2012 has been a pretty amazing year for us fangirls and fanboys. Personally for me it was big in the comic book category. This was the year I had time to read a lot of ongoing series, which will account for why I have several categories for comic books alone. The “Best of” title is a bit deceiving; this isn’t my take on the best of 2012, but rather my personal favorites of the year. And by favorites I mean the geeky things I was completely obsessed with. Beware, baby spoilers ahead.
Movie (aka the movie I couldn’t stop talking about after I left the theater): Avengers
I think we can all agree that Avengers was the best superhero movie of the year. It did everything right. Loki and the Hulk deserve their own film.
Honorable Mention: Looper
Looper seemed like it was straight out of a Philip K. Dick novel. It was thought-provoking and timey wimey. I loved every bit of it!
TV Show (aka the show I live-tweeted the most): The Walking Dead
I’m a fan of everything The Walking Dead, but not blind to the many faults the TV series has had. I wasn’t happy with the first half of season two, frankly I thought it was quite boring. Everyone knew Sophia wasn’t smart enough to survive… no offense Carol. But season three has been intense all the way through and there’s no time to catch your breath. Much like Game of Thrones, in The Walking Dead no one is safe, and that’s a great feeling to have as a viewer. Needless to say, shit goes down!
Honorable Mention: Game of Thrones
I think Game of Thrones would be a far better show if it had two extra episodes to work with, but with that being said, it’s still one of my favorite shows of the year. To say I’m invested and attached to the characters is an understatement. I didn’t even give Doctor Who honorable mention and that’s saying a lot!
Episode of the Year (aka the episode that made you proud to be a fan): Sherlock “A Scandal in Belgravia”, Steven Moffat (writer) and Paul McGuigan (director)
One of the most brilliant pieces of television I’ve ever seen.
Honorable Mention: Game of Thrones “Blackwater”, George R. R. Martin (writer) and Neil Marshall (director)
“Blackwater” is what happens when a Game of Thrones episode isn’t cramped with plot or characters. Magic! (no pun intended) Also there was that jaw dropping explosion.
Anime Series (aka the only new anime show I watched this year): Sakamichi No Apollon (Kids on the Slope), Shinichiro Watanabe (director) and Yoko Kanno (composer)
The dynamic duo Watanabe and Kanno of Cowboy Bebop fame are back! I love jazz so this series is heaven for me. I also reviewed the first episode here.
Video Game (aka the game that made me cry): Journey, thatgamecompany (developer) and Sony (publisher)
Journey is a video game that gives you a spiritual experience. This was my favorite game of the year and one of my favorite games of all time. It’s difficult to express what kind of game Journey is because it’s just one of those things you have to experience for yourself. But in short, it’s about life, death and the journey you take in between. Journey is intense and deep without being heavy-handed. Last but not least, it’s breathtakingly beautiful.
Honorable Mention: The Walking Dead, Telltale Games (developer and publisher)
I actually haven’t finished this game yet, but from what I’ve played (and heard) I know I’ll cry. #ForClementine
I met Scott Snyder at NYCC!
Writer (aka my Comic God of the year): Scott Snyder, Batman, American Vampire and Swamp Thing
Scott Snyder is one of those writers that make you say to yourself, “Where have your stories been all my life?”
I’m a huge fan of Batman, American Vampire and Swamp Thing. How he’s able to keep all three fresh and fascinating month after month is beyond me. But that’s also why he’s my favorite writer of the year. I could go on and on about why I fell in love with Snyder’s work, but I’ll save that for a future blog post.
Honorable Mention: Jeff Lemire, Animal Man, Sweet Tooth and The Underwater Welder
Lemire also takes the award for creating the character I’m most protective of, Gus aka Sweet Tooth.
Artist (aka art so good it makes your curse to yourself): Greg Capullo, Batman
Capullo’s art gives me goosebumps. Literally. His leather face Joker is simultaneously beautiful and horrifying. Just look at that gorgeously gory face!
Honorable Mention: Yanick Paquette, Swamp Thing
Comic Book Series (aka my favorite Wednesday of the month): Batman, Scott Snyder (writer) and Greg Capullo (illustrator)
It was incredibly difficult for me to deicide which series should take the top place as my favorite series of the year. Well… that’s a lie. I knew it was going to be Batman the whole time!
I don’t even know where to begin with Batman. Judge if you want, but this was my first time reading an actual Batman comic. I’d been a fan of TAS other shows and films, but with most mainstream superhero comics I didn’t know where to jump in. Thankfully DC’s new 52 gave me a great starting point.
