Your Guide to Free Comic Book Day in Metro Phoenix

Categories: Comics

Courtesy of Ash Avenue Comics.
Get ready.

Comic book geeks of Metro Phoenix better get plenty of sleep on Friday night, not to mention waiting until Sunday to check out Iron Man 3. That's because Saturday, May 4, gonna be a red-letter day that's like a ink-stained, pulp-filled, four-color mashup of Phoenix Comicon, Halloween, and Christmastime. The annual celebration of Free Comic Book Day will be happening at retail shops both locally and nationwide.

And thanks to a bit of calendar synchronicity, Intergalactic Star Wars Day (a.k.a. "May the Fourth Be With You") also falls on Saturday. The upshot of which for fans of the saga is that many local nerd-related businesses will feting both occasions. We've scoured pretty much every collectors den, comic shop, and geek havens in town and have a comprehensive list of what you can expect this weekend. Consider it a rehearsal for Comicon.

See Also:
- 7 Favorite Comic Book Shops in Phoenix
- Phoenix Comicon Announces Sci-Fi Sirens and Comic Book Legends for 2013
- All About Books and Comics Hosts a Celebration of the First Gay Comic Book Wedding

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10 Awesome Aziz Ansari GIFS

Categories: Comedy, Comics, Fun

Wait. You got your Aziz Ansari tix already, right? Good. 'Cause his Buried Alive Tour stops at Comerica Theatre on May 5. Ready for the pre-party? Here it goes: 10 GIFS of our favorite swagtastic comedian, Yeezy sidekick, and Parks and Recreation character. (Deal with it, Swansonians.) That one up there? That's a bonus GIF, from us to you, boo.

See also:
- Is Parks and Recreation the Wu-Tang Clan of Comedy?
- 30 Minutes or Less Plays It Too Safe
- Rashida Jones Steps Out on Her Own

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Tempe Zine Convention III -- It's Like Comic-Con Plus an Open Mic

Categories: Comics, Literary

Heather Hoch
Blurring the lines between fine art, poetry and naughty comics, the Tempe Zine Con featured nearly 20 entries from local artists and writers.

Down at the Bayou, a house in the "Hipster Compton" section of Tempe just west of the ASU campus, a small crowd of fashionable, attractive young artists gathered in the brick shed to share their zines, drink some beer and take turns listening and reading their work.

See also:
- Aaron Johnson's Zine Collection
- Creators of Ziindi Zine Open 1Spot, a Native Contemporary Art Gallery on Roosevelt Row

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Cartoonist Lynda Barry's The Unthinkable Mind Class Syllabus Available Online

Categories: Comics

Welcome back to Explicitly Graphic, a monthly column by Cynthia Clark Harvey (who's working on a graphic novel of her own). From time to time, Harvey will review graphic novels, talk to artists, and dive into the scene of all things explicitly graphic. Today, she talks about Lynda Barry's university cartooning class with an online syllabus.

Cartoonist Lynda Barry is encouraging us to do the unthinkable.

For years, Barry has taught a workshop called Writing the Unthinkable. Now she's teaching an interdisciplinary Art/Science/English class, The Unthinkable Mind.

See also:
- Chris Ware's Graphic Novel Building Stories is an Unfolding, Inspiring Narrative
- University of Chicago's "Comics: Philosophy & Practice" was an Academic-omicon
- Sketchy Stuff: A Resource Guide to Drawing Opportunities, Workshops, and Classes in Phoenix

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Amazing Arizona Comic Con Brings Marvel's Stan Lee and DC Comic's Jim Lee to Phoenix in January

Categories: Comics

Amazing Arizona Comic Convention
Editor's note: Amazing Arizona Comic Con has announced that because of an illness, Stan Lee will not be appearing.

Remember when comic books cost a dime and you would rush the newsstand every Friday after school for some weekend reading? Batman, Superman and Spider-Man were the big ones, but there were also Tales from the Dark Side, G.I. Joe and probably something about zombies.

Well, those days are gone. The reality is that comic books have become big business, practically overshadowing the larger-than-life characters filling the pulpy pages.

The third annual Amazing Arizona Comic Con returns to Phoenix January 25-27 featuring two of the men most responsible for elevating comic books in the literary world: Marvel Comics founder and creator Stan Lee, and DC Comics mastermind Jim Lee (no relation).

See also:
- Phoenix Comicon Announces First Wave of Guests for 2013, Including J. Michael Straczynski and the Cast of Babylon 5
- The 13 Best One-Liners of William Shatner

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A Charlie Brown Christmas & Fantagraphics' New Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking are Peanuts Christmas Classics

"Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you're the Charlie Browniest."
It's easy to get bummed out by Christmas -- especially when the "holiday season," with all the crass consumerism, bad music, and awkward family gatherings -- seems to kick off earlier and earlier each year.

But only the "grinchiest" can resist the charms of A Charlie Brown Christmas. Originally aired by CBS in 1965 (ABC now airs the special), the film established Charles M. Schulz's "Peanuts" characters as synonymous with Christmas, capturing all the joy and lowdown of the holiday with its crude animation, mellow jazz soundtrack (courtesy of Vince Guaraldi), and decidedly traditional message.

See also:
- 7 Favorite Comic Book Shops in Phoenix
- Phoenix Comic Book Artist Dave Kiersh Publishes Afterschool Special

More »

Magical Moment by Luster Kaboom

Comic by Dave Quan aka Luster Kaboom

Read the full comic after the jump ...
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7 Favorite Comic Book Shops in Phoenix

Categories: Comics

San Diego Comic-Con is over and the latest adventures of Batman have yet to hit the silver screen. So while you're in comic land limbo, we have a few local solutions to get an illustrated fix.

7. Greg's Comics
This is the comic book geek's comic book shop. The Mesa store's laid out like a dork hoarder's garage sale -- packed with rows and rows of long boxes, with very little wiggle room. But there's a bounty of back issues in those boxes, at fairly cheap prices, and best of all, mini-series are bundled together and sold at a discount.

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Phoenix Comic Book Artist Dave Kiersh Publishes Afterschool Special

Categories: Comics

Dave Kiersh
Those late afternoon kids' TV specials of the 80s and 90s about Really Important Stuff left their mark on comics artist Dave Kiersh. So much so, that his new book, Kiersh's first full-length graphic novella, is titled Afterschool Special.

Growing up on Long Island, Kiersh found the topic-driven shows on subjects such as safe sex, abstinence and date rape - common denominator: sex? -- pretty darn riveting.

One that he recalls in great detail is the 1988 CBS Schoolbreak Special "No Means No." It's a story about date rape told in voice-over narration by the main characters, one played by Chad Lowe.

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All About Books and Comics Hosts a Celebration of the First Gay Comic Book Wedding

Categories: Comics

Not another one, I thought. I'd already been to quite a few wedding receptions, especially recently. That just comes with being 30 and unmarried.

But there was the invitation:

You Are Cordially Invited to the Wedding Reception of Jean-Paul "Northstar" Beaubier and Kyle Jinadu who will be married in Astonishing X-men #51!

Date: Wed. June 20th
Time: 10 am to 8 pm
Location: All About Books and Comics
5060 N. Central Avenue
Attire: Wedding Attire (or just wear a tie over your T-shirt)

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