I hope everyone had a great and very safe New Years! In case you had SUCH a good time that you’ve forgotten who won such great awards in Part 1 as Video Game of the Year, Villain of the Year and such, you can check it all out HERE.
Now we can move on to the HUGE, BIG MONEY awards! These are the ones you’ve been waiting for...these are the ones that always end up with the most controversial winners...and these are the Bleedies that people end up hating me for!! Geesh, everyone’s got an opinion.
So let’s keep it rollin’ baby! You know what time it is...and yes, I just made a Limp Bizkit reference. We’re off to a great start...
TV Series of the Year
Wow, we’ve had a phenomenal, revolutionary year in comic adapted television. For the past few years we’ve been treated to some amazing television shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Arrow...but as great as those two shows are (Arrow won two years ago), there has been such a swerve in how comic book/superhero television is done with Marvel’s Netflix TV series’, that those two great shows did not even get nominated this year! Don’t be too shocked, I only have 4 slots!
The bar has risen. Comic book TV is in its renaissance, and these 4 groundbreaking shows are lead the pack in 2015 and changed...EVERYTHING.
It had everything we ever wanted in a Daredevil adaptation: spectacular fight scenes, amazing dialogue, Stick, ninjas, Easter eggs, avocados...it had it all.
Last year’s winner holds on to defend its title in a year that saw a more “adult” approach to superhero shows. Despite it all, Flash is still an AMAZING TV show that doesn’t seems to be “slowing down” whatsoever. Yeah, it had to be said.
I can’t say anything bad about this show that broke all the rules, made its own rules, and then broke them all over again. The writing, the acting, the special FX, all of it deserves a resounding SWEET CHRISTMAS!!!
The Walking Dead
The “old timer” of the bunch still ain’t going down without a fight. It deserves this nomination because it STILL kept us pinned to our sofas in 2015, and when it didn’t...it had us looking under dumpsters for Glenn.
And TV Series of the Year Goes To....
I’m sorry. This show. This freaking FREAK of a show blew my mind apart. It changed everything. You see, Daredevil is the one comic book, that in its own incognito way in the 80's, helped get Marvel ...screw that..THE COMIC BOOK INDUSTRY to where it is today. Back in the 80’s this comic got older teens and adults reading comics with it’s gritty material and adult themes. Marvel let Frank Miller have his way with this story about a blind lawyer from Hell’s Kitchen that has these heightened abilities and he puts on a red devil costume to fight the most dangerous criminals in New York City, and what Frank did was take this concept and make it comics’ best kept secret for quite some time.
The show takes all of that and gives us the exact same feel. And then some. I can’t say better things about Charlie Cox’ fantastic portrayal of Matt Murdock/Daredevil, or Vincent D’Onofrio’s haunting take on Wilson Fisk/Kingpin...or EVERYONE in the show. EVERYONE just made me well up in gratefulness because Daredevil isn’t just a show. It’s the biggest comic book phenomenon that nobody ever talks about except in comic shops for the last 30 YEARS.
I absolutely ADORED every one of the nominees this year as well as other shows that were not nominated, and I wish I could have DD share this award with its counterpart, Jessica Jones because they are SO CLOSE in quality that it’s ridiculous. I gave DD the edge because it gave us amazing action scenes AS WELL as imagery that I’ve wanted to see since I was a kid. And I know...it’s weird to say that, but let me remind you that I read almost EVERYTHING from a very young age and became a twisted albeit pretty awesome adult as a result.
We are possibly at the point where superhero TV is getting better than superhero FILM! How the heck did THAT happen?!
Movie of the Year
No matter how you feel about the comic book adapted feature films that came out in 2015, they all made a substantial amount of money (okay NOT ALL....there was one Fox production that made next to nothing, you know what we’re talking about), and cemented the fact that the “superhero movie” with all of its critics...is the best thing we got going!
