Marvel Will Give You 700 Free Comics Online

By Matthew Klickstein , Mar 11, 2013 05:14 PM EDT

UPDATE: You guys wanted these comics so bad that you crashed Marvel's servers. The company and distributor Comixology had to close the sucker down. No more free comics. 

Mainstay comic book magnate Marvel announced at SXSW on Sunday, March 10 that it will allow the downloading of first issues of 700 of its most beloved series. The deal is part of its Marvel #1 initiative whose goal is to attract new fans and re-attract old fans who have moved on.

The problem? You can get the 700 first-issue Marvel Comics only up until 11 p.m. (EDT) Tuesday, March 12.

The comics can be downloaded through the Marvel Comics app or via the Marvel Comics Digital Shop.

""This is the perfect way to show everyone how much we believe in our material by letting them try the first issues for free, because we're sure once they start, they won't stop," Marvel SVP - Sales, Digital and Print David Gabriel says"Week in and week out we ask fans to come check out our new releases — both in print and digitally — with the promise that we'll bring them the best comics made by the best talent and managed by the best editorial team in the industry. Now, existing and news fans [alike] can discover the heroes they know and love and learn about new ones all at the same time."

The 700 comics that have been released for free download until the end of Tuesday include the likes of: Spider-Man, The Avengers, X-Men and Guardians of the Galaxy.

With Marvel #1, the company hopes