Recently at NYCC, we had a chance to interview Costello from Comic Bento about all the perks and reasons to join their service. What makes them different? In a pop culture world where there are so many “crates”, “boxes” and “blocks” being mailed out through various subscriptions, the plethora of choices may make it seem over saturated with non-unique unboxings other than a common monthly theme. With a shift slowly starting to happen where other “crate” services are gradually starting to offer specific genres, Costello was quick to point out that Comic Bento has already been doing that, “the other (Loot Crate) box services are evolving to something like Comic Bento.”
Comic Bento is a subscription service where you can sign up for a month to month membership to get a box of trade paperback comics based around a particular theme. A common deterrent for people looking to buy trades are pirce. With Comic Bento, you are receiving 5 comics for the price of one. And you don’t need to worry about missing out on important details or backstory because you are always getting a collected story line starting with volume one of that comic in trade paperback form, giving you everything you need (sometimes there are later volumes but those are collected anthologies). Each month there is a theme to the $60 worth of comics included in the $20 box (Cheaper if you sign up for a longer term subscription) which you can sign up and check out their various monthly plans here: https://comicbento.com/
Other “crate” subscriptions ship you a mixture of items relating to the theme, but who needs sunglasses that fit only a child or a blow up crown if you don’t have a need for either of those? Costello shared the pain of receiving unusable items from the other “crates” and how they are different, “With Comic Bento it’s a specialized service, you’re getting comics. So if you like comics and you like the theme, you’re not going to get a comic accessory, you’re not going to get something you might like because you’re a fan. You’re a comic fan, we give you comics, it’s as simple as that”
Comic Bento ships you five different books from five different publishers, so you’re getting a mix of characters like Ant-man, something from creators like Alex Ross, and some stuff that might be new to you. Costello emphasized, “The Comic Bento is a great way to broaden your comic book horizons. If you’re new to comics it gives you a good starting point to start a collection and find the comic series or style that you enjoy, and if you are already reading comics, this is a better way of giving you a new experiences to see what is out there and to see what else you might be missing out on.”
Something that Costello was very excited to share with us and potential new members is what Comic Bento has in store to stay one leg up on other “crates”. October’s theme is “Masks” just in time for Halloween and they were trying something new with a special guest curator, Gail Simone! Costello said, “Gail (Red Sonja, Deadpool, Batgirl), a really popular writer, is the first for this guest curator experiment, and Comic Bento plans on reaching out to other friends in the comic book industry since the response has been so well received already.”
So not only is Comic Bento offering a cheap way to build your comic book library or to get into reading comics altogether, but their subscription is unique in that you are getting a product that you know you like and will use (unlike throw away stickers or other knickknacks). What can be more of an incentive to join up now than with a guest curator picking the books for the Bento. You are being told by people in the comic business books they read and so should you!
We’re going to give Comic Bento a shot! For our readers who already use the service, what you enjoyed the most so far? Tweet us @The_GWW and let us know!