Comics are awesome, right? The only downside is their monthly release schedule leaves you with plenty of time to stew over what will happen in the next issue â€” and a burning desire to learn more. If you’re fed up with the other geeks at your LCS, and their stubborn refusal to admit that Batman could kick Wolverine’s ass all across the galaxy, then you need to find yourself a good website to get your geek on. These 14 sites are some of the best around.
14. Bleeding Cool
Bleeding Cool is the scummy gossip rag of the comics world, a site that everyone loves to hate. Happy to print rumors, but also the source of the occasional bit of honest journalism, Bleeding Cool was founded by Rich Johnston, who spun off his success from his CBR column Lying in the Gutters. Bleeding Cool is quick to publish, quick to point fingers, and quick to draw conclusions, leading many readers to be aggravated at the site and its writers. That said, the world needs scummy gossip rags sometimes, because digging through the garbage occasionally gets you gold.
13. Pink Kryptonite
Despite the tights, grunting, and fabulous haircuts and outfits, comics as a medium is remarkably hostile to gay folk. There are only a handful of gay and lesbian characters among the major publishers, and they have a far higher rate of getting killed off than straight characters. Hell, Marvel’s premier gay hero is Northstar, and he’s died more than a few times, and at one point gained his powers from a fairy. Pink Kryptonite is part of a series of blogs, approaching pop culture from a gay perspective, and if it updated more frequently, it’d be higher on this list. Comics need to more embracing of minority cultures without falling in to stereotypes, and its good to see sites like Pink Kryptonite fighting for that.
Jinxworld is a mammoth forum under the eye of Marvel writer Brian Michael Bendis, but with major sub-forums for a whole pile of major industry talents, like David Mack, Alex Maleev, Dan Slott, Adi Granov, and Gail Simone. To put it bluntly, it’s just about your best chance of hanging out online with your favorite artists and writers, because lo and behold, they actually read and respond to their own forums. While Jinxworld can be a bit confrontational at times, and a number of the forums are just about dead, it’s still a pretty happening place.
11. Scans Daily
Scans Daily has had rough interactions with the professional world of comic books. They’re a site where users regularly put up chunks of comics in order to express their joy or rage at what’s going on in their favorite series. They’re the best and the worst of the fanworld, superexcited about some things, but will rage in a second about anything they don’t like. They faced legal issues for putting up too much of issues, and prominent writer Peter David took them to task for majorly spoiling plot twists that he put together. While Scans Daily can be incredibly annoying, it’s also a great site for getting into new titles.
After super heroes exploded in the late 30s and early 40s, hundreds of characters were created by publishers that went on to fold, leading to many of these wonderful heroes gathering dust and eventually entering the public domain. That’s right, these are characters which anyone can pick up and use. If you’re an enterprising artist or writer who wants to try their hand at using an existing character, but without stepping on any legal toes, you just go through the character archives until you find something you like. Maybe it’s time to bring back Cosmo Mann or the Great Defender.
Ever since the X-Men film surprised the crap out of everyone in 2000 by being both popular and actually, you know, good, superhero films have been a really big deal. It’s now to the point where they’re a legitimate sub-genre in their own right, and while there are still plenty of crapfests being produced (Jonah Hex), we also get amazing films like Iron Man and Nolan Batman flicks. Superhero Hype is the premier site for comic book movie news â€” not to mention a fair bit of information about video game crossovers too.
8. IGN Comics
On the flip side, you have IGN comics, a spin-off of the immensely popular video game news site instead devoted to comics. Since IGN is such a powerful media entity in its own right, they manage to get their hands on a huge amount of exclusive information and features, not to mention their close ties to the gaming industry means they always have the most up-to-date and interesting news about videogame adaptations of your favorite characters. Who else is looking forward to Marvel vs Capcom 3?
Whitechapel is Warren Ellis’ most recent messageboard, and you’ll have to search far to find a more eloquent, talented, and generally interesting group of people online. They’re all also incurable cynics and bitter shells of human beings, but what else would you expect from Warren Ellis fans? You’ll also spot a few big names kicking about, especially on the art side of things, and plenty of interesting non-comic artists and their ilk, too. The creator residency’s are especially good, where a comic creator sets up a thread, and answers any questions thrown at them. The forum is moderated strictly, so don’t be a dick.
Newsarama is pretty much the definition of a slick, media savvy news site, packed to the gills with press releases, teasers, covers and all sorts of fun and games. While the the site is light on editorial content, it covers just about anything under the sun and has some absolutely ace interviews, and is impressive for the sheer volume of information that they hit up at any point in time. Their blog page and forums are also both worth hitting up, if you want to get a touch more opinion on the world of comics.
The Comicbook Database is a reference tool, and absolutely invaluable for tracking down information for back-issues and comics out of print. While less…fun…than many of the other sites on this list, it gets this high spot by honestly being the most useful site around if you’re trying to track down what an artist worked on, looking for an issue’s cover, tracking what issue numbers were what storyline, or just about anything else. It’s a haven of information on just about everything. If you’re a geek obsessed with the minutiae of your obsessions â€” and lets face it, who isn’t? â€” you’ll immediately get why this is great.
Okay, lets get the unmentionable one out of the way: 4chan. 4chan’s /co/ board is actually really good. Well, compared to the rest of 4chan anyway. That’s like being the only kid in special ed who can tie your shoelaces. It still has some degree of 4chan’s trademark villainy, but it’s also an incredible community. They’ll talk about anything under the sun: JMS’s run on Superman, Grant Morrison’s Hypercrisis (the threads linking every work he’s written for DC in an attempt to make the company into a sentient mind), Eurocomix and censorship, crazy original art, just about everything. Yeah, they’re dicks, but they’re funny dicks who have the most rapid response to news and stories out of anywhere.
MightyGodKing is a Canadian lawyer. He’s also one of the funniest bloggers on the planet, has a keen insight into comicbook storytelling, and I would pay huge sums of cash to read something he would write. Go track down his “Reasons I Should Write…” articles for Dr. Strange and Legion of Superheroes. I don’t give a single crap about the Legion, but the stories he pitches are amazing and funny. His photoshoped editions of famous comics are legendary. Plus, he has an obsession with Rex the Wonder Dog, which speaks volumes for just how damned cool he his. I only wish he updated more.
Where most other news sites tend to rely mostly on press releases and the occasional interview, Comicsalliance built itself up on original articles and excellent humor. Rather than just reposting the same news you see everywhere else, they got bloggers and artists who actually care about the medium, but aren’t afraid to poke fun. It’s kind of weird to think they’re part of a mega-conglomeration of blogs run by AOL, yet manage to maintain the feel of a bunch of people who love what they’re doing, and know the best way to make fun of it rather than being corporate shills.
CBR (ironically, also the suffix of pirated comic files) is the go to place for comic news. They have columns from a number of incredibly prominent creators, including Marvel EIC Joe Quesada. They’re the first to get major news, have the best exclusive previews, and a review team that actually at least vaguely knows what they’re talking about. At this point, they’re the top news site because they’re the top news site, continuing on their path due to inertia if nothing else. The mainstream media of comic books, they’re still the first stop for important news.