iFanboy Video Podcast

iFanboy #127 – The Best Comics of 2009… So Far

Show Notes

People are always asking what books they should read, and this week, Ron, Josh, and Conor round up their favorite books of 2009 so far.

There hasn’t been a better time to be a Superman fan in a long time. With James Robinson, Greg Rucka, and Sterling Gates writing fantastic stories on Superman,ย Action Comics, Supergirl, and Superman: World of New Krypton, the Man of Steel’s world has never been stronger or his world more interesting.

Sticking with the DC Universe, a little housecleaning is being done with the Flash family by masters Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver on The Flash: Rebirth. Great for new and old Flash fans, this is the corner of the DCU to watch.

Mark Waid, having taken the reigns at BOOM! Studios is back to his best writing form with Irredeemable, the tale of a Superman gone very, very bad.

Glen Brunswick and Dan McDaid get all Kirby cosmic with their Image series, Jersey Gods, about some very powerful dudes and a love story in New Jersey.

Over at Marvel, the event to be reading is War of Kings, along with Nova andย Guardians of the Galaxy, spearheaded by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. Self-contained, smart, and fun, it’s everything you want from a Marvel comic book.

Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill are back with The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century – 1910 from Top Shelf Comics and Knockabout, and we couldn’t be happier. Make sure to check out our previous show on The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, with Kevin O’Neill.

Joe Kelly is back with a vengeance, whipping up comic book magic with a boatload of great artists on such books as I Kill Giants, Four Eyes, The Amazing Spider-Man,ย Bad Dog, and more. Make sure to check out our interview with Joe Kelly here.

Dark Horse’s The Umbrella Academy: Dallas blew us away just like the first story, “Apocalypse Suite” did. Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba are both mad scientists of comic book excellence, and that’s all there is to it.

Itching for Garth Ennis writing World War II comics? It’s okay… admit it! The good news is, there’s Battlefields from Dynamite Entertainment.

Finally, against nearly all odds, IDW is putting out some incredible G. I. Joe comics. I know, we can hardly believe it either.


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  1. You guys should send Twinkies to Africa.


    I’m really surprised you didn’t touch on Green Lantern but that’ll probably come up when you guys do a Blackest Night show

  2. That was a freakin fantastic episode. Although Ron needs to take smaller hits; he was looking far too stoned to be doing a video podcast.

  3. Mmm Twinkies.

    You threw me off with the Twinkies. Suddenly it covers the entire screen and I’m like: ‘Someone really loves this delicious pastry’.

    Also what threw me off was the Umbrella Academy panels. What the hell was going on in this series?

  4. @TheNextChampion: Threw me off too those look nothing like the first series, really made me want to pick up Dallas.

  5. Ron looks sleepy. You guys just roll him out of the iFanbed?
    (I imagine the iFanboys sleep in three-tier bunkbeds with an alarm that blares to wake them for important comic events)


    Judging from the during-credits outtake, Josh beat Ron about the head and face for playing with his hair and then stole his shirt.

  6. Ron looks near dead. 

  7. *In my best grandma voice* Conor, eat something.  You look thin.

    Great show guys. 

    War of Kings has been delivering in every way.  I’m incredibly happy with that series.

    I’ll be picking up Umbrella Academy and Irredeemable in trades when they’re released, sound like they’ll be quite fun.

    And I haven’t had a Twinkie in years, but I have been knowing to dabble in the Hostess cup cakes from time to time.


  8. lol @ arnimzola.com in the netflix ad.

  9. That volume discussion reminds me of GTA discussions. SA and VC are full game, but aren’t part of the series? Those arguments always bug me.

  10. i take it that you guys were only focusing on titles that are somewhat new, or just recently caught your interests.


  11. Black Dossier definitely ISN’T volume three of LOEG – it’s a source book.

    As soon as you read it you realise that it isn’t the same thing as the regular series. 

  12. The GI Joe Cobra cover with Chuckles sitting behind the Twinkie made me spit out my coffee.

    I plan on picking up the I Kill Giants trade this weekend and am looking forward to it. I couldn’t agree more about Joe Kelly – the man has had a banner year so far.

