Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Free Comic Book Day 2015: Bow Your Allegiance to Comics
After the much anticipated Avengers: Age of Ultron movie, what is the next thing that comic fans are excited about? Well it Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) of course! Celebrated every first Saturday of May since 2002, comic geeks all around the world has been lining up to get free comic books specially release on FCBD. In recently years, the Philippines joined the festivities of FCBD, spear headed by Comic Odyssey (CO), a comic book shop here in our country. The biggest celebration happens on their Bonifacio Global City branch. Geared not just to keep comics alive, it reaches comic readers either new, old or returning to fan the flame in reading comics. Aside from the 3 FCBD comics, CO gave out additional free comics with our very own FCBD Komiks, Komikon sampler, special treats for early birds and sale of their back issues.
Attendees of FCBD are in for another awesome treat. Comic Odyssey has an artist room which showcases Pinoy talents, local and international artist. Last year Whilce Portacio was there and so are a very long list of Pinoy artist, writers and sketch artist. On Top Shelf, these comic artist have tables which you can buy their stuff, get your comics signed, take selfies or even ask for a sketch. If you are lucky they might be giving away free comics too. Expect to go home with a big haul of comic books. Adding some flair to the event, is the guy who is first in line always that got some attention. Whoever you are your fellow comic fans salute you! Let’s not also forget the cosplayers. I love the ones who cosplayed Spider Gwen and Silk.
This year I have to go their early, all packed up to survive the summer heat. We got their 7:30 AM and Oh man the lines are already long. But by 9:00 (I think) they line started to move which means they are letting us in and have our fill of comic cravings. As we enter the Fully Booked, we are greeted by cute little kids. “Happy Free Comic Book Day!” Yes it is a happy day as we choose from 50 comics we want on the two tables. I got to pick Boom! 10th Anniversary Collection, Comics Festival 2015, and DC’s Divergence. My girlfriend (with the aid of his comic geek boyfriend) took Marvel’s Secret Wars #0, Batman Detective Comics #27 Special Edition (yup it’s available there) and Spongebob Squarepants comics. Sadly, Attack on Titan is already gone. Since it’s hot and sweaty we were cooled down by free Magnum ice creams.
We decided to buy some local comic books and have it signed. I bought the children’s comic book “Piko” by Anino Komiks then I grabbed “Kulas 2” by Freely Abrigo for my girlfriend. As we enter the artist room, fans already swarmed the area. Some are checking the artist out. Some are scribbling on a FCBD Wall and have their picture taken on a “Araw ng Libreng Komiks” backdrop. But still we manage to get our books signed. I got to meet Rob Cham, author of “Light” and contribute to “Piko”. Two more artists who were featured in “Piko” signed my copy. “Kulas” author, Freely Abrigo was there after lunch. He drawing something on a blank variant comics when we approached him. He is friendly and warm. He even knows my nickname! He signed my girlfriends “Kulas 2” and I requested a simple sketch of me and her under Freely’s signature. Thank you Comic Odyssey for bringing us these great comic book artists.
Also if your familiar with Facebook groups like The Comic Brook and Comics Club Philippines, FCBD is the best event to do meet ups and talk about comics. One of the comics FB group gathered themselves over what they call “CCP tree”. I had some meet ups to which I bought some comics. Some gave me comics for our group’s charity event in Batangas City. I’m proud to say I had the most number of comics in this year’s FCBD. It was a tiring but a fun day of free comics overload.
Aside from the festivities that Comic Odyssey dishes out , other local comicbook stores such as Filbar’s, Druids Keep and Precious Pages are into the FCBD fever that every comic geek will go crazy for. Enjoy your free comics and see you next year guys!
Contributed by Nitoy Gonzales