Robot 6

If there were a comics version of the Netflix Watch Instantly queue, what would you put on it?

Today Pop Candy’s Whitney Matheson did something that some consider too revealing even in this socially networked, airport x-ray’d age: She posted 20 movies from her Netflix “Watch Instantly” queue. Like anyone else’s, it’s a motley crew of movies made possible by a massive library of films and the power to watch any of them at any time with a few clicks of a mouse — a blend of “comfort food” you want access to at all times, unwatched stuff you’re dying to see at the next available opportunity, major investments of time or energy you haven’t been prepared to make just yet, “eat your vegetables” fare you know you ought to watch eventually, and goofy guilty pleasures you’re simply tickled to be able to watch whenever you feel like it.

This got me thinking. I know there are any number of logistical and financial reasons why such a thing doesn’t exist for comics. But we comics readers are an imaginative bunch, no? And today I choose to imagine a world where I can load up pretty much any book I can think of and read to my heart’s content. So here’s what my imaginary “Read Instantly” queue would look like, circa today. Check it out, then let us know what’s on your queue in the comments!

1. Powr Mastrs 3 by C.F. (PictureBox)
2. H Day by Renée French (PictureBox)
3. Duncan the Wonder Dog by Adam Hines (AdHouse)

This trio of eagerly anticipated alt/art-comix releases have been generating best-of-the-year buzz for weeks now, if not longer. I can’t wait to see what the fuss is about in all three cases.

4. Thor: The Mighty Avenger by Roger Langridge and Chris Samnee (Marvel)

I’ve heard nothing but good things about this all-ages-yet-not-kids’-stuff comic, from sources of the sort I wouldn’t normally expect to say good things about this kind of comic. Seeing as how I’m a big fan of a lot of “off-model” Marvel stuff, color me intrigued.

5. Twin Spica by Kou Yaginouma (Vertical)
6. Ax: A Collection of Alternative Manga Vol. 1 by Mitsuhiro Asakawa (compiler), Sean Michael Wilson (editor), and various cartoonists (Top Shelf)
7. A Drunken Dream by Moto Hagio (Fantagraphics)

My manga reading has been absolutely woeful this year — my short attention span (seriously, I don’t call my blog Attentiondeficitdisorderly for nothing) makes reading long series only after their completion more or less a must for me, while I’ve got a shelf full of prestige projects from American art-house publishers waiting for me to crack their spines. These recent releases are at the top of my manga must-read list.

8. The ACME Novelty Library #20 by Chris Ware (Drawn & Quarterly

I already read this the day I got it, then picked it up and read it again the next day. But it’s so chillingly good I want access to it 24/7.

9. Achewood by Chris Onstad

Now here’s where it gets a bit embarrassing: I’m literally years behind on Onstad’s much-beloved webcomic, which is especially galling considering that I was an early and vocal supporter. But for a while there I just didn’t have the wherewithal to follow any comic on a daily basis. This strip’s been going on for so long that maybe this is the equivalent of all those Mad Men and Breaking Bad DVDs that have cluttered up my queue waiting for the right time for literally months now, but someday…someday…

10. Wednesday Comics by Mark Chiarello (editor) and various writers/artists (DC)
11. Scarlet by Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev (Marvel/Icon)

These are two titles to which, despite the presence of creators whose work I’d greatly enjoyed over the years, I found myself less warmly disposed than I’d have otherwise thought. In Wednesday Comics‘ case, it was my suspicion that nostalgia might be too heavy a presence; in Scarlet‘s, it was disappointment with the pair’s previous collaboration on Spider-Woman. But on a rainy weekend afternoon it might be fun to see what, if anything, I missed.

12. Berserk by Kentaro Miura (Dark Horse)

This long-running action-adventure serial has stealthily but steadily become one of the most influential books around in artcomics circles — Johnny Ryan’s Prison Pit wears its influence on its sleeve, for example. I can’t see myself buying all 30-odd available volumes, but in my imaginary “Read Instantly” world, finding out whether Berserk is as berserk as everyone says would be irresistible.

