Hip Hip Hooray for Free Comic Book Day

We'll be upfront -- we love comics.

We're excited about Iron Man 2's opening next week, we've been following the development of the Green Lantern and Captain America movies, and we're pretty proud of our complete collection of Ultimate Spider-Man trade paperbacks. Yet, if our zealous nature doesn't convince you to get into your local comic book shop, maybe this will; on May 1, many shops around the country will participate in Free Comic Book Day, where everyone gets at least one free comic.

Yeah, you can walk right in and snag free reads of titles like Iron Man, Superman, G.I. Joe, and Toy Story.

Here's where the cynics say, "Meh. Comic books are for kids." Some are, for sure, but pick up an issue of Mark Millar's Kick-Ass (which the recent film was based on) and double check -- there are plenty of titles that appeal to adult audiences. In fact, some of the more mainstream titles like X-Men or Batman deal in far bigger issues than just thwarting a costumed villain.

But what if you've been out of the mix for a while and want to get back to reading your favorite titles? Here's some hot tips:

  • Check out the trade paperback section. Often, these collected stories get you a full storyline for around $20, and can really help get you up to speed on what's going on in the main titles.
  • Try a title that has issue #1 on the shelf. Many of these titles will ease you into a new story or show off new characters without having a bunch of back titles to read through. Comic companies issue new titles all the time with low numbers to bring in newer readers.
  • Ask an expert. Almost all comic book store employees can give you in-depth information on what titles are selling well, have interesting stories, or are an easy read. Just ask!
  • Don't just buy one issue. Comics aren't expensive -- for $20, you can normally pick up five or more titles. If you don't like the story in one, it's no sweat -- you have four more chances.

Need help finding your local comic book shop participating in the event? Head to the official Free Comic Book Day website for a store locator.

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