    Great show as always.

  13. Great show, though clearly those commutes from San Francisco to the iFanboy studio seems to finally be getting to Mr. Richards. 

  14. I’m proud to say that I’m reading a majority of these books. 

    @heroville they stated early on in the show that they were going to do a show solely on Green Lantern.

    I think you guys got me interested in GI Joe Origins as well.  The rest that I don’t collect month to month will be eventually read in trade form or borrowed from my friends that are hard corps DC fans…or is it core.  I don’t know.  They both sound the same.

    Anyway, good taste gentleman.  You keep me coming back for more!!!! 

  15. @captbastrd Yes, and they have a comic zyxometer that provides them with sweeping headlines and exclusive interviews.  In addition to bunk beads they also have a fire alarm and a pole to slide down to their computers.

  16. Hmmm.  I don’t know about UMBRELLA ACADEMY.  I’m not a fan of My Chemical Romance.  … KIDDING!  Kidding!  Don’t kick me off the boards.

    I’m following Conor on this one and trade waiting.  That first one was a lot of fun and reading the sequel all together sounds best to me.

    Enjoyed the video again.  Ron, your rock star life style is catching up with you.  Get some sleep there, buddy.

  17. I found myself intrigued by the enthusiasm for Cobra then dismayed as 24 was repeatedly brought up (I stopped watching 24 for a reason).

  18. G.I. Joe: HELL YES.  I agree completely.  I have had more fun in that universe than any other.  Who saw that coming? Did anyone expect them to be this good?  IDW deserves some cudos for the quality of the books, but I really wish they would get there distribution issues worked out.  My shop didn’t get G.I. Joe #6 today.

    I liked twinkie-cam and look forward to the twinkie episode (but not as much as the Green Lantern episode).

  19. I also like Ron’s new Unicorn look.

  20. Hate to triple post, but here goes:

    I noticed a number of you mentioning Ron looking run down.  He lives in San Francisco and appears to be working his ass on at Rev3.  He (and Josh and Conor) were at the Diggnation live show and he was mentioned in the Diggnation episode last week.  He has also helped make Rev3’s new website look ultra slick (I love theatre mode).  This weekend he organized (it seems) the ustream live broadcast of the pick of the week podcast.  He also has to jet cross country to record the episodes to appease his massive fanbase.  We should probably cut him some slack.  (Josh and his newly developed twinkie gut, not so much. [Sorry Josh, but I kid because I care.])

  21. Oh, we all know Ron’s working liking a mad man. I always marvel at the dedication the three bring.

    I mean,


  22. @miyamotofreak – That certainly is dedication, but you might need to scale that pic down for future posting.  I don’t really want to see the pore on Ron’s nose ever again.

  23. No Dark Avengers?

     Or Thor?

    EPIC FAIL!!!

  24. Do we really have to go over the THOR thing again?

  25. I had to back and watch to make sure the Twinkie conversation wasn’t just a fever dream

  26. Jeff Reid (@JeffRReid) says:

    Not to nit-pick here, but you may want to update the show notes to mention that Paul helped on the interview with Joe Kelly.  I just want to make sure that he gets some love!

  27. Paul was there?

    Fair enough.

  28. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:


  29. And they’ve managed to get exactly 3 issues of Thor out this year so far.  Way to go!

  30. In addition to "GI Joe: Cobra," I’d like to give some love to "The Mighty" and "Madame Xanadu."

    Still waiting to the end of the month to read the latest issue of the former. But, dang, those first four issues… that was some strong comic booking. I’m quite interested to see where this title is going.

    Also, to "Madame Xanadu"–a series that both myself and my girlfriend quite enjoy–which is proving to be an unexpected history of the DC Universe in a Vertigo-style narrative. This has been the surprise book for me. I know it came out last year, but I just read the issues in two, three sittings a few weeks ago. Excellent use of DC’s mystical catalogue, especially the reveal of the Spectre and the title character’s involvement in his creation. Great series. Check it out in trade.



