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Berserk Manga Order

Berserk is undoubtedly one of the most popular manga series in the United States. When the manga returned in 2023 with a new volume, it topped the charts, outselling One Piece and Demon Slayer in the processIt is also an influential work that affected not just many mangakas but also the worlds of games, film, animation, and literature. 

Written and illustrated by Kentaro Miura (1966-2021), Berserk is a Dark Fantasy manga set in a medieval-Europe-inspired world. The story follows Guts, a lone swordsman, on his quest for vengeance against Griffith, the leader of a mercenary band that betrayed him. Starting in 1989, Berserk was published in the manga magazine Monthly Animal House, which was replaced in 1992 by the semimonthly magazine Young Animal.

Berserk was a life’s work for Miura, who died from acute aortic dissection in May 2021. Manga artist Kouji Mori, the only person who knows how Miura intended to finish Berserk, has agreed to continue the manga and see it through to the end using plans and thoughts relayed to Mori by Miura himself, as well as memorandums and character designs that Miura left behind.

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Venom War Reading Order

As summer comes, Marvel delivers a new Symbiotes event–one year after the Summer of Symbiotes. It’s time for the Venom War from writer Al Ewing and artist Iban Coello. This time, it’s a family affair:

The Venom symbiote has bonded with both Eddie Brock and his son Dylan at different points. Now, both Brocks are going head-to-head, determined to be the one true Venom! Father versus son in a showdown of showdowns that threatens to tear the world asunder!

Of course, this being an event, it’s not just about Eddie and Dylan fighting over Venom. Agent Anti-Venom (aka Flash Thompson), Red Goblin (aka Normie Osborn), Widow (aka Natasha Romanov), Carnage (aka Cletus Kasady), Spider-Man (aka Peter Parker), and Meriduis (a future version of Eddie Brock) are taking part in this war.

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Secret Six Reading Order

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DC Comics is full of teams and organizations, some more famous than others. Everybody knows the Justice League and Suicide Squad, but you can’t say the same about the underused Secret Six.

Created at the end of the 1960s by E. Nelson Bridwell and Frank Springer, The Secret Six is the name given to a succession of clandestine, non-governmental special ops teams. The team, to put it simply, was at the time of its creation, DC’s version of Mission: Impossible (which was launched on television in 1966!).

The team features generally six members who all possess special skill sets but also some dark secrets that, if revealed or exploited, would result in imprisonment, disgrace, or death. They are led by the faceless Mockingbird, often with each character assuming that the leader must be one of the other five members. 

Each team can be read independently from the other, so let’s explore the several versions of Secret Six that exist in the main continuity with this Secret Six reading order!

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Doctor Octopus: Origin Story of Spider-Man’s “Superior” Enemy

Among Spider-Man‘s many iconic enemies, Doctor Octopus occupies a notable place–right after the infamous Green Goblin. Octopuses are not natural enemies to the spiders, so this is an exception. Introduced in 1963 in the pages of The Amazing Spider-Man #3, this supervillain was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.

Doc Ock’s real name is Otto Octavius. He is a mad scientist who is highly intelligent, myopic, and in control of four mechanical arms that he built himself. Those arms were the original idea of Steve Ditko. He suggested it to Stan Lee who came up with the rest, the name and the origin story.

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Darkseid Reading Order

If Marvel’s Thanos is nowadays vastly known, he is not the only tyrannical ruler with a deadly agenda for the rest of the Universe. Before him, there was another one introduced in the DC Universe by none other than Jack Kirby. We are obviously talking about Darkseid, a New God and the tyrannical ruler of the planet Apokolips. 

Darkseid first appeared in a cameo Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 (1970) in what is known as the beginning of the Fourth World Saga–he made his first full appearance in Forever People #1.

Born Prince Uxas, Darkseid took control of the planet Apokolip, a nightmarish dystopia that is the complete opposite of its sister planet, New Genesis, a utopian world ruled by the wise and benevolent Highfather. The inhabitants of these planets possess incredible powers and abilities far beyond those of ordinary mortals. Eventually, the two went to war against each other. But a peace was ultimately signed and required an exchange of “hostages” as Highfather’s son, Scott Free (Miracle Man), was traded for Darkseid’s son, Orion.

What Darkseid really wants is to eliminate all free will from the universe. To achieve that, he searched the Anti-Life Equation and that’s why he took an interest in Earth as he thought he could piece together the Equation by probing the minds of every human. But he also had to fight the heroes of Earth. He tried other approaches over the years to accomplish his desired goal. From antagonist in Jack Kirby’s saga, he became the greatest adversary of the Justice League.

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The Essential Comic Book Vocabulary Guide

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Each subject has its own lexicon and specialized terminology, and the world of comic books is no exception. New readers can be confused when words such as “continuity,” “variant covers,” or “crossovers” pop up.

As a medium, comics have created a rich and distinct language over the years. Prominent creators and scholars like Will Eisner, Scott McCloud, R. C. Harvey, and Dylan Horrocks have worked to formalize and clarify comic-book language. To help you navigate the Comic Book World, we’ve put together a Glossary of comics terminology—a guide with the most popular terms and phrases you can encounter.

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Superman Comics, A Reading Guide for the Golden Age, Silver Age & Bronze Age!

