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The Escapist Staff | 17 Dec 2014 13:30
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Best Comic Book Writing of 2014 Nominees

Comics Writing Lazarus

Greg Rucka - Lazarus

Publisher: Image Comics
Art: Michael Lark, Owen Freeman (covers)

Want to be depressed but feel awesome about it? Read Lazarus and wait until it sinks in just how much of its brutal corporate dystopia feels unsettlingly familiar. Set in a world where governments have all but vanished the former nation states divided between rival wealthy families, the series explores the horrors of systemic poverty, the corruption inherent in feudal-style societies, and the way everyone suffers when the only law is who has the deepest pockets.

Of course, you don't have to pay attention that closely if you don't want to, because Lazarus is also a story about conspiracies, science-gone-mad, the battle for control of the world - hell, think Game of Thrones meets Gattaca. Which is why writer Greg Rucka makes this list. This series has a lot to recommend it, but the most impressive thing about it is the way Rucka has wrapped deep, divisive and difficult political issues inside a pulpy shell, without hurting either.

the wicked the divine 5

Kieron Gillen - The Wicked + The Divine

Publisher: Image Comics
Art: Jamie McKelvie, Matt Wilson (covers)

The new Image series begins with the premise that every ninety years, twelve gods are reincarnated as humans (who, inconveniently, already existed before they were suddenly given divine powers). Worshiped like pop stars, members of this pantheon have it pretty good - except for the unfortunate fact that they will die within two years of becoming empowered.

Marla Desat has been raving about this series for months. As she put it, "[it] keeps blowing my mind and making me scrape the brain bits off the floor, for both writing and art." That's about as good a recommendation as we can imagine. Thought provoking, hilarious and difficult to take at times, it's a great comment on current culture, and a kick as story as well.

Comics Writing Saga

Brian K. Vaughan - Saga

Publisher: Image Comics
Art: Fiona Staples

You know we love Saga - it's one of our nominees for best series. Nimble, romantic, and kind of batshit in the best possible way, Saga is, simply put, one of the best comics ever produced. Vaughan has conjured up a story with the kind of awe and wonder that Star Wars did for film fans of the 70s. Framing the series as a memoir of sorts, via voice over narration that underscores the adventure and lends it an air of slow-building tragedy. Characters, meanwhile, are complex, difficult, and real, despite the fact that some of them have wings, others have horns, while still others are talking robots who somehow still have sex. It's remarkable work.

Vaughan's writing has only matured as a result of his time spent working on television, and with Saga, he's turned in the strongest work of his career in comics.

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