Snyder got me hooked with the Court of Owls and the current Joker storyline has me on an emotional roller coaster. One minute I want to cry, the next I was scared shitless for the Bat-fam. Snyder’s Batman is dark and seriously scary and I couldn’t be happier.
Honorable Mention: The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman (writer) and Charlie Adlard (illustrator)
Kirkman had me worried there for a while, I wasn’t interested about the series at all. It was the same ol’ same ol’, and I felt I was reading out of habit rather than actually being interested in what was happening in the story. However, that all changed when Negan and Lucille entered the picture (or should I say panel). I haven’t been this excited about the series since the governor!
New Comic Book Series (aka that thing I couldn’t stop talking about): Saga, Brian K. Vaughan (writer) and Fiona Staples (illustrator)
Saga is the new kid at school that everyone has a crush on. This series is what it would be like if BKV wrote a science-fantasy version of Romeo and Juliet, except the characters are believable. What really made this new series my favorite are the raw and brutally honest characters. Fiona Staples also gets the award for making me feel like a creep for having a girl crush on a spider’ish alien. Don’t act like you didn’t think The Stalk was a total babe… for a spider.
Honorable Mention: Hawkeye, Matt Fraction (writer) and David Aja (illustrator)
I confess, I was one of the Hawkeye haters. Compared to the rest of the Avengers, Clint seemed kind of lame. This was before I read any Avengers or Hawkeye comics. I still haven’t read much Avengers, but Fraction came along and changed my mind before I even finished the first issue. It’s genuinely “laugh out loud” funny with an interesting storyline and a character that has, well, character. I’m now a proud member of the Hawkeye fan club because of Matt Fraction.
Mini Series (aka a series I want to talk about but needed more categories): Punk Rock Jesus, Sean Murphy (writer and illustrator)
Punk Rock Jesus combines two fanatical segments of our society: media and religion. Murphy holds nothing back in PRJ, which is part of what makes it one of my favorite series of the year. It’s a candid look on society housed in a captivating story and supported by complex characters.
Honorable Mention: Happy!, Grant Morrison (writer) and Darick Robertson (illustrator)
Happy! is the Grant Morrison I fell in love with. The jarring, post-modern’ish, mind blowing WTFs with themes that make you reflect on yourself and society Grant Morrison. I also didn’t realized how much I missed Robertson’s art (Transmetropolian) until I read Happy!. He does gritty do damn well! The dark and ultraviolent story juxtaposed with a bubbly blue horse work surprisingly well together.
Graphic Novel (aka more comics I want to talk about but needed more categories): Prince of Cats, Ronald Wimberly (writer and illustrator)
This is the only story I fell in love with visually, sonically, emotionally and intellectually this year. You can read more about PoC and an interview with Wimberly here.
Honorable Mention: The Underwater Welder, Jeff Lemire (writer and illustrator)
Probably the most atmospheric (Is that a thing? It is now.) and eerie story of the year. It also managed to say the most without saying anything at all.
Best Issue (aka the holy shit issue): The Walking Dead #100, Robert Kirkman (writer) and Charlie Adlard (illustrator)
This issue was the comic book version of being punched in the stomach. I’m still too devastated to talk about it.
Honorable Mention: Batman #14, Scott Snyder (writer) and Greg Capullo (illustrator)
Hell hath no fury like the Joker scorned. Batman just keeps getting better… or worse depending on who you are. The Joker’s soliloquy in this issue was close to perfection. He had me hanging off of every word. The Joker is back and he’s pissed at the Bat-fam for making Batman lazy, and he’s going to make them pay. Did I mention he’s doing this all out of love? Don’t even get me started on Alfred…
Late to the party (aka the most time consuming obsession): A Song of Ice and Fire, George R. R. Martin (writer)
Even though A Dance with Dragons came out in 2011 I read it this year, along with the rest of ASoIaF series. I prayed to the old gods and the new for several months (and still do from time to time). This series also has a special place in my heart for having a lot of kick ass female characters. Brienne and Arya are my heroes!
Honorable Mention: Lost
I’m not ashamed to admit my life was consumed by Lost for a few months. I skipped parties, went over my data plan and didn’t hang out with my friends as much because I wanted to be on the island. I watched the series in about two months and wrote all about it here in, ‘Confessions of a Lost Late Bloomer’.