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Up, Up, and Away!” Superman is one of the most iconic comic book superheroes who dedicated his life to truth, justice, and the American way. The creation of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster made his first appearance in Action Comics #1 (May 1938). Sent to Earth from a distant planet as a baby, the child (now named Clark Kent) grew up and discovered he had super abilities. As an adult, he decided to become Superman, “champion of the oppressed” and “had sworn to devote his existence to helping those in need!”

A page of history was written as the debut of Superman is now considered the beginning of the superhero genre. While Action Comics started as an anthology, the title would eventually become dedicated to Superman Stories. It didn’t take long for the Man of Steel to headline more than one title as he soon came to live adventures in newspaper strips as well as in the new Superman title! During the next decades, the Kryptonian would team up with Batman and other superheroes while living some wild tales in Metropolis as Clark Kent/Superman, working as a journalist for the Daily Planet with his love interest Lois Lane and photographer Jimmy Olsen, and facing enemies such as Lex Luthor, Brainiac, or General Zod.

From the 1940s to the mid-1980s, there have been many Superman adventures, and DC Comics has reprinted some of them in different collections (there are many more stories to be collected yet). This article is here to help you navigate all those collections (some only available second-hand, very pricey or not), and explore those old colorful times!

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The Future of Comic Book Treasury (and other recent updates)

Panels from The Wicked and The Divine #2. This was in July 2014!

As of right now, you may have heard how Google is killing independent websites. If not, the short version of the story is the recent updates of the search engine wiped out the search traffic of many websites as Google pushes ads and AI Answers on the top of their results pages. Google Search has evolved to no longer be a proper search engine, as its primary focus is to retain users within its own ecosystem (and selling its own products).

Without surprise, Comic Book Treasury has been massively affected by those recent events. Compared to last year, we have lost more than 50% of our traffic and we are still decreasing — and to be fair, we are a small website! It could also be worse, as our sister site Howtoread.me (owned by Fabien) has been part of those who lost 95% of their traffic.

I also have to acknowledge that the timing couldn’t be worse, as the Superhero Comic Book Industry is not in great shape right now. The market is down and things are evolving. These are always turbulent times.

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Kyle Rayner Reading Order (Green Lantern)

Following the 1993’s Reign of Supermen saga, Hal Jordan–the main Green Lantern of that era–is pushed on a downward spiral during the famous Emerald Twilight storyline that will have grave consequences for everybody. Hal lost his mind and destroyed what was the heart of the Green Lantern, killing most of the Guardians of the Galaxy in the process, before going away for a time. During his absence, one surviving Guardian, Ganthet, visited Earth to find a replacement Lantern. He found Kyle Rayner.

Editor Kevin Dooley was faced with dropping sales and decided to let go of Hal Jordan, now considered a hero from a bygone era but a lot of readers, and introduced a new Green Lantern for the 1990s. As it was the era of the Death of Superman and backbreaking Batman, the trend was destruction and Hal (and Coast City) had to be destroyed to let an All-New Green Lantern take his place.

In Green Lantern (vol. 3) #48, writer Ron Marz and artist Darryl Banks introduced Kyle Rayner, a freelance comic book artist working in Los Angeles. Unlike Hal Jordan, Kyle was not a fearless and somewhat perfect hero. In fact, he had his problems and knew fear, but it was his capacity to overcome it that led Ganthet to give him what was at the time the last working Green Lantern power ring.

Without the Green Lantern Corps to help him, Kyle had to learn the hard way how his ring works. When his girlfriend, Alexandra DeWitt, was murdered by the supervillain Major Force (who infamously stuffed her body in a refrigerator), Kyle was forced to confront the seriousness of his new job as a Lantern. He moved to New York and decided to become the best Lantern he could be–this storyline was the origin of controversy, but the Green Lantern series survived and thrived with his new hero.

Since then, Kyle Rayner joined the Justice League, achieved godhood, helped create a new group of Guardians of the Galaxy, helped carry on the legacy of the Corps, and fought Parallax and a lot of powerful enemies.

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The Beta Ray Bill Origin Story – Who is this alien Thor?

Looking like he is Thor with the head of a horse, Beta Ray Bill is not a multiverse variant of the Asgardian superhero. He is from the same universe and he is more than a copy or a variant of the God of Thunder.

Introduced by Walt Simonson during his famous run on Thor in 1983 in a 4-issue adventure told in The Mighty Thor #337-340, Beta Ray Bill is a Korbinite, as he comes from the planet Korbin, “Burning Galaxy.” The inhabitants of this part of space don’t look like him as he was transformed into a cybernetic being.

For Walt Simonson, the idea was to use comic tropes to subvert expectations. As he said in an interview published in The Jack Kirby Collector #14, “I designed Bill deliberately as a monster, because I knew that people would look at it and go, ‘Oh, my God, it’s this evil guy.’ I deliberately wrote them so you weren’t sure in the beginning if he was a good guy or a bad guy. His face was designed around a horse’s skull, partly because horses are quite beautiful. I thought it’d be kind of cool to have the structure of a beautiful animal underneath the monster to give this dichotomy between the monstrous and the beautiful in the same face.

One of the most surprising elements of Beta Ray Bill’s introduction is that he can pick up Mjolnir, the most powerful weapon of the Norse gods, the one that only Thor is supposed to be worthy of using. But Bill is also worthy and, beyond the initial shock of seeing a monster-like character using Mjolnir, it proves that he is a noble warrior on par with Thor.

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