I’ve listened to podcasts just about daily since at least 2011. Nonetheless, it’s only around 2017 that I’ve found comic book podcasts entering my regular routine.
The truth is while there are oodles and caboodles of comics podcasts out there, finding the best ones with consistently intriguing approaches is a challenge. Much of it comes to personal taste, as I know I tend to tune out to podcasts that simply review the week’s issues (see also: MANY of them).
The below podcasts all have at least some central hook, or are simply done so well that I tune in at least once a month.
So, if you’re looking for new comics podcasts to add to your rotation, or want to start listening to some for the first time, these are my favorites of the year.
David Harper is the founder of Sktchd, and an excellent comic book journalist with my favorite comic book podcast of the year. Off Panel is set up as a standard “guest of the week” interview show, but Harper’s curiosity about all aspects of the comic book business keep the guests from sinking into the trap of repetition.
Favorites of mine include an interview with the co-owner of Big Bang Comics, a comic shop in Ireland, as well as Harper’s interview with Ed Piskor centered around X-Men: Grand Design.
If you’re interested in many facets of the comic book industry, Off Panel almost certainly has high quality episodes that will peak your interest.
The “internet’s most destructive comic book and pop culture podcast” is hosted by Chris Sims and Matt Wilson, two former Comics Alliance writers, and comic book creators in their own right. While the duo produce a weekly podcast with hundreds of episodes, it’s the monthly “Every Story Ever” specials that hooked me.
“Every Story Ever” finds Sims and Wilson taking reader submitted lists of three comics stories at a time, and then ranking them against all the other stories that have ever been submitted. The list is now hundreds of items long, and frequently leads to hilarious confrontations between the likes of Maus and something like Garfield Alone.
Your mileage for the host’s opinions may vary, but at a minimum “Every Story Ever” has introduced me to all sorts of comics I either hadn’t heard of, or hadn’t prioritized reading. For example, there’s no way anything from Achewood makes my best comics of all time list without this pod.
Easily the funniest recap podcast imaginable, with primary host Hub tackling alternating Bronze Age issues of DC’s Teen Titans and Marvel’s Defenders. Even when I couldn’t be less interested in reading the comic discussed, I’m endlessly entertained by the conversation around the comic.
For my money, the Patreon exclusive “What the Duck?!” podcasts with Hub and his partner are even better. Titan Up The Defense has my highest recommendation!
Comics journalist Graeme McMillan and co-host Jeff Lester alternate episodes tackling the news in comics (and whatever they happen to be reading!) and “The Baxter Building,” a show tackling the entire first volume of Marvel’s Fantastic Four. It’s challenging to really carve out ownership of “the week in comics” style conversation, but the chemistry between the hosts positions Wait, What? a cut above a crowded field.
I’m a sucker for ranking podcasts, what can I say? Hosts Zack and Adam do an excellent job ranking every X-Men story ever, shining a light on three thematically connected X-Men stories each episode.
As much as I love X-Men, I’ve definitely been introduced to material and characters I had never heard of here, including (but not limited to) the X-Men Pizza Hut comics of the 1990’s! Very fun listen for X-Men fans, and one of my favorite comics podcasts of the year.
- House to Astonish
- Casual Wednesdays with Doom Rocket
- Word Balloon
- Nerd Night Radio
- The Marvelists
I’d also be remiss here if I didn’t mention Comic Book Herald has podcasts! Check out the My Marvelous Year reading club podcast to listen to Zack and myself discuss every year of Marvel publication, starting with 1962!
What do you think? Agree with any of the selections? I’m sure there are plenty I missed as well that I’d love to give a shot. Do what feels right to you in the comments.