And y’know what? This lifelong comic book aficionado won’t have it any other way. It’s still the best time to be a fan of this stuff (something I have truly been since before I could read...so yeah, it’s not a trend for me), and these four movies are the best examples of that fact.
It’s the “little” movie that kicked a whole lotta ass! NOBODY thought it was gonna be THAT good. I don’t care who you are.
Avengers: Age of Ultron
AoU gets better with each viewing, trust me on that. Also, everyone needs to keep watching until they spot the Jocasta Easter egg, because when I finally saw it I lost my gawdfersaken mind.
Kingsman: The Secret Service
It’s British gentlemen with umbrellas kicking arses all over the place. And a gorgeous model doing crazy martial arts on prosthetic running blades. And Samuel L. Jackson with a lisp. That’s all that ever needed to be said to sell movie tickets.
It’s a loveable family film based on the classic strip by...okay yeah, I just didn’t wanna nominate that godawful Fantastic Four movie. I’m sure Peanuts is great though. And it’s also what FF made at the box office, so...yeah.
And the winner is...
It’s hard to deny that, much like Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel has an amazing ability to take a lesser known property and create magic with it. Ant Man is a film that takes a lot of comedy, amazing action and a whole lot of charm that just creates an amazing experience at the movies for people of all tastes. I can honestly say that if you don’t like Ant Man...there could be something wrong with you. You need joy in your life.
Paul Rudd was brilliant as Scott Lang, the unlikely heir to the Ant Man shrinking suit and Pym particles. Michael Douglas was perfect as Hank Pym, an older version of the character we are used to, and the gorgeous Evangeline Lily was captivating as Hope Pym, Hank’s daughter with a rather “Waspy” future. And Marvel comic fans... there’s a VERY comic book-esque scuffle Scott has with Sam Wilson/Falcon (Anthony Mackie back in the wings) that will keep those that love that MCU feel VERY happy. It’s straight out of a comic book, and is my favorite part of the movie. The movie certainly leads into Captain America: Civil War in a big way as well (don’t forget that SECOND after credits scene)! I love it, I love it all.
Kingsman was a dark horse and a lot of people will argue that it’s the best movie out of this bunch, and maybe it is, but I say that Ant Man is the best COMIC BOOK MOVIE of these four. And that’s why we’re all here, right?
Trending News of the Year
These are the comic book news stories that dominated our newsfeeds and made mainstream media outlets face the music. And that music is orchestrated by John Williams and can be played by a Darth Vader cosplayer on a unicycle with bagpipes.
So yes, which trending topic actually deserves an award? Why would I give an award for something like that? Stop asking silly questions and read on! Enjoy the funny words!
Archie Comics Reboot
The Riverdale gang are now millennials! Every issue has them on their phones for 22 pages straight. Riveting entertainment.
Marvel Studios Has Its Own Internal "Civil War"
In a weird turn of events, Kevin Feige (Marvel Studios President) had a falling out with Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter, who also runs Marvel’s television ventures. Feige now soley answers to Disney execs. It’s a long story but I blame this crap for Jessica Jones and Luke Cage having to say “Green Guy” and “Flag Waver” when addressing the Avengers. Stop messin’ with our fun, executive guys!!!
Sony & Marvel Studios Agree To Share Spider-Man Movie Rights
So. This was my ACTUAL Christmas.
Star Wars Pandemonium!!!
Dear Disney marketing department: the Star Wars feminine hygiene products was perhaps a step too far.
The Trendiest Comic News of 2015 was...
SPIDEY COMES HOME!!!!
This was a shoe-in. Nothing has made me happier than to hear that Sony Entertainment finally saw the light...and at the end of that light was an Uncle Scrooge sized money bin of Disney/Marvel money to swim in!
Now, Marvel doesn’t have FULL control of the wall-crawler. Sony still has final say on how he’s presented. But the best part is that we get to see Spider-Man join the same universe as Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy and Daredevil. And that can't be any cooler for us, the fans, and we even got the news later on in the year that young actor, Tom Holland was given the nod to play a teenage Peter Parker after a rigorous audition period.
