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Presented below, is my list of the best, most memorable comic books I read this year. What this list is not, is a list of the most important or impactful comics. In a year that saw the release of new titles like Bitch Planet, Gotham Academy, the Wicked + the Divine, Ms. Marvel, Lumberjanes, the continuation of consistently awesome titles like Saga, Rat Queens, and Sex Criminals, the relaunch of a fresh new Batgirl, and the introduction of fan-favorite characters like Spider-Gwen and Silk, there were smaller moments that had a greater emotional impact on me. These are the comics that I will look back on fondly, and want to pick up and re-read as the years go on.

While a comic like the Edge of Spider-Verse #4 might not be as impactful in the long run as Edge of Spider-Verse #2 (1st appearance of Spider-Gwen), for me, it one of the funnest, most enjoyable reads of the year. Likewise, while Afterlife with Archie #6 might praised by many as the best issue of the series thus far, issue #4 resonated with me on a very personal, emotional level.

I hope as you scroll down this short list of my personal favorites of the year 2014, you’ll smile as you remember the effects these issues had on you when you read them, or you’ll be intrigued enough to keep your eye out for them at your local comic shop and give them a try. Leave a comment at the bottom of this post and let me know what you think of my Top 10 Single Issues of 2014, or holler at me on Twitter @nickbigpoppa

Nick’s Top 10 Comic Book Single Issues of 2014
(in release-date order)

January 22, 2014
hawkeye 16 cover

Hawkeye #16 (Marvel) “Recording Tape”

By: Matt Fraction & Annie Wu
Color Art: Matt Hollingsworth
Lettering: Chris Eliopoulos

This comic is POIGNANT

Hawkeye #16 is a great “one-and-done” story featuring Kate Bishop in L.A., where she helps a brilliant 1960’s pop musician recover his lost recordings. The end of the issue is perfect, which probably why this book made such a lasting impression on me.

April 5, 2014
Afterlife with Archie #4 cover, 2nd printing

Afterlife with Archie #4 (Archie) “Archibald Rex”

Story by: Roberto Aguirre Sacasa
Art by: Francesco Francavilla
Lettering by: Jack Morelli

This comic is HEARTBREAKING

Just when you though things couldn’t get much worse for Archie, one of the last remaining links to his old life is taken from him. Afterlife with Archie #4 will pull at the heartstrings of anyone who has ever had a pet. It’s a sad yet touching issue, and just look at the 2nd printing cover…beautiful!

August 13, 2014
Skullkickers 30 cover

Skullkickers #30 (Image) “Tavern Tales Through Time”

Story: Jim Zub, Will Hindmarch
Art: Jeff Cruz, Royce Southerland
Letters: Marshall Dillon

This comic is LIGHTHEARTED FUN

Skullkickers #30 features four short fun-filled “Elseworlds” style tales. Each story shows our heroes in alternate timelines and realities, such as an old-school kung-fu world, a hilarious “grim n gritty” world, an old movie serial style world, and world plagues by zombies. This was my first issue of Skullkickers and I loved it so much I added it to my pull list.

August 27, 2014
Outcast 3 cover

Outcast #3 (Image) “I Remember When She Loved Me”

Creator, Writer: Robert Kickman
Artist: Paul Azaceta
Colorist: Elizabeth Breitweiser
Letterer: Rus Wooton

This comic is TOUCHING, SAD, QUIET

Outcast #3  is a personal look at the main character’s past, which plays into his current struggles and motivations. The dialogue and panel layouts created a reading pace full of beats and pauses that helped immerse me in the story.

Click here for my review of Outcast #3.

September 3, 2014
Southern Bastards 4 cover

Southern Bastards #4 (Image) “Here Was a Man, Conclusion”

Writer: Jason Aaron
Art & Color: Jason Latour
Letters: Jared K. Fletcher

This comic is TRAGIC

Southern Bastards #4 concludes the first arch of the series in a painfully brutal and tragic way. This issue left me sad, angry, and wondering what would possibly come next.

September 17, 2014
Daredevil 8 cover

Daredevil #8 (Marvel) “The Purple Children”

Writer: Mark Waid
Pencils/Inks: Chris Samnee
Colorist: Matthew Wilson
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna

This comic is INTENSE

Daredevil #8 is a great place for new readers to jump on. It features a dark and scary story. Issue #8 welcome new series colorist, Matthew Wilson, whose colors give this issue the mood and tone that sets it aside from previous issues.

Click here for my review of Daredevil #8.

October 1, 2014
Edge of the Spider-Verse 4 cover

Edge of Spider-Verse #4 (Marvel) “I Walked with a Spider”

Writer: Clay McLeod Chapman
Penciler: Elia Bonetti
Colorist: Veronica Gandini
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles

This comic is SUPERHERO/HORROR FUN

Edge of Spider-Verse #4 is a horrifyingly fun romp into an alternate reality, featuring a horrific version of Peter Parker that left a devilish grin on my face. It’s a great “one and done” standalone Spider-Verse tale.

Click here for Justin Townsend’s review of Edge of Spider-Verse #4.

October 8, 2014
Wytches 1 cover

Wytches #1 (Image)

Story: Scott Snyder
Art: Jock
Color: Matt Hollingsworth
Letters: Clem Robins

This comic is TERRIFYING

Wytches #1 is a terrifying comic, featuring the cruelty and horror of both humans and the supernatural. This issue is one of the most effective first issues I’ve ever read (it hooked me immediately and and didn’t let go).

Click here for Bobby Shortle’s review of Wytches #1.

October 8, 2014
Batman 35 cover

Batman #35 (DC) “Endgame, Part 1”

Writer: Scott Snyder
Pencils: Greg Capullo
Inks: Danny Miki
Colorist: FCO Plascencia
Letterer: Steve Wands

This comic is SUPERHERO FUN

For the first time in the New 52, Batman fights the Justice League of America, one member at a time! Batman #35 is a breath of fresh air after the year long Zero Year arch. What a great start to new story arch!

Click here for Logan Rowland’s review of Batman #35.

November 5, 2014
The Autumnlands Tooth and Claw 1 cover

The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #1 (Image)

Writer: Kurt Busiek
Artist: Ben Dewey
Color Art: Jordie Bellaire
Lettering & Design: John Roshell & Jimmy Betancourt of Comicraft

This comic is WORLD-BUILDING FUN

The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #1 surprised me with it’s high level of the character development, world building, and plot. All the necessary storytelling elements are in place, making this issue a great beginning to an exciting new fantasy world.

Click here for my review of Tooth & Claw #1.

2014 was a great year for comics and comics fans. There were so many great single issues from all the publishers. I’d like to end this post by saying thanks to all the creators and professionals who help make Wednesday the best day of the week! Happy New Year!

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