By Sammie Rice
This article is for all the self-proclaimed comic book nerds out there! If you haven't heard of Comic Bento yet, then prepare yourself for your new favorite comics-based product.
Comic Bento is essentially a Loot Crate for comic book lovers packed with a mystery bundle of graphic novels pertaining to a different theme every month. Pretty great right? Hold on to your seats because below is an exclusive interview I did with the Director of Communications, Jeff Moss! We get a behind the scenes look at the people who are behind this fantastic company as well as some exciting news about next month's Bento Box.
Sammie Rice: Comic Bento doesn't just cater to mainstream comics, you also pull titles from more indy publishers. Why is that?
Jeff Moss: There's a couple reasons why we do this. The first is that there are a lot of great books, stories and creators out there that kinda get pushed to the edge of the comics shelf. They aren't as visible as a lot of characters and titles. So, we like to dig through and find the gems that we think should be shared with a wider audience. The second reason is that I see Comic Bento as not only a good way to expand a collection, but a great way for people to get into comics, especially if they don't have a local comics shop to go to. For someone just breaking into the world of reading comics, chances are the stuff they will gravitate towards is the more mainstream stuff. While those comics are great (I read a lot of those books myself), Comic Bento can show people just how wide the variety of comics out there can be. Of course, this is not to say that regular comic readers won't recognize some of the titles and publishers we work with; Valiant, Top Shelf, Oni Press, Dynamite and more (with others coming on board all the time) have all had books in our boxes that have been met with rave reviews!
SR: Are the brains behind Comic Bento huge comic book nerds?
JM: I don't really know what defines a nerd these days to be honest, but I can tell you that we all share a huge love of comics. Personally, I've been reading comics for 30 years at this point, selling them for 5, making them for almost 10 and talking about them forever. Everyone at Bento from our buyers, to our IT guys, to our shippers have weekly pull lists, original art collections and read comics regularly. We all love comics and have dedicated a pretty substantial portion of our lives to making, selling and promoting comics as a whole, which is another aspect of Comic Bento that I really like: It promotes comics as a whole, as an industry. We aren't here to tout one character, publisher or creator over another. We love COMICS and that's what we want to share with our subscribers.
SR: Each month has a different theme and Comic Bento users will receive a bundle of graphic novels pertaining to that theme. Can you tell us about any past/upcoming themes?
JM: It's actually been the most fun part of working on Comic Bento! It's really exciting to take an idea, spin it into a theme, then find awesome books to match it! I can't say much about upcoming themes, because we reveal them on our Facebook page around the middle of the month, every month. Past themes were a bit simpler and included Fantasy, Sci-Fi, and Humor. In January we started playing with the idea of more expansive themes and went with "It's All Criminal!" A box full of crime, detective and criminal stories that had a lot of people scrambling to sign up. February's theme is "Feminine Mystique," featuring, well, I'm not going to say featuring what exactly, but it's celebrating women in the industry from characters to creators and more.
SR: What countries are eligible for receiving Comic Bento products?
JM: Right now we are only able to ship within North America. As anyone who shops online knows, shipping costs are on the rise and we haven't yet found a solution to shipping internationally that doesn't add a LOT to the cost of a box. But, we are working on it and will hopefully have some news on that front sooner rather than later!
SR: Does Comic Bento have any social media accounts our readers can follow?
JM: Absolutely! Social Media is huge for us, especially when it comes to reviews, unboxing videos, customer service and more! Fans can find us at:
A huge thanks to Jeff Moss for participating in this interview and an even bigger thanks to the full crew of Comic Bento who work incredibly hard to bring a fun and different reading experience that can be enjoyed by the novice or veteran comic book reader.
Thanks for reading and make sure to check out the rad service Comic Bento has to offer at www. comicbento.com!
Sammie Rice is a Florida comic book employee and proud Valkyrie. She enjoys long strolls in the park through pterodactyl-free zones and making lots of nerdy friends. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr: @SammieReads