Top Comics to Buy for December 5, 2018

By Zack Quaintance — This week is brimming with tough choice, so many that we actually ended up including a whopping seven total books in our top comics section, where I don’t think we’ve ever previously exceeded six. Most weeks, in fact, we keep it to five, and that’s plenty. So, what exactly happened this week?

Well, for starters DC Comics had one of its best weeks all year, with a pair of great new series launching, Doomsday Clock making its scope clearer, Deathstroke returning to form, and continued solid performers like Justice League, Batman, The Green Lantern, and Border Town all taking huge leaps forward with their plots. On top of that Marvel was no slouch and Image also launched some great new series. Simply put, this week is an embarrassment of riches, one likely to complicate holiday budgets for many comics fans.

What are we waiting for? Let’s get to the books!

Top Comics to Buy for December 5, 2018


Doomsday Clock #8
Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Gary Frank
Colorist: Brad Anderson
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $4.99
The critical and commercial hit series by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank continues following the shocking revelations of last issue. As the truth behind Dr. Manhattan's actions against the DC Universe are revealed, Ozymandias turns to the only being who can stop him: Superman.
Why It’s Cool: Before the first issue of Doomsday Clock hit, writer Geoff Johns made some oblique comments in interviews about the story being inspired by the 2016 presidential election. The unprecedented and chaotic nature of that election, and the sheer volume of societal corners it touched, made it hard to understand what he could possibly mean by that. This issue makes it a bit clearer, while still leaving the full ambitions of this story obscured in an intriguing way. It’s also a compelling comic book with clear and consequential stakes. Recommended.

Deathstroke #38
Artist: Fernando Pasarin
Inker: Jason Paz
Colorist: Jeromy Cox
Letterer: Willie Schubert
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $3.99
Deathstroke finally meets his match: Arkham Asylum?! Now an inmate, Slade Wilson must prove his sanity so he can stop an alien invasion (what?). Before he can even attempt a breakout, he's got to face off against angry Arkham inmates out to get him. And what's Two-Face's role in all this mayhem? He keeps showing up in two places at once! Meanwhile, Deathstroke's daughter, Rose Wilson, is kidnapped! Can Jericho save his sister?  
Why It’s Cool: For my money, Deathstroke has easily been one of the best shared universe corporate superhero comics in the past two and a half years, telling a story wherein the seeds of seemingly inconsequential moments continue to flower into consequential plot points, essentially using the long-form periodical medium’s unique strengths. The recent Batman crossover now feels like a bit of a detour, but after Deathstroke #38 I’m happy to say this book is back on its excellent track. Artist Fernando Pasarin is also doing career best work here, making this comic worth buying for the art alone.

Die #1
Kieron Gillen
Artist: Stephanie Hans
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Publisher: Image Comics
Price: $3.99
THE WICKED + THE DIVINE writer KIERON GILLEN teams up with artist supernova STEPHANIE HANS (THE WICKED + THE DIVINE 1831, Journey Into Mystery) for her first ongoing comic! DIE is a pitch-black fantasy where a group of forty-something adults have to deal with the returning unearthly horror they barely survived as teenage role-players. If Kieron's in a rush, he describes it as "Goth Jumanji." That only captures a sliver of what you'll find in oversized debut issue-where fantasy gets all too real.
Why It’s Cool: I’m tempted to just put Because it’s a Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans ongoing...Nuff said! here, but that’s probably a bit of a disservice and also I’m more verbose than that, although the fantastic creative team is a big part of the reason Die lands here. What’s more is that this title has a really interesting concept: it’s a black fantasy that sees grown-ass adults returning to close the loop on some magical horror they barely survived as teens, a horror they awoke essentially by playing Dungeons and Dragons. Basically, Die is just a great mix of creators, concept, and things fans will be interested in. It could very well be Image Comics next big book.

The Green Lantern #2
Grant Morrison
Artist: Liam Sharp
Colorist: Steve Oliff
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $3.99
Someone is transporting a mysterious cargo out of the Great Void, and it spells trouble for the universe at large! Hal Jordan interrogates a member of the Spider Guild for answers and uses his pheremones as an interrogation tool, but can he extract the info in time?! Meanwhile, Volgar Ro makes a play for Earth while its emerald protector is off-world!
Why It’s Cool: The Green Lantern #1 had all the trappings of a new landmark run on a long-time character (which Grant Morrison has done in the past, see Batman, specifically), and now The Green Lantern #2 keeps it going. This series is a hard-boiled psychedelic tropey police procedural in space, and so far we absolutely love it.

