Today was Free Comic Book day.
In Tokyo there were two comic book stores offering free comics- Blister Comics (Akihabara) and Verse Comics (Ikebukuro). Addresses are below.
I decided to check out Verse Comics,Ikebukuro for a number of reasons-
1) They are a new store (opened March of this year).
2) They are in ikebukuro (close to where I live).
3) They had Mangaka Kei Zama doing an in store signing, an illustrator of two of my favourite comics as a school boy - 2000AD, and Transformers (G1).
Verse comics about 5 minutes from Ikebukuro Station and pretty easy to find if you have google maps (it's listed).The store is just off a square that when the weather is good tends to get quite busy with cos-players, and female (mostly) traders of manga character badges and stuff due to the big ANIMATE store being close by.
Verse's staff have been in the comic business for quite a while so are very knowledgeable. They don't speak English but they do have an American member of staff who is sometimes there and from what I gather also responds to emails sent in english to the store. The majority of the stock is in Japanese but they do stock a few english language comics and also have copies of PREVIEWS magazine so if they don't have something in stock you want you could always hunt it down in Previews and they could order it for you. They have a few tees and toys but this place is mostly for comic fans. They also have an exhibition area for artwork.
I went along for Free Comic Book Day and the place was pretty busy. They had a good selection of free comics and were well organised when it came to Kei Zama's signing.
I picked up a good selection of free comics (Rick and Morty, and 2000AD to name 2!), a copy of Previews, and a copy of the Image Comics Street Angel which I am super stocked about as I love Jim Rugg's work!
I am really pleased this comic shop has opened in Ikebukuro and will support it as best I can. If you see me in there please say hi.
Address and links will follow photographs.
2 Stores in Tokyo are participating in the event with special signings happening at each (Check websites for details)
MINAMI BUILDING 3RD FLOOR
4-3-10 SOTOKANDA CHIYODA-KU
Phone: (813) 620-64404
2F, DKY12 Bldg 1-8-6 Higashiikebukuro,Toshima-Ku,
Signing - 原画展示＆Kei Zama (座間慧) - Free Judge Dredd comic!