5 largest comic book publishing companies

It is commonly known that art cannot be developed without the industry, and the industry cannot be developed without competition. The competition among business titans always has a positive effect on the consumer, no matter what improvements he is looking for in a product: price, availability or quality.
Comics industry began its development in the twentieth century, during the prewar period. Throughout the entire history all comic book publishers tried to create their own unique fantasy worlds. Some changed their name, while others took different approached to the audience. Superheroes and villains were getting new features that allowed them to win interest of the public over and over again.
Many people argue about which publishing company makes the best comics, but we decided to leave this question up to you and just tell about those who dominate on comics market.

1. Marvel Company

Marvel Logo
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The history of Marvel started in 1939, when publisher Martin Goodman decided to group together his subsidiaries under the name “Timely Comics”. The first Marvel’s characters were Human Torch and Namor The Sub-Mariner, and only in 1941 Captain America was created.
In 1961 Marvel Comics makes a revolution in the history of graphic novels. It launches The Fantastic Four #1. Unlike any previous superheroes the Fantastic Four characters appear in front of a reader with all their humanity. They experience daily stress, general household troubles and fight with each other like any other ordinary inhabitant of the Earth. Initially, they didn’t even wear costumes, therefore were deprived of the main attributes – secrets and double life.
Marvel presented to us such popular and well known superheroes as Spider-Man, X-Men, The Incredible Hulk and many more. Most of them live in a fictional universe called Earth-616. However events often take place in very real New York, Washington and London. Marvel uses the theme of parallel worlds, magic, mythology and time travel.
Nowadays Marvel continues to take over Hollywood with its superheroes. In 2009 Marvel signed a contract with The Walt Disney Company and became a part of the US largest media company. Today Marvel is the largest comic book publisher with 45% market share.

2. DC Comics

DC Logo
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DC comics was founded in 1934 and very soon became the main competitor of the Marvel publishing house. Abbreviation DC came from the popular series “Detective Comics”. DC Comics created such iconic characters as Batman and Superman, along with other well-known superheroes: Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Green Lantern and others.
Company’s comics are less infantile and more positive. Actions usually take place in fictional cities like Gotham or Metropolis. DC Comics uses a lot of parallel worlds themes, demons and even vampires. The company also owns “Vertigo” series, which is designed for the production of comics for adult audience. This brand name publishes such comics as “V for Vendetta”, “Sandman”, “100 Bullets”, “Hellblazer” etc.
In 2009 American film studio Warner Brothers gained a full control over DC Comics. The studio now is able to use a maximum amount of characters from the comics.

3. Dark Horse Comics

Dark Horse Comics
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Dark Horse Comics was established in 1986 as a private company in the state of Oregon in the United States. Company creator Mike Richardson owned several comics shops and put its income into creating Dark Hoese Comics. The name “Dark Horse” did not come by an accident. At that time Marvel and DC Comics were the main players on the comic book market and independent publishers, who tried to fight against these giants, often faced a lot of challenges.
However Dark Horse Comics has grown and become the third-largest comics publishing company in the United States. The main aim of the company is quality and variety of manufactured products. Dark Horse and its subsidiaries have over 350 items, which are sold under company’s own brand. Company is best known for such comic books as Conan, Hellboy, Mask and Sin City. Dark Horse Comics also publishes comic books based of Star Wars, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, King Kong etc.

4. Image Comics

Image Comics Logo
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Image Comics is an American comic book publishing house created in 1992 by artists Erik Larsen, Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Whilce Portacio, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino, who at their time left biggest publishers at the top of their popularity to create their own company.
The main peculiarity of Image Comics, that distinguishes it from other comic book companies, is that character’s authors retain all copyrights and don’t have to pass them to the publisher. At first Image Comics’ issues were dominated by characters from other studio partners, but nowadays company publishes comics in many genres from a lot of independent creators. Image Comics is best known for such series as “The Walking Dead”, “Savage Dragon”, “Invincible”, “Spawn” and more. Currently Image Comics sells a little over 4% of all comics sold.

5. IDW Publishing

 Description: IDW Publishing logo
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IDW Publishing is the youngest major comic book publisher. It was founded in 1999 as a division of Idea and Design Works, LLC to develop products related to comic books, movies, video games etc. Nowadays IDW Publishing most well-known creations are licensed from movie and TV franchises, for example Star Trek, Terminator, Transformers and Doctor Who. Company takes fifth place on the comic book market with 3,5% of dollar share.

Comics chronicles: 14 significant dates in the history of Marvel

Such characters as Hulk, Iron Man and Thor are well known to the audience for many years. But most of us know nothing about the creator of these superheroes – Marvel Company. Only the biggest comics fans can tell company’s history without a single hitch. For others “Marvel” often is just a familiar name.

