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Retailers expect big crowds for Free Comic Book Day, thanks to ‘Avengers: Endgame’

Retailers expect big crowds for Free Comic Book Day, thanks to ‘Avengers: Endgame’
Customers look over a stack of free comics at House of Secrets Comics and Toys in Burbank during last year's Free Comic Book Day event. (Raul Roa / Burbank Leader)

Moviegoers hoping to get an extra dose of Captain America and Iron Man in their lives after “Avengers: Endgame” may want to head down to their local comic shops this Saturday for Free Comic Book Day.

Held on every first Saturday in May since 2002, the event will see stores across the country handing out hundreds of thousands of free comics. However, people can’t walk into a store and grab any random comic from the shelves.

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The ones given out on Saturday are made specifically for the day and are adorned with a Free Comic Book Day logo. The event is meant to help draw in new comic book readers to their local stores, according to Diamond Comic Distributors.

While the comics may be promotional in nature, they will still feature characters like Spider-Man, Captain Marvel and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

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Thanks to Marvel Studios releasing a few of its movies around late April and early May, some stores have noticed an uptick in recent years of new customers coming out during Free Comic Book Day.

Howard Chen, owner of Legacy Comics and Cards in Glendale, said the impact Marvel had was first noticeable in 2012 with the release of the first “Avengers” movie and was still going strong last year with “Avengers: Infinity War.”

“‘Infinity War’ was huge for us because I think people really loved Thanos,” he said, referring to the villain in the movie. “Because of his popularity, it definitely increased interest in the comics he’s in and the toys of him.”

Chen said he’s currently preparing for the “mad rush” of people on Saturday since his store will hand out up to 20 comics per person.

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For him, the event is a way to give back to a community that has supported his store the other 364 days of the year.

While Legacy is the only comic book store in Glendale, Burbank residents will have several retailers to choose from on Saturday.

Black Cat Comics and Collectibles, Emerald Knights Comics and Games, House of Secrets and the Perky Nerd will all be taking part in Free Comic Book Day.

For more information about the event, visit freecomicbookday.com.

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