Despite being a real fake doctor/lawyer, I am also a dirty filthy addict. My drug of choice is the graphic media some may call comic books.
I know you want some. You’ve seen it around. All the cool kids are doing it. Hell, the first one’s free on May 5. It’s Free Comic Book Day, probably the best damn day in the whole BANG, CRASH, POW world. I know your kid has a birthday and you probably got married on some day you think is super special, but it is not. Free Comic Book Day trumps all that foolishness by a long shot.
Let’s admit it: Life is a long stretch of boredom waiting for something interesting to come along and kick you in the face. FCBD is that thing! All the other “things” cost more than free and most likely will result in sweating, stinking, and hangovers. FCBD, however, involves very little of that. The free titles range from “kid friendly” to “don’t let the kids see that!” and everything in between. With comics covering the best of traditional genres, from mystery and horror to romance and science fiction as well as time-tested four-color adventures in superness.
This one guy I talked to was like, “The level of maturity and complexity of current graphic literature is sure to surprise people who have been away from the media.” Then I was all, “Cool man, party on!” Then he was like, “It’s no secret that the comic book world has invaded the mainstream in the last 20 years. Long-running comic series The Walking Dead was recently adapted into a top-rated television show on AMC, and The Avengers is slated to open May 4, much to the excitement of Iron Man fans. Free Comic Book Day is poised to be bigger than ever.” And I was all, “What! No way!” That guy was crazy!
You know when old dudes are all, “When I was a kid comic books cost 10 cents” and you think to yourself, “It’s because you’re super old, dude,” but you don’t say it because the batteries on his hearing aides are most likely dead. Now, when he changes his batteries, you can say “Back in my day on May 5 comics were free, old dude! HAHA! LOL! OMG!!” Then he will probably counter with something like, “Well, back in my day we walked 10 miles to school in the snow uphill both ways being chased by a Yeti with a shotgun.” Well buddy, your life sucked.
I know you have that book at home next to your bed that’s been bookmarked about a third of the way through, and you’re thinking you’re going to finish it at some point to prove to yourself you can finish a book even if it’s long, dry, and unimaginative—you know, the one with all those verbose descriptions of the title characters drinking tea in their fancy breakfast nook in Victorian England.
A comic book can handle that whole chapter in one awesome panel! Maybe you aren’t interested in “Proof,” a series about a Sasquatch who secretly works for the U.S. government and investigates his fellow cryptids. Just maybe you find the idea of a post-apocalyptic world where all the children being born are bizarre animal-human hybrids mundane? Have you never wondered what it might be like to dress up like a bat and take on the seedy underbelly of a major metropolis from your empty lonely mansion? Well, I hate to be the one to break this to you but … You. Are. Dull.
Look, just do the math: (Words+Pictures) - $ = 3x (a more interesting you). In addition to free comics, there will probably be some dumb prizes and few lame contests, but you will never know because you are spending your free time looking online at hats for your dog and growing your not-so-ironic mustache. Good luck with that. If you’re looking for a real party, try Free Comic Book Day May 5 at Dr. Cain’s Comics and Games.
Reid Cain owns Dr. Cain’s Comics and Games at 778 Marsh Street in downtown San Luis Obispo. The shop is open daily till 6 p.m. On Wednesdays, which are new comic book days, the shop is open until 7 p.m. On Thursdays during Farmers’ Market, the shop is open till 8:30. For more information, e-mail San Luis Obispo’s finest fake doctor/lawyer on the interwebs at firstname.lastname@example.org. Send comments about this piece to the executive editor at email@example.com.