The American company Marvel was established over 70 years ago. Marvel created the idea of superheroes and put it into practice by inventing hundreds of fantastic stories. Over time the popularity of comics started to grow and the company decided to expand its activities by creating a series of animations based on existing plots. Later Marvel moved on to shooting big screen movies, becoming more and more famous throughout the world. At the moment Marvel Company has over 5 000 comic book characters and nearly two dozen films, not to mention the mass production of cartoons.

Although the way to the top of the publishing business was not so easy, Marvel is now one of the largest publishing houses, which represents modern comic book culture. We have gathered the most important facts and dates of the company’s history, to help you find out what is actually hidden under the name “Marvel”.

Marvel comics

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1939

The Marvel Company was created by Martin Goodman in 1939 as a group of subsidiaries under the name Timely Comics. Company’s first publication was “Marvel Comics #1” in October of 1939. In this issue appeared superhero Human Torch created by Carl Burgos, as well as the modern anti-hero Namor: The Sub-Mariner, a mutant created by Bill Everett. Comics became a hit, although the company did not have enough of own funds to meet all the demand and had to use the services of an outside company Funnies Inc.

1940

Goodman hires the chief editors Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, who are now responsible for a current style of the comics. By the end of the year Simon and Kirby find an assistant Stanley Lieber, but the whole world will soon know him as Stan Lee – editor in chief and main ideologue of Marvel Comics.

Stan Lee

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1941

America has not yet entered the World War II, but everybody feel the inevitability of it. At this time the company’s chief editor, writer and artist Joe Simon teams up with the legend of comic book industry Jack Kirby to create the first national superhero – Captain America. Captain debuted in the comic book Captain America Comics # 1 in March 1941 and became a major sales hit.

Captain America

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1944

In this year comes out the first film adaptation of Marvel comic book – “Captain America”. The film is about criminals, who are led by a villain called Scarab. They kill enemies with the help of mysterious poison and steal a secret device, which is able to destroy buildings with sound vibrations. Captain America stands on their way starting a fight for life and death. The series are shown in the movies right after the frontline chronicle.

1960s

Looking on DC Comics reviving superheroes in the late 50s and early 60s, Marvel decided to do the same. Editor and writer Stan Lee in collaboration with artist Jack Kirby created the Fantastic Four. Contrary to stereotypes of the genre heroes did not live a double life, and at first did not even wear costumes. They experience daily life struggles, which later was called “superheroes in the real world” approach.

On this wave of success Marvel created other comics superheroes, such as the Hulk, Spider-Man, Iron Man and X-Men, as well as such memorable villains as Doctor Doom, Magneto, Galactus, Green Goblin and Doctor Octopus. However the most commercially successful comic book was “The Amazing Spider-Man” created by Lee and Ditko.

The Hulk

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1970

Jack Kirby leaves Marvel for a competing DC Comics. Stan Lee no longer writes stories and gets promoted to a publisher. This marks the end of the “Silver Age of Comic Books” (1956-1970).

1974

Wolverine makes his debut as a minor character The Incredible Hulk #180. Captain America is disappointed in life, he throws his shield and becomes a Nomad.

Wolverine

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1980s

Jim Shooter becomes a chief editor of “Marvel Comics” and brings rapidly growing direct market to the company. He establishes authorship royalties for comics’ creators and starts to print “Epic Comics” in 1982. But despite the success Marlin publishing house loses ground to DC in the second half of the decade, after a few former stars of Marvel changed sides.

In 1989 Reagan publicly acknowledged that he reads the newspaper strip about Spider-Man first thing in the morning. Meanwhile, Marvel goes to billionaire Ronald Perelman.

1996

Marvel and DC comics are doing an amazing thing: they release two series comics where the characters of both competing universes are fighting among each other.

2008

Marvel establishes Marvel Studios, which is fully focused on the film industry. However the copyrights to the film versions of some characters (for instance Spider-man and X-Men) still belong to other studios.

2009

“The Walt Disney Company” announces about the purchase of “Marvel” in late August. The deal took place in late December with the price of 4.24 billion dollars.

2013

Marvel launched so-called “Phase Two” of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. “Phase Two” introduces to the audience such films as “Iron Man 3”, “Thor: The Dark World”, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”, “Guardians of the Galaxy”, “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and “Ant-Man”.

“Avengers: Age of Ultron” logo

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2015

Marvel announces about publishing “Star wars” again after a nearly twenty-year break.

