Hugh Likes Comics: Free Comic Book Day 2022!

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Hello readers! One of my favorite holidays is again upon us. Yes, that’s right! It’s Free Comic Book Day is tomorrow, May 7, 2022! And this year I will be at my favorite local shop to peruse the offerings and help support local business and some of my favorite creators! Free Comic Book day started in 2002, the free promotion has grown over the years, and is always celebrated on the first Saturday in May. There are a staggering number fo comics to choose from, from well-known superhero franchises, to kid-friendly cartoon tie-ins, and serious indie titles., all free for the taking.
Just remember they’re free for customers, not the shops, so please be sure to buy something and support your local business!
Here is a selection of the books I’m looking forward to this year:

Galaxy: The Prettiest Star FCBD Edition
Written by Jadzia Axelrod
Art by Jess Taylor
I have been a fan of Jadzia Axelrod’s writing for years, and I am beyond excited for her upcoming graphic novel from DC Comics. Always clever and full of charm and heart, I can’t wait to see her writing for ‘the big two.’ in this story of a intergalactic princess in hiding. And the art is gorgeous as well.

Avengers / X-Men / Eternals Judgement Day FCBD
With a whole bunch of talented creators, this one tees up Marvel’s big ‘summer blockbuster’ of popular superheroes dusting up for reasons. But this year’s scuffle revolves around the desecration of the corpses of Dead Space Gods, so it should at least be interesting. I’ve been a big fan of the swerve X-Men took in the past few years, as well as the Eternals relaunch, so I am looking forward to this one.

Barbaric #1 FCBD Edition
The story of a barbarian cursed to do good and his sentient battle axe with a drinking problem, Barbaric plays fast and loose with the tropes of low fantasy. I have an issue or two of the ongoing series, and if that’s your style of fantasy, I recommend giving it a look.

Marvel Voices FCBD #1
The Marvel’s Voices anthology series has been an excellent collection highlighting marginalized creators along with characters, and this FCBD collection seems to be a collection of some of the best of those stories. It doesn’t look like it has the one where Mystique kills Professor Moriarty, but still a worthwhile pickup.

I have heard great things about both of these manga series, and I’m looking forward to picking up this sampler of both to get a better fix on whether they’ll be joining my to-be-read pile.

There is an incredible variety of books coming out this year for Free Comic Book day. You can check them all out, along with their handy Local Comics Shop locator at their website: FreeComicBookDay.com

Hugh Likes Comics – Ghost in the Shell FCBD 2018

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Ghost in the Shell: Global Neural Network Free Comic Book Day sapmple
Written by Max Gladstone
Art by David Lopez
Colors by Nayoung Kim
Published by Kodansha Comics

The Skinny: This single issue adventure gets a lot right in this Free Comic Book Day release.

When I first heard of “Ghost in the Shell: Global Neural Network,” I was skeptical. Western reinterpretations of manga and anime have a tendency to lose something in the translation, and the less said about the live-action film, the better. But I was pleasantly surprised by this single-issue story, distributed as a teaser for an upcoming anthology for Free Comic Book Day.
Gladstone’s story could be a slice of Masamune’s original manga, or a single-episode story of Stand Alone Complex. The Major accompanies Director Aramaki to a trade conference, where he immediately gets kidnapped, and she runs into an old war buddy while tracking him down. The characterization is spot-on from the two old spies philosophically discussing their natures to Aramaki glibly critiquing his interrogator’s technique.
The art is a bit rougher, and the only real flaw of the issue. Lopez’s technical art is spot on, reproducing the Masamune’s design elements and the 90’s cyberpunk aesthetic of the original comic. The character art is lacking, however. His faces in particular feel dated, as though he were copying off a circa-1990’s model sheet. Kim’s grimy colors are atmospheric and serve the story well.
Free Comic Book Day may be past, but if you can find a copy of this one-and-done story, and the character designs don’t throw you, this is a fun little cyberpunk tidbit.