It ’ s an matter to year for Marvel, three years after the launch of the “ Fresh Start ” era, as some of the line ’ sulfur biggest titles ( Black Panther, Immortal Hulk, Venom, & on a technicality, Jonathan Hickman ’ s X-Men ) wind down throughout the year. even with that turnover, “ Fresh Start ” is heartily sustained through the Krakoa earned run average of X-Men, an exciting fresh Marvel Space Age, and a healthy diverseness of quality throughout the broader universe. Honestly, even some of the big time runs I ’ thousand least enthused by ( Jason Aaron ’ south Avengers and Nick Spencer ’ s Amazing Spider-Man ) are signally reproducible, and offer batch of intriguing moments. It ’ s a truly full time to be a sports fan of Marvel Comics .
Below you ’ ll find my picks for the best wonder Comics of 2021, updated throughout the class to reflect raw books I ’ meter excited about. Check them out here, and let me know anything good I should be reading in the comments !
Honorable Mentions: slaughter : Black White & Red, Taskmaster, Black Widow, Beta Ray Bill, Power Pack, Way of X
Best Comics of 2021 ( So Far ) !
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Best Marvel Comics of 2020
Creators: Zeb Wells, Stephen Segovia, Carmen Carnero, Ariana Maher
Relevant Issues: # 8 to # 18
Hellions is so good, such a stun blend of heart and liquid body substance, that we don ’ thyroxine even talk any more about how weird it is that a rival for best X-book stars Mister Sinister ( yea ), Psylocke ( yep ), Havok ( oklahoma ), John Greycrow ( … ), Wild Child ( … ), Empath ( … ) and Nanny and Orphanker ( what ? ! ). In so many ways, it ’ s the promise of the Krakoa earned run average fulfilled, where any mutant can be a star, and wholly revamp concepts can thrive .
honestly, the only thing that * hurts * Hellions at this point is the launch of books like SWORD and Way of X that are inherently more desegregate into the big picture of what matters in X-Men comics properly now. But in many ways, that ’ s besides freeing, allowing Hellions to equitable be the laugh-out-loud Suicide Squad reimagining we didn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate know we needed .
Creators: Al Ewing, Valerio Schiti, Marte Gracia, Ariana Maher
Relevant Issues: SWORD # 2 to # 12
Creators: Al Ewing, Juann Cabal, Federico Blee, Cory Petit
Relevant Issues: Guardians of the Galaxy # 10 to # 16, Annual # 1, GotG # 17 to # 21
Al Ewing ’ s been good and properly cosmic for a long time, as evidenced by such contemporary must-reads as Ultimates and honestly a commodity collocate of Immortal Hulk ! Giving him the reigns to Marvel ’ s cosmic landscape – which has been curiously unfocused despite the cosmic focus of events like Empyre and King in Black – is a huge acquire, and has enormous likely for fans of Marvel heroes across the galaxy .
Between the excellence of SWORD ( a part of the X-Men ’ sulfur “ Reign of X ” ) and the increasing complexity and divers shifts of Guardians of the Galaxy, Ewing ’ s Marvel Age of Space is shaping up to potentially compete with the halycon days of Annihilation-era mid 2000 ’ s Marvel Cosmic .
Creators: Chip Zdarsky, Marco Checceto, Marcio Menyz, Clayton Cowles
Relevant Issues: # 26 to # 37
The final Daredevil issue of 2020, Daredevil # 25, ended on a major turn for the excellent Chip Zdarsky and Marco Checceto run, one which offers the potential for him to move his run far out of the shadow of all the great Daredevil runs that preceded his. If you don ’ thymine know what that turn is – somehow, even – get to reading Daredevil, and cut ahead to the adjacent choice !
Starting with King in Black tie-ins, the 2021 version of Daredevil follows Elektra Natchios as the Daredevil of Hell ’ s Kitchen while Matt Murdock fights for survival in prison. And as thus often happens when a known Marvel player takes on a bequest cape ( here ’ south looking at you Bucky, Sam, Flash, Carol and Shuri ), it makes for great comics !
