I used to read a lot of comic books when I was a kid.  Eventually, I grew up and grew out of them.  Until high school when I started picking them up again and experienced my first wave of nostalgia for those childhood favorites: The Avengers, The Amazing Spiderman, and Batman.  In time, my interest in comics waned once again.  Until sometime in college when my interest was renewed.  And so it has gone over the course of my life – my interest in comics waxing and waning and waxing in an endless cycle of nostalgia and fresh discovery.

So this morning I was thinking about the thousands of comic books I’ve read over the years and tried to come up with a list of those singular issues that hold a special place in my heart.  Now they may not be the most critically acclaimed or the most popular or even all that memorable to many, but whenever I rediscover comic books, I’m always trying to recapture the joy I experienced when reading these single issues for the first time…

Uncanny X-Men #133UNCANNY X-MEN #133

The rest of the X-Men have fallen to the fearsome Hellfire Club and it’s up to Wolverine, last mutant standing, to save the day.  I remember being blown away by this one because it was the first time I’d seen Wolverine really cut loose in a bad-ass way.

Amazing Spiderman #130AMAZING SPIDERMAN #130

The only thing I like more than a colorful supervillain is a colorful supervillain with depth.  Spiderman and Doctor Octopus have few things in common, but one thing they do share is an affection for dear old Aunt May.  And when Hammerhead crashes one of comicdom’s weirdest weddings, the two longtime enemies become the unlikeliest of allies in order to save her.

Uncanny X-Men #141UNCANNY X-MEN #141

Arguably the most awesome storyline in the title’s run foresees a grim future for our uncanny anti-heroes.

Hitman #14HITMAN #14

This title was hilariously over-the-top, and the pinnacle of its outrageous run was this issue that sees Tommy and co. taking on the undead denizens of a local zoo.

Amazing Spiderman #131AMAZING SPIDERMAN #131

A seminal issue back in the day when, for the most part, dead characters stayed dead.


A bit of a cheat here because it’s a special release rather than an issue of an ongoing title, but I include it because it ranks as my very favorite Batman story.

Avengers #177AVENGERS #177

One by one, Earth’s Mightiest fall to the unstoppable Korvac.  Shocking stuff.

Uncanny X-Men #137UNCANNY X-MEN #137

I recall being so surprised and amazed by the audacity of this double-issue that I ended up returning to my local comic book shop and purchasing another dozen copies – for safe keeping.

Avengers Annual #7AVENGERS ANNUAL #7

The bittersweet opening to of an epic two-parter.  The final, soul gem reunion of Adam Warlock and his loved ones gets me every time.

Deadpool #11DEADPOOL #11

The greatest time travel story in comic book history sees Deadpool travel back to The Amazing Spiderman #47.  No, not the 1960’s when that issue was set but actually The Amazing Spiderman #47.  The high point of writer Joe Kelly’s brilliant Deadpool run.

11 thoughts on “July 12, 2013: My Favorite Single Issue Comic Books!

  1. I think I remember reading X-Men #133… very early 80’s, right?

    I stopped reading by sophomore year in high school (’81) although before that I was a big Flash fan. I think it was the physics of fast motion that fascinated me.

  2. I haven’t read enough to have a favorite single issue…but I am torn between House of M and Civil War in terms of “events”.

    I like that you picked Uncanny X-Men 141, though, given it’s the inspiration for the new X-Men First Class movie coming out and my favorite storyline in any of the X-Men cartoons. I love apocalyptic stories and its political commentary.

  3. G’day

    Never much into reading comics. Although I used to love reading Mandrake the Magician.

    Uncanny X-Men were a pop/rock band back in the day…well the 80’s. They were pretty cool.

  4. In another life, the comics enjoyed were
    Superman, Batman, Spider man, somehow I obtained Archie, There was a handful of a few others whose titles escape me…so I guess they were not so memorable. My mother declared comics were a waste of money and this was in the day when they were like 10 cents a copy – and now I am dating myself.
    And in those days of yester year…that is when the movie theater had the Saturday Bugs Bunny Club and for 10 cents, you got to see a western and lots of cartoons.
    sigh….that was a bushel of years ago.

  5. We didn’t have any books stores (or libraries) in the country but they did have a Five & Dime store that carried comics. I read whatever comics they had. It was mostly superhero comics but I wasn’t picky. They didn’t open a public library until I was in my late teens. These days, there are so many cool electronic game systems that I could never get my teen interested in comics. Do you think that comics will go the way of cursive writing? http://news.yahoo.com/cursive-writing-dead-162632387.html?.tsrc=attmp

    I’m feeling kind of crappy this morning. We are heading to the donut shop to see if I can snap myself out of it. 😉 Caffeine/sugar here I come!

  6. I was going to ask you what was the most unique comic book you ever read, but I guess you just answered that.

    @ Tam Dixon – I am kinda excited about the kids not learning cursive writing. I will finally know how to write in a foreign language. They won’t know what I am saying. Hope the donut worked! I recomend two. 🙂

  7. I used to read comic books by the car load, way back when I could buy them for 12 cents an issue. Now those were the days! Sadly, instead of keeping them, my mother, in her infinite wisdom, threw them all in the garbage. Sigh.

    But, I also really enjoyed science fiction thanks to my dad who watched shows like Star Trek, the Original Series,Lost In Space, and Battlestar Galactica. We were a family of Geeks before Geeks were cool. Thanks, Dad.

  8. It’s amazing that you can recall individual issues at all, much less pick your favorites! I tried to get into comics as a kid, but they just never thrilled me compared to pure prose. Although I do recall reading lots of Archie issues, probably because they showed how silly teenage girls are. I wonder why males seem to love comics and superheroes more often than women do, if I may make that generalization? Maybe the same reasons men buy image-oriented porn while women (not me!) wade through 50 Shades of Gray? 🙂

  9. When I was younger, the only comics I really read were Archie and the ones in the newspaper. As an adult the only ones I own are Jericho and Dark Matter.

  10. I really don’t get all the Archie love. My husband and his sister continued to buy those Archie comics you see at the supermarket check-out stand well into adulthood, and I have no clue why. I suspect it’s mostly nostalgia; I’m not even sure my husband read most of them. I mean, can the lives of those eternal teenagers really have that much going on, to justify felling many, many trees in the decades-long telling of their goings-on? Or are they just retelling the same stories over and over, hoping no one will notice?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.