A great comic book cover is an advertisement, a work of art, a statement, and an invitation. A great comic book cover is a glimpse of another world through a canvas no bigger than a window pane. In Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month), we look back over some of the most eye-catching, original and exceptional covers of the past month.
September's covers include masterclass composition from Genndy Tarkakovsky and Noelle Stevenson, some beautiful uses of light, color, and contrast, and some very different portraits of gods, old and new.
Constructing a comic to be a direct reference to something else is always a tricky proposition. When it's done sloppily, it can take the reader right out of the story, like one of my least favorite Batman comics, The Cult, which is trying so hard to be the next Dark Knight Returns that you can see it straining with effort on every page. Even in the best case, if you're attempting to echo one of the greats, you're still reminding people that they're not reading the comic you're spending all this time calling back to, and it goes from being distracting to being frustrating for the reader.
It's the exact problem that W. Haden Blackman and Michael Del Mundo are grappling with in Marvel's latest relaunch of Elektra, but with the incredible, engaging storytelling that comes from both story and art, they do a solid job of it. Well, until the last page, that is, when it goes from "this might be a worthy successor" to "this is going to be incredible."
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