Immortal Hulk #10
Al Ewing
Artist: Joe Bennett
Inker: Ruy Jose
Colorist: Paul Mounts
Letterer: Cory Petit
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Price: $3.99
Gamma Flight was too late. Shadow Base is infiltrated. Crusher Creel is damned. And the One Below All walks upon Earth. Now, in the place he was born, the Immortal Hulk is the last thing standing between the world of the living...and the GREEN DOOR.
Why It’s Cool: Immortal Hulk is, simply put, the best superhero comic coming out right now. It makes our top comics to buy every time it comes out, and it will continue to do so barring a major and surprising shift in quality. This comic is great. It’s the combination of The Incredible Hulk, Twin Peaks, and old school horror filmmaking we didn’t know we’d been missing, and you should without question be reading it.

Martian Manhunter #1
Steve Orlando
Artist: Riley Rossmo
Colorist: Ivan Plascencia
Letterer: Deron Bennett
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $3.99
No matter what you know about J'onn J'onnz, you're not prepared for this! The acclaimed team of writer Steve Orlando and artist Riley Rossmo (BATMAN/ THE SHADOW, BATMAN: NIGHT OF THE MONSTER MEN) reteam for a reinvention of the Manhunter from Mars in this twisted, unexpected series. Back on Mars, J'onn was about as corrupt as a law officer can be, and when a reckoning comes for his entire society, he'll get a second chance he doesn't want or deserve! One shocking murder, and an unexpected fragment of the Mars he lost, will change his life-and the course of the Earth-forever!
Why It’s Cool: Steve Orlando doesn’t write bad debut issues, and his newest comic is no exception. He does a great job with the basics here, introducing us to our cast, clueing us in on his protagonist’s deepest desires and most pressing concerns, and laying track for the mystery that will presumably move this book forward through the next 11 chapters. Oh, and Riley Rossmo’s pliant martian artwork is fittingly of another world.

Shazam #1
Geoff Johns
Artist: Dale Eaglesham & Mayo “Sen” Naito (backup story)
Colorist: Mike Atiyeh
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Publisher: DC Comics
Price: $4.99
The superstar team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Dale Eaglesham reunite to launch the first all-new SHAZAM! monthly title set in the DC Universe in almost 20 years! (What took you guys so long?!) Teenager turned super-hero Billy Batson struggles to balance school and superheroics! (Guess which one is more fun?) But when Shazam unlocks a shocking secret deep within the Rock of Eternity, it challenges everything he knows about the worlds of magic and his family's future as its champions! Also, witness the bizarre team-up of Dr. Sivana and Mr. Mind as they set off to build a society all their own! Don't miss the start of an epic run in the making as "Shazam and the Seven Realms" begins!
Why It’s Cool: This is an absolutely adorable comic that captures the elements of this character and his wider family that make it so special. It’s a great debut in that it seems built to appeal to both long-time fans of the character and those reading a Shazam! comic for the first time. There’s even a fun nod to the characters bygone (and rightful) name.

Top New #1 Comics

  • Black [AF] Devils Dye #1

  • Defenders: Immortal Hulk #1

  • Defenders: Namor #1

  • The Freeze #1

  • Hack/Slash vs. Chaos #1

  • Killmonger #1

  • La Guardia #1

  • Prodigy #1

  • Self/Made #1

  • Snap Flash Hustle #1

  • Winter Soldier #1

  • Wizard Beach #1

  • X-Men: The Exterminated #1

Others Receiving Votes

  • Batman #60

  • Border Town #4

  • Crowded #5

  • The Dreaming #4

  • Her Infernal Descent #5

  • Justice League #13

  • Lodger #2

  • Low Road West #4

  • Marvel Knights 20th #3

  • Snotgirl #12

  • Unnatural #5

  • Venom #9

  • The Walking Dead #186

  • The Wicked + The Divine #40

  • Wrong Earth #4

See our past top comics to buy here, and check our our reviews archive here.

Zack Quaintance is a tech reporter by day and freelance writer by night/weekend. He Tweets compulsively about storytelling and comics as BatmansBookcase. He also writes comics and is currently working hard to complete one.