Beginners Guide to the Marvel Universe

Discussion in 'Comic Books and Graphic Novels' started by SoundBlaster7, Jun 3, 2012.

  1. SoundBlaster7

    SoundBlaster7 Well-Known Member

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    After seeing a few of the films based on Marvel Comics that came out recently, I really got interested in the Marvel Universe in general. I'd love to get to know some of the characters and learn about each series, but with so much out there, it's overwhelming to get started.

    I'm familiar with the basic pop culture stuff that pretty much everyone on Earth knows. I've seen a few cartoons (60s & 90s Spider-Man, 90s X-Men and Fantastic Four), but haven't read any comics. Right now, I'm trying to hunt down the handbooks and encyclopedias. Seems like a good place to start.

    What would you guys say is a good place to get started?
    Any recommendations on a particular comic book or cartoon series?
     
  2. tikgnat

    tikgnat Baweepgranaweepninnybong. TFW2005 Supporter

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    I wouldn't say read the Marvel Essential series, because that's 24 issues or so of one character, and all early stories and in black and white, which might not your cup of tea.

    The Marvel Platinum Definitive *insert character here* series is very good. A mix of good stories ranging from origin stories to stand out moments to modern appearances. There's generally a Definitive collection for every Marvel character who stars in a film, I found Definitive Thor and Hulk to be very good.

    Also a few years ago Marvel did a Marvel Encyclopadeia series, the first one covers a wide range of characters and is fairly accessible, but I find those better to plug gaps in my knowledge about a character, I would prefer to learn about new characters by reading about them.

    Lastly the Avengers Assemble run by Kurt Busiek and George Perez is fantastic, a really good point to jump in on he Avengers.

    Oh and a book called Fantastic Firsts is also very good, lots of varied origin stories.
     
  3. SoundBlaster7

    SoundBlaster7 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the advice :) 
    I'll look these titles up!
    The Marvel Platinum Definitive series sound great, I might start with them.
     
  4. Star Saber

    Star Saber Cybertron 5th Commander

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    If you're familiar with the film versions, I'd recommend the following

    Ultimate Spider-Man (the first few volumes by Bendis and Bagley)
    Ultimates (The first two volumes by Millar & Hitch)


    As for some classic runs, you can't go wrong with

    Avengers Assemble TPBs (by Kurt Busiek and George Perez)
    Fantastic Four Visionaries (by John Byrne, a great defining run on the FF during the 80s)
    Uncanny X-Men Vol. 1 Omnibus (by Claremont and various - what essentially starts off the X-Men as a blockbuster franchise we know today, you can follow up with the Dark Phoenix Saga)
    Iron Man - Demon in a Bottle
    Thor Visionaries (Walter Simonson) - you can also go with the underrated Thor Dark Gods by Jurgens and Romita - which ties in with the Avengers Assemble series by Busiek and Perez
    Captain America Operation Rebirth and Captain America Man Without A Country by Waid and Garney - one of the best Cap stories of all time.
     
  5. geerave

    geerave Well-Known Member

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    ive always felt like the modern marvel era kick off with Avengers Disassembled and astonishing xmen (written by avengers director joss wedon no less!)
     
  6. superkamiguru

    superkamiguru Well-Known Member

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    For me best starting points for marvels big 3 for me are matt fraction's invincible iron man, j michael strasinski's thor, and ed brubaker's captain america.
     
  7. Kaijumaster

    Kaijumaster 335

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    And Alias!
     
  8. Aernaroth

    Aernaroth <b><font color=blue>I voted for Super_Megatron and Veteran

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    Are there any characters or eras or storylines you'd like to learn more about, specifically? It's a big universe.

    The "essential" digest editions are pretty decent I guess, even if they are in black and white.

    Honestly, and don't laugh, check out what your local library has. In recent years all the ones around me have started stocking a lot more graphic novels, and it's a great way to sort of dip your feet in without having to spend a lot of money.


    There's a couple encyclopedias and "guides to the unverse" and marvel "universe" series and such, but wikipedia and internet content is going to be more complete than those, I think.
     
  9. yodafett

    yodafett Well-Known Member

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    ^ This. Our local one has a crap-ton of stories I've gotten caught up on. Not to mention inter-library loan through the WorldCat system, if you library is part of it.
     
  10. doomboy536

    doomboy536 Universe Onslaught fanboy

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    If you want to try a cartoon then you can't go wrong with Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes. It is coming to an end now but is a pretty decent intro to the Marvel universe.
     
  11. Kaijumaster

    Kaijumaster 335

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    I liked how at times they were qouting "secret Invasion" Word for word.
     
  12. Malach Ra

    Malach Ra TFW2005 Supporter

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    Go for the updated marvel encyclopedia. Good stuff in there. My personal favorite part of marvel is the cosmic part. From the Thor to the Negative Universe. Its all good. I recommend Annihilation War. Best stuff marvel has put out in years.
     
  13. Aernaroth

    Aernaroth <b><font color=blue>I voted for Super_Megatron and Veteran

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    Guardians of the Galaxy RULED.
     
  14. Malach Ra

    Malach Ra TFW2005 Supporter

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    Oh yes. I have yet to pick up the new annihilators, does anyone know if its any good? Also, war of kings was pretty decent too, along with the thanos imperative. I love me some cosmic marvel.
     

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