Biff Bam Pop!’s Holiday Gift Guide 2021 Presents Read This Book: Five Great Indie Trades For Your Last Minute Shopping

Hey there friends, it’s your old pal Uncle Mac here with some kind words of sympathy. I get it. Christmas is right around the corner, and while you’ve managed to grab a few things so far, there are just so many people on your list it’s a bit overwhelming. What do you get those darn kids so they think you’re the cool uncle? What about that coworker who surprised you last year and left you empty handed? What about that special someone you really want to impress this year?

The answer to all of these is, as always, indie comic books! They are the true gift that keeps on giving!

But there are so many on the shelf right now, and you want to look like you are a hip indie reader and not just a rider on the coat tails of the latest fad. Well don’t you worry. Uncle Mac is here with a great list of hip new indie trades that will impress even the most jaded of surly Gen Zers!

So enough preamble, let’s dive in:

James Harren (W/A)
Dave Stewart (Colorist)

Perfect for: Anime fans, action fans, Kaiju fans, and fans of post apocalyptic survival stories.

Here’s the blurb:

A cosmic plague has spread, transforming everyday people into violent, monstrous kaiju. Only the Ultramega – three individuals imbued with incredible powers — hold the line against this madness. Their battles level cities and leave untold horror in their wake. Now, the final reckoning approaches for the Ultramega… but is this a war they can even win?

Fight monsters and stand with humanity in this new Skybound Original from the greatest artist of his generation, James Harren (Rumble, BPRD) and Eisner Award-winning colorist Dave Stewart (Black Hammer).

Just some good old fashioned monster fighting, with a post apocalyptic twist. I was a bit worried when I read issue one of Ultramega that this was just going to be another beat-em-up book, but the story took some awesome twists and ended up being one of my favorite reads of the year. Don’t get me wrong, there is still a ton of awesome action, but the characters are actually very well developed, and this world feels both familiar and fresh at the same time. Ultramega is definitely a great book for the action fan in your life.

Pick up a copy here!

Scott Snyder (W)
Tony S. Daniel (A)
Image Comics

Perfect for: Mad Max fans, survival horror fans, female action fans

Here’s the blurb:

It’s been ten years since Val Riggs saw the sun swallowed up by darkness. Ten years since nearly everyone she knew was infected and changed into hideous ‘shades’. Now a ‘ferryman’ providing transport for people and goods, she traverses the deadly unlit roads in her eighteen-wheeler, taking on whatever evils the night provides. When the promise of an illuminated sanctuary crosses her path, Val must undergo a journey far beyond the limits of any ferryman before her. But with a loved one in the throes of infection, time is running short…

Legendary creators Scott Snyder (Dark Knights: Death Metal, Wytches) and Tony S. Daniel (Batman, Deathstroke) unveil horrors beyond any shade in this pulse-pounding new ongoing series.

Nocterra is such an awesome book, told by the master Scott Snyder and beautifully illustrated by Tony S. Daniel. It’s a must for anyone who loves survival horror or post apocalyptic stories (lots of apocalypse stories this year. Wonder why that is?)

Nocterra got a lot of hype when it was announced, and it’s no surprise why. Snyder weaves an intense and thrilling story around a handful of survivors of this terrifying new world. It’s a fresh take on an old concept, and I really dug it, plus, there is a second volume on the way, and talk of a TV show in the works, so you might be helping your friend to get in on the ground floor with this one. A great read, and a great gift!

You can pick it up here.

Michael Moreci (W)
Nathan Gooden (A)
Vault Comics

Perfect for: Conan fans, 80’s action movie fans, comedy fans, and D&D fans.

Here’s the blurb: Owen the Barbarian has been cursed to do good with what remains of his life. His bloodthirsty weapon, Axe, has become his moral compass with a drinking problem. Together they wander the realm, foredoomed to help any who seek assistance. But there is one thing Owen hates more than a life with rules: Witches.

Welcome to the skull-cracking, blood-splattering, mayhem-loving comic brave enough to ask: How can a man sworn to do good do so much violence? Hah! F***ing with you. It’s just…BARBARIC.

There are only a handful of comics out there now that I immediately read the day I buy them, and Barbaric is one that very short list. I’m only three issues so far, but they were extra thick, extra long, and extra awesome. As a long time fan of sword and sandal style action, Barbaric had a lot to offer, and with the fantastic writing of Michael Moreci, and the frankly stunning art of Nathan Gooden, this book delivers.

Now, be forewarned, Barbaric is for mature readers, full of lots of sex and violence, so think carefully before you pick it up for a younger reader, but if you have a friend who loves some good old fashioned barbarian action, this is the book to buy!

You can get you copy here.

James Tynion IV (W)
Martin Simmonds (A)
Image Comics

Perfect for: Spy fans, conspiracy theory fans, your uncle who loves the History Channel, and fans of great books all around.

Here’s the blurb: Cole Turner thought he joined the right side of the war for the Truth. But now that he’s learning more about Lee Harvey Oswald’s tenure leading the Department, he’s not so sure. And as Tulpas start to gain a stronger foothold in the real world, Cole’s time to decide where he stands is running out…

The second arc of the smash-hit DEPARTMENT OF TRUTH from James Tynion IV (Batman) and Martin Simmonds (Dying is Easy) is collected here!

I mean, you knew I had to drop this is here, right? The Department of Truth is hands down my favourite comic right now. It’s at the top of my read pile every month, and one of the few comics that I’ve never had a disappointing time reading. Volume One was amazing, and Volume Two cranks things up to eleven. More mystery, better action, and more of that incomparable Tynion storytelling that we all love. Plus, Martin Simmonds’s art will haunt you dreams in the best possible way.

Pick it up here.

Donny Cates (W)
Geoff Shaw (A)
Image Comics

Perfect for: Any comic fan, but specifically indie comic fans.

Here’s the blurb: DONNY CATES and GEOFF SHAW reunite for an epic and historic series that’s AVENGERS: ENDGAME meets CLOVERFIELD with a good dose of the questing of THE DARK TOWER series thrown in for good measure.

Imagine everything you thought was fantasy…was real. And now join us, in a world where reality is dead…and anything is possible…

One day, the sky opens up and every comic book character you’ve ever know comes pouring into the real world. The world, understandably freaks out. Comic books are destroyed, comic creators are hunted, and religious extremists attack.

There are a lot of comics that people say are for “comic fans,” but this here, this one actually is. Crossover is a deep dive into comic lore, with a literal who’s who of indie comic darlings. Every page is crammed full of tiny Easter eggs, and any comic fan is going to love seeing how Donny Cates weaves together this new reality. It’s a fantastic read, and a great gift for that comic book fan in your life.

Pick your copy up here.

So there you go folks, five great indie titles for those last minute Christmas gifts you still need to snag. Check them out, and let me know what you think!

Until next time, stay safe.

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