Creators: Jed MacKay, CF Villa, Brian Reber, Ferran Delgado
Relevant Issues: # 2 to # 7, Annual # 1, # 8 to # 13
I ’ ve credibly told this history before, but I ’ ll never forget Yokira Cebulski holding up a copy of J. Scott Campbell ’ s cheesecake cover girl report of Black Cat # 1 at C2E2, excitedly asking “ Who likes Black Cat ? ! ” and the mix of confused, muted clapping that followed. It ’ s not like Felicia Hardy international relations and security network ’ t a democratic, enduring supporting actor in the Spider-Man Universe, but if there was a market for a truly great Black Cat ongoing, surely that would have presented itself before 2019 ?
however, Jed MacKay and Travel Foreman turned the story of Black Cat into one of Marvel ’ s best series, and MacKay impressively continues the feat in 2021, forced to relaunch Black Cat with a new # 1 as part of the King in Black consequence, and sticking the land prison term and time again. A huge depart of the crochet of this comic is that MacKay and company have turned Felicia ’ s floor into a armed robbery across every corner of the Marvel Universe, intentionally bouncing from citation orient to reference luff in a way that is badly entertaining for longtime Marvel fans. Plus, I ’ ve sincerely never been more entertain by Felicia and her posse, one of the most entertain “ Crews ” in Marvel Comics of the past few years .
Creators: Kieron Gillen, Esad Ribic, Matt Wilson, Clayton Cowles
Relevant Issues: # 1 to # 6
I used to make jokes that Jack Kirby ’ sulfur Eternals were primarily good for helping readers get some rest on those insomniac nights, and well, I still will from time to time, but 2021 is surely the most induct I ’ ve ever been in the Eternals. A distribute of that has to do with the impending introduction to the MCU, with much of my exuberance besides boosted by Gillen and Ribic ’ s ongoing Eternals .
Eternals is Gillen ’ s return to the Marvel Universe after four years aside, and it ’ s a bright fit, with the very overt, even very huge mythology of Eternals as his resort area. Combine that sprawling mythology with Esad Ribic ’ second, who has one of superhero comics highest bat average across runs on thor : God of Thunder and 2015 ’ s Secret Wars, and Eternals fits right into the exciting creator-driven world-building of the likes of X-Men and Hulk franchises .
Creators: Al Ewing, Joe Bennett, Ruy Jose, Chris O ’ Halloran, Cory Petit
Relevant Issues: # 42 to # 50
There ’ s actually no right time for Immortal Hulk to end, as Al Ewing, Joe Bennet and team have crafted a fill on Hulk indeed instantaneously iconic, I can ’ triiodothyronine fathom any readers who won ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate feel a tremondous absence following the run ’ s termination with 2021 ’ s Immortal Hulk # 50. however, Ewing and co. have surely earned the right to give their saga the rare of rewards in comics : a proper ending on their own terms .
Immortal Hulk will go down angstrom a constant bearing on “ Best of Marvel Comics ” lists in years to come, and with the exception of Greg Pak ’ s long discharge starting with “ Planet Hulk, ” it ’ s honestly hard to flush consider other contenders for Marvel ’ s best Hulk exercise ( no, I didn ’ triiodothyronine forget about Peter David ’ s identical hanker – and frequently identical interest ! – work ).
Read more : Illuminati Members, Enemies, Powers | Marvel
I don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate want to see Immortal Hulk go, but you know what ? sometimes the green door beckons .
Creators: Jed McKay, Alessandro Cappuccio, Rachelle Rosenberg, Corey Petit
Relevant Issues: Moon Knight # 1 to # 6
Moon Knight international relations and security network ’ t quite at Daredevil levels of strongest comics per ounce in the Marvel Universe, but the last ten has solidified the report of Marc Spector and Mr. Knight as one of the more interest creative tapestries in superhero comics. Writer Jed McKay continues an incredible hot stripe with Marvel Comics, and artist Alessandro Cappuccio and colorist Rachelle Rosenberg are performing at a ace flush .
