Bachelor of Audiovisual Production and Direction. Avid comic book reader. Proud nerd.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Even if you are stressed over your Christmas shopping or planning a family reunion, we can all agree the holidays are a time to be around our loved ones and celebrate. And superheroes are no different: Batgirl goes to department stores to get her dad a present, Iceman plans a celebration at Xavier’s school, Gambit and Rogue spend their first Christmas as a married couple, and Batman spends Christmas Eve chasing criminals. Yes, apparently crime doesn’t stop during the holidays.
Up next, we are going to list four holiday-themed comic books for you to share the spirit of the season with your favorite heroes, or maybe get ideas for a gift to that geek friend of yours who already have thousands of comics on their shelf.
1. "Daredevil" #253
- Written by: Ann Nocenti
- Art by: John Romita Jr.
- Cover by: John Romita Jr., Al Williamson
During their acclaimed run on Daredevil, Ann Nocenti and John Romita Jr. took Daredevil through a lot of different situations, including Christmas in Hell’s Kitchen.
On Christmas Eve, police officers want to stay home with their families, so they ask Daredevil to patrol the city, assuming he doesn’t have a family. This request makes Daredevil think about his own life and the people in it.
For some context, we have to remember that this story takes place after Daredevil Born Again, a story in which the Kingpin takes everything away from Matt Murdock (Daredevil), his license to practice law, his apartment, his friends. Matt is left with nothing else but his spirit. But the spirit of a man without fear is more than enough to rise against adversity.
So, when the holiday season arrives, Matt re-evaluates all the things he has, and everything he can do for others. Homeless kids, junkies, drunks; those are the people in his life and he is thankful to have them because they help him as much as he helps them. On the other hand, we have the Kingpin of crime, the most powerful man in New York City, determined to destroy Matt Murdock. If taking everything away from Daredevil hasn’t destroyed him, then what will? How do you defeat a man with an unbreakable spirit?
The paradox of a man who has nothing but is happy, and a man who has everything but still cannot find peace, is what makes this comic a great reading to enjoy during the holidays.
2. "Merry X-Men Holiday Special" #1
- Written by: Charlamagne Tha God, Chad Bowers, Ed Brisson, Chris Claremont, Al Ewing, Sina Grace, Tini Howard, Lonnie Nadler, Matthew Rosenberg, Rainbow Rowell, Chris Sims, Charles Soule, Kelly Thompson, Zac Thompson, Leah Williams.
- Art by: Kris Anka, Ryan Browne, Marco Failla
- Cover by: Marko Djurdjevic
This comic from multiple creative teams features 25 short stories, one for each day from December 1st to Christmas.
Starring many of our favorite X-Men, this book is a beautiful expression of who the X-Men are and how different they are from each other. Kitty Pride celebrates Hanukkah and vows to honor -and avenge- everyone who have lost their lives by reasons of hate. Jubilee packs for a deserved vacation with her son, Shogo. Iceman plays White Elephant with other students at the X-Men mansion. Nature girl has very good reasons to hate Christmas. Beast faces awkward scrutiny from his parents. If you are curious about how the X-Men spend the holidays, don’t hesitate to get this comic.
3. "The Batman Adventures Holiday Special"
- Written by: Paul Dini
- Art by: Bruce Timm, Ronnie Del Carmen, Glen Murakami, Dan Riba, Kevin Altieri
Every Batman fan is familiar with Paul Dini and Bruce Timm, the superstar team responsible for Batman: The Animated Series, and creators of Harley Quinn. Their work is easily recognizable for their simple yet incredibly expressive style and captivating plots. In this special, they give us a story where a thief strikes the same department store where Batgirl is doing her Christmas shopping. Ouch!
In addition, writer Paul Dini works with top talent from different backgrounds; Like Ronnie Del Carmen, co-director of Pixar’s Inside Out, and animator and producer Glen Murakami (Batman Beyond, Teen Titans). The result of this work is an Eisner Award-winning comic full of exhilarating situations, like the Joker broadcasting his new year’s resolutions, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn going on a shopping spree with Bruce Wayne, and a lot more bat-awesomeness you’ll have to read to believe.
4. "Batman: Noel"
- Written by: Lee Bermejo
- Art by: Lee Bermejo
This masterpiece deserves nothing less than first place on our list. In his first work as both writer and artist, internationally acclaimed artist Lee Bermejo (Joker, Lex Luthor: Man of Steel, Batman: Damned) adapts Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol into the DC universe.
In this story, we find Batman, who is living a lonely and bitter life, spending Christmas’ Eve chasing a henchman who might lead him to the joker. But his night makes an incredible turn when he is visited by three spirits who will make him see his own life through a different glass.
With impeccable detail and graphic expression, Bermejo takes us on a magical journey through a Gotham City that is relentless as well as forgiving. Cold, but full of hope.
A beautiful retrospective on Batman’s life, Batman: Noel is a story in that will have Batman, and fans alike, finding beauty even in the coldest corners of Gotham.
Since this writer is already feeling the holiday spirit, here’s a bonus comic for you. Happy Holidays!
© 2018 Daiana Gauna