  31. The above post is the best way to indicate other books you feel we might have talked about. Thanks!

  32. I second JamesSeals suggestion of "The Mighty".  I believe Josh mentioned it on a podcast once, but it hasn’t been mentioned much.  The last issue was positively chilling.  I am guessing that if the rest of this opening arc holds up it will get some love.  In my experience Josh can generally be relied upon to highlight a book that isn’t getting its due.

  33. I know you guys stated your doing a show on them later…..But Green Lantern Corps. Woof, what a cosmic book. After reading the very bad issue of GL this week; GLC has no becomed the best cosmic comic in the industry for me. Tomasi has to juggle so many plotlines in every arc but he manages to make some of the most entertaining stories. The Kryb villain and Emerald Eclipse are the highlights.

    None of you are reading it but: INCREDIBLE HERCULES is one of the best titles for Marvel. A great mix of action, humor, and greek mythology makes it one of the more entertaining books to come out. You cant beat ‘CRACKJAMMA’ and you cant beat the amazing wink Herc does. Also; you get the Dark Avengers get their asses handed to them by Hercules!


  34. @stuclach: Josh and I have been talking abot THE MIGHTY for a while now. I actually read it first, if we’re keeping score.

  35. @josh: You are welcome, sir.

  36. nice show. Good to have an update of what is good.

  37. @conor – Sorry about that.  I remembered Josh mentioning it, but didn’t recall you commenting on it.  And yes, we are always keeping score.

  38. I was just about to say that they really should’ve talked about The Mighty but somebody beat me to it.  I think you have to actually read up to issue #4 or #5 to realize how similar the premise is to Irredeemable which I’m checking out a reprint of #1 right now.  LCS didn’t have #2 so I gotta track it down on Ebay. 

    They should do a show Irredeemable VERSUS The Mighty to see which one is best, and possibly argue about who would win in a fight.  I wonder who thought of the story first.  Seems a bit of a coincidence though.

    Screw Dark Avengers, I’m dropping that and probably X-Men 4ever too.  I’m so down with Marvel other then Spiderman.  UGH

  39. I don’t think the Mighty is good enough to be in this show.  At least not yet.  It’s been a slow climb of a story, and while it’s quite skillful, I don’t think it’s entirely compelling yet.  We’ll see how it goes.

  40. I know only Conner and Ron are reading it but Amazing Spider-Man has been great, this past year a fun 3 issue series from Image came out "I hate Galaxy Girl", cartoony but fun.

  41. @Josh: I agree with you about THE MIGHTY.

  42. so was Wolervine 72 in the best books of 09 so far?

  43. We weren’t doing best issues, perse.  But I can tell you, that whole story would be more on my mind if it came out with any regularity.

    And again, there are *other* good books besides what we talked about.

  44. No Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose?  Fucking bullshit.

    (Also: Dark Avengers)

  45. I know this book came out a while ago in issues, but as a trade it just came out, so Paul Dini/Bruce Timm’s Mad Love just came out in a beautiful Hardcover a few weeks ago, a must get. 


  47. Hey man, i said on the show that I didn’t think Spider-Man was all that great.

    But then also, let it go!

  48. Well, weren’t most of the books you guys talked about mutually agreed upon in quality?  If so, that would exclude:

    Spider-Man, which has been mountain or valley all freakin’ year

    Dark Avengers: which isn’t really genius per se, just enjoyable to people that love the avengers

    Thor: Wow, really? Sorry to any Thor lover out there, but I’ve read ’em all so far and the writings pretty weak.

    Mighty will mature in time.  I think it just needs to grow some balls.  Then it’ll be fuckin’ sweet, what what?

  49. @Josh: ha ha. it’s starting to get to you, huh?

  50. That was a really inclusive and spot-on selection of comics from this year.  I’d throw "Guerillas" in the mix, as well.    Everything else I can think of, you either covered, or explained why you weren’t covering it.

  51. Comics are fun, and iFanboy makes comics fun.

  52. You know what’s cool, and while it seems planned, it isn’t?  DC, Marvel, Image, Top Shelf, IDW, Boom, and Dynamite were all featured. 