2016

Here comes the “Phase Three” of the Marvel cinematic Universe that will continue up to the 2019. However the box office has already exceeded 1.8 billion dollars. Phase Three brought to us “Captain America: Civil War” (2016) and “Doctor Strange” (2016). At the same time Marvel has confirmed release of such films as “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” (2017), “Spider-Man: Homecoming” (2017), “Thor: Ragnarok (2017)”, “Black Panther” (2018), “Avengers: Infinity War” (2018), “Ant-Man and the Wasp” (2018) and other.

Benedict Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange

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3 Weird Comic Crossovers You Never Heard About 

One of the major parts of modern comics is the iconic crossovers between characters. It is not uncommon to see Spiderman swing by the X-mansion or Batman popping into Metropolis City. In fact, we can’t count how many times we’ve seen the characters come together to fight a threat or even each other.

However, there are also times when comics get weird as these superheroes will crossover into something completely unrelated. Check out these 3 weird comic crossovers you never heard about.

Django and Zorro – the official Sequel 

One of the first odd sequels to the film was the Django and Zorro collaboration. The comic was set after the end of Django Unchained where he returned to bounty hunting to provide for his wife. He was hired as the bodyguard for the former Zorro. Together, the duo posed as rich railway investors to fight off the proclaimed Archduke of Arizona and save the Native American tribe that was enslaved.

X-Men and Star Trek

In early 1996, the teams of Paramount Studios and Marvel made a plan to create a series of crossovers between X-Men and Star Trek. The plot was based on the X-Men traveling through a wormhole to team up with the Star Trek cast. The two teams united to combine their phasers and mutant powers to burn out and defeat Proteus.

Batman and Sherlock Holmes

While teaming up two of the greatest detectives isn’t weird, how DC did it was. The comic plot led Robin and Batman to travel to London and stop Moriarty’s descendant from killing the Queen. That is when they received help from Sherlock Holmes. While the team up is unique, the problem was that Sherlock worked in the 1930s, which make him 130 during the time of the published comic.

The comic gets even weirder as time-travel becomes easily accessible, which means Batman could travel back to Victoria England or Holmes traveling forward to the future before his time.

What do you think about these weird comic crossovers? Comment below and share your opinions with us!

 

Top 4 Comic Artists in the World 

From blockbuster films to animation, comic artists have played a strong influence in today’s film culture. In this article, we will take a better look at the greatest comic artists of all time. From designing these characters take skills and practice as there is a variety of methods.

Here are the top 4 comic artists in the world.

Frank Miller 

After drawing the Royal Feast issue in the comic series, The Twilight Zone, Miller found himself working for Marvel comics. Miller has also appeared as the vicar who gets killed by marc in the film, Sin City. To date, Miller has 3 Harvey awards, 4 Kirby awards, and 6 Eisner awards.

Dave Gibbons 

Known for his career in IPC and DC comics, Gibbons became the lead artist for Doctor Who’s Monthly and Weekly issue. He produced Watchmen and become one of the sixty-two comic creators who appeared at the IGN stage along with two Jack Kirby awards.

Steve Dillon

At the young age of 16 years old, Steve Dillon got his first professional job drawing the first issue of Hulk Weekly for Marvel UK. He also worked on Nick Fury about the present day spa and a World War Two army Hero. Dillon went on to develop the Preacher novel series that focuses on Texas and the realities of the true American Dream.

Jack Kirby 

Jack Kirby is known for his career in comics that started in the early 1930s.  He worked together to create the infamous character of Captain America. He also went on to create the Hulk, Fantastic Four, and help Stan Lee illustrate The Avengers and Thor. Known as the king of comic innovation, he used his creative juices to build comic devices and genres. In 1943, Kirby was drafted into the Second World War where he was asked to create enough comics to be used during his absence.

What are your all-time favorite comic artists? Comment below and share your favorites with us!

Top 5 Best-Selling Comics of All time 

Believe it or not – Comics are a big business that has ultimately leaped into the digital world. Let’s check out the top five best-selling comics of all time.

#5 X-Men

As the strangest superheroes on the list, Marvel’s X-Men were on the brink of being canceled but only to be rebooted with a powerful team. Writer Chris Claremont finally made the team stick as X-Men grew in success with numerous spin-offs. X-men also went into the Guinness World Record for the best-selling single issue; the ‘91’s renumbered X-Men #1.

#4 One Piece 

Since the series started in 1997, the crazy pirate has an acknowledged debt to Dragon Ball Creator Eiichiro Oda was determined to take Dragon Ball’s popularity as a challenge. With over 73 volumes, One Piece is the fourth best-selling comics in the world. There are also special episodes that crossed over with Dragon Ball.

#3 Spider-Man

With international sales, Spiderman catches readers just as flies. His massive popularity benefited from the early 90’s boom. Spiderman’s biggest-selling issue was the Amazing Spiderman issue #583. This was the popular backup story where President Barrack Obama became a Marvel character.