13. The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller (DC)
14. The Diary of a Teenage Girl by Phoebe Gloeckner (Frog)
15. Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth by Grant Morrison & Dave McKean (DC)

A trio of all-time favorites to which I never grow tired of returning. Yes, one of these things is not like the others.

16. Jack Kirby’s Fourth World Saga (DC)
I read these in those gray-toned trade paperbacks ages ago and still feel the impact. The time has just never been right for me to plow through the four gorgeous Omnibus collections DC put out back-to-back. But I’ll get a chance at some point!

17. The Incal by Alexandro Jodorowsky and Moebius (Humanoids)
18. Phoenix by Osamu Tezuka (Vertical)

And now the really embarrassing bit: I’ve never read so much as a panel by the masters of two of the world’s three major comic book traditions. Deeply, deeply sad. Well, now that I’ve outed myself, there’s no place to go but up, and I understand these are the books to start with.

19. Or Else #2 by Kevin Huizenga (Drawn and Quarterly)

The short story “A Sunset” in this issue of Huizenga’s series is the best comics short story I’ve ever read, I think. There’s nothing else like it. I want to be able to study it whenever the mood strikes me.

20. Boy’s Club #4 by Matt Furie (Pigeon Press)

I also want to be able to laugh at dick jokes until my sides hurt.

Well, there you have it — my imaginary “Read Instantly” queue in all its glory. I’ve showed you mine, now you show me yours!

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Comments

8 Comments

Planetary….I think I can start and end right there~

All of Paper Rodeo because there’s no other way that I will ever have access to it.

FLEX MENTALLO
WE3
(let’s just say everything Morrison and Quitely have ever done, ALL-STAR SUPERMAN right up through those first three BATMAN & ROBINs)
WATCHMEN
FROM HELL
TOP 10
PLANETARY
Ellis/Hitch AUTHORITY
The Lee/Kirby FF run
Kirby’s FOURTH WORLD
X-MEN VIGNETTES
SANDMAN
NEW FRONTIER
SCALPED
ASTERIOS POLYP
THE SPIRIT
INVINCIBLE
LOCAL
LOCAS
PALOMAR
SCOTT PILGRIM
OPTIC NERVE
Cooke’s PARKER adaptations, present and future
WEDNESDAY COMICS
BATMAN: YEAR ONE
BATMAN: YEAR 100
THE DARK KNIGHT

I think my queue is full.

I’m sure this is cheating, but

Legion of Super-Heroes 1958-present
Fables
Girl Genius
Asterix
All-Star Squadron
Naruto
One Piece
Order of the Stick
Groo the Wanderer 1982-present
Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld
Irredeemable
Incorruptible
The Incredibles
Anne Steelyard
Atari Force
Sandman
Blue Devil
Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes version)
Doonesbury
Knights of the Dinner Table

Rubber Blanket!

i just make myself wishlists on half.com and place holds on the brooklyn public website. hahahaha it’s been working out so far.

also i haven’t read pheonix, but I have read a lot of tezuka (though still not nearly enough) and I really recommend starting with MW, and then moving onto any Black Jack book you can get your hands on.

as for Berserk, I still am only 20 or so volumes in but it’s worth it. i’m a cheapo and have been reading the scanlations though (which have terrible translations but still doesnt ruin the reading experience)

my queueue:

The Box Man – Imiri Sakabashira
Summit of the Gods – Jiro Taniguchi
Swallow Me Whole – Nate Powell
The Drifting Classroom series – Kazuo Umezu
Powr Mastrs 2 and 3 (i know I know I shouldve already read number dos by now sue me)
If n Oof – B Chippendale
Bent – Dave Cooper
Doing Time – Kazuichi Hanawa
Secret Comics Japan
Meathaus S.O.S.
Closed Caption Comics 9 (and not just cuz i’m in it!!)

*brooklyn public library website

One Piece – Because I’d probably go broke if I tried to buy it volume-by-volume. This actually goes for a lot of shonen series, like Ranma 1/2 or Inuyasha.

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