If you’ve spent even a modicum of time on the #comics tag in Tumblr, it’s likely that you have seen brianmichaelbendis show up on your dash once or twice, posting some of the best pages in all of comicdom and laying down some serious knowledge.
The world of comics can be a confusing place, and just like the man himself, we are here to help make it a little clearer for all of you. So if you’ve been looking for some suggestions on what Bendis books to read but have been too afraid to ask, take a look at our
comiXology Guide to Brian Michael Bendis
Arguably, the comic that Bendis is best known for is the reboot of Spider-Man’s universe with 2000’s Ultimate Spider-Man, which not only brought Peter Parker’s origins into the modern age, but also kicked off the now-beloved Ultimate Universe. Bendis, along with veteran artist Mark Bagely, took Spidey’s original 11-page origin story and turned it into a seven issue story arc, and continued on for over 100 more issues to become Marvel’s longest running consistent creative duo on a single title.
Bendis continues to helm the Ultimate Spider-Man series with sarapichelli on art and starring fan-favorite Miles Morales.
Bendis and Michael Avon oeming's long running creator-owned series Powers combines the superhero and police procedural genres, and is now in production at FX to get it's own TV series. Powers pits the wiles of two detectives against a world filled with superhumans. The series went on to become an Eisner award winner and still continues to come out in the ongoing Powers: Bureau.
In 2001, Bendis took up the task of writing Daredevil with Alex Maleev on art. The series would go on to become one of the most lauded and character defining runs in the characters storied history. The Bendis run introduced a new love interest into Matt Murdock’s life and saw the reemergence of Kingpin.
Following up Kurt Busiek’s run, Bendis rebooted the Avenger’s series with Avengers Disassembled, which heavily featured the Scarlet Witch and lead directly into the events of the now-beloved House of M event.
An instant classic! Beast travels through time to bring the original X-Men into the present, imploring past-Cyclops to stop his future self from committing genocide on the mutants. Currently at 27 issues, this series is a regular best-seller and is sure to go down as one of the all-time greatest X-Men series.
Happy Birthday brianmichaelbendis!!!
Who is the mysterious old man who lies on his deathbed in a hospital in 1939, and how does his passing mark the beginning of the first heroic age of the Marvel Universe - and signal the rise of the superhumans? It’s a world on the brink of war, and the race is on to create the world’s first super-soldier! Witness the first days of the Human Torch, the Sub-Mariner and many more - how they shaped the world to come, and how the future they would create in turn shaped them!
A comiXologist Recommends:
Mike Isenberg recommends Devil Dinosaur
The king of comics takes on the king of the thunder lizards!
Jack “King” Kirby is inarguably one of the most influential comic creators of the last century. By the end of the 1960s, Kirby had co-created Captain America, the Fantastic Four, Thor, the Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, the X-Men, the Inhumans, and Black Panther, all for Marvel comics. In the first half of the 1970s, however, Kirby left Marvel for a five-year stint at DC, where he continued to astound readers with his incredible imagination and bombastic, innovative art style.
One of Kirby’s more successful creations at DC during this period was Kamandi: The Last Boy On Earth, a series about a young boy’s adventures in a post-apocalyptic wilderness.
In the latter half the 70s, Kirby returned to Marvel, and Kamandi had been optioned for an animated television series. With the buzz for DC’s Kamandi growing, Marvel decided that they needed their own Kirby-created young-boy-in-the-wild series, and so Devil Dinosaur was born. But instead of the last human boy in the far-flung future, Devil Dinosaur features the first human boy in the far-flung past. And also his best friend, a bright red tyrannosaurus rex.
Devil Dinosaur only ran for 9 issues but each issue is a gem. Kirby’s artwork is a wonder to behold. It’s said that Kirby’s forte was his dynamic and innovative depictions of power and strength; it’s hard to get much stronger or more powerful than a big ol’ dinosaur rampaging through the jungle.
The stories themselves are also great, brimming with Kirby’s delightfully imaginative weirdness. Over the course of nine issues, Devil and Moon Boy encounter giant neanderthals, alien invaders, super-sized ants, dinosaur tamers, and a time-warp that briefly sends Devil rampaging into 1978.
Devil Dinosaur is a fantastic adventure series from a master of the medium. Highly recommended.
Witness the bizarre first appearance of the planet-hungry Galactus in Kirby & Lee’s Fantastic Four #48.
Seriously… how weird is that 2nd page? The mixed-media?
Also check out Galactus’s sweet christmas themed duds, keepin cool with those short sleeves. The outfit was immediately updated by the next issue, but the short sleeves stuck around for a little while.
If you want more of classic Galactus, plus the first appearances of Black Bolt & The Inhumans, and the first superhero wedding issue starring Reed Richards and Sue Storm, you should check out Fantastic Four Masterworks vol. 5 to get it all in one place.
You got a glimpse of the Nova Corps during Guardians of the Galaxy, now get to really know the men who have carried the name of Nova with our one-day NOVA sale!
A comiXologist Recommends:
Kate Kasenow recommends Moon Knight #6
Continuing a long-running streak of brilliant reboots, the newest series of Moon Knight does not disappoint! While issue #6 is the finale of the current creative team, it invigorates the story of Mr. Knight and passes on a truly impeccable story unto the next.
In this issue, we are not lead by Moon Knight at all, but the tragic rise of a would-be antagonist. The plot of this issue really drives forward the idea that as not all heroes are created equal neither are villains and sometimes the best of intentions can lead to the wost of consequences. The character of Moon Knight, especially during this current series, is rife with both personal and psychological issues. The exploration of these issues from both sides—from the perspectives of both protagonist and antagonist, is what makes this series truly shine.
Behind these perspectives, is the seasoned writer Warren Ellis, who’s sparse style really packs a punch—sometimes literally. His characters are often reserved until their thoughts have marinated enough to let the words flow freely, but when they do the story rolls along with them. Each character is full of depth that allows them to exist fully in the dark underworld that Ellis paints with his writing. Backing up Ellis’ words is the fantastic art of Declan Shalvey (dshalv) with colors by Jordie Bellaire (jordiecolorsthings). The mood of the colors is always pitch-perfect and Shalvey’s lines move effortlessly across the page, each one laid out with an incredible sense of design.
This issue is the swan song of an incredible team and isn’t to be missed!
Kate Kasenow is a comics artist from Indiana currently living in Manhattan. She works at ComiXology as a Lead Digital Editor and spends most of her spare time re-reading J. R. R. Tolkien.