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Marvel Comics: Where To Start Reading To See Your Favorite Characters – Screen Rant

In Marvel Comics, there’s no shortage of solid stories, complex heroes, and exciting events spanning numerous issues. The question is, where to start?
Marvel Comics has risen through the ranks of the industry to become one of the medium’s best sources for superheroes, villains, and everything in between. With such beloved characters like Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, and Captain America leading the charge, there’s no shortage of solid stories, complex heroes, and exciting events spanning numerous issues. The question is, where to start?
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This is something all comic-readers ask at one point, and since Marvel has been around since the ’60s, things have continuously expanded to the point of multiverse status. There are various sites and suggestions for where to begin the journey, but most just prefer to just run with their favorite character and go from there.
One of the newest runs featuring Marvel’s Master of the Mystic Arts, Way of the Weird explores a different side of Strange’s spellcasting. In this 2015 series, Doctor Strange is thrown into a new battle with the forces of darkness and shown the cost of his constant magic use. It’s an adventure that plunges Strange and the reader to the depths of the multiverse.
With Multiverse of Madness on the horizon, fans of the Sorcerer Supreme might want to invest some time with the comics before heading to the theatres, and while there is a more current run in progress, the 2015 run has more than enough material to satisfy readers of any level.
When it comes to X-Men comics, it really depends on what the reader wants in terms of story – something old or something new. If they’re looking to get into the tried-and-true X-Men, the original Uncanny X-Men from Marvel’s Masterworks collection is the way to go. More modern fans will want the All-New X-Men from 2012, which brings the original team into the 21st century.
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Fans of X-Men: First Class will tear through the All-New X-Men like Wolverine, thanks to its emphasis on time travel and focus on the original founding members. But Chris Claremont’s Uncanny X-Men is essential for any fan of the team, covering the best the golden age had to offer.
In no uncertain terms, if readers are looking to get into Deadpoolregardless of whether or not they’ve seen the movie, the 2012 run is exactly what they’re looking for. There are sharks, zombies, giant monsters, and all the quips and quirks that fans could want from Marvel’s Merc with a Mouth.
Readers wanting something out of Deadpool aren’t reading it for morally complex plots and characters; they read it for the sheer bombastic nature of Deadpool and his self-aware antics. He’s a larger-than-life character that deserves a comic series just as over-the-top.
2017’s Captain America is for fans of classic Marvel action, and it has been described as a return to form for the character. Steve Rogers is one of the company’s most cherished heroes and fans want to see him duke it out with the forces of evil and save the day. Needless to say, this series definitely delivers.
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The Star-Spangled-Man does everything one could possibly want with all the shield-throwing action fully intact. In Cap’s journey across America, fans are presented with a more traditional approach to the character that will delight any fan of his original comics. Sometimes, it never hurts to return to one’s roots.
Origins stories are a dime a dozen when it comes to superheroes. The birth of iconic characters like Batman and Spider-Man have been told and retold so many times that fans can practically regurgitate them. That being said, Hulk: Season One comes highly recommended and has been considered to be Hulk’s definitive starting point.
The entirety of the story revolves around the creation of Bruce Banner’s alter-ego but mixes familiar elements with a reimagined flavor that doesn’t strip away from the core structure. It’s practically an essential read for any Hulk fan old or new.
Although Matt Fraction’s series of the same name might be preferable to those more familiar with the Iron Man film series, Brian Michael Bendis’s comics practically recreate the character and construct an entire world around the prolific Tony Stark. A mix of old and new elements in a modern coat of paint, it’s a solid place for any Iron Man buff to begin.
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Along with giving Iron Man’s suit a sleeker and more modern design, the series is (as the first issue’s title suggests) a reboot of the character. If readers are entirely new to the Marvel multiverse or simply new to the character in general, they wouldn’t be wrong for picking up this series first.
Thor’s modern runs are definitely more fantasy-heavy than some of his more Avengers-focused material, but that’s essentially the idea surrounding the character. The God of Thunder series is one that mixes elements of classic Thor (such as one of his original costumes) and mythological-inspired plots that feel pulled straight from American Gods.
It’s the Mighty Thor on an epic quest to find missing gods, and it’s as big and mythic as the thunder god himself. Whether someone is a die-hard fan or are just looking for some Viking-inspired adventures, this series will certainly satisfy.
Like the X-Men, comics concerning “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes” are an ocean to be crossed. But as far as modern interpretations go, The New Avengers covers a lot of ground for those looking to take a headlong dive into the series. It concerns the events surrounding Marvel’s Civil War and covers all the core happenings therein.
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Though it’s not the only starting point for Avengers fans, it’s one that covers a lot of ground and story work. It’s loaded to the brim with enough action and drama to satisfy the greenest of readers and provides enough information without needing to swim through the backlogs.
The newer runs of the Guardians of the Galaxy unashamedly take a lot of elements from the MCU adaptation, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The Guardians and their adventures have always been more light-hearted affairs, but with enough drama and action to keep readers invested. And while their original comics have been pulled into compilations, the more modern adventures will keep fans entertained.
Essentially, the newer series is the Guardians all Marvel fans want. Star-Lord, Drax, Rocket, Groot, and Gamora all come equipped with their large personalities and continuously save the universe from various threats. All it’s missing is a ’70s soundtrack.
When it comes to Spider-Man comics, there is no one definitive answer. As Into The Spider-Verse so wonderfully displayed, there’s more than one version to get invested in, and it’s essentially a game of pick-your-poison. However, if fans are looking for something more concrete and basic, The Amazing Spider-Man from 1999 and 2000’s Ultimate Spider-Man are two excellent choices.
Both series start with clean slates, but then carry on onto their own adventures and storylines. Amazing is a modernized retelling of the original and Ultimate is an unashamed and over-the-top superhero extravaganza. In the end, it’s down to the reader’s preference.
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Zach Gass is a writer from East Tennessee with a love for all things Disney, Star Wars, and Marvel. When not writing for Screen Rant, Zach is an active member of his community theatre, enjoys a variety of authors including Neil Gaiman, C.S. Lewis, and J.R.R. Tolkein, and is a proud and active retro-gamer.


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