had a lot of hype surrounding it, and amazingly, it lived up to it. Easily the best Fox X-Men film to date, the adaptation of the classic X-Tale swapped Kitty Pryde for Wolverine in the lead, but still ended up being a satisfying way of bridging the old X-Men cast with the new. Director Bryan Singer’s return to the franchise was nothing short of a slam-dunk, and had plenty of awesome moments for the large cast. Hell, even Quicksilver, the character everyone made fun of, ended up not only being pretty cool, but also running away with the best scene in the movie!
Superior Foes of Spider-Man
I’ve gone on and on about my love of Nick Spencer and Steve Lieber’s Superior Foes of Spider-Man series, and guess what? I’m going to do it again. This series is absolutely hilarious, and a killer send up of some of the goofier aspects of superheroes. The cast is largely a bunch of D, E, and even Z-Listers, but Spencer and Lieber craft such a hilarious tale that they elevate their team of losers to the A-List. Sadly, Superior Foes came to an end in November, but hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for these two creators to team up again.
Of all of the comic book TV shows that premiered this year, CW’s The Flash is easily the best. A combination of Arrow and the Sam Raimi Spider-Man films, the weekly adventures of Barry Allen are a thrill to watch. From beating new villains to exploring the limits of his powers, The Flash is filled with stuff that’s largely made me scream out loud with nerd glee, the highlight being The Flash’s first encounter with Captain Cold.
Guardians of the Galaxy
No one expected this movie to become the massive hit that it became. Hell, no one really expected it to be a hit, period. However, The Guardians of the Galaxy didn’t become just a massive box office success, it’s also made household names out of Rocket Raccoon, Star-Lord, and of course, Groot.
And you know what? It’s all well deserved. Guardians of the Galaxy is one of the most entertaining comic book movies ever produced, and much of that credit goes to Marvel and director James Gunn. There’s a ton of off-kilter stuff in this film, from the cast to the soundtrack, but it’s all done so confidently that it works. If you haven’t seen it yet, why are you still reading this? Go watch it! Now!
Post-Forever Evil Justice League
DC’s Forever Evil event was one of the better events of the past year, but it’s what came after it that really set a fire under DC’s books. After helping to save the planet from the evil Crime Syndicate (and figuring out that Bruce Wayne is Batman), Lex Luthor decides that he should be a member of the Justice League, and the crazy part about it is that Batman and Superman LET HIM.
Seems far-fetched? It is. But credit should go to Geoff Johns, who delivers not only a very compelling argument for why Luthor should be on the team, but also has a ton of fun playing him off his new teammates. The issue where Lex confronts Bruce Wayne in his home about his life as Batman is one of the best issues of the year, and it’s largely because of Geoff Johns incredible voice for Lex. While the book has slowed down a little since Luthor has joined the team, you know that Johns will be building to something major.
At this point, Scott Snyder could sneeze into a tissue and I’d think it was an awesome story. That being said, his Vertigo series The Wake with artist Sean Murphy was a thing of beauty. A mash up of Waterworld and The Thing, The Wake is like nothing you’ve read in comics, and to go any further would end up spoiling this awesome story, which has too be experienced. The Wake is tailor made for a miniseries on TV, and hopefully the higher ups in tinsletown have taken notice.
One of the strongest titles Image Comics is putting out these days is Manifest Destiny, a series that puts the team of Lewis and Clarke as not just adventurers, but monster hunters. Tasked with clearing out the western territories of dangerous monsters so they’ll suitable for US Citizens, every issue of Manifest Destiny has been filled with action, suspense, and some of the best monster designs I’ve ever seen. Chris Dingess and Matthew Roberts series is a breath of fresh air in comics, and one that’s sadly overlooked. Get on board now before it’s too late.
Nathan Edmondson delivers two of the best Marvel titles that you’re not reading month in and month out: The Punisher (with art by Mitch Gerads) and Black Widow (with art by Phil Noto). Both titles are different, yes, but also share a common theme and style. Both characters are operating in the Marvel Universe, but in their own corners with little interaction from the outside events or characters (with the exception of their crossover story). Edmondson has a very strong grip on what makes Frank Castle and Natasha Romanoff tick, and both Gerads and Noto are delivering some of the best artwork in comics. Both series are still relatively recent, so add them to your pull list now and thank me later.