There’s never been a better time to be reading comics. With so many great options from Marvel, DC, Image and other major publishers, and digital services like Marvel Unlimited and DC Universe Infinite making it easier than ever to start reading, there’s no excuse not to dive into a good book in 2023.
From Marvel’s huge X-Men plans to DC’s ambitious relaunch to the ongoing saga of The Walking Dead’s Clementine, these are the biggest comic book projects on the horizon in 2023.
Marvel Comics in 2023
Marvel just got done celebrating Spider-Man’s 60th anniversary in 2022, and now it’s the X-Men’s turn in 2023. But don’t expect any major relaunches or new #1 issues right out of the gate. The X-Men line is still dealing with the massive fallout of 2019’s House of X, and there’s no stopping that mutant train anytime soon.
Marvel is kicking off the new year with a new X-Men crossover called Sins of Sinister. Similar to Powers of X, this storyline jumps ahead to reveal mutantkind’s dark future after Mister Sinister finally betrays his new allies. We’re not sure what effect this crossover will have on the present-day Marvel timeline, but this is one franchise where the future definitely affects the past.
Later in 2023, Marvel will follow that up with a mysterious new storyline called Fall of X. We don’t know much about Fall of X just yet, but based on the title alone we can probably expect mutantkind’s new golden age to come crashing down . The X-Men writers are still in Act 1 of the overarching story that began with House of X and Powers of X, and Fall of X is the story that finally ushers in Act 2.
Then there’s Dark Web, an X-Men/Spider-Man crossover that pits our heroes against Madelyne Pryor and Chasm, better known as Ben Reilly. These two clone villains are tired of being outcasts, and they’re going to get their revenge on the rest of the world, even if that means summoning a horde of demons from Limbo.
Spidey fans can look forward to some other big developments in Peter Parker’s world. Amazing Spider-Man writer Zeb Wells has hinted that he’s finally going to address the series’ biggest mystery and reveal what happened to make Peter Parker’s friends and family turn against him. Spidey is also getting dragged into a Summer of Symbiotes crossover, one which spotlights Venom, Carnage and Red Goblin.
Not to be outdone, the two Captains America are having a crossover of their own. Captain America: Cold War reunites Steve Rogers and Sam Wilson as they take on the Outer Circle and discover new revelations about the origin of Cap’s unbreakable shield.
We’re also expecting major overhauls of two of Marvel’s biggest franchises, Avengers and Star Wars. Writer Jason Aaron is wrapping up his five-year Avengers saga in April, which means we can probably expect a brand new Avengers #1 hitting the stands at some point this summer. Marvel’s Free Comic Book Day Avengers special will give us our first taste of that new series.
In the meantime, we’ve got our eyes on Steve Orlando and Sara Pichelli’s Scarlet Witch, a new ongoing series that casts Wanda Maximoff as the magical fixer of the Marvel Universe. Also in the magical realm, Jed MacKay’s Doctor Strange saga reaches its next phase with a new monthly series featuring the resurrected Stephen Strange.
As for Star Wars, 2023 also happens to be the 40th anniversary of Return of the Jedi. Based on how Marvel handled The Empire Strikes Back’s anniversary a few years back, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a full relaunch of Marvel’s Star Wars line next year. That would almost certainly include a new monthly Star Wars series set after Episode VI and exploring how the victorious Rebel Alliance transformed into the New Republic.
And while we’re on the subject of Lucasfilm properties, is it too much to hope for a new Indiana Jones comic timed to the release of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny? It’s been way too long since Indy has appeared in a comic. But even if he does sit this one out, at least Marvel is debuting a new Planet of the Apes comic in 2023.
DC Comics in 2023
As we head into the new year, DC will be wrapping up the massive Dark Crisis storyline and speeding straight ahead into a new crossover called Lazarus Planet. After a volcano covers the world in the same magic goo that keeps Ra’s al Ghul young and spry, we’re going to see familiar characters gain strange new powers and abilities. Even Batman is getting superpowers.
Once Lazarus Planet wraps up in early spring, DC is going all-in on a new initiative called Dawn of DC. Much like the New 52 in 2011 and DC Rebirth in 2016, Dawn of DC is all about giving readers a fresh jumping-on point and a host of new series.
NYCC 2022 Gallery: DC Comics’ Superman Relaunch
Dawn of DC is bringing back some major heroes who have spent recent years away from Earth. Kal-El is returning home to star in both Action Comics (which is still written by Philip Kennedy Johnson) and a relaunched Superman series by Dark Crisis writer Joshua Williamson. DC is even bringing back a more classic status quo and restoring Superman’s secret identity. That said, Supes will have a hard fight ahead thanks to both classic villains like Lex Luthor and brand new enemies. Meanwhile, Clark’s son Jon will continue his adventures in a new series called Adventures of Superman: Jon Kent, while Connor Kent is the star of Superboy: The Man of Tomorrow.
