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  1. #1
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    Default Looking for the BEST comic stories of the 80s

    I know that saying "best" is highly subjective. What could be one person best, might be shit to the other.

    I am a 80s baby. Never read a single comic until about 3 years. Mainly been reading 2010 - up. And mostly longer arcs: Preacher, Transmetropolitan, etc...

    It isn't that I don't like those comics. I feel like I am missing out.

    I found a list: https://web.archive.org/web/20160405...-of-the-1980s/



    Now, I've read Watchmen, TDKR, Batman Year One, and Swamp Thing. Non of the others. When I read ASM #229 - 230. I fell in love. So, I've read everything else on that persons list...

    And I want more. I'm not looking for LONG arcs... or by specific writers, artists or inkers etc...

    Just great stories. In the 80s. My goal will be to buy these in singles or perhaps buying a digital reader.

    Any suggestions?



    The GOAL will be to creat a long box with great stories and art. Maybe something like Avengers #211-about 228 and Avengers #270 - 277

  2. #2
    I am the law Judge Dredd's Avatar
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    Judge Dredd Block Mania/Apocalypse War

  3. #3
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    I should mention.

    I am only interested in Marvel & DC.

  4. #4
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    Daredevil 196 - DD meets Wolverine for the first time, before Wolverine was in everything.

    Alpha Flight 1-13 - A team book that focused on individual characters and their back stories, kind of the way the show LOST would focus on individual characters while still serving the overall plot.

    Moon Knight 35- Great one and done story that even guest stars the ff and x-men.

    These are some that might easily be overlooked by most.
    Last edited by TomHudson; 03-30-2018 at 07:45 AM. Reason: Wrong issue #

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by HitManX View Post
    I know that saying "best" is highly subjective. What could be one person best, might be shit to the other.

    I am a 80s baby. Never read a single comic until about 3 years. Mainly been reading 2010 - up. And mostly longer arcs: Preacher, Transmetropolitan, etc...

    It isn't that I don't like those comics. I feel like I am missing out.

    I found a list: https://web.archive.org/web/20160405...-of-the-1980s/



    Now, I've read Watchmen, TDKR, Batman Year One, and Swamp Thing. Non of the others. When I read ASM #229 - 230. I fell in love. So, I've read everything else on that persons list...

    And I want more. I'm not looking for LONG arcs... or by specific writers, artists or inkers etc...

    Just great stories. In the 80s. My goal will be to buy these in singles or perhaps buying a digital reader.

    Any suggestions?



    The GOAL will be to creat a long box with great stories and art. Maybe something like Avengers #211-about 228 and Avengers #270 - 277
    Hmmm........ How much time you got?

    I'm going to got title by title at first. I will not be able to get all of them in one post.

    Iron Man: Demon in a Bottle (#120-128), Doomquest and its sequel (#149-150 and 249-250), and Armor Wars (#225-232, or #215-232 if you want the lead up to the story).
    Amazing Spider-Man: I know you didn't want long runs by creators, but the Roger Stern run is pretty much great for each issue. Highlights include the Cobra/Mr. Hyde story (#231-232) the Hobgoblin saga (#239, 244-245, 249-251), and the Kid Who Collected Spider-Man (#248). After that, the Tom Deflaco/Ron Frenz run is pretty solid. The further Hobgoblin story runs through #259-261, 275-276, 289. The Sinister Syndicate #279-281 is also good.
    Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man: The Owl/Octopus War and fallout (#73-79), Death of Jean DeWolf and its followup (#107-110, 134-136)
    Fantastic Four: Man and Superman/X-Factor (#249-250)
    Avengers: The Roger Stern run is the best of the decade. Highlights include Ultimate Vision (#231-254), Once and Future Kang (#267-269), Under Seige (##273-277), and Assault on Olympus (#281-285).
    Mini Series: Wolverine, Hawkeye, and Hercules (2 minis) are the must haves for this decade.
    West Coast Avengers: The original Mini is great. Also Lost in Space/Time (#17-24)
    Incredible Hulk: Ground Zero (#340-346)
    Captain America: The Captain (#332-350), Acts of Vengeance (#365-371) and Streets of Ice (#372-378)
    Thor: Beta Ray Bill Saga (#337-340), Surtur Saga (#350-353), Last Stand of the Executioner (#360-362), and the final Simonson story (#275-382).

