Some words about time and timing.

by John Velousis

Hello! Hopefully, you’ve seen and read our “Best-Of” column. If not, here’s a link. I’d like to point out that, in that article, all of our wonderful recommendations from this fantastic year in comics now have links so that you can buy the stuff we’re talking about – sometimes digitally, sometimes from Amazon, sometimes a bit of each. If you haven’t heard yet (from me) that I’m very close to shameless, well, now you have! Please enjoy your Black Friday shopping! Ach – BLACK FRIDAY! Black is the color of death. Black is also the color of a hole – an absence. You know what else is a hole? DEBT. The day’s name is THE closest that the collective United States of America comes to brutal self-awareness. Gotta give it props for THAT, anyway. Oh, but I do ramble on. Happy shopping, really.

You're preaching to the choir, buddy. Supergod #5. Writer: Warren Ellis, Illustrator: Garrie Gastonay, Inks: Rhoald Marcellius, Color: Digikore Studios

Perceptive readers will note that 2011 isn’t over yet. Hence, our list is NOT “The Best Comics of 2011” – look at the long, odd title I gave the thing. Elsewhere, I have said that our site “stakes its claim as the Golden Globes of the [comic book reviewing] field” by announcing our awards-like stuff first. I’ve also called our timing “a deliberate, calculated Dick Move that I orchestrated just so we’d be first.” While there’s a germ of truth in each of these statements, I’m writing THIS present article to tell you that I’m mostly joking when I say those things.

Bulletproof Coffin #6 - Story & Words: David Hine, Story & Art: Shaky Kane

The Golden Globe Awards, if you don’t know, are movie awards whose televised ceremonies generally are the third-most watched awards shows every year. (The first two are at the link, okay?) This is kind of nuts, because they are decided upon by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which has (per that Wikipedia article!) 93 members at present. Their decisions upon winners are available for purchase, it seems, but at least they’ve abandoned their original practice of figuring out winners based upon whether the winner was willing to attend their televised award ceremony. The biggest reason for their ratings success, though, is that they both announce their nominations and then show the winners before the AMPAS does so with the Oscars.

Here at the Comics Vault, our decisions are not for sale – yet! – and we are infinitely more qualified than the HFPA to announce What Is Truth in our art criticism. Why? Because they are all paid for their opinions, as professional jounalists. We, on the other hand, perform our task pro bono. We do it for love!

The Return of Bruce Wayne #6. Writer: Grant Morrison, Penciler: Lee Garbett, Inker: Alejandro Sicat, Colorist: Guy Major, Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher

As for the timing, one may very well ask, “Why now?” Or perhaps, “Are you really saying that your period of review is gonna be from the third Wednesday of November through the second one in November the next year every year? Are you nuts? Is that your deal? You’re nuts?” Well, we arereally saying that, yes. And no I am not crazy, that’s not my deal, not really.

Oh, behave! Knight and Squire #2. Writer: Paul Cornell, Artist: Jimmy Broxton, Colorist: Guy Major

As for “Why now?” The reason is because, why NOT now? We are free, you know. ALL of us, all human beings, in SOME sense are truly free, insofar as where no rules exist, we may make our own. That is what we here at The Comics Vault have done. We reject the idea that we must obey the arbitrarily chosen first day of the Julian and Gregorian Calendars. We are no more bound to start and end at that date than we are to spend it observing The Feast of the Circumcision. We are art critics! Capital-A Art is fearless; it doesn’t bolster rules, it bends rules to its whim. We would be UNFIT to render judgment upon the pieces of this medium were we to aspire to any less.

Oh, just plop down like you own the joint! GOD! From a story in DC Universe Legacies #8. Writer: Len Wein, Artist: Frank Quitely, Colorist: Peter Doherty, Letterer: Rob Leigh

Now, to be frank, none of the writers here knew in MAY of this year – let alone November of 2010 – that we would be blogging about comics right now. So, yeah, there’s a good likelihood that we missed some awesome thing that shipped in December of 2010 – in fact, this whole article is illustrated with some of my favorite stuff from the last two months of 2010. Well, next year, we’ll do better. And if we want to, we will reject the sun itself and start observing 26-hour days. Because we are free, and that, my friend, is how we roll. Thank you for visiting us here, and as Tony Stark would say, keep coming back!