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?