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In 2002, a major (Marvel) superhero movie was released: Spiderman. Tobey Maguire lept a few buildings and left New York covered in webbing while Kirsten Dunst played an incredibly sexy Mary Jane Watson. *Drools when thinking back to a certain rainy alley scene*
Anyway, since Marvel, DC and several other big players in the American comics field weren't doing too well, and expected the Spiderman movie to bring a general audience back to their comics, they decided to expand on the big Public Relations job, and launch a concept called Free Comic Book Day.
The concept? The day after the Spiderman movie's premiere, May 4th, you walk into any comic book store in America or Canada, and you get a free comic book from four major publishing agencies.
The day was a great hit and in 2003, it was repeated, this time on Spiderman's anniversary, May 3rd, and expanding into the Australian territory as well. Since I'm writing this in June 2003, I have no idea yet wether or not 2004 or any other future years will bring us another edition of this special day. If it does, this is the site to check, since it will keep all announcements, and all the stories and ins and outs, before and afterwards.

Click here to surf the Free Comic Book Day site for yourself