Published on April 16th, 2014 | by Duke Of Havoc


Free Comic Book Day 2014 – Preview

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I think most who frequent Need To Consume are aware of Free Comic Book Day. However, I thought I would give it a quick write up as it might just tempt one or two of you into visiting your local comic book store and giving comics a go. So, if you are completely au fait with the event and already have your titles marked out, you might as well click on one of the other amazing articles from Need To Consume instead.


They gone? Cool. So, you have been thinking of giving comics a go but have no idea where to start or you might have a wee bit of trepidation about going into a comic book store (trust me, they are incredibly welcoming places).  Well, Free Comic Book Day was invented just for you and also a way for the industry to thank those who religiously visit their local store to pick up the last titles in their pull list.

It all started back at the turn of the century when a rather bright fellow called Joe Field started to notice a trend between comic book movie releases and an interest in related titles. He was a retailer but also wrote for a magazine which covered the comic book industry. He wrote a piece on a proposed day where comics would be given out free to encourage new readers into stores. Free comics?! You mean, actually give them away? For free? That is the reaction you would have expected, but no! The reaction was incredibly popular and Jim Valentino (an incredibly well respected creative talent) proposed that the very first Free Comic Book Day should be held on the opening weekend of the highly anticipated Spider-Man film by Sam Raimi. This happened to be the May 4th 2001 (which just happened to also be Star Wars Day. May 4th. May the fourth. May the for..oh forget it).

By using the hype and attention surrounding the film, the event hoped to generate a lot of free press and attention. People of all ages were expected to flock to the film and Free Comic Book Day was hoping to use that momentum and interest to create a new generation of comic book readers. Needless to say, the event was a huge success and has been held every year since then. It is traditionally held on the first Saturday of May, however in 2004, it was moved to July to tie in with the sequel to the film which started it all only two years previous. To give you an idea of how popular the event is, there has been over thirty million comics distributed to over nine million visitors in just thirteen years. Yikes!

So, are you interested? You fancy finding your local store and seeing what they are up to? Well never fear, Duke can point you in the right direction. Simply click here find a store local to you and get it in your diary.

The books on offer are incredibly varied. It isn’t all about Marvel and DC anymore, folks! There are myriad publishers out there who want to attract new readers to their titles and this is the perfect event for it. FCBD have different levels of books known as Gold and Silver. The different levels available on the day at your local store is purely down to the owner. There are over sixty comics which will be available on the day but please don’t expect to find all of them in your store! I have picked out a few titles below, but you can find the full list here.


Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy


 (W) Brian Michael Bendis, Dan Slott (A) Nick Bradshaw (CA) Sara Pichelli

In an all-new story by award-winning writer Brian Michael Bendis and acclaimed artist Nick Bradshaw, the Guardians of the Galaxy welcome Venom and Captain Marvel to the team for the launch of a not-to-be-missed death-defying epic! PLUS: Writer Dan Slott lays the foundation for 2014’s top secret Spider-Man event that will rock the Wall Crawler’s world forever!

Dark Horse’s Avatar/Itty Bitty Hellboy


(W) Gene Luen Yang & Various (A) Faith Erin Hicks & Various (CA) Faith Erin Hicks

In Avatar: The Last Airbender, Sokka follows Suki as she gives a lesson in manners and encourages a young girl’s strength. Itty Bitty Hellboy has fun toying with nemesis Rasputin, and the Juice Squeezers crew leap into action to defend one of their own against a persistent bully. Hilarity ensues!


Marvel’s Rocket Racoon – Trust me, this furry critter is going to be everywhere!


(W) Joe Caramagna (A) Adam Archer (CA) Ron Lim, Richard Isanove

Spotlighting Marvel’s BIGGEST star! No, we’re not talking about Iron Man! Not Captain America! Not Thor! It’s Rocket Raccoon! The madcap mammal takes on the cosmos in an all-new FREE COMIC BOOK DAY adventure!

Steam Wars

(W/A/CA) Fred Perry

A not so long ago, in a galaxy relatively close by began an epic struggle on a world seized in the grip of an evil Victorian empire.  Only a ragged alliance of rebels oppose the emperor and his black guard, but hope is fading.  While fleeing from the steam-driven war machines of her imperial pursuers, Duchess Imoen stumbles across the home of the last Dragoon: the legendary storm foil warriors of ancient lore!  This new (but strangely familiar) steam-fantasy epic will give thrills that haven’t been felt since 1977!

Uber The First Circle

(w) Kieron Gillen (a) Caanan White

An ideal entry point into the world of Uber!  Kieron Gillen and Caanan White electrified the comics community with their runaway hit, UBER in 2013.  Now the creative team that revolutionised the super soldier genre is presenting a special Free Comic Book Day edition, Uber: The First Cycle!  This is a history book told with the events of the first two story arcs woven into real-World history and with tons of all-new writing from Gillen, special new art and sneak-peaks of upcoming pages.

Some stores really make a go of it and hold events with cosplayers and even some of the writers & artists who create the titles on offer. Kia and Maria of Need To Consume are going to be at Whatever Comics in Canterbury, Kent wearing their Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy costumes from LSCC. We will be posting a huge look back at the event from stores across the UK and hopefully beyond. If you went for the first time, let us know in the comments below and feel free to share on Twitter and Facebook.

Duke Of Havoc
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