    These are just a sampling. I didn't touch on any of the X-Men titles or DC.

  6. #6
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    You said not long runs but, all of Frank Miller's Daredevil, Stern Spider-Man, Simonson Thor. For only a shorter story, read Daredevil: Born Again by Frank Miller. It's miles better than TDKR.

  7. #7
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    I would sya basically all of Michelinie's and O'Neill's Iron man. There are a few fillers but over all it's two long runs and both are a lot of fun.
    Gruenwald's Squadron Supreme (kinda proto Watchmen)

  8. #8

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    You say you don't want "long arcs," but in the 1980s, long arcs weren't really done a lot unless they were a separate miniseries like Watchmen.

    It's hard at this point for those of us who read comics in the 1980s to point to a specific issue. We really just remember a certain creator's run for the most part. Issues within a great creator's run are generally all worth reading and even if it's not a "long arc" in the sense that it's all one story, elements of earlier stories often do get touched upon in later ones, so forgive us if we do just rattle off swaths of issue numbers instead of just a single one or two.

    Since DC really hasn't been touched upon, I'll add a bunch here and list it by character:

    SUPERMAN (pre-Crisis):
    (1) Superman Annual 11 (1985): Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons, before they teamed for WATCHMEN, created the classic "For the Man Who Has Everything" story featuring Superman, Batman, Robin (Jason Todd), and Wonder Woman vs. Mongul. This was adapted in an episode of both Justice League Unlimited and Supergirl.

    (2) Superman 423, Action Comics 583 (1986): Alan Moore writes the last pre-Crisis Superman story, "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?"

    SUPERMAN (Post-Crisis)
    (1) MAN OF STEEL by John Byrne (1986) - Published soon after Alan Moore's story above, this lays out the backstory of the post-Crisis Superman. Really, any trade collection of post-Crisis Superman from 1986-1996 is worth reading.

    BATMAN
    (1) Batman 404-407 (1987) - The classic post-Crisis origin of Batman by Frank Miller and David Mazzuchelli -- "Batman Year One."

    WONDER WOMAN
    (1) Wonder Woman 1-24 (1987-1988) - George Perez pencils, plots, and eventually writes the post-Crisis Wonder Woman. The first 6 or 7 issues show her post-Crisis origin and journey to man's world to fight Ares (in the 80s, not World War I like the movie).

    JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL
    (1) Justice League 1-6, Justice League International 7 (1987) - begins the legendary Keith Giffen/JM DeMatteis/Kevin Maguire run on the title. Superheroes with a sitcom bent.

    LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES
    (1) Legion of Super-Heroes 290-294 (1982) - Paul Levitz and Keith Giffen give the Legion perhaps its greatest, and most famous, story, "The Great Darkness Saga." This can be daunting for someone who never read the Legion as it features every team member and pretty much every supporting cast member who ever appeared in the series teaming up to fight Darkseid, but for sheer audacity, it's worth a read even if you don't know who anyone is.

    It's a little hard to keep recommending because you say you want suggestions noted as single issues rather than trades, which is the easier way to get into comics these days.

    If you were willing to try trades, I'd simply suggest start with the first collection for any character you are interested in and keep reading until the stories no longer work for you.

    But the above individual issues featuring DC's biggest characters are a good start.
    Last edited by Comic-Reader Lad; 03-30-2018 at 12:56 PM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
    Hmmm........ How much time you got?

    I'm going to got title by title at first. I will not be able to get all of them in one post.