This means that Spider-Man will be early in his illustrious career at the same time as Tony Stark is thinking his days as Iron Man are limited. Not the route I would have taken, but I think they are looking forward into the future, with a new, young hero.
Look, basically this isn’t just trending news , it’s been an absolute dream come true and something that’s been on all of our minds since waaaay back in the very first Marvel after-credits scene when a spry Nick Fury asked a youthful Tony Stark (no really, go back and watch! They look YOUNG, it’s weird) if he thought he was “the only superhero in the world”.
It’s happening! And it’s happening in a few short months time!!! Can they actually keep Spider-Man’s appearance a secret all the way up to the Civil War’s release?
Cover of the Year
Well, we’ve gotten here once again. The Cover of the Year is always really weird because...it’s the hardest award to figure out, the hardest award to choose a winner for...and it’s also one of my favorites to do both. I admit, a comic cover is often misleading to what the comic is really about, but it’s also the most important aspect of a comic...it sells the dang thing, right?
So, these four nominees are in my opinion the coolest, most engaging comic covers this year and hopefully you all think so too!
Darth Vader #1 Variant by Mike Del Mundo
Uh, Lord Vader...I think you got a bit of your childhood soul in your teeth...
Captain America: Sam Wilson #1 Hip Hop Variant by Mahmud Asrar
Based on A$ap Rocky’s awesome “Long. Live. A$ap” album cover...this absolutely represents what Sam Wilson has made of the mantle of Captain America. Powerful stuff.
Storm #11 by Stephanie Hans
This cover was simply one of the most beautiful of 2015. It captures Storm’s beauty, confidence and of course...lightning eyes.
World’s Finest #32 by Yilderay Cinar
A beautiful piece that totally recreates the best moment in Superman film history...that turned into the silliest moment in Superman film history.
Cover of the Year goes to...
Darth Vader #1 Variant by Mike Del Mundo
For the second year in a row, Mike Del Mundo blows us away with a cover that captures the essence of a character and tells a dark and haunting story at the same time.
The sadness of the Anakin Skywalker story is brilliantly reminded to us as this once brave and heroic Jedi Knight has lost himself in the dark, evil shell of Darth Vader.
It’s amazing, it’s brilliant, it makes Jake Lloyd’s portrayal of Anakin actually meaningful...and I want it on a t-shirt.
Hero of the Year
What makes a hero? Is it bravery? Is it the ability to inspire others? Is it the overwhelming sense of responsibility? Is it just standing up for your beliefs and fighting for what’s right?
Well, for these four comic book heroes it’s the ability to eat massive amounts of chimichangas, shaving a your hair into a mohawk and jumping into a big bunny suit, not throwing up after finding out you made out with your twin sister, and being a badass way into your geriatric years!
So beat that, Chuck Norris. Wait what? Chuck Norris has done all of that? At the same time? Geez. Get over yourself, Norris.
The Merc With A Mouth had a great 2015! He got married to a succubus, had a movie made about him (which looks awesome), died (in comics that’s a good thing, sort of a rite of passage), came back to life, became an international celebrity and finally capped of the year by finally becoming an Avenger! Everything’s coming up Wade!
Gotham needed a new hero. Jim needed a new midlife crisis. Easter needed a new bunny.
I predict big things in the future for this farm boy from Mos Eisley. Big things.
Old Man Logan
You thought he “berserker raged” before, now try to interrupt him during Jeopardy.
The Comic Book Hero of 2015 is...
Old Man Logan
Okay, okay...this is beginning to feel rigged, right? Well, yes..I’m a big Wolverine superfan...and this is a little bit rigged. So what?! THIS IS MY SHOW!
