Without a doubt, we here at Nerds on Earth think that the Marvel Unlimited app is one of the best deals in all of nerdom. It has a tremendous backlist and the app only runs about 6 months behind publication date on new comics; so if you aren’t the kind of person who wants to be current to the moment, it is a huge value. And reading comics on an iPad is a great experience.
That said, if you are new to comics, it can be a daunting place to jump into. So here are some comics and runs that I think make for a great starter list.
New to Comics? A Marvel Unlimited Starter Set
Brian Michael Bendis’ New Avengers. Bendis is without a doubt one of the architects of the Marvel Universe and by reading this series that started in 2004, you get a solid sense of what has happened over the last decade of Marvel. It is especially notable for the redemption of Luke Cage and Wolverine and Spider-Man becoming first time Avengers.
Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men. The X-men is the most superhero soap opera of all Marvel books. It has a long, rich but convoluted history that can make it daunting to jump into.
Joss Whedon’s run is a beautiful, nearly perfect X-Men story that newcomers can easily jump into. (But know that the series closer is in a book with a different title, Giant Size Astonishing X-Men, which could get lost.)
Young Avengers. This 2005-2006 series is based on the simple premise that there is a group of teenagers that are becoming Avengers. There are some weird affiliations and cool tie-ins but the premise is easy to jump on-board and it tells the story of some characters that are very intriguing and relatively new.
Runaways. This Brian K. Vaughan penned series is based on the elevator pitch of what if some superpowered teenagers discovered their parents were supervillains. Independent from much of the Marvel Universe, it is a great standalone story, again, with some relatively new and compelling characters.
Ms. Marvel by G. Willow Wilson. One of the best new books of the last 5 years. And it deserves all the accolades that it has garnered, as it has expanded Marvel’s diversity while also being firmly rooted in its teenaged roots as it follows the story if the Muslim American Kamala Khan as she becomes Ms. Marvel.
Guardians of the Galaxy by Abnett and Landing. If you liked the movie, this series which began in 2008 is perfect for you. There are some characters you won’t recognize and some tie-ins with some Marvel cosmic events but overall it is great storytelling and comic books. Worth checking out.
The Mutant Massacre. Okay, so this will be hard for modern readers to understand but there was an era where comics didn’t have annual massive crossover events. The Claremont Era Mutant Massacre event was one of the first and in the app, you can find a reading list for it and many other events in the app itself.
If you haven’t made the investment yet, Marvel Unlimited is definitely worth it and these reading lists recommendations will give you some good starting points.