I think the most stimulate thing about this relaunched Moon Knight is that McKay and team are leaning into the wax advanced history of what ’ randomness made the character exciting, from Declan Shalvey ’ s Mr. Knight redesign to Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino ’ s phantasmagoric psychological mystery. McKay is capturing Spector ’ s Judaism, disassociative identity perturb, and feelings of depressive disorder as a fail mercenary turned West Coast Avenger. It ’ s a capture understand, and a series I look advancing to reading for a commodity long time .
Creators: Jonathan Hickman, Mahmud Asrar, Sunny Gho, Clayton Cowles
Relevant Issues: # 17 to # 21, Inferno # 1 to # 4
Ranking “ X-Men ” in 2021 is a fiddling crafty because the Jonathan Hickman written run on the title ends during the summer Hellfire Gala with publish # 21, before Gerry Duggan and Pepe Larraz take over with a relaunched “ X-Men ” # 1 for the remainder of the class .
As it stands, the Hickman run on X-Men ends on a powerfully strong note through issues # 18 to the decision, as Hickman returns to plot threads seeded early in his run ( issue # 5 ’ sulfur Children of the Vault return key in X-Men # 18 to # 19, and issue # 6 ’ s history of Mystique, Destiny, and Nimrod returns in X-Men # 20 ). For my money, the prevail ends in precisely the way House of X and Powers of X promised, with huge payoffs on seeds, mysteries and ideas that make this era of X-Men so agitate .
Creators: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Leonard Kirk, Matt Milla, Joe Sabino
Relevant Issues: Captain America # 27 to # 30
2021 has been a year of critics and fans * finally * coming to terms with the weight and approach path of Ta-Nehisi Coates ’ Marvel Comics, both as Black Panther ended with his second put of 25 issues ( a series that belongs on this list but for the fact that merely 2 issues actually came out * this class * ), and as Coates Captain America cemented more of its capture focus and aim .
That Captain America is a political work should not come as a surprise to anyone who has been reading comics since – checks notes – World War II, but Coates ’ late 2020 and 2021 issues of Cap are particularly acute of this american english cultural moment .
I ’ ve said as much before, but Marvel fans are going to look back at the five years of Coates as a major storm in the Marvel Universe, and dirge that this influence wasn ’ t more fierily appreciated in its time .
Creators: Vita Ayala, Rod Reis, Travis Lanham
Relevant Issues: # 15 to # 20
The X-Office ’ s New Mutants went from the weakest most adrift bible in the trace to one of the best, and all it took was the creative renovation adding writer Vita Ayala and artist Rod Reis. That infusion, and a newfound, much-needed focus on the youth of Krakoa, turned New Mutants into a must-read from jump .
I ’ thousand systematically print how * much * report Ayala and Reis pack into each consequence, frequently balancing no fewer than three distinct plat threads, so far somehow giving each equal weight and attention. Whether it ’ s the mysterious nefarious presence of the Shadow King, the growing concerns of Gabby aka Scout, or the honest-to-god precaution New Mutants ( Karma, Dani Moonstar, Rahne Sinclair, Magik ) trail young mutants, this style is an absolute highlight of the Reign of X .
Creators: Gene Luen Yang, Dike Ruan, Triona Farrell, Travis Lanham
Relevant Issues: Shang-Chi ( 2020 ) # 1 to # 5, Shang-Chi ( 2021- ) # 1 to # 7
The biggest challenge I ’ ve had with Shang-Chi is comparing the relaunched miniseries, and now ongoing 2021 Marvel series launch to previous works of incredible godhead Gene Luen Yang. In 2020, Yang ’ s work on Dragon Hoops and Superman vs the Klan was literally my favored in all of comics, and similar accolades can be thrown at the likes of Boxers and Saints or american Born Chinese. Yet, when Yang ’ randomness taken over superhero properties ( for model Superman ), the work has never wowed me in the same way .
