Photo by Johnny Jackson
Bill Phillips, owner of Bunjee’s Comics in McDonough, said he is prepared to distribute thousands of free comics as part of this year’s Free Comic Books Day, on May 5.
As the much-anticipated film, “Avengers,” hits theaters nationwide, avid comics readers in the Southern Crescent area will have the opportunity to experience them in comic book form.
Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America will reprise their heroic roles on the big screen this weekend, and their stories will be available for free at local comic book stores.
On May 5, area residents can visit their local comic book store and pick up a free comic book in recognition of the 11th Annual Free Comic Book Day. Millions of free comic books are expected to be given away at more than 2,000 participating locations.
Free Comic Book Day was created by retailer Joe Field, who is also president of the trade association known as the Comics Professional Retail Organization (ComicsPRO). The annual recognition is designed as an appreciation to loyal comics fanatics, as well as an outreach to potential comics connoisseurs.
“With more than 3.5 million comics available worldwide for the giveaway on Free Comic Book Day 2012, this is the perfect opportunity to experience all the great stuff going on in comics at your locally owned independent comic book specialty store,” Field said. “Your comics retailer is your guide to ‘The Next Big Thing’ in pop culture.”
Bunjee’s Comics, located at 569 Jonesboro Road in McDonough, is a member of ComicsPRO. It has thousands of comic books to give away to potential new customers and comic book lovers, according to Bill Phillips, who owns Bunjee’s Comics.
Phillips said he opened the original store in Griffin, in 1993, and moved his business to McDonough in 2005. He said he has seen a re-emergence in the popularity of comics in recent years with the volume of blockbuster movies based on the graphic genre.
“Comics are — like jazz — one of the great American art forms,” said Phillips. “When it’s done right, it’s hard to beat. I love art, and I love stories, and it’s a perfect marriage where they meet.”
Phillips acknowledged an educational value in reading comics, both for their graphic artistry and their storytelling.
“I believe in it wholeheartedly,” he said. “I think visual storytelling has been with us since cavemen days. There are college courses being taught on these graphic novels. Most good libraries have a decent comic book section. Vocabulary-wise, I’ve certainly learned more words from comics than probably anything else.”
Bunjee’s Comics will be open, from 11 a.m., until 7 p.m., on Saturday, May 5. The store’s regular hours are Tuesday, from 11 a.m., until 5 p.m., and Wednesday through Saturday, from 11 a.m., until 7 p.m., and Sunday, from 1 p.m., until 6 p.m.
“I’m new to the comics world,” said John Cox, of McDonough, who is a regular patron at Bunjee’s. The 25-year-old employee at Piedmont Henry Hospital said he enjoys “good story art, and character development.”
Cox said he grew up on Anime, a Japanese form of comics. Lately, however, he said he has enjoyed “Thor” comics, and has gravitated toward the “Avengers.”
To learn more about Free Comic Book Day, visit www.freecomicbookday.com.