#2 Batman 

Over 450 million in sales has lead Batman to the number 2 spot on the list. His early popularity led his Detective Comics to be sold in millions on a regular basis. While the story might be a bit apocryphal, Batman has become one of the best-selling comic heroes of all time and still going strong.

#1 Superman

With over 600 million copies in the sale, the best-selling comic character of all time is no other than Superman. This superhero becomes extremely popular in the 30s as his first issue was released in 1938. From there, he has spun off into everything from comics to TV shows and lunchboxes.

What is your favorite comic of all time? Comment below and tell us your favorites!

Captain America: 6 comics about main American superhero

Capitan America is a comic book superhero from Marvel Company. Created by writer Joe Simon and artist Jack Kirby he appeared in the comic book Captain America Comics # 1 in March of 1941 for the first time. Over the years “Captain America” comic books were sold more than 210 million copies in 75 countries. In comics “Captain America” is referred to anyone who is selected by the US government to wear a costume and a shield.
For almost entire history of the comics Captain America was an alter ego of Steve Rogers, morbid young man who was enhanced with the experimental serum to the peak of human perfection in order to help US military operations. Captain America wears an American flag inspired costume and uses and indestructible shield as a weapon. This superhero was often pictured fighting against the Nazi unit, which made him one of the most popular characters during the World War II. His popularity wanes with the end of the war and by the 1950s he had disappeared. However the Silver Age of Comics brought this American superhero back to life as part of The Avengers team in 1964.
Since then Captain America often appears in the comics and even on the big screen. We decided to trace the life and history of the main American superhero from the very beginning.

Captain America
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1. Captain America Comics Vol. 1

Captain America Comics Vol. 1

We decided to start Captain America comic book guide from the very beginning: in particular from 1941 when Joe Simon and Jack Kirby came up with one of the main symbols of Western popular culture – Captain America.
The first issue tells a story about the origin of the superhero. Weak, but brave young man Steve Rogers becomes a volunteer in a government experiment and as a result gets superpowers from a miraculous serum. Scientist, who invented the serum, dies immediately from a German spy, which leaves Roger one of a kind.
The fact that Steve Rogers was brave even before any superpowers is an important point of the comics. Plus, this issue was illustrated by Jack Kirby, who drew Captain America almost until his death in 1994.
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2. Avengers Vol. 1

The Avengers movie art

It is impossible to talk about Captain America and not mention the Avengers. They met in the 60s when Captain America became an undisputed leader of this brave team. In “Avengers Vol. 1” series Captain America appears only in the 4th issue. Readers learn the story of how Captain America fell from an experimental Nazi plane in the Atlantic Ocean during the war. He was frozen in the ice, but brought back to life after two decades.
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3. Captain America: Man Out of Time Vol 1

Captain America’s shield covered with ice

After the end of World War II the popularity of Captain America started to decrease and the character disappeared for a while. But in 1963 Marvel returned Captain America in rather ingenious way: The Avengers found frozen Captain in a block of ice and revived him.
Captain America spent almost twenty years lying in the ice and woke up to a new world. The story was retold many times and as a result every time the amount of years increased. For instance in 2011 movie it turned out that Captain has spent 70 year covered in ice.
“A Man Out of Time” basically tells a story about the shock that one experiences falling asleep during the World War II and awakening in the present time.
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4. Captain America No More

In the late 80s Marvel has entrusted the ongoing about Captain America to Mark Gruenwald. Mark’s ideas were quite bold and original for that time, but his main achievement was plot arc called “Captain America No More”.
Steve Rogers is no longer Captain America and other hero takes over – Super-Patriot. “Captain America No More” shows that not only Captain America is a patriotic symbol, but it is a particular person (Steve Rogers), who wears the suit for many years. Eventually Super-Patriot is unable to cope with the role of national hero and commits murder. Of course the comics end with the opposition between the true Captain America and the new one.

5. Captain America: Living Legend

Captain America: the living legend

“Captain America: Living Legend” is a modern mini-series (only 4 issues) about the Captain. It is easy-read story that has espionage, war, Russian astronauts and alien monsters. This is a great choice for those who want to quickly get to know the character, while reading inspiring thoughts on war and soldiers.
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6. The Death of Captain America

The plot is easy to guess from the title. And although the death in comics has lost its meaning, it is different for Captain America. “The Death of Captain America” is mostly not about the Captain, but his surroundings. It shows how much of the Marvel’s world is actually holds by Steve Roger. As well as it talks about modern America and confusing world we all live in.