    Iron Man: Demon in a Bottle (#120-128), Doomquest and its sequel (#149-150 and 249-250), and Armor Wars (#225-232, or #215-232 if you want the lead up to the story).
    Amazing Spider-Man: I know you didn't want long runs by creators, but the Roger Stern run is pretty much great for each issue. Highlights include the Cobra/Mr. Hyde story (#231-232) the Hobgoblin saga (#239, 244-245, 249-251), and the Kid Who Collected Spider-Man (#248). After that, the Tom Deflaco/Ron Frenz run is pretty solid. The further Hobgoblin story runs through #259-261, 275-276, 289. The Sinister Syndicate #279-281 is also good.
    Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man: The Owl/Octopus War and fallout (#73-79), Death of Jean DeWolf and its followup (#107-110, 134-136)
    Fantastic Four: Man and Superman/X-Factor (#249-250)
    Avengers: The Roger Stern run is the best of the decade. Highlights include Ultimate Vision (#231-254), Once and Future Kang (#267-269), Under Seige (##273-277), and Assault on Olympus (#281-285).
    Mini Series: Wolverine, Hawkeye, and Hercules (2 minis) are the must haves for this decade.
    West Coast Avengers: The original Mini is great. Also Lost in Space/Time (#17-24)
    Incredible Hulk: Ground Zero (#340-346)
    Captain America: The Captain (#332-350), Acts of Vengeance (#365-371) and Streets of Ice (#372-378)
    Thor: Beta Ray Bill Saga (#337-340), Surtur Saga (#350-353), Last Stand of the Executioner (#360-362), and the final Simonson story (#275-382).

    These are just a sampling. I didn't touch on any of the X-Men titles or DC.


    I have time for great stories.

    With Fantastic Four #249 - 250. Wouldn't it be better to go ahead and read the entire galactus trial? That's 20 issues, I believe. I don't mind long arcs.



    Quote Originally Posted by OldManBrian View Post
    You said not long runs but, all of Frank Miller's Daredevil, Stern Spider-Man, Simonson Thor. For only a shorter story, read Daredevil: Born Again by Frank Miller. It's miles better than TDKR.
    I might just go ahead and buy Miller's omnibus and companion, Stern's omnibus and Simonson's Thor omnibus.

    I'm having a hard explaining this though. I essentially just want 200 comics from the 80s.

    Quote Originally Posted by Balakin View Post
    I would sya basically all of Michelinie's and O'Neill's Iron man. There are a few fillers but over all it's two long runs and both are a lot of fun.
    Gruenwald's Squadron Supreme (kinda proto Watchmen)
    I liked Gruenwald's Squadron Supreme. I also liked a few of his issues on Captain America.

    Quote Originally Posted by Comic-Reader Lad View Post
    You say you don't want "long arcs," but in the 1980s, long arcs weren't really done a lot unless they were a separate miniseries like Watchmen.


    It's hard at this point for those of us who read comics in the 1980s to point to a specific issue. We really just remember a certain creator's run for the most part. Issues within a great creator's run are generally all worth reading and even if it's not a "long arc" in the sense that it's all one story, elements of earlier stories often do get touched upon in later ones, so forgive us if we do just rattle off swaths of issue numbers instead of just a single one or two.

    Since DC really hasn't been touched upon, I'll add a bunch here and list it by character:

    SUPERMAN (pre-Crisis):
    (1) Superman Annual 11 (1985): Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons, before they teamed for WATCHMEN, created the classic "For the Man Who Has Everything" story featuring Superman, Batman, Robin (Jason Todd), and Wonder Woman vs. Mongul. This was adapted in an episode of both Justice League Unlimited and Supergirl.

    (2) Superman 423, Action Comics 583 (1986): Alan Moore writes the last pre-Crisis Superman story, "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?"

    SUPERMAN (Post-Crisis)
    (1) MAN OF STEEL by John Byrne (1986) - Published soon after Alan Moore's story above, this lays out the backstory of the post-Crisis Superman. Really, any trade collection of post-Crisis Superman from 1986-1996 is worth reading.

    BATMAN
    (1) Batman 404-407 (1987) - The classic post-Crisis origin of Batman by Frank Miller and David Mazzuchelli -- "Batman Year One."

    WONDER WOMAN
    (1) Wonder Woman 1-24 (1987-1988) - George Perez pencils, plots, and eventually writes the post-Crisis Wonder Woman. The first 6 or 7 issues show her post-Crisis origin and journey to man's world to fight Ares (in the 80s, not World War I like the movie).

    JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL
    (1) Justice League 1-6, Justice League International 7 (1987) - begins the legendary Keith Giffen/JM DeMatteis/Kevin Maguire run on the title. Superheroes with a sitcom bent.

    LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES
    (1) Legion of Super-Heroes 290-294 (1982) - Paul Levitz and Keith Giffen give the Legion perhaps its greatest, and most famous, story, "The Great Darkness Saga." This can be daunting for someone who never read the Legion as it features every team member and pretty much every supporting cast member who ever appeared in the series teaming up to fight Darkseid, but for sheer audacity, it's worth a read even if you don't know who anyone is.

    It's a little hard to keep recommending because you say you want suggestions noted as single issues rather than trades, which is the easier way to get into comics these days.

    If you were willing to try trades, I'd simply suggest start with the first collection for any character you are interested in and keep reading until the stories no longer work for you.

    But the above individual issues featuring DC's biggest characters are a good start.
    Read all Superman by Alan Moore. Haven't read Man of Steel by Byrne. Read Batman Year One. Wonder Woman by Perez #1 - 8, I have read that. So good. Haven't read JLI or Legion of Super-Heroes. I'll check the ones out the ones I haven't read.
    Last edited by HitManX; 03-31-2018 at 05:54 AM.

  10. #10
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    Hmmm, okay here's my list of "greats" from the 80's:

    -Marvel's Secret Wars
    -DC's Crisis on Infinite Earths
    -Batman Year One
    -Batman The Dark Knight Returns
    -Squadron Supreme maxi-series
    -X-Men The Dark Phoenix Saga
    -X-men Days of Future Past
    -Byrne's Fantastic Four
    -Miller's Daredevil
    -Byrne's Alpha Flight
    -New Teen Titans - The Judas Contract
    -Batman the Killing Joke
    -Batman Son of the Demon
    -LOSH: The Great Darkness Saga
    -Miller's Wolverine limited series
    -Spider-Man: Kraven's Last Hunt
    -Avengers: Under Siege
    -Walt Simonson's Thor
    -Justice League by Giffen and DeMatteis
    -Captain America by Stern/Byrne
    -Amazing Spider-Man by Stern
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by HitManX View Post
    With Fantastic Four #249 - 250. Wouldn't it be better to go ahead and read the entire galactus trial? That's 20 issues, I believe. I don't mind long arcs.
    Those issues are a sentimental favorite of mine. They are the first FF issues I ever read, and the story is a great introduction to the FF and the Marvel Universe as a whole. Byrne had a solid consistency for his run on FF and I had trouble picking out any story arcs as better than the others. The Trial of Galactus is good, but it plays out slowly with other stories happening in between. Since you were not asking for runs, but individual issues, those are the ones that stood out in my memory.

  12. #12
    Fantastic Member Dick Grayson's Avatar
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    Some DC not mentioned yet:

    Denny O’Neil’s Question run
    Mike Grell’s Green Arrow - Longbow Hunters starts things off and is a classic 3-issue prestige series, then the ongoing picks up from there
    Ostrander’s Suicide Squad
    Ostrander’s Hawkworld
    Grant Morrison’s Animal Man
    Grant Morrison’s Doom Patrol
    Alan Grant’s Detective Comics (583-594, 601-621, 627, in 1990 it continues to the main Batman title then Shadow of the Bat)

    While each of these series ran for awhile, I recommend just starting at the beginning and if you like, keep going.

  13. #13
    Incredible Member Graphic Autist's Avatar
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    John Byrne.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rincewind View Post
    Those issues are a sentimental favorite of mine. They are the first FF issues I ever read, and the story is a great introduction to the FF and the Marvel Universe as a whole. Byrne had a solid consistency for his run on FF and I had trouble picking out any story arcs as better than the others. The Trial of Galactus is good, but it plays out slowly with other stories happening in between. Since you were not asking for runs, but individual issues, those are the ones that stood out in my memory.

    I've noticed that 80s writers have a different structure for doing arcs.

    I really enjoyed those two issues. Didn't feel completely lost at all. It was the same with reading ASM #229-230.


    Thanks for helping me!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graphic Autist View Post
    John Byrne.
    100% agree

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