Best of the year: Matthew’s picks

Published On December 31, 2009 | By Joe Gordon | Best of the Year 2009, Comics

Today’s Best of the Year selection comes from Matt Badham, freelance writer (with work appearing in the Judge Dredd Megazine, Tripwire, 2000 AD, Comics International and more), interviewer, keen supporter of UK comics talent and a regular contributor to the blog. Eschewing the regular format Matt is instead concentrating soley on comics; over to Matt:

Chloe Noonan, Monster Hunter by Marc Ellerby

Chloe Noonan monster hunter Marc Ellerby

Chloe Noonan, which follows the monster-hunting escapades of its eponymous heroine, is the sort of light-hearted, fun comic that leaves you with a spring in your step. If Ellerby doesn’t hit the big time off the back of Chloe’s exploits, well, there isn’t any justice in this world.

Trial Sherlock Holmes Moore Reppion Campbell

The Trial of Sherlock Holmes by Leah Moore, John Reppion and Aaron Campbell

I’m a big Holmes fan, so I was worried that scriptwriting duo Leah Moore and John Reppion were going to drop the ball with the Trial of Sherlock Holmes (Conan Doyle being a tough act to follow and all that). They didn’t. Instead they crafted a compelling locked room mystery that easily holds its own against the original Holmes stories. Good stuff and highly recommended.

Necessary Monsters Daniel Merlin Goodbrey Sean Azzopardi

Necessary Monsters by Daniel Merlin Goodbrey and Sean Azzopardi

Barking mad concepts, cool dialogue and atmospheric art make this one of my must-reads of 2009. I enjoyed Monsters in mini-comics form, but it’s also available online and will soon be released, in February, I believe, in trade paperback.

Dear David Lasky Sarah McIntyre

Dear David Lasky by Sarah McIntyre

Sarah is one of my favourite cartoonists. Dear David Lasky is, in my opinion, her best comic. Enjoy it online here.

B.A.S.T.A.R.D.S british comics anthology

B.A.S.T.A.R.D.S by various

There are lots of good anthologies around at the moment. This marvellous offering, edited by Dan Lester and Francesca Cassavetti, features some of my favourite cartoonists including Sally-Anne Hickman and Paul Rainey. There’s a great deal of variety in B.A.S.T.A.R.D.S, in terms of subject matter and style, from some of the best comic creators working in this country today. You really should pick up a copy as soon as you can.

Psychiatric Tales Schizophrenia Darryl Cunningham

Psychiatric Tales by Darryl Cunningham

Originally presented on Darryl’s blog, these strips about mental health will be collected by Blank Slate in 2010. This is comic strip as reportage – important, socially useful work.

Fool's Errand Philip Spence

Fool’s Errand and Reasons Why I’m Scared To Love You by Phil Spence

Phil Spence is probably best known for his online comic, Ninja Bunny. I’m actually a bigger fan of his mini-comics, such as Fool’s Errand and Reasons Why I’m Scared To Love You. Both are beautiful and heartbreaking.

Paul Crystal, Graphic Designer by Jim Medway

Paul Crystal, Graphic Designer
by Jim Medway

This was Jim Medway’s entry to the Observer/Comica/Cape graphic short story prize. I liked the winning entry to that competition, but, I’m afraid, it pales in comparison to Jim’s offering, which is genius. Read it here.

Spandex 1 Martin Eden

Spandex by Martin Eden

I loved this. I loved it, I loved it, I loved it.

The creator of The O Men takes things to the next level with this poptastic slice of super hero fun. Functional art (it has to be said). A great colour scheme. Amazing scripts.

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About The Author

Joe Gordon

Joe Gordon is’s chief blogger, which he set up in 2005. Previously, he was professional bookseller for over 12 years as well as a lifelong reader and reviewer, especially of comics and science fiction works.