[BEST & WORST '12] Jorge Solis’ List of the Best Comics 2012!

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It’s usually difficult to buy comic book issues every month. Most likely, I’ll wait till the issues are collected and buy the trade paperback. It’s easier for me to see how the story arc comes full circle. But often, the best comics are the ones I buy in single issues and still get the trade paperback as well. Here is my list of the best trade paperbacks to come out of 2012.

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JORGE SOLIS’S TOP 10 COMICS OF 2012

10. Green Wake Vol. 2: Lost Children (Image Comics)

Though the series ended too soon, Kurtis J. Wiebe delivers a satisfying finale to the mysterious town and inhabitants of Green Wake. Wiebe provides explanations on the history of Green Wake and his final thoughts on the series. Riley Rossmo offers unused covers and sketches of a few panels.

9. Witchblade: Rebirth, Vol. 1: Unbalanced Pieces (Top Cow Productions)

During Top Cow’s Rebirth, Tim Seeley starts off with a fresh take, relocating Sara Pezzini, wielder of the Witchblade artifact, to the mean streets of Chicago. Artist Diego Bernard captures the snowy and icy weather, which represents Sara’s moody personality. Bernard includes a cover gallery in the bonus content.

8. Hoax Hunters Vol. 1: Murder, Death, and The Devil (Image Comics)

Michael Moreci and Steve Seeley play around with the reality TV concept, where paranormal investigators disprove actual supernatural events to the public. Artist Axel Medellin focuses on the atmosphere and character dynamics in his moody illustrations. This collection also features Issue #0, the back-up tales originally found in “Hack/Slash.”

7. Swamp Thing Vol. 1: Raise Them Bones (DC Comics)

Scott Snyder delivers a suspenseful origin tale as Dr. Alec Holland is called upon once again to become Swamp Thing. Artist Yanick Paquette delivers the gruesome imagery of The Rot and its zombie army. Paquette also offers sketches and early concepts of the cover layouts.

6. Rebel Blood (Image Comics)

Alex Link and Riley Rossmo craft an action-packed thriller about a young man, Chuck Neville, discovering the animals in the woods have turned into zombies. With no dialogue in the panels, Rossmo illustrates eerie and frightening sequences where Chuck is being chased by the infected animals. Rossmo provides early covers and concept art of the zombie animals.

5. Crawl To Me: Evil Edgar Edition (IDW Publishing)

Writer/artist Alan Robert delivers an intense psychological thriller about a married couple trapped in their house by a menacing evil spirit. The “Evil Edgar Edition” contains an introduction by comics legend Walt Simonson and a painted cover by Menton3.

4. American Vampire Vol. 4 HC (Vertigo Comics)

In “Death Race,” Scott Snyder introduces Travis Kidd, a young hunter with his own style of killing bloodsuckers. With a pair of wooden teeth, Kidd bites back and rips the throat of a vampire. Artist Rafael Albuquerque delivers a breathtaking car chase as Kidd and Skinner Sweet fight on top of his Thunderbird’s hood. Albuquerque provides a sketchbook containing character designs of Kidd and loosely drawn “American Vampire” covers.

3. The Strain Vol. 1 (Dark Horse Comics)

In this adaptation, David Lapham tightens the dialogue, focusing on the police procedural aspect as Ephraim and Nora, the disease detectives, investigate their case. Aimed at shock value, Mike Huddleston depicts the violent aftermath of the vampire attacks, where heads are squashed and brains pop out.. Also included, there is a foreword by ” The Strain” creators, Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan.

2. Monocyte – Black Label Menton3 Edition (IDW Publishing)

Kasra Ghanbari and Menton3 deliver a highly imaginative apocalypse with provocative and fashionable character designs. In Menton3′s artwork, primary colors are washed away, bringing only gray and black tones to the forefront. In this edition, Menton3 offers new end pages and a custom cloth cover.

1. Severed HC (Image Comics)

Scott Snyder and Scott Tuft deliver a heart-wrenching coming-of-age tale about a lost runaway searching for his missing father, while crossing paths with a demonic serial killer known as The Salesman. Attila Futaki recreates the look and feel of America in the 1900s with his beautifully-rendered illustrations. Readers are given an inside look at the artistic process as Futaki provides a cover gallery, character sketches, and photo references.

Honorable Mentions:
“Hellboy Vol. 12: The Storm And The Fury”, “The Darkness: Rebirth” Vol. 1, and “’68 Vol.1: Better Run Through The Jungle”.

By – Jorge Solis