*Ahem*, no really, not many comics made me happier than the Secret Wars tied Old Man Logan, where the outlaw hero from a post-apocalyptic MU where the villains won, needs to travel across Doom’s Battleworld, going from dangerous realm to even more dangerous realm, and finally ending up in the recreated Earth 616...where Wolverine has been dead for almost a year.
Old Man Logan is basically the same character as Wolverine...but with a bit more of a Clint Eastwood outlaw cowboy twist, a bit of Mad Max, a whole damaged psyche filled with guilt and baggage (that’s nothing new for him, actually)...and I mean...A CRAZY OLD MAN WITH HAND KNIVES! Who could argue with all that awesome?
Do yourself a favor and pick up the coolest, most badass Secret Wars comic of them all (YES, EVEN MORE THAN SECRET WARS), in single issues or the upcoming trade and just enjoy watching Logan live on in the greatest way possible. He’s also prominently featured in the awesome Extraordinary X-Men ongoing series, and a new upcoming solo ongoing.
Artist of the Year
This is admittedly also a super hard category to put together, because there is so much amazing artwork going on in comics! So many styles, so many versions of characters...nothing is wrong! Nothing is bad!
Okay, some comic artwork is kinda bad. I guess. But mostly all of it is awesome! I somehow narrowed it down to the four artists that me jump in my seat with delight in all of 2015. Here goes!
Andrea Sorrentino (Old Man Logan)
I lose my marbles while looking at Andrea’s beautiful landscapes and dark, moody use of light and shadow. He’s one of the most mind-blowing comic book artists out there right now, in my opinion.
Chris Bachalo (Dr. Strange, Uncanny X-Men)
I’m a longtime fan of Chris’ and I get ALL of his work, no matter what he’s drawing...but his Doctor Strange stuff has some of the trippiest double page splashes I have ever seen! It may be his best work since Death: The High Cost of Living or Generation X. Treat yourself to that book, please.
Esad Ribic (Secret Wars)
Whatever you feel about this book and the direction it took, I think we can all agree that Ribic is a freakin’ artistic master. Holy crap.
John Cassaday (Star Wars)
Don’t get me wrong, I totally wanted to nominate Stuart Immonen for his ridiculously amazing work on Star Wars as well, but since Cassaday did the first arc of SW, we’ll focus on his work. And what beautiful artwork it is. Cassaday’s work makes you sigh at how ungodly beautiful it is.
The Comic Book Artist of 2015 is...
I felt like I had no choice here. I Instagrammed single panels of Sorrentino’s OML artwork so much this year that I may be considered his stalker at this point.
I would say there are heavy influences of artists like Jae Lee, J.H. Williams and a few others, but Andrea has managed to create his own dominating style out of his influences like every great artist does.
Also, check out some of his past DC stuff like his Green Arrow run and his I, Vampire tenure. He also illustrated the awesome Uncanny X-Men Annual #1 in 2014.
Writer of the Year
Being a comic book writer is probably the most coveted job in the industry at the moment. You basically almost have complete control of the fates of these iconic (and sometimes, your OWN) characters, and decide where the story goes and what this (hopefully) awesome comic artist gets to bring to life.
Who I pick for this Bleedie has changed over the years from, “the writer of the comic I read with the best writing” to “the writer who consistently puts out material that mostly inspires my own writing”. Which, I think is a different thing?! Yeah, sure...it’s a different thing.
So good luck to the nominees, you are all the authors that inspire me to want to write awesome comics like you and inevitably steal away your jobs! MWAHAHAHAHA!
Jason Aaron (Mighty Thor, Doctor Strange, Star Wars, Southern Bastards)
The big bearded wonder is a veteran nominee for this award and no matter what, Jason, even if you don’t win...I just can’t quit you.
Mark Millar (Chrononauts, Jupiter’s Circle, MPH, Huck)
One of the best, most critically acclaimed, most moneymaking writers in comic book history...and he still has time to write the funny papers!
