Getting into Marvel comics

Image via Marvel

Image via Marvel

A recommended reading list for newcomers

By Greg Waldock, Staff Writer


Comics are damn hard to break into. Thousands of issues, volumes with the same numbers, events spanning multiple timelines… it can be a lot to take in.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to start out. Rather than buying individual issues at a comic store, seek out volumes, which are multiple comics in one larger book. It’s a much easier way for a new fan to adjust to the unique comic style.

Here are a series of volumes—all available at Surrey libraries or at Marvel’s website—that act as great introductions to the Marvel universe, and aren’t bogged down by the ridiculously convoluted history of the franchise.


Avengers World, by Hickman and Spencer

An introduction to a new Avengers. It’s a great starting-off point with its excellent art, writing, and pacing. Googling some of the lesser-known characters is always good, but you really don’t need any background information that isn’t supplied in-book. Just assume that if they aren’t huge famous characters like Captain America or Iron Man, then they’re pretty much new and unheard-of. Otherwise, that Google rabbit hole will never end.


Ms. Marvel Vol. 1, by G. Willow Wilson

The origin story for Kamala Khan, one of the few Muslim Marvel characters. It’s a fun series that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Everyone should experience a good origin story when they first start reading comics, and this is one of the best that’s come out recently. It does have some characters or locales that are unfamiliar to non-comic readers, but it’s all well explained within the pages, so any more investigation is entirely up to you.


Thor: God of Thunder Vol. 1, by Aaron and Ribic

Three different Thors across time investigate the murder of gods around the galaxy. Young Asshole Thor, Current Avenger Thor, and Old Asshole Thor have their stories spliced together for a sweeping look at his life and personality. It’s a wild and crazy glimpse into how divinity works in the Marvel universe, with great art and a horrifying atmosphere of nihilistic dread.

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