If Halloween is nerd Christmas for cosplay reasons, Free Comic Book Day (or FCBD) is the non-denominational, equal opportunity Holiday party— complete with Secret Santas. Thanks to the generosity of both publishers and retailers (who cover all the costs incurred by FCBD), lucky comic readers can swing by participating shops on Saturday, May 4th, 2013 to pick up a selection of over 50 (!!!) books. These are titles specifically printed for FCBD, offered by a wide variety of publishers (e.g. DC, Marvel, Dark Horse, Image, IDW, Bongo, etc.) for every age range. The goal is to get more people reading comics, whether they’re 5 or 50, and help regular readers find new series to follow.
Honestly though? The best part of FCBD isn’t the books, it’s seeing the nerd community come together to celebrate what they love. There’s always something happening at participating stores: whether you’re making friends while waiting in line for your books, taking photos with cosplayers or getting a sketch or signature from an artist, the day is filled with new and old fans alike revelling in the graphic art they love.
So where will you be this Saturday? Here are some of my favourite shops hosting FCBD events:
Silver Snail Comics
329 Yonge Street, 2nd Floor
- Largest FCBD celebration in Toronto with over 15,000 comics to give away
- Skottie Young (Marvel “Babies” cover artist) and Kalman Andrasofszky (X-Treme X-Men cover artist) will be signing FREE Silver Snail Anniversary posters, plus sketching live on 64-inch screens and handing out free prints of their digital sketches (while supplies last)
- Spent Pencils Studio members (Paul Limgenco, Mark Feltham, Kevin Briones and Gemal Plummer) will be signing and sketching
- 501st Legion and local cosplayers in attendance
- In-store sales and promotions all weekend
- Complete selection of FCBD titles, 14 comic limit per person
The Comic Book Lounge
587A College Street
- Featured Guest: Ken Wheaton (Popeye artist), displaying a gallery exhibition of original Popeye art in-store
- Other guests include Dave Ross (Iron Man artist), R.B. White, Leo Leibelman, Sean Ward, Christopher Yao and David Bishop
- Appearances by the Toronto X-Men Cosplayers
- In-store sale
- Great selection of FCBD titles, 5 comic limit per person
3278 Yonge St
- Special guests artists Shane Kirshenblatt, Marvin Law and Rob Vellone sketching for fans throughout the day
- Appearance by Pat Mastroianni (Joey Jeremiah on Degrassi) and his Delorean for some photo ops
- In-store sale
- Great selection of FCBD titles focusing mostly on kids books, 3 comic limit per person
499 Main Street South #104
- Guest appearances by Ken Lashley, Marcus To, Ty Templeton, Agnes Garbowska, Adam Gorham, Vince Sunico, David Bishop, Shane Heron, George Todorovski, Paris Alleyne, Joe Osei Bonsu, J Aaron Ong, Alvaro Cruz, Gemal Plummer, Mark Williams, and Gen Ishihara!
- Contests, prizes and giveaways
- In-store sales and doorcrashers
- Complete selection of FCBD titles, 5 comic limit per person
Did I miss your local shop? Let me know in the comments!