Countdown To The Eisners 2015 – Best Limited Series

eisner_imageWhile it's nice to have a couple of ongoing series queued up in your pull box, sometimes just settling with a limited series can make for a nice break in the cycle. These are series that have a shelf life of only a few issues, then they're off to be collected in a trade paperback or hardcover. I noticed a few of the nominees in this category deal with dreams, and the sorts of adventures one can have within their own dreamscapes. For the younger readers, Little Nemo. For the older readers, Sandman. While I did get a little sleepy reading all these nominees in a row, I kept myself from falling asleep and being transported off to either realm. Although if I had a say in the matter, I'd definitely be down to explore Slumberland with Flip, and have tea with the Princess.

Keep in mind I cannot vote for who wins (nor can you, probably), as per the rules. However, that's not keeping me from being vocal regardless!

Who is eligible to vote?
Comic book/graphic novel/webcomic creators (writers, artists, cartoonists, pencillers, inkers, letterers, colorists
All nominees in any category
Comic book/graphic novel publishers and editors
Comics historians and educators
Graphic novel librarians
Owners and managers of comic book specialty retail stores

Who is not eligible to vote?
Comics press or reviewers (unless they are nominees)
Non-creative publisher staff members (PR, marketing, assistants, etc.)
Fans

Before I get back to channeling Winsor McCay so I can be eligible for next year, let the games begin!

Best Limited Series

Daredevil: Road Warrior, by Mark Waid & Peter Krause (Marvel Infinite Comics)

After a little turbulence forces Matt's plane to land in Wisconsin, he notices something is off about one of the passengers: he has no heartbeat. When he tries to confront the man on the ground, he's off and running, and seems to be able to not only morph his physical appearance, but his molecular structure as well. Pretty soon its Daredevil fighting Daredevil, and Matt needs to quickly figure out who/what he's fighting. Strong art by Krause, and once again Waid excels at flexing his Daredevil writing muscle.

Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland, by Eric Shanower & Garbriel Rodriguez (IDW)

In the royal palace of Slumberland, the Princess is desperately in need of a playmate. Her father, King Morpheus, has his wisest of wise men select the perfect playmate for her: James "Nemo" Summerton. Only problem is, getting Nemo to Slumberland to play with her in the first place. Upon arriving to the majestic kingdom and meeting the Princess, things go awry as the rascal Flip tries to throw a monkey wrench into the equation and wake Nemo up, melting Slumberland. A true nod to Winsor McCay with a wonderfully fun story from Shanower and gorgeous art from Rodriguez.

The Multiversity, by Grant Morrison et al. (DC)

While DC's New 52 is currently happening, a cosmic parasitic race known as the Gentry is invading the Multiverse in the background, bleeding slowly into each Earth. Heroes from every world find themselves being drafted and fighting against the Gentry, trying to save the Multiverse and everyone who inhabits it. You get different characters interacting with one another from parallel worlds, with the only thing tying them together being comic books. Not sure I'd classify this as a limited series, for it feels like it will be present for the next few years.

The Private Eye, by Brian K. Vaughan & Marcos Martin (Panel Syndicate)

Taking place in Los Angeles in the semi-distance future, everyone has a secret identity. I'm not talking about superheroes, but after The Cloud blew up revealing everyone's secrets, people had to protect what they had left of their identities. It's up to one private investigator to solve a background check that suddenly becomes a murder-mystery. It's as if Vaughan took Facebook, Blade Runner, and Wikileaks, and blended them together for a sci-fi noir tale with fabulous illustrations from Martin.

The Sandman: Overture, by Neil Gaiman & J. H. Williams III (Vertigo/DC)

Dream is summoned away from his world to a cosmic plane, where he's joined by several different aspects of himself. It's like a Crisis of Infinite Sandmans, in a way. One aspect of Dream has died, and it's up to him to find out what caused that aspect's death. The journey to a crazed star that's a cancer to the universe is then underway, as Dream is accompanied by his cat aspect. Gaiman shows no signs of slowing down with the Dream Lord, and Williams' dreamscapes are mesmerizing.

 

little_nemo1_coverWho I think should win:
Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland, by Eric Shanower & Garbriel Rodriguez (IDW)

This miniseries was a lot of fun. Such a well-crafted tale from Shanower and Rodriguez, which McCay himself would approve of the final result. Watching "Nemo" explore Slumberland for the first time was such an enjoyable adventure, and it brought a wonderful feeling of nostalgia to the reader. Not once did it feel like a bastardization of the property, but rather a fitting homage to the original Little Nemo strips. It's as if I was a little kid again, hungry for more of the fantastical world.

It's also great seeing Rodriguez's illustrations again after Locke & Key, for the man can draw intricate settings as if they were nothing. In Return to Slumberland, every page was eye-candy, and I found myself scanning each page throughout with the biggest grin on my face.

Who I think will win:
The Private Eye, by Brian K. Vaughan & Marcos Martin (Panel Syndicate)

Vaughan and Martin made sure the last half of the series ended just as strong as it started, with some great unexpected twists and turns along the way. Powerful storytelling, with beautiful art. Both Vaughan and Martin are major favorites in the industry.

Who I think should have been nominated:
Trillium, by Jeff Lemire (Vertigo)

A terrific sci-fi story with great art (as usual) from Lemire. While it technically started in 2013, it continued on and ended in 2014. Great little series, and a must-have for Lemire fans.

Who do you think should win / been nominated?

Cameron Hatheway is a reviewer and the host of Cammy's Comic Corner, an audio podcast. You can return him to Slumberland on Twitter @CamComicCorner.