Robert Kirkman (Walking Dead, Invincible, Super Dinosaur, Outcast)
I could have made the EXACT same joke for him as I did for Millar. But I won’t...I’ll make the “I love your stuff, but quit putting rape scenes in your comics...it’s disturbing” joke. So there.
Becky Cloonan (Gotham Academy, Southern Cross)
I got a chance to meet and interview Becky this past year and she’s down to earth, cool, laid back...and a bit of a creative maniacal genius. Everything a great comic writer should be!
And the Bleedie goes to...
Y’know, I’ve been a fan of Mark’s for a good 10 years or so...and yet, he’s never won this award! He’s basically the Leonardo DiCapprio of the Bleedies! So, it’s about time!
After years of Kick-Asses and Secret Services and Superiors and Nemesissses, and let’s not forget his amazing work this year on Chrononauts and MPH and his Jupiter’s saga, and I will NEVER forget the mainstream stuff like The Ultimates 1 & 2, Civil War, the original Old Man Logan story arc and the BAD ASS JLA run with Bryan Hitch (yes, I’m a comic book elephant, I never forget), well damn...this is almost a lifetime achievement award for Mark Millar, right?
So cheers, mate. You deserve the recognition and I hope to have a chat with you someday!
Comic Book of the Year
We’ve finally gotten to the biggest, most important and final Bleedie award of them all! Comic book of the year goes to that one comic that consistently was entertaining and always ends up on the top of the read pile. Do we sometimes peek at the last page to see what happens? Sometimes!!! It’s our favorite comic, we’re allowed! We also sometimes reread them over and over and say out loud our favorite parts....okay, I'm now revealing too much of my own weird eccentricities, aren't I?
So, I know a lot of people have a variety of favorite comics, and not all of them have made the nominees here. But alas, these are the 8 coolest comics I read all year and we can agree to disagree if you like!
Here we go!!
Scott Snyder made Batman a middle aged dude in a bunny mech and y’know what? It wasn’t all that horrible! I don’t know if he’s a comic book writer or a sorcerer of some kind.
The best Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure reboot we will never get!
He makes me wish all doctors wore funky capes, had pornstar moustaches and said weird yet cool stuff that doesn't make any sense.
Can’t wait for when Crazy Quilt teaches Home Economics (and there was the obligatory Crazy Quilt joke)!
It’s still awesome and the most graphic superhero comic book out there today! EVERYONE should be reading it!
Old Man Logan
He’s only slightly less agile and dangerous with his hands than Bettie White.
I don’t get how Doom made himself a planet and forgot to put ONE Starbucks! How does that happen?
I actually think that at this point if Jason Aaron wrote a Jar Jar Binks Valentine’s special where he fell in love with Princess Kneesa of the Ewoks (shout out to the Ewoks cartoon series) it would be an awesome comic book. Quote me on that.
The Bleedie for Comic of the Year goes to...
Simply put: It’s the YEAR of STAR WARS! It’s back in full force and Marvel jumped on the hype train before almost anyone when they reacquired the rights to publish Star Wars comics again! They didn’t waste any time with releases of solo titles for fan-favorite characters like Darth Vader, Chewbacca, Princess Leia, Lando Calrissian and of course, a Star Wars title which follows Luke and the gang on adventures taking place in-between Episodes IV and V of the films.
And are they awesome? Well, it looks like Marvel’s Star Wars cleaned up in this year’s Bleedies, so YES...they are awesome! All of the SW comics that I read capture the feel of the original trilogy so perfectly with humour and action and they made sure to get artists like John Cassaday and Stuart Immonen that would amazingly capture the likenesses of the actors from the films...it’s like watching little Star Wars mini-movies every issue!
No other comic book in 2015 made me excited to open every month and while there was so many great titles to choose from I think that this comic was the one that just never hesitated to blow me away with every exciting panel. Hopefully it maintains this momentum in 2016!
Hope everyone enjoyed the 5th Annual Bleedies and here’s to a brand new year of great comics, movies and TV! Bleed out!