• Reviews 

    Free Comic Book Day! (Reviews)

    By | May 4th, 2009
    Posted in Reviews | % Comments

    The first Saturday of every May is Free Comic Book Day. This is mostly designed to pull people into comic book stores who don’t go into comic book stores with promises of treats, tchochkes, and free comics. All our favorite comic book giants send out examples of things they press with the hopes of getting to a new fanbase. They also release stuff just to appease us, the loyal comic book reader who comes in every Wednesday and buys up our favorite stories. Long story short: I love Free Comic Book Day.

    I am just as picky when it comes to grabbing FCBD books as I am any other book, however. Probably even more so. This year, there was a decent list of hot comics waiting to be grabbed up, as well as a cute little exclusive Mini-mate (of which I own a couple). I showed up at my local comic book store at 10:00 AM before my comic book guy had even put his books out just to make sure that I’d be able to grab all I wanted to grab, and grab I did.

    The two biggest titles this year were the Avengers one-shot and the Blackest Night preview. In the Avengers issue, we have a reuniting of Thor with the New Avengers (our true Avengers) and the new Dark Avengers. The issue, while entertaining, is nothing to write home about though. It’s nice to have a story in which Thor once again interacts with the Avengers, but that interaction is very basic and minimal, and most of the action happens without him. This issue once again goes to tease us with the hopes of a New/Dark Avengers throw down, but we get nothing in the end. I enjoyed reading it and am happy to have gotten it for free, but it’s a story I could’ve lived without. On the other hand, the Blackest Night #0 was a really great read. It’s short, to the point, and doesn’t really offer anything we didn’t already know/assume about the story, but it succeeds in being an ample prologue to DC’s summer event. Leave it to Geoff Johns to take a bit player in the Green Lantern mythos and make him possibly one of the most important villains Green Lantern will ever face. The information at the end of the issue that tells us all about the different Lantern corps was also a great addition for those who haven’t been up to date with the Green Lantern books. Needless to say, I have high hopes for the Blackest Night.

    There wasn’t a lot else I picked up. I picked up the Atomic Robo issue because Atomic Robo is something I’ve been interested in reading for a while. The book seems entertaining and right up my alley, but I’ve been apathetic about taking the time to go out and grab volumes 1 and 2. After reading this short story, however, I’m much more interested. I love the art for it as I feel it fits the mood presented very well. The writing is also highly entertaining. Atomic Robo is a very humorous character, and he spends the issue fighting a hyper-intelligent “time traveling” velociraptor. If that doesn’t grab your interest, I’m not entirely sure what will. The book kind of reminds me of what Hellboy would be like if he were funny. I’ll definitely be picking up the new series, to say the least. I also picked up William Shatner’s comic book, mostly because it’s William Shatner. I really hate the feel of the issue as it feels like someone printed this on flimsy crap paper they pulled out of a wet garbage, but for a small independant comic company, I don’t think I should expect too much. The three stories held inside, however, really aren’t bad. They’re nothing to write home about (unless you’re a really old fan of Tek War), but it’s a nice way to introduce people to his work. For a guy who never really made it after the original Star Trek series and movies, he is a creative guy and not that bad of a story teller. Granted, he didn’t actually write anything in this issue, but they are his stories.

    Continued below

    The real exciting book of the year, however (at least for me), was the reprint of issue #1 of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Everyone my age grew up with the Turtles. They are one of the most popular 90’s cartoons of all time, but not everyone has actually read the original stories, including yours truly. It’s something I’ve always wanted to read, but it’s about as hard to find as Steve Purcell’s Sam And Max used to be (which you can now get quite easily, thank God). I was more than happy to grab this issue, and I absolutely love it. It’s truly awesome to see the turtles in their original form, and anyone who missed this grab certainly missed out big time. However, the good news is that even if you didn’t get this issue, you can read them online, and on top of that volume 1 will be released in trade paperback soon, which is the first 11 issues and 4 backup stories about the turtles, all released back in the 1980’s. Exciting news all around!

    Granted, there was a lot more that I didn’t read. Frankly, it just didn’t interest me all that much. However, Free Comic Book Day is something that should be embraced by all, and if you didn’t go this year, be sure to mark it on your calendars so you don’t miss out on free Ninja Turtles next year.

    Matthew Meylikhov

    Once upon a time, Matthew Meylikhov became the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Multiversity Comics, where he was known for his beard and fondness for cats. Then he became only one of those things. Now, if you listen really carefully at night, you may still hear from whispers on the wind a faint voice saying, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not as bad as everyone says it issss."