Free Comic Book Day; it’s a day where people come from far and wide to gather as many comic books as they can carry in their arms (for free) and maybe, just maybe, the comic book retailers will make new customers too. Since 2002, Free Comic Book Day has brought millions of new readers to a variety of books and this year is no exception. A lot of publishers will use these books to launch major events, such as Marvel constantly pushing their latest Avengers or Spider-Man storylines into readers hands for free. Other publishers like Bongo Comics, who publishes The Simpsons, will create special one off issues that add to the comic line. Then you get the lazy publishers who will just put out a reprint of something from the past or the first few chapters of a Manga (Yeah Viz, I’m onto you!). Either way, this is a great day for all readers and collectors, young and old.
So in the tradition of The Pull List, here are 5 books from the Gold and Silver range that I recommend you track down yourselves on the most holy of comic book days… And don’t forget to go and pick up something from the stores too, they need to make money and you never know what most Comic Book Retailers will have going on the day: Signings, free drawings from local and international artists, specials on Trade Paper Backs, back issues and more. So support that local shop instead of just being that reader who comes in once a year for free stuff.
FCBD 2018 MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS SPECIAL
(Writer) Kyle Higgins, Ryan Parrott (Art) Diego Galindo (Cover Art) Jamal Campbell
Featuring an all-new, original Power Rangers story exclusive to this Free Comic Book Day issue, this has ties to the “Power Rangers: Shattered Grid” event storyline, taking place in the pages of BOOM! Studios’ Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Saban’s Go Go Power Rangers comic series! Zordon turns to the Morphin Masters for help in the Power Rangers’ darkest hour as they battle Lord Drakkon – an evil version of Tommy, the Green Ranger, from an alternate reality – as he threatens every Ranger in all of existence.
BOOM Studios has been doing some amazing things with the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers line since they returned in 2016. One of the biggest things that they did was a sorta-new character by the name of Lord Drakkon, an alternate timeline Tommy Oliver (The Green Ranger) who never left the side of evil and combined the powers of the Green and White Rangers into one all powerful villain. From there Drakkon took over his world before finding his way into the world where the team we know resides. Drakkon has been beaten, captured by the Earth Defense Forces, escaped and now is out for revenge in a story line called SHATTERED GRID. This Free Comic Book Day edition features a story that ties into the SHATTERED GRID story line, so you know it’s going to be a quick grab since the start of the story line, which happened in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #25, is sold out worldwide!
FCBD 2018 TRANSFORMERS UNICRON #0
(Writer) John Barber (Art) Alex Milne (Cover Art) Sara Pitre-Durocher
Not a whimper, nor a bang-the end comes with a squall of entropy shrieking from the ravenous maw of death itself. The message is clear: Unicron has arrived. The Transformers lock into a desperate bid to save Rom’s homeworld from the world-killer – but why has Unicron chosen this world on his path to Cybertron… and Earth? The biggest story in the history of Transformers starts now: for Unicron’s arrival can mean nothing less than the end of a universe.
The Transformers have had an interesting history with comic books, with the first 4 issue mini series being created by Marvel in 1986 which ended up running for 100 issues before the plug was pulled in the USA. (The UK meanwhile got over 150 issues in an alternate universe series that mixed with the US one) Now the license is with IDW, who are doing some more interesting things with the Robots in Disguise; ranging from more Political takes on life on Cybertron, to a religious stance with a group of space faring robots… Plus they made Megatron a good guy! Now IDW is adding Unicron, one of the biggest of the baddest, into the mix and this issue is just a preview of a story that might just change everything we know about The Transformers.
FCBD 2018 BONGO COMICS FREE-FOR-ALL
(Writer) Matt Groening (Art/Cover Art) Matt Groening
Get in line for the foremost Free Comic Book Day four-color giveaway of the year! Bart goes in search of adventure one particularly hot and boring summer day; Milhouse exacts revenge on his bullies; Lisa, of all people, gets her own “…the Clown” show; and Kang and Kodos make an ill-advised alien abduction. It’s a fabulous and frenetic funny book for the ages (all of them), and it’s all free!
One of the “must have” staples for Free Comic Book Day has always been the Bongo Free-For-All, which usually features stories from The Simpsons, Futurama and more every year. The best thing about the Bongo Free-For-All is that they are all new mini stories from those brands, nothing reprinted here. If you’re going to grab anything at all from this Free Comic Book Day, then this should be the first thing on your list.
FCBD 2018 NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS ZEROS JOURNEY #0
(Writer) Dj Milky (Art/Cover Art) Kei Ishiyama
When Jack Skellington’s faithful pet Zero gets lost, the ghost pup must get the help of the residents of Christmas Town to find his way back. With Halloween plans on hold while Jack mounts a search, will they be reunited in time to save both holidays?
If there is anything that this world has been missing it’s more stories from the world of The Nightmare Before Christmas. The adventures of Jack Skellington and Zero just need to be told damn it! It’s amazing that one of Disney’s most beloved modern movies has gone without anything to make more stories out of. Sure it took The Incredibles over a decade to get another movie, but they have had comic books. Toy Story got mini movies and other things over time to keep telling their stories. The Nightmare Before Christmas? Nothing. Well thankfully we finally get something, and it’s free too which is a bonus.
ULTRA STREET FIGHTER II #1
UDON ENTERTAINMENT INC
(Writer) Ken Siu-Chong (Art/Cover Art) Hanzo Steinbach
While Ryu has struggled for years to control the darkness within himself, his best friend Ken Masters has now succumbed to his own inner demons to become… VIOLENT KEN! Ryu, Sakura, Sean, and even Dan Hibiki must fight to prevent Ken from destroying himself and those he cares about most!
Recently, the events from the Street Fighter comic books have made their way into being a massively over arching story about Ryu and his battle with the Satsui No Hadou, the killing intent of his martial art which is used mostly by Akuma and also Ryu when he gives into it. After the events of Street Fighter Unlimited, which partly told the story of Street Fighter III, we had a more balanced Ryu who embraced the light and the dark of his martial arts to defeat Gill and also Oni (Akuma when he’s lost all control). Fast forward to Street Fighter vs Darkstalkers, where Ken encounters the darkness within himself, leading to a confrontation between Ryu and Violent Ken that ended the comic! Now we get to see the outcome in Ultra Street Fighter II starting with this free issue.
And now for the part you’ve all been waiting for… The full list of available comic books! As mentioned before, please support your local Comic Book Retailer and buy something while you are there too, and make sure to keep yourselves to the limits and rules each store will have on the day for how many books you will get. For more information about the day and what else might be happening, make sure you check out the Official Free Comic Book Day Website.