Top 7 greatest comic artists of all time

Comics is a kind of mass culture and the way to tell a story using images and text sketches at the same time. It basically synthesizes literary and visual creativity. And even though comics sometimes called a form of “low art”, it does not stop its characters and creators of having a significant impact on the development of popular culture.
It all begins in 1938 when Superman came into our world from the first issue of Action Comics. Creation and designing characters along with the worlds that superheroes have to defend becomes a separate form of art. And comic artists start gaining more and more popularity and hundreds of fans around the world. Today we would like to dive a little into the history of comics and learn more about the most famous artists of comics industry.

1. John Romita Jr

John Romita Jr
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John Romita Jr is a New York writer and comic book artist. He is the son of another famous American comic book artist John Romita Sr – the author of Spider-Man comic book series. In cooperation with writer Roger Stern, Romita Jr. created such character as the Hobgoblin and drew the issue in which Spider-Man meets Juggernaut. Also John Romita Jr worked on the comic book Kik Ass together with the writer Mark Miller.
But the real fame came to John after he created an Iron Man stories about billionaire and philanthropist Tony Stark, who becomes a superhero to save the world. His bold compositions of frames still affect the work of younger cartoonists to the present day.

2. Brian Bolland

Brian Bolland
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Brian Bolland is a British comic book artist and graphic designer. Immediately after studying he dipped into the work of illustrating fantasy stories. Bolland soon becomes an active participant in the era of “British invasion”, when American creators of comic characters mostly hired illustrators from Britain.
The highest compliment to the British artist was the proposal to work on any DC character. And in 1988 comes out the legendary comics “Batman: The Killing Joke” written by Alan Moore. This is the story about the origin of the Joker.
Bolland’s works affect the culture till these days: Heath Ledger called “The Killing Joke” a source of inspiration for his role as a Joker in the “The Dark Knight” movie. He carefully studied the graphic novel before shooting and used Bolland’s character as a reference.

3. Will Eisner

Will Eisner

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Will Eisner is an American illustrator and comics artist. He is recognized as one of the most important and beloved figures in the global comics industry. He made a considerable contribution to the comics’ development and therefore often called the “Father of graphic novels”.
Will Eisner began his career as a comics cartoonists in the New York American newspaper and later in Wow, What A Magazine !, for which he wrote and drew comic strips. However his most famous work “The Spirit” was published in 1940 and in 2008 brought onto the big screen.

4. Jim Steranko

Jim Steranko
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Jim Steranko is an American graphic designer, illustrator and comic book artist. Jim’s first job was for Harvey Comics. Later he meets Stan Lee, American comics author, who brought Jim to Marvel company.
Steranko revolutionized art of graphic presentation of the stories. His brief three issues have given Capitan America a new life. But Jim is best known for his iconic cover of Giant-Size Hulk. This image is still considered one of the best comic book covers of all times. Steranko’s publishing house SuperGraphics published a two-volume “History of Comics”, which is a must read for all beginner cartoonists.

5. Osamu Tezuka

Osamu Tezuka
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Osamu Tezuka is a Japanese illustrator, who’s often called the Walt Disney of Japan. The whole world knows Osamu’s famous character “Astro Boy”. For the first time «Astro Boy» took off into the world in 1951 and since then it became the most popular and beloved Japanese hero. “Astro Boy” has even become an honorary citizen of the city of Saitama, where the author’s studio is located.
Osamu Tezuka is called the “Father of Anime” and “God of Manga”, as he has always been a few years ahead of other illustrators. Osamu was an inventor of the “big eyes” in Japanese animation and felt himself equally comfortable in any genre, whether it was sci-fi, mystery or horror story.

8. Steve Ditko

Steve Ditko
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Steve Ditko is an American illustrator and cartoonist. He worked with Marvel Company, developing images of the Hulk, Iron Man and Spider Man. His new look at Spider Man brought incredible success to the illustrator. Ditko shines in drawing facial expressions: the characters look intrigued, worried and furious. His designs were innovative and many believe that during his work on the first issue of Spider Man, he made everyone take a fresh look at the New York.

7. Frank Miller

Frank Miller
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Frank Miller is a modern American illustrator and graphic designer. Frank’s work is distinguished by a pronounced cinematic quality and he is often praised for his dark, noir style. Frank’s graphic novels “Sin City” and “300” made a splash on the big screen. But among the comic book fans he is best known as the creator of “Batman: The Dark Knight Returns”, which has changed the world of comics and forced it to focus more on adult audience.

