Saturday was what some folks call “Free Comic Book Day Lite,” otherwise known as Halloween ComicFest.

Looks like this second FCBD each year is picking up steam, which makes me as a fan of the comics industry very happy!

JUST WHAT IS HALLOWEEN COMICFEST, ANYWAY?

Free Comic Book Day, local comics shop, LCS, Halloween ComicFest, Marvel Comics, Ms. Marvel #1, Superior Spider-Man #1,Thor: Road to War of the Realms #1; DC Comics, John Constantine: The Hellblazer, Hellboy, Jughead: The Hunger, Goosebumps, Rise of the TMNTIf you go to the official website for Halloween ComicFest, you find this description:

On Saturday, October 27, participating comic shops across North America and around the world will hand out more than 1.7 million free comics to anyone who comes into their shop during Halloween ComicFest! During the event, anyone who goes into a participating comic shop can choose a free comic from the 34 titles available this year and participate in the fun Halloween-themed activities hosted by the comic shops.

Thirty-four free comics, including 22 full-size and 12 mini-comics can be picked up. This year’s titles include Marvel Comics’ Ms. Marvel #1, Superior Spider-Man #1, and Thor: Road to War of the Realms #1; DC Comics’ John Constantine: The Hellblazer; and other Halloween-themed comics like Hellboy, Jughead: The Hunger, Goosebumps and Rise of the TMNT, that are perfect for comic readers of all ages.

What happens during this event? Well, as stated above, there are free comics handed out as well as free candy and Funko Pops, costume contests, and participating comics creators selling their wares, depending on the local shop you attended this year.

WHY CELEBRATE HALLOWEEN COMICFEST?

Free Comic Book Day, local comics shop, LCS, Halloween ComicFest, Marvel Comics, Ms. Marvel #1, Superior Spider-Man #1,Thor: Road to War of the Realms #1; DC Comics, John Constantine: The Hellblazer, Hellboy, Jughead: The Hunger, Goosebumps, Rise of the TMNTI have discussed this event previously, but it bears repeating that Halloween ComicFest is a chance for families and other comics fans to get a second chance to celebrate the industry. I mean, Free Comic Book Day is HUGE these days, and it seems such a shame to have to wait another whole year to enjoy that event again.

Hence, Halloween ComicFest was born. This was, in fact, it’s 18th year, although it hasn’t really been gaining strength until the last few years.

It also helps families enjoy the holiday in what is usually a much safer environment. Back in days past, when everyone knew their neighbors, people could trust those living around them to give out candy and fruits that were good for their kids. These days, that’s not quite so true.

If anything goes wrong during this event, you know just where to register your concerns!

IT HELPS LOCAL SHOPS

Free Comic Book Day, local comics shop, LCS, Halloween ComicFest, Marvel Comics, Ms. Marvel #1, Superior Spider-Man #1,Thor: Road to War of the Realms #1; DC Comics, John Constantine: The Hellblazer, Hellboy, Jughead: The Hunger, Goosebumps, Rise of the TMNTYou know the other reason why this is helpful—it benefits the comics industry, particularly on the local level.

Free Comic Book Day brings fans who have drifted away back to local shops as well as introducing new people to the stores in their neighborhoods.

Halloween ComicFest accomplishes the same goals. And who would turn down a free comic or three?

Then, too, fans get to sample comics that they may not have had to budget to try out before. And maybe, just maybe kids will be introduced to the comics universes. Who knows? Maybe some of the folks who were there on Saturday might show up again really soon to buy gift cards for the upcoming holiday season or set up a weekly subscription featuring some of the comics they got during the event.

I don’t know any comics shops that would turn down new customers! Not a one!

If your local store didn’t participate this year, just ask the folks running it to take a look at Facebook so they can check out all the successful Halloween ComicFests around the globe and in nearby communities. They just might add it to their list of events in 2019!

What do you think? Did you visit your LCS to participate in Halloween ComicFest? If not, did you go to another nearby shop to do it? Did you notice, if you did attend, that there were more people participating than last year? What suggestions do you have that might improve this event? Whatever thoughts you have, please share them below! And have a Happy Halloween!

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About Author

Wayne Hall creates the Wayne's Comics Podcast. He’s interviewed Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, John Layman, Kyle Higgins, Phil Hester, Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray, David Petersen, Christos Gage, Mike Grell, and Matt Kindt. On this site each week, he writes his "Comics Portal" column (general comics comments and previews) and reviews comics.

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