An Appreciation of Lesser-Known Comics

Mainstream media continues to hype all the already-well-known comics by DC and Marvel, including the New 52 (with highly publicized relaunches of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest) and the brand new Incredible Hulk and Avenging Spider-man.  While there are some great stories being told there, you would be remiss if you didn't check out some lesser-known titles.  Here are some:

The Bionic Man - Director Kevin Smith wrote a script for an adaptation of The Six Million Dollar Man, but Universal Pictures foolishly rejected it, so now Dynamite Entertainment has wisely grabbed it and released it as a terrific comic book.  It's full of action, great ideas, cool art, and fantastic writing -- a fine tribute to the saga of Steve Austin, astronaut, a man barely alive, who is rebuilt by a secret government agency to be better, stronger, faster.

Brilliant - Marvel's best known titles include the X-Men, Iron Man, Thor, and a slew of others, but it still comes up with new stuff, including this thought-provoking and entertaining adventure yarn by Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley about "college-age genuises who challenge each other to solve the mystery of superpowers." 

Comics - Produced by BlueWater Comics, the simplistic sounding title is a play on both the comic book medium and the stand-up comic profession, telling true-life biography tales of comedians such as George Carlin.

Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. - While DC's Aquaman, Flash, Green Lantern, and other flashier heroes earn all the buzz, Mary Shelley's classic monster is re-imagined as a hero who works with a team of government agents to defend the world against supernatural dangers.

Spaceman - This mini-series by Vertigo (a division of DC) chronicles the plight of Orson, "a hulking, lonely loser" in a post-apocalyptic future, working as a scrap metal collector who dreams of traveling the stars and ends up on a greater mission than he could have imagined.

Vescell - Image Comics brings us a science fiction tale full of avatars, artificial intelligence, and gritty futuristic corporate dangers.

Xenoholics - Another fun title from Image, the artwork is eye-catching and the story about people addicted to aliens is, well, addictive.

If you're a comic book fan, any other lesser-known titles out there that you can recommend?  Let me know.

Comments