Comic book classics: 8 must read Batman stories

The Dark Knight, Silent guard and vigilant defender, the greatest detective in the world – Batman. He certainly doesn’t need an introduction, as we all know and love this superhero. Batman fights crime for over 70 years. There are many clichés and plot moves in Batman stories, which have become a standard for a variety of genres.
Batman had his first appearance in the comics in May 1939 in Detective Comics #27. Of course, during all these years tons of paper was used and drawn thousands of illustrations. Many generations grew up on Batman stories, although the character had changed repeatedly, as the world changed around. And it is quite a natural process, since comics have always been a kind of alternative reflection of reality, therefore the character should always stay relevant.
Those who would like to get to know Batman better through comics will face a great amount of volumes dedicated to the Dark Knight. We have tried to gather comic books, which have already become classics and bedrock of Batman stories. We suggest reading them and the sooner the better.

1. Batman: Year One

Batman

Everybody knows the origin of Batman, as it has been presented dozens of times. But this comic book has the most logical and rational version, the closest to the generally accepted canons.
“Year One” was created by the writer Frank Miller with illustrator David Mazzucchelli and released in 1987. This comics touches the very beginning of Batman’s career. It shows the formation of Bruce Wayne as a symbol of the night, and as someone who has experienced the death of his parents. The story also talks about the origin of the bat costume and includes first appearance of other characters, such as James Gordon, Selina Kyle and Falcone crime family.
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2. Batman: The Killing Joke

Joker

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Written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Brian Bolland this graphic novel was published in 1988. The plot tells a story about an unnamed engineer, whose fate was not so happy. Heartbroken by the death of his wife and unborn child he decided to get involved in the robbery of a plant, where he hides his face with a red hood. After an unsuccessful attack the gang was killed, and a red cap engineer comes face to face with the Dark Knight. Frightened, he falls into a vat of chemicals and escapes through the downspouts. The whole story is the reason why the unfortunate engineer became the way we know him today – the Joker. It is important to note that “The Killing Joke” – is the best novel about the famous antagonist, which has no analogues.

3. Batman: The Long Halloween

Released in 1997 the series “Long Halloween” was illustrated by Tim Sale and written by Jeph Loeb. This is a grim criminal story that occurs after the Year One events. During this Halloween Batman, Commissioner Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent join forces to save the city from mafia wars and mysterious killer – a person who kills mobsters, but only during the holidays.
Much attention is paid to the relationship between the main defenders of Gotham City, as well as the transformation of Harvey Dent into Two-Face. “The Long Halloween” shows the genuine tragic figure of Harvey Dent and his duality that wasn’t caught by every author. This is a great comic book for those who are interested in the origin of one of the most prominent villains of the DC universe.

4. Batman Adventures: Mad Love

Harley Quinn

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Joker’s girlfriend Harley Quinn perhaps is the most popular anti-hero of the Batman’s universe. Not everyone remembers that she appeared in the animated series “Batman: The Animated Series” for the first time, and only later in this comic book. Nowadays Harley has changes so much that it is priceless to see her just the way writer Paul Dini pictured her.
This comic, exciting and touching story of Harley’s mad love for Joker won the Eisner Award. In 2016 Harley Quinn had her first debut on the big screen starring in the “Suicide Squad” movie.

5. Batman Arkham Asylum: Serious house on Serious earth

Batman: Arkham Asylum poster

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This iconic graphic novel was written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Dave McKean in 1989. Events take place in a psychiatric Arkham Asylum, where the Joker takes control of the entire staff and the building, turning it into a deadly trap for Batman. Arriving at the clinic, The Dark Knight is trapped inside the hospital, where every inmate wants to kill Batman.

6. The Dark Knight Returns

One of the best comic novels in the history “The Dark Knight Returns” was written and illustrated by Frank Miller in 1986. The plot tells about the 56 years old Bruce Wayne, who hasn’t worn the Batman mask for 10 years, due to the death of Jason Todd. The government forced all superheroes to retire, leaving the protection of the city to the Superman. As the result crime in Gotham city raises to previously unseen levels: a gang of “Mutants” kills everyone and everything. In this situation, Bruce Wayne realizes that city needs Batman like never before.

7. Batman: Hush

The majority of Batman’s villains appear in this successful bestseller. A mysterious villain who literally knows everything about the past of Bruce Wayne appears in Gotham and disturbs Batman. Acting with the hands of the Arkham hospital regulars, a new criminal tries to defeat the Dark Knight. The presence of almost all the main characters of the Batman universe makes this a great introduction to the modern history of Gotham.

8. Batman and Son

This is the first chapter of Grant Morrison’s saga, which continues to this day in Batman Inc. series. Batman receives breaking news that he might have a son, which leads to the real war for the right to become the successor of the legendary Gotham defender.

