AfterShock announced this morning that it’s giving back to comic book shops with the release of a new 48-page comic emphasizing the importance of comic book shops in creator and fans’ lives. “Support Our Shops,” aka “S.O.S.,” will be distributed through Diamond Comic Distributors at no cost to stores. It features seven stories written by Cullen Bunn, Stephanie Phillips, Zac Thompson, Steve Orlando, Jamie McKelvie, Jerry Ordway and Aaron Douglas, with art by Leila Leiz, Don Kramer, Szymon Kudranski, Ro Stein & Ted Brandt, Gordon Purcell and Cliff Richards, as well as a cover by David Mack.
“This benefit book celebrates the central and critical role that comic shops have always played in fostering a love of the medium among fans – many of whom have gone on to become creators in their own right,” Publisher Joe Pruett said in a press release. “It might be a drop in the bucket, but it’s a hell of a drop in the bucket. These are heartfelt stories, crafted by creators with deep, lasting connections to the comic shops of yesterday, today and, we have no doubt, tomorrow.”
“S.O.S.” will be distributed to Diamond’s top 500 AfterShock accounts on June 24. The top 200 will receive 20 free copies per storefront, while the next 300 stores will receive 10 free copies. Stores not included in this ranking can receive copies of the comic by request or through their AfterShock Ambassador. According to AfterShock, comic shops can choose to leverage “S.O.S.” as they see fit — whether to give the comic away for free, sell it to recoup pandemic-related losses, or use it for something else entirely is entirely up to them.