Decisions, Decisions…

Okay guys, so I know I’ve been saying that I needed to cut back on the different series I’ve been following, but I haven’t managed to really do so before this week – when I basically forced myself to sit down and think this all out and determine some sort of criteria for what series I stick to, and which ones I want to let go. And I thought I would walk everyone through the process of what I came up with, in case anyone is interested…

The first thing I wanted to do was put all the series I was reading in some sort of ranking. I thought this would make the process easier because I could define a cut-off point from there and basically pull everything that fell beneath that point. Unfortunately, that’s where I ran into the first problem. There are many series that I love for very different reason. I could not figure out how to rank Hawkeye, Thor, and Saga against each other because I love them for totally different reasons. Trying to compare them was, if you’ll forgive the overused metaphor, like trying to compare a specific apple to a specific orange and say which one was better. There was no way to decide which of the three was actually on top of the list. So I decided, instead, to split the list!

Taking all the series I read, I put them into one of three categories:

  • “Fun” reads – comics that I read for the humor. These are the series that, in my opinion, are usually more character driven. Typically the plot lines are more episodic in nature, though not always. I read them more for the characters and the quips that go back and forth. They’re the ones that I almost always laugh at as I’m reading, and any running storyline just doesn’t seem as series as other series I’m reading.
  • “Serious” reads – comics that are very plot driven and the storyline doesn’t leave much room for humor. Not to say that they don’t have good characters, but that’s not what I’m reading for. I’m reading mostly to find out what happens next and how the events I’m reading about end up fitting into the bigger picture of what the writer has in mind.
  • “In-Between” reads – which is exactly what it sounds like, comics that incorporate both categories above. These are usually the ones that do the best job balancing the serious elements and the humorous elements.

With those rankings in mind, I put each series into one of the three categories, and then ranked them within those categories (an infinitely easier task than ranking every series against each other) and ended up with the following lists:

“Fun” Reads:

  1. Hawkeye
  2. Avengers Assemble
  3. Captain Marvel
  4. X-Men Legacy
  5. Wolverine & the X-Men
  6. FF
  7. Young Avengers
  8. Secret Avengers

“Serious” Reads:

  1. Thor: God of Thunder
  2. Batman
  3. Scarlet
  4. Morning Glories
  5. East of West
  6. Batwoman
  7. Mind the Gap
  8. Avengers
  9. New Avengers
  10. Guardians of the Galaxy
  11. Wonder Woman
  12. Captain America
  13. Green Arrow
  14. Wolverine
  15. Winter Soldier
  16. Thanos Rising
  17. Age of Ultron

“In-Between” Reads:

  1. Saga
  2. All New X-Men
  3. Daredevil
  4. Nova
  5. Superior Spider-Man
  6. Uncanny X-Men
  7. Indestructible Hulk
  8. Iron Man
  9. Fantastic Four
  10. Uncanny Avengers
  11. Polarity

Once that was done, I started looking at the series near the bottom of the list, and trying to figure out just what my criteria was going to be, and where the cutoff point would be in each list. That was not the fun part, because there are plenty of series that I want to keep reading on the off-chance that they get interesting, or the ones that are tied to other series that I have enjoyed reading so far. But finally, I settled on two pretty simple pieces of criteria:

  1. I need to have read at least 2 issues – You can’t always tell if a series is going to be any good from just the first issue, so at least 2 or 3 would be a good place to make a judgement
  2. I’m looking forward to the next issue coming out – anticipating what will happen or wondering how something is going to be solved, or even just looking forward to reading more of a character.

Turns out that second point is what really defined my cutoff point. I went through every list and figured out which series was the last one that I was really looking forward to continuing, and the answers were pretty easy to come to: FF, Wonder Woman, and Superior Spider-Man. Everything underneath it was up for a cut. The only thing that would stop that is if I’d only read 1 issue, which did save two series – Wolverine and Green Arrow (Technically Thanos Rising should have been on this list too, but I really didn’t want to read another one, so I left it off). Which means the following series I will not be picking up anymore:

  • Young Avengers
  • Secret Avengers
  • Captain America
  • Winter Soldier
  • Thanos Rising
  • Age of Ultron
  • Uncanny X-Men
  • Indestructible Hulk
  • Iron Man
  • Fantastic Four
  • Uncanny Avengers
  • Polarity

And yes, I did have a decent idea of which of these I would be dropping through the week, which is why you saw me mark a lot of these series as “Drop” throughout the week – especially ones where I had issues sitting around for me to read (I was really hoping some of them would prove me wrong…). Anywho, there are still plenty of series that I’m reading, so no worries – there will still be plenty of opinions. And I will be picking up new series to try whenever I can! But I think I will keep the same litmus test around – more than one issue read and I need to be looking forward to the next issue, or I won’t pick up any more.

Happy Tuesday everyone, and I hope you all are looking forward to whatever you are picking up tomorrow!

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