Revisit CBR's Top 100 Comics of 2011

Mon, January 2nd, 2012 at 12:58pm PST

Comic Books
Kiel Phegley, Staff Writer

2011 is one for the books, and in celebration CBR has been going over the books – the comic books of course. (Puns!) All last week, we counted down our Top 100 Comics of 2011, and before we dive into 2012 full on we wanted to offer our readers one last look at some of the best comics published over the last 12 months.

This year, 30 publishers, collectives and creators had their work rank on the big list from the most mainstream of superhero and genre publishers to the most obscure alternative efforts with a healthy dose of literary comics, modern graphic novels, digital efforts and manga thrown in. Once again, the comics industry showed up in 2011 with some of the best and brightest efforts imaginable.

As in previous years, the Top 100 was compiled thanks to the tireless work of a range of CBR's contributors who sent in their own ranked Top Ten lists to me (News Editor Kiel Phegley) with point values being associated to each book which I later edited down to a Top 100 I felt best reflected the vote of the staff. This year's nomination team included the following fantastic writers on comics: CBR News Team members and controbutors Alex Dueben, TJ Dietsch, Shaun Manning, Jeffrey Renaud, Dave Richards, Steve Sunu, George Tramountanas, Brett White and Brian Warmoth; CBR Columnists Timothy Callahan and Brigid Alverson; CBR Reviewers Benjamin Birdie, Greg Hatcher, Ryan K. Lindsay, Greg McElhatton, Chad Nevett and Doug Zawisza; Comics Should Be Good bloggers Greg Burgas, Brian Cronin, Sonia Harris and Kelly Thompson; Robot 6 bloggers Sean T. Collins, Chris Mautner, Michael May, Tim O'Shea and JK Parkin. And last but never least, our rarely seen publicly but always radical trio of Senior Editor Stephen Gerding, Programmer Frank Beaton and Executive Producer Jonah Weiland.

Looking at the hard numbers, DC Comics took a strong lead with 23 titles ranking overall. Seven of those titles came from the mature readers Vertigo imprint while a surprising nine were part of the publisher's recent New 52 superhero relaunch. Not to be outdone, Marvel Comics came in second with 15 titles on the chart including the #1 book of the year in "Daredevil" and two entires from their creator-owned Icon imprint. Image Comics was close on the heels of the big two with eleven entries overall, and the rest of the list contained many publishers with multiple books ranking including the always strong art comics publisher Fantagraphics with seven books, a record year for Drawn & Quarterly with five comics and high marks for the Portland publishing scene with Dark Horse earning five spots, Oni earning four and Top Shelf earning two.

On a personal note, over the course of any given year, I read more blog entries, op/eds, news stories and message board posts that decry comics as a dying medium which is both creatively bankrupt and commercially fallow than any sane person probably should. For whatever reason, it's very easy for people in this business, professionals and fans alike, to accentuate the negative and foretell our inevitable demise. But each and every year when I compile this list, I'm bolstered by the fact that there are probably more totally awesome comics being made now than at any time in the medium's history. Even with the rigorous work of the staff, there are doubtlessly more great comics from 2011 that we've missed. Overall, there are just too many good comics being published today for any one person or any one website to keep total track of. How GREAT is that???

So please take a moment to look over the list one last time, read up on a few comics you may have never seen before and maybe purchase a few of them while you're at it. Afterwards, chime in on the CBR Message Boards to have your say on the best comics of 2011!

  1. Daredevil
  2. Animal Man
  3. Hark! A Vagrant
  4. Love & Rockets New Stories 4
  5. Habibi
  6. Uncanny X-Force
  7. Scalped
  8. Ultimate Comics Spider-Man
  9. Detective Comics Vol. 1
  10. Batwoman
  11. Wonder Woman Vol. 4
  12. Swamp Thing Vol. 5
  13. Anya's Ghost
  14. Action Comics Vol. 2
  15. Aquaman Vol. 7
  16. Green River Killer A True Detective Story
  17. Casanova: Avaritia
  18. Batman Vol. 2
  19. One Soul
  20. Garden
  21. Butcher Baker The Righteous Maker
  22. Super Dinosaur
  23. Wolverine & The X-Men
  24. Big Questions
  25. Petrograd
  26. Chew
  27. Journey Into Mystery
  28. The Sixth Gun
  29. Finder: Voice
  30. Infinite Kung-Fu
  31. Planet of the Apes
  32. Amazing Spider-Man
  33. Morning Glories
  34. Deadpool MAX
  35. Batgirl Vol. 3
  36. Hulk
  37. Ivy
  38. Lose
  39. Criminal: Last of the Innocents
  40. The Fantastic Four Comics of Jonathan Hickman
  41. PunisherMAX
  42. Pepper Penwell & The Land Creature of Monster Lake
  43. Graphic Classics
  44. Optic Nerve #12
  45. B.P.R.D.
  46. Green Wake
  47. Severed
  48. Ganges #4
  49. iZombie
  50. Fables
  51. Onwards Towards Our Noble Deaths
  52. O.M.A.C.
  53. Flashpoint: Batman: Knight of Vengeance
  54. American Vampire
  55. Centifolia II
  56. Witch Doctor
  57. Any Empire
  58. Touch Sensitive
  59. All Star Western/Jonah Hex
  60. Drops of God
  61. Eye of the Majestic Creature
  62. Archie Meets Kiss
  63. Pope Hats #2
  64. Saturn Apartments
  65. Vengeance
  66. Who is Jake Ellis?
  67. Wolves
  68. Atomic Robo
  69. Locke & Key
  70. Love From The Shadows
  71. Feynman
  72. Buffy The Vampire Slayer: Season 9
  73. Amelia Rules: The Meaning of Life…and Other Stuff
  74. The Boys
  75. A Tale of Sand
  76. The Shade
  77. Sweet Tooth
  78. The Wolf
  79. The Unwritten
  80. The Cardboard Valise
  81. Gladstone's School For World Conquerors
  82. Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.
  83. Xombi
  84. The Walking Dead
  85. Hellblazer
  86. Prison Pit
  87. Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010
  88. Congress of The Animals
  89. The Cape
  90. Artifacts
  91. Reed Gunther
  92. Irredeemable
  93. Loose Ends
  94. Robert E. Howard's Savage Sword
  95. Batman Incorporated
  96. Darkwing Duck
  97. The Punisher
  98. Echo
  99. A Zoo in Winter
  100. Paying For It

TAGS:  cbr, site news, top 100 2011

 
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