This holds for Shang-Chi, but honestly it may be an entirely unreasonable bar. Compared to the rest of Marvel – and literally the entire history of Shang-Chi comics in Masters of Kung-Fu – Yang ’ s reimagining of Shang-Chi ’ second seat in the Marvel Universe is the most I ’ ve ever enjoyed the character. Yang, Ruan and the team craft an engaging Five Weapons Society, integrate compel elements of chinese history, and are doing some challenging employment exploring how Shang-Chi presents himself to his family vs. the westerly Marvel Universe as we ’ ve come to know it. On clear of all that, Yang and team are getting to have fun exploring all corners of the Marvel Universe, from Spider-Man to Wolverine to criminal auctions including the likes of MODOK and Madame Hydra .
Creators: Leah Williams, David Baldeon, Israel Silva, Joe Caramagna
Relevant Issues: # 6 to # 10
You know, for its first half, X-Factor felt like a delightful “ hang out ” comedian, giving fans a alone opportunity to spend time with the diverse ( and predominantly thwart ) gang of mutants investigating & confirming mutant deaths for Krakoan resurrections. As the series progressed into 2021, though, the creative unit brought storylines spanning the Mojoverse and the Morrigan wax circle, into a honestly astonishing gambit of bringing everything wax lap .
Leah Williams is my darling of the new wave of X-Men writers, and combined with the visuals of Baldeon and Silva – some of the best empanel layout explorations in Marvel – X-Factor has been a consistent joy. That Marvel is ending the series with its tenth issue – despite satisfactory sales, huge fandom, AND literally the best fagot representation in anything from the publisher – is honestly precisely confusing .
Creators: Chip Zdarsky, Pasquel Ferry, Matt Hollingsworth, Phil Noto
Relevant Issues: # 1 to # 5
Chip Zdarsky is no stranger to putting Peter Parker through hell, as evidenced by the precurser limited serial, Spider-Man: Life Story. Itself a variation on “ What If, ” Life Story played with the mind of Peter Parker actually aging through the decades – alternatively of operating on Marvel time – and the consequence that a life like * that * would have on a character. Spider ’ south Shadow is back to Spidey stories grounded in the skid timeline, set specifically after Peter Parker famously obtained the black symbiote costume in Secret Wars # 8 .
honestly, the series ’ primary wonder – What if Peter never got rid of the symbiote ? – international relations and security network ’ thymine in truth that interesting. We ’ ve seen Peter wrestle with that decision across a wide diverseness of fib, from the original to enliven series to feature films to the Ultimate Universe comics. What elevates Spider ’ mho Shadow is how in full Zdarsky and Ferry lean into the premise and proceed to execute fully formed world building shaking up the pieces * around * Peter Parker. It ’ s a little change on paper, but the shift of Marvel ’ s “ What Ifs ” from one-shots to miniseries in truth upgrades the likely, and it ’ s already showing .
Creators: Donny Cates, Nic Klein, Matthew Wilson
Read more : Scarlet Scarab Powers, Enemies, History | Marvel
Relevant Issues: # 9 to # 15, Annual # 1, # 16 to # 20
Despite outstanding cosmic visuals from Klein and Wilson, the Donny Cates written earned run average of Thor, following the years long tenure of Jason Aaron, got off to a inert depart. The “ Black Winter ” felt a bunch like Cates strip-mining his own late Marvel greatest hits – a Knull-like cosmic human body as the villain, throwdowns with Galactus to establish scope and plate – without much that in truth spoke to the unique opportunity of Thor, King of Asgard .
After the opener, though, Cates, Klein and team have in truth opened up with a run that feels like * their * Thor. “ Prey ” in especial is conceptually hard, but honestly tied more than that, it ’ second deeply committed to using the long history and bequest of gods of thunder in energizing, exciting ways. I ’ m fully back in on this function, and look forward to where Cates, Klein and Wilson can take it from here .