DC’s two most iconic Green Lanterns are each getting a new series in 2023. Detective Comics writer Mariko Tamaki is spearheading Green Lantern: Hal Jordan, while Johnson is writing Green Lantern: John Stewart alongside his Action Comics work.
DC is still revealing exactly which characters and teams will be included in Dawn of DC, but we do know Doom Patrol, Cyborg and Shazam are all getting new series next year. DC is even bringing back the superhero team-up series The Brave and the Bold, this time with a rotating lineup of creators.
You might be wondering where Batman falls in all of this. DC is keeping surprisingly quiet about what the future holds for its biggest hero. But that may be because the Batman franchise isn’t going to be shaken up the same way the rest of the DC line is.
We’ll see Batman writer Chip Zdarsky dig deeper into his ambitious roadmap for the series next year. Tom Taylor’s Nightwing is about to reach issue #100. Batman Rebirth writer Tom King is also returning to the franchise for a new Penguin comic, one that casts Oswald Cobblepot as… an agent of the US government? Sure, why not?
We probably won’t see any new episodes of Netflix’s The Sandman in 2023, but the franchise will keep trucking along in comic book form. DC is reviving the Dead Boy Detectives for a new limited series at the very end of 2022. Once that book ends, writer James Tynion IV will debut the second book in his Nightmare Country trilogy.
The Other Big Comics of 2023
Even if superheroes aren’t really your thing, there are plenty of great comics to look forward to outside of Marvel and DC.
We’re definitely keeping our eye on IDW Publishing next year. This publisher is undergoing a major shift in focus in 2023 as they continue to pivot away from licensed properties to original projects. That includes the debut of a new, teen and adult-oriented graphic novel line called IDW Original Series. The first two books in that new line are Arca, a sci-fi epic that explores what happens when humanity’s billionaires leave their dying planet behind, and Codex Black, a fantasy adventure story set in 15th Century Mesoamerica.
As IDW continues their push into original properties, that means both GI Joe and Transformers will be finding new homes at other publishers. Hasbro has yet to reveal the fate of either franchise, although rumors suggest both will find a new home at Skybound. We do know Hasbro is looking to relaunch both properties with a fresh, new reader-friendly continuity. Although fans of Larry Hama’s long-running GI Joe: A Real American Hero needn’t worry too much. Hama has all but confirmed that he’ll be continuing that series at the new publisher.
The Best Comic Book Series or Original Graphic Novel of 2022
In another big industry shake-up, the Conan line is leaving Marvel and moving to Titan Comics in Spring 2023. But don’t expect things to change too drastically, as Marvel writer Jim Zub is also making the jump to the new publisher. And if you’re more interested in classic Conan comics, Titan is also continuing Marvel’s lineup of Conan Omnibus collections.
Walking Dead fans will definitely want to be on the lookout for the next entry in the Clementine trilogy. Tillie Walden’s Clementine: Book Two is currently slated for an October release. That book continues to chronicle Clementine’s journey after the events of Telltale’s Walking Dead games. And if the first volume is any indication, this one is going to be a contender for best of the year.
Mark Millar remains one of the biggest draws in the entire industry, and he’s bringing back one of his most popular Millarworld titles next year. Millar is teaming with Batman artist Jorge Jimenez for Nemesis Returns, a sequel to 2010’s Nemesis. Nemesis Returns once again asks the question “What if a costumed vigilante had the resources of Batman and the personality of the Joker?” so this one is definitely adults-only.
Nemesis Returns is just one piece of a bigger puzzle, though. Millar and his artistic partners are planning a full-fledged crossover for 2023 called Big Game. Expect Nemesis Returns to link up with the sequel to The Magic Order and two new books called The Ambassadors and Night Club.
Finally, we’re thrilled to see Jeff Smith bringing back his beloved all-ages series Bone in September. Bone: More Tall Tales is a graphic novel anthology featuring new stories in the Bone universe from a number of talented creators. Do we have another early contender for best comic of the year?
Those are the comics we’re most excited to read in 2023, but there’s no telling how many great books haven’t even been announced yet. Let us know what’s on your to-read list in 2023, and vote in our poll to let us know what you’re most excited for in the new year:
Also, be sure to check out our breakdowns of what to expect from Marvel in 2023 and what to expect from DC in 2023.
Jesse is a mild-mannered staff writer for IGN. Allow him to lend a machete to your intellectual thicket following @jschedeen on Twitter.