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Hellboy (Dark Horse): The prodigal son of Hell has become Dark Horse’s flagship character, but if you’d ask Hellboy about it he really couldn’t care less. Created in 1994 by Mike Mignola, Hellboy has spawned his own franchise, with one ongoing series (Hellboy in Hell) and a variety of spinoff titles from his former employer B.P.R.D. and friend Abe Sapien. With Mignola back writing and drawing a regular Hellboy title, 2013 is the best time in years to be a fan of the big man with the red right hand of doom.
Invincible (Image): He’s everything Marvel and DC wouldn’t do with their heroes, and everything comic readers wish they would. Created by Robert Kirkman and Cory Walker years before they’d become household names in comics, Invincible has taken the superhero ball and run with it — ably assisted by current series artist Ryan Ottley. From gut-exploding punches to rather frank talk about superheroes and sex, Kirkman and Co. have created the most authentic teen hero that comics have ever seen.