Every day in April we will reveal the greatest stories ever told starring a particular character or written/drawn by a particular creator (and throughout the month, you’ll get daily chances to vote for NEXT week’s lists). These lists are voted on by YOU, the reader!
Here is the list of characters/creators featured so far (along with the rules on how to vote).
Today’s list is the Greatest Brian K. Vaughan Stories Ever Told!
10. Escapists #1-6
This sort of sequel to Michael Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay tells the story of a young man who buys the rights to his dead father’s favorite comic book character, The Escapist (the comic book character created in The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay). He and his friends set off to relaunch the hero for a new generation. One of the creators dresses up as the Escapist for a publicity stunt. Things look great but then begin to fall apart. The whole thing sort of ends on what seems to be Brian K. Vaughan’s current mission statement – it is fine to want to honor the heroes you grew up with, but it is better to do NEW things on your own. There are a variety of artists on the series (especially since we see the comic as they are drawing it as well as their “real life” adventures). Jason Shawn Alexander, Steve Rolston, Philip Bond and Eduardo Barreto all worked on the book’s art.
9. “Pride and Joy” Runaways Volume 1 #1-6
Along with penciler Adrian Alphona, inker Craig Yeung and colorist Christina Strain, Brian K. Vaughan introduced a fascinating group of young heroes. The heroes of the Runaways are all the sons and daughters of a group of Los Angeles-based super criminals known as the Pride (their kids don’t know this, of course). The parents get together once a year (ostensibly for a charity event) and when they do, their kids awkwardly hang out with each other. This year, though, they discover their parents murdering an innocent girl as part of a yearly sacrifice to some ancient gods. The kids go on the run (hence Runaways), each taking with them some aspect of their parents’ abilities (for one, futuristic technology, for another, alien abilities, for another, mutant powers, for another, magic powers and for another, a sharp tactical mind). They decided to band together to take their parents down and perhaps do a little good as well along the way.
8. “Oath” Doctor Strange: The Oath #1-5
This series, drawn impeccably by the brilliant Marcos Martin (with inks by Alvaro Lopez), helped in a many ways to set up Doctor Strange for his inclusion in Brian Michael Bendis’ New Avengers. The series introduces a new take on the Night Nurse character, this time as an underground medic of sorts for superheroes.
7. Saga #1-6
Saga is the tale of Alana and Marko, two young people from warring planets (well, one is a moon) who have fallen in love and have now had a child. They and their offspring are hunted by both sides of the war. Vaughan and the excellent series artist Fiona Staples populate the world of Saga with a variety of fascinating characters. Most notable are the the bounty hunters hunting down Alana and Marko. Some of the most striking aspects of the series come from the bounty hunter known as The Will, who is accompanied by a Lying Cat, a cat who can tell if you are lying. The Will is not a good man, but he is also driven by a certain code of honor that comes up in a bizarre fashion while on a pleasure planet. The Will has had his heart broken by a fellow bounty hunter and their interaction is fascinating in how it drives him.
This is a great, character-driven series filled with action and adventure.
6. “Unmanned” Y The Last Man #1-5
This is the introduction to the world of Y the Last Man, as one day, all male animals on Earth die except for a young man and the helper monkey that he is training. Vaughan and co-creator and penciler Pia Guerra (with inks by Jose Marzan Jr.) quickly adapt us to this new world, where young Yorick teams up with a government agent and a scientist to hopefully find a cure for the death of all men on Earth. Their journey is a complex and intriguing look at a dramatically changed American landscape.
The top five is on the next page!
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