    It would make sense that we woud do that on purpose, and it would have been a good idea, but it turns out it just happened.

  53. @Josh – You forgot Dark Horse.  In the list, not the show.  Umbrella Academy covers it.

  54. great show

    ron looks hungover!

  55. Great show guys! I’ve been looking for the I Kill Giants trade since it came out and can’t find it at shops in my area. Also, the Canadian Amazon has it listed as a pre-order yet…maybe it isn’t out up here yet but I’m really looking forward to reading this one!

    Also, can’t wait for IDW to collect all the current G.I. Joe stuff they’re doing in trades. It all looks really great.

    …and Ron didn’t look THAT bad. Keep up the great work, iFanboys! 

  56. left out scalped

  57. Ron is such a DIVA!!< check out the outtakes at the very end!!!

    BTW  "Old Man Logan" Best Arc of 2009(or 2008)

  58. Uh…a couple of questions: although i’m afraid I’m opening a can of worms here, what’s the beef with Thor? I mean, I know it’s not stellar rock your socks off stuff, but it’s not that bad. I got the iFanboys’ attitude towards JMS, but I think Thor is kind of a good, fun read. Still I have seen numerous people mentioning it like there’s some bad juju about it.

    Second: as someone mentioned GI Joe Origins on here, uhm, why is this supposed to be good? I got the first issue and because of all the praise I heard I was expecting something good. What I found was rough storytelling 8sort of like the first few pages of Viking) and artwork that was horribly inconsistent. I mean, come on, Duke never looked even similar in any panels. Different faces all the damn time. There were errors of perspective and proportion. Just to make this clear, this is not a matter of taste, but obvious errors to me. THe main characters should have a consistent face and look. Just saying, you know.

    Btw, Ron really looked like he was run over by a truck or something. Seems like he needs a vacation or something. Keep in mind that this is not supposed to be a rant but more of a concern.

    In case he was just hung over, well…I hope he had fun the night before. ๐Ÿ˜€ 

  59. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    @Kenzaburo – Thor’s just one of those topics that keeps getting brought up a lot, so it’s gained a kind of infamy. Some of us love it, some of us hate it. Nothing macabre about it though.  

  60. I don’t like Thor, and people got mad about it.  More than once.  Yes I’ve read it.

    Also, 3 issues…this year. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  61. But it’s not like you never liked Thor, Josh, right? I’m pretty sure that I remember you mentioning that you read Thor when you were younger.

    But thanks for the heads up, guys. 

     Another note: Since I already brought up Ron looking tired/exhausted/sick/whatever…what’s up with Conor looking kinda buffed? Has he been working out and doing all those extra crunches he planned on doing after the 300 podcast? ๐Ÿ˜€ 

  62. I’ve read Thor a lot.  I read it when I was a kid, and later when it was by Jurgens and John Romita Jr..  I’ve even read almost all of JMS’s run. I just wasn’t that impressed.  It wasn’t bad by any means, but it didn’t excite me.

    Conor will be thrilled you said that, true or not.

  63. I heard that crunches are bad for you. A lot of fitness routines are dropping them.

  64. Crunches bad

    Doritos good

  65. @miya most foods involving swine are bad for you too.  But that doesn’t mean that I’m gonna stop eating them:)  And Doritos are awesome!!!

    I’ve read my fair share of Thor and I just haven’t really connected much with the book.  I’ve read all of the newest series of Thor up to date, but just nothing there for me.  I like the art and the writing, just not my thing.

  66. Hey we already got to see next weeks outtakes already. They had the green lantern stuff on the table on the outtakes.

  67. They are also wearing different clothes in the outtakes.  WTF?  So they film them all on the same day, but actually change shirts, not pants, to trick the audience into believing it is a different day.  Ron was changing the way his hair pointed?  To create some kind of illusion?  As in "Hey look at me, it’s a different day, I have a different shirt (same pants) and my hair is styled differently!"  Clever!

  68. I have always assumed that they film like 5-6 episodes everytime they meet or something and change shirts everytime because some episodes seemed to have josh still with voice lost from cons a month after the con was over.

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