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Halloween ComicFest: Better than candy

Here are some things science has established about comic books:

They contain no high fructose corn syrup or sugar.

Most of them don’t look as disgusting as a Baby Ruth.

You can consume a comic book more than once.

And getting a comic as a Halloween treat isn’t the obvious bummer for kids that getting handed fruit instead of candy is.

All likely factors in the creation of Halloween ComicFest, Saturday, Oct. 25, in shops around the nation. That day, adults and kids can shamble like zombies into comic shops and get free Halloween and horror-themed comics, and can buy packs of Halloween ComicFest mini-comics to hand out to little extortionists who show up on their own doorsteps for trick-or-treat.

The mini-comics come in globs of 20 for $4.99 and include Plants vs. Zombies, Angry Birds and Vamplets.

The eclectic mix of 19 full-sized free comics — ask how many your shop will let you have — includes Afterlife with Archie, Resident Evil and My Little Pony.

Launched in 2012, Halloween ComicFest is like Free Comic Book Day, held each May since 2002. It’s part of an insidious plot by retailers, publishers, suppliers and distributors to dig up more bodies — introduce new readers to comics and comic book stores.

At Arcane Comics in Ballard, owner Bret Boyer says, “It’s a guarantee that we will see some new faces in the store and get the chance to turn them into lifers.” He adds, “It showcases a different set of comics — horror! Which is one of my favorites.”

Since many — that is, most — non-comic-geek civilians may not have ever set foot in an actual comic book store, the official website, halloweencomicfest.com, includes a comic shop locator. Type in your zip code and they pop up on a map like tombstones. And since the gap between Resident Evil and My Little Pony can only be measured in tears, you can also download previews of the comics to see which ones are appropriate for your kids. Call one near you to see if it’s participating. You can also check in on the Halloween ComicFest’s Facebook page, and @HalloweenComic on Twitter.

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