FCBD 2024: Marvel’s ‘Blood Hunt,’ Spider-Man India, Dark Horse, Flash Gordon and more

Several publishers have revealed more about their plans for Free Comic Book Day 2024.

As we move into the new year, several companies have revealed additional details on their Free Comic Book Day plans for 2024. This year’s event will be held May 4 and will feature about 50 titles from various publishers.

And those publishers include Marvel, Dark Horse and Mad Cave, who have shared more about what to expect from this year’s titles. Let’s dig in …

Marvel has announced five titles for 2024, which may be a record for the most titles by a singular publisher? I’m not completely sure, but it’s definitely the most they’ve had in recent years.

Two of those titles fall into the “gold sponsor” tier, which probably doesn’t mean much to the average comic reader beyond the fact that they will likely be easier to find than the “silver tier” titles. The first one, Blood Hunt/ X-Men #1, will spotlight two upcoming events:

Blood Hunt is an Avengers-themed crossover written by Jed MacKay with art by Pepe Larraz, and, no doubt, will have a whole bunch of tie-in issues when it finally arrives. It features Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and their allies — like Tigra, Blade and Doctor Strange — facing off with vampires. For the FCBD issue, Sara Pichelli is drawing the story.

“As eternal night takes hold of the Marvel Universe, an overwhelming army of bloodsucking terrors will emerge, united by a single vision for the first time in millennia. To keep them at bay, a new world order may need to be put in place… ” Marvel.com tells us about the crossover.

“I think vampires are a very fun part of the Marvel Universe,” MacKay told Marvel.com. “You can enjoy them on a surface level as adding a little spookiness to a book, or you can get as deep as you like into the long-running Marvel history of vampires, which is as elaborate as any other part of it (and the fact that Dracula is there is a source of endless delight)! Blood Hunt is just the latest chapter in the long-running vampire mythos of Marvel vampires—and they’re stepping out of the darkness in a big way.”

Here’s a sneak peak at the Blood Hunt story:

Marvel’s being a bit more tight-lipped about the second story in that issue, which will feature a look at the post-Krakoa X-Men titles. “Written by Gail Simone and drawn by David Marquez, this story follows Jubilee on a journey to where it all began and is packed with jaw-dropping hints at the X-Men’s post-Krakoa landscape.” As you can see on the cover, it’s billed as “X-Men: From the Ashes” and I bet we learn more about that closer to the end of the Fall of House of X storyline that’s currently running through those titles. Marvel’s been teasing it on their socials:

Their second gold-tier title will feature a look at the recently relaunched Ultimate Universe, as well as upcoming Spider-Man titles:

We already know about Ultimate Spider-Man, Ultimate X-Men and Ultimate Black Panther, but the first story in this issue will introduce “a new team of Ultimate heroes” to “help put this twisted universe on track towards a hopeful future in a story by Deniz Camp and Juan Frigeri.”

Here’s a look:

The issue will also feature a Zeb Wells/Ryan Stegman Spider-Man story and an Al Ewing-written Venom tale:

So that one should be packed.

For the past couple years, Marvel has also released a silver-tier Marvel’s Voices issue, collecting various stories from their Marvel’s Voices line. This year they’ll do that again, with reprints from the anthology line as well as a brand-new Spider-Man India story:

I find it amazing that Marvel has never done a Star Wars-themed issue for Free Comic Book Day, especially given how close the day typically falls to May 4. Well, this year, FCBD is on May 4, so Darth Vader and the gang would not be denied:

Are there Rebel survivors stranded on Hoth? Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa, Lando Calrissian, and Chewbacca mount a dangerous rescue mission to Echo Base! Lightsabers! Blasters! Snowtroopers! All-out action amongst the wreckage of AT-AT walkers, Rebel airspeeders and frozen weapons of mass destruction!

This one will also feature a story about Sabé, the former handmaiden of Padmé Amidala, as she helps Darth Vader track down Amidala’s son, Luke Skywalker. This issue is by Charles Soule, Greg Pak, Ramon Rosanas, Ibraim Roberson and more.

Marvel will also release one aimed at young readers, based on the Disney Junior show Spidey and his Amazing Friends.

And speaking of Star Wars and younger readers, Dark Horse revealed the completed cover for their silver-tiered title, Star Wars: Young Jedi Adventures—Sky Parade Rescue. Which is also a Disney Junior show:

The Star Wars short story features writing by Daniel José Older, art by Andy Duggan, colors by Dan Jackson and letters by Comicraft. It’ll be accompanied by a Plants vs. Zombies tale that will reveal the origin of Zomboss, with writing by Paul Tobin, art by Lusia Russo, colors by Heather Breckel, and letters by Steve Dutro.

Finally, Mad Cave Studios has revealed some of the creators working on their two FCBD issues, featuring their recently acquired licenses for Flash Gordon and Gatchaman.

Flash Gordon #0 will feature a story by Jeremy Adams and Will Conrad. Per the King Features press release on the 90th anniversary of Flash Gordon:

The initial Flash Gordon stories are slated to be released this year, starting with an explosive debut for “Free Comic Book Day 2024” (Saturday, May 4th)! A special Flash Gordon #0 issue will be available for free to fans at participating retailers worldwide. Flash Gordon #0 will thrill audiences with a race against time as Flash Gordon, Dale, and Doctor Zarkov try to stop the villainous Ming the Merciless from using the Unraveller, a device that can unwind an object to their subatomic structure in one apocalyptic burst of energy. Written by Jeremy Adams (The Flash, Green Lantern), illustrated by Will Conrad (Angel & Faith, Justice League: Odyssey), and featuring an amazing cover by superstar artist Dan Panosian, issue #0 will lead directly into the ongoing monthly series debuting in July, and also forecasts Mad Cave’s extensive Flash Gordon plans for 2024!

Meanwhile Cullen Bunn, Tommy Lee Edwards and Steve Orlando are all working on Gatchaman material.

Free Comic Book Day 2024 will take place on May 4; visit their website for more information or to find a participating store.

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