8 comic book heroes that have made it to the big screen

With the development of the computer technology comic book superheroes have gotten a new life – this time on the big screen. Nowadays creators can embody the most daring special effects, as well as watch superheroes work wonders not on paper, but in 3D. It seems like this is the perfect time to put Marvel or DC fantasy stories to the big screen, since technical capabilities of our time allow drawing fairy worlds from scratch.
We now can surely call 2010s “the era of the comic book movie”, just like the main genre of ‘40s was noir detective or action movies that were popular in the 90s. Hollywood studios do not get tired of screening sometimes forgotten comics’ classical themes with people’s favorite superheroes.

1. Superman

Description: A clip from a Superman movie (1983)

Superman appeared on the big screen in 1948. However the first film adaptation was not so successful and did not add much popularity to the character. But the 1978 movie, directed by Richard Donner, became instant classics, breaking all possible records.
Superman was played by athlete and stuntman Christopher Reeve. This movie had everything to become a universal film of all times: fairy love in spite of everything, man who could throw a car with one hand and was afraid to talk to a girl, the triumph of good and evil. By the way, none of the following movies were able to repeat the success of this one.

2. Spider Man

Spider Man
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The first film about Spider Man was directed by Sam Raimi and became a huge hit in 2002. Spider Man was played by Tobey Maguire. It is known that before the shooting actor had to stick to a strict diet. Tobey hasn’t read any comics about the superhero and agreed to be in a movie only because he liked the script. The first movie brought its creators 800 million dollars and the total box office of the trilogy exceeded 1,5 billion dollars.

3. Batman

The first film about Batman was released in 1943 (starring Lewis Wilson), but the real popularity dark filmography reached at the end of 20th century. From 1989 to 1997 four movies have been released, in which Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer and George Clooney tried on the Batman’s black suit and mask.
Michael Keaton took the Batman role with great responsibility. For more than 2 month before the shooting he was taking kickboxing lessons from David Lee and therefore was able to perform almost all the tricks himself. As a result the movie received the “Oscar” and a lot of nominations in other prestigious awards.
Interesting fact: the largest dividends from Batman movie adaptation actually received Jack Nicholson. Instead of a regular fee for the role as the Joker actor asked for royalties from the movie’s box office. In total, Jack Nicholson earned about 60 million dollars and continues to receive money until now. This got him into the “Guinness Book of Records.”

4. Iron Man

Iron Man

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A little later than already mentioned superheroes got its movie adaptation Iron Man. Its creators sketched the image of billionaire Tony Stark from the famous philanthropist and adventurer Howard Hughes. Actor Robert Downey Jr. had to work hard to bring the Iron Man character to life on the big screen. Not only that shooting took more than a year, Robert also had to work with special effects to accurately convey all the movements of his character.

5. X-Men

Wolverine played by Hugh Jackman

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X-Men is another series of science fiction films about the team is mutants from Marvel comics. At first was released trilogy, followed by a number of prequels, sequels and spin-offs. The main character of X-Men is mutant Wolverine, played by Hugh Jackman. Wolverine has a wonderful gift of recovery and is able to recover from the most devastating wounds.
Today 8 movies have been released about the adventures of the X-Men team: Wolverine, Rogue, Storm and others. In March 2017 a new superhero film “Logan” will be released. It will be the third and final Wolverine film as usual starring Hugh Jackman.

6. Deadpool

Deadpool

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This American fiction thriller directed by Tim Miller was released in 2016. The film continues the series of X-Men movies. The plot of the film is a story about famous Marvel comics’ character named Deadpool (starring Ryan Reynolds) and his transformation from an ordinary man into a hero with superpowers.
Interesting that Deadpool is already the fifth comic book adaptation for Ryan Reynolds. Previously he starred in “Blade 3: Trinity” (2004), “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” (2009), “Green Lantern” (2011) and “R.I.P.D.” (2013).

7. Ant-Man

Ant-Man

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Unlike other comic book characters for Ant-Man superhero this is the first appearance in a separate movie, apart from occasional appearances in the animated films. Movie tells a story about petty crook Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), who with the help of an unusual high-tech suit receives the ability to decrease in size, but still maintain his strength. The filmmakers did a great research work, studying ants and abilities of different species of these insects to convey the behavior of a character as accurately as possible.
In 2015 Marvel Studios confirmed that a sequel titled “Ant-Man and Wasp” is scheduled for release in July 2018. It is now confirmed that Peyton Reed will come back to the director’s chair along with Michael Douglas for the role of Hank Pym.

8. The Avengers

The Avengers movie illustration

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One of the highest grossing films of 2012 was shot by Joss Whedon. He combined all previous adaptations of comic book heroes: the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America – to save the world from the evil Loki. At the same time all superheroes have individual films with their original stories, which in “the Avengers” boil down to a common plot.

Top 6 of the most famous comics in the world

More than one generation of teenagers has grown reading exciting stories about favorite heroes: Superman, Batman, Hulk and Iron Man. Comics were and still remain the subject of worship for both children and adults.
There are many definitions of comics, but generally comics is a series of images, which tells some kind of a story. Comics may not even have any text. “Silent comics” tell an intuitive story with its images. But most of the time direct speech is transmitted through a “speech bubble” usually presented as a cloud coming out of the mouth or head of a character. The author’s words are usually placed above or under the comics’ frames.
Every year comics become more and more popular all around the world. Thousands of people read comics every day, Hollywood makes movies based on comic novels and some even consider it to be the great literature. Like any other form of art, comics have different genres, but the most numerous and well-knows are comics about superheroes.
The world of comics is huge and for many years it has been replenishing with thousands of characters, series, themes and scenes. So let’s take look at the most well-known comics stories that have been capturing our attention for many years.

1. Spider-Man

Spider-Man

Almost everyone knows this comic. It describes the story of a superhero, who survived a bite from a radioactive spider and turned into a Spider-Man. And now he has superpowers – the ability to cling to walls using solid spider web produced by the movement of his hand.
Spider-Man also has superhuman strength, excellent “spider-sense” that alerts him to danger, as well as superhuman speed and perfect balance. Like any superhero he fights crime and tries to make the city a safe place. Although Spider-Man has a pretty long list of enemies, he doesn’t give up, because he is driven by not only desire to improve the world, but also love.
Comics came out between 1963 and 2012. There has been a few movies filmed and several video games released based on this character.

2. V for Vendetta


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This is a classical dystopia and one of the most important comics in history. The series consists of only 10 issues and describes 1980s – 1990s after a global catastrophe. Fascist and totalitarian regime is now established in England. Citizens suffer from minority persecution, crime, violence and corruption.
The main character stands against the new regime, but nobody knows his name. At the same time he calls himself a V. He hides his face under Guy Fawkes mask and starts a war with the existing rules to prove people that they can live in the world without cruel despots.
The story was written by Alan Moore and illustrated by David Lloyd. In 2006 Warner Bros. released eponymous movie based on this comics.

3. Batman

Batman

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This comic is about one of the most important an influential superhero in the history. Batman is a comic book character created by the illustrator Bob Kane in collaboration with the writer Bill Finger. According to the original version of character’s biography – Batman is an alter ego of Bruce Wayne – an industrialist, billionaire and philanthropist, who has declared war to the crime after his parents were killed by a robber. Bruce Wayne swore to liberate the city from the evil that took the lives of his parents.
Unlike other superheroes, Batman is an ordinary person with no superpowers. He fights crime with his brilliant intelligence and excellent knowledge in science and technology, as well as indomitable will and the ability to instill fear in his enemies. He wears a bat-inspired suit and goes to the streets of the fictional city Gotham to confront criminals, corrupted politicians, as well as the group of villains including such characters as The Joker, Two-Face, Poison Ivy and Penguin.

4. Sin City

A character from Sin City

Sin City is a series of graphic novels created by Frank Miller. It is a complex sequence of stories with tense crime scenes and clearly expressed moral message. Plots are often intertwined with each other and the main character of one story can become minor in other.
Stories unfold in a fictional Basin City, also known as Sin City. Even during the daytime this metropolis lives nightlife. The city is populated with strong and unmanageable people, street predators and their victims, police and maniacs. Most characters are very cynic, cruel and unpleasant. Although during the story they demonstrate the most intimate and profound human qualities, including guilt, love and desire to protect the weak.
Comics mostly have black and white graphic solution and a lot of text, which is unusual for this genre of graphic novels.

5. X-Men

Wolverine – X-Men superhero

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This comic novel tells a story about the team of superheroes. X-Men was created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and released in 1963. X-Men are mutants that due to the evolutional jump were born with latent superhuman abilities. Ordinary people hate and fear mutants and consider them as a threat to a human society. Some X-Men use their power for criminal purposes, which increase the tension in relationships between humans and mutants. At the same time Professor Charles Xavier has dreamed about peaceful coexistence between mutants and humans for a long time. Therefore he gathered X-Men to defend the world that hates and fears them.
Due to the wide cultural, ethnic and racial diversity The X-Men comics became very popular and famous all around the world. There are several movies as well as animated films released based on the story about X-Men.

6. The Avengers

The Avengers
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This team of elite superheroes was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. The first comic book was released in 1963 and originally had Ant-Man, Wasp, Thor, Iron Man and the Hulk as team members. However, shortly Hulk has left The Avengers and Captain America joined the group. Such rotation became a hallmark of the comics.
Currently, there are three teams of Avengers and Avengers Academy. They fight against enemies, which no superhero can defeat alone. Over the years computer and video games were released, as well as made animated and full-length movies based on the Avengers comics.