Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) is one of my favorite events of the year. It occurs the first Saturday in May, every year. Which means this Saturday, May 2nd is FCBD. I attended my first one back in 2007 and have been a participant every year since. It was actually FCBD that pulled me back into the world of comics, through the introduction of indie graphic novels, and I truly treasure this event every day for introducing me to one of my favorite literary formats. There are a plethora of events going on across the United States and Canada. You can locate your local events easily through their website (many public libraries are also getting in on the fun, so if you lack a number of comic shops that might be your best bet).
For those like me, who crave the offbeat, the unusual, indie comics, or if you will, the non-superhero comics, then I have compiled my top choices from this year's selections. They include compilations of short stories, teasers to upcoming graphic novel releases, pop culture adaptations, and more! Scroll down to see full descriptions (including age ratings) and let me know in the comments what comics you are most looking forward to (for a full list of Free Comic Book Day 2015 Comics, click here). There really is something for everyone and I do hope you will either continue your love of this special event or check it out for the first time this year, because you are never too young or too old to read comics.
Top to Bottom / Left to Right:
BOB'S BURGERS: D.E. is bringing us a special Bob's Burgers in comic form, and I for one could use more doses of the Belcher Family. This comic is set up with mutliple short stories from various writers and artists from the show. They are tackling some of our favorite topics: Tina's Friend Fiction, Louise's Unsolved Mysteries and Curious Curiosities, Gene Belcher Presents: The Musical, and more! Plus - this one is for all-ages.
SUPERMUTANT MAGIC ACADEMY STEP ASIDE POPS COMBO: Drawn & Quarterly is celebrating their 25th year in publishing and what better way to celebrate on Free Comic Book Day then with two of their most anticipated comics for 2015: Jillian Tamaki's SuperMutant Magic Academy and Kate Beaton's Step Aside, Pops! Two creators that bring the humor along with the clever writing and wonderful illustrations. Bonus points - amazing women creators and another all-age comics for FCBD.
AND THEN EMILY WAS GONE!: This one from Comixtribe is for Mature Readers. It is also a prelude to the horror comic, And Then Emily Was Gone! by John Lees, Iain Laurie, and Ryan Stegman. In Scottish folklore Bonnie Shaw will grant parents wishes in exchange for their children. The question is, what will Billy McTaggart's parents decide.
COMICS FESTIVAL: As per their tradition, Comics Festival has compiled a collection of short story comics by Canadian creators for FCBD. This year's showcase includes the following: Cover by Isabelle Arsenault (Jane, The Fox, and Me), Back Cover by Dave Roman (Astronaut Academy, Teen Boat), Lady's Favor, by Kate Beaton (Hark, A Vagrant), The Boss, by Mariko Tamaki (Skim, This One Summer) and Gillian Goerz, In Real Life: Con Game, by Cory Doctorow (Little Brother) and Jen Wang (Koko Be Good), Once Upon a Pony, by Svetlana Chmakova (Nightschool), Superhero Girl: The Death of Kevin, by Faith Erin Hicks (Friends with Boys), and Costume Quest, by Zac Gorman (Magical Game Time). This compilation comes with a Teen+ Rating.
THE MOTORCYCLE SAMURAI: IDW - Top Shelf is presenting The Motorcycle Samurai, which is being hailed "the new benchmark for indie digital comics." That's right, this digital comic featuring the last hero of the West is getting the print edition makeover FCBD. Expect a 24-page color comic to hold you over until the full graphic novel comes out later this year. The Motorcycle Samurai has a Teen Rating.
BODIE TROLL & FRIENDS: Red 5 Comics contribution Bodie Troll & Friends by Jay P. Fosgitt is considered the perfect Free Comic Book Day comic for non-comic readers (say that five times fast), not to mention avid all-age comic readers. Expect beautiful illustrations and a humorous story of a troll hijacking a little girl's tea party. Again, this is for all-ages and all-types of readers.
HIP HOP FAMILY TREE 3-IN-1 FEATURING COSPLAYERS: This is another special featuring two comics. First there is Ed Piskor's Hip Hop Famiy Treet (or HHFT), which is a current comic for FANTAGRAPHICS BOOKS. This FCBD special includes experts from the three existing volumes, Rob Liefeld/Spike Lee commercial adaptation and exclusive pinups by R Crumb, Scottie Young, Jim Rugg, Ben Marra, and more. Then you have Dash Shaw's Cosplayers, which will includes 24 pages of exploration of social interactions through two cosplayers. Together they have a Teen+ Rating.
DARK HORSE FIGHT CLUB THE GOON THE STRAIN: Dark Horse Comics with Chuck Palahniuk and Cameron Stewart are premiering Fight Club! Plus Eric Powell covers an all-new tragedy in The Goon! and Guillermo del Toro has an all-new chapter from The Strain! That is right, this is a three comic special. Needless to say, this one is for Mature Readers.
BOOM! Studios Ten Year Celebration 2015 Free Comic Book Day Special: Over the years, BOOM! have produced some wonderful works for Free Comic Book Day. This year their tenth anniversary special offers a full-color issue of all-age titles from BOOM!'s imprints Archaia, BOOM! Box, and KaBOOM! The special includes an illustrated cover by Mouse Guard creator David Petersen and contains:
- Jim Henson's Labyrinth - "Wisdom and Idioms" written and illustrated by Cory Godbey
- Iscariot written and illustrated by S.M. Vidaurri
- Mouse Guard -"Service to Seyan" written and Illustrated by David Petersen
- Adventure Time with Fionna & Cake: Card Wards created by Pendleton Ward, written by Jen Wang, and illustrated by Britt Wilson
- Regular Show - "Coffee Shop Special!" created by JG Quintel, written by Kevin Church, and iillustrated by Coleman Engle
- Peanuts - "Dogstoevsky" created by Charles M. Schulz, story by Charles M. Schulz, pencils by Vicki Scott
- Garfield - "Fast Feline" created by Jim Davis, written by Mark Evanier, illustrated by Andy Hirsch
- Lumberjanes created by Shannon Watters, Noelle Stevenson & Grace Ellis, written by Noelle Stevenson and Grace Ellis and illustrated by Brooke Allen
- Munchkin -"Table of Contents" written and Illustrated by John Kovalic
- Help Us! Great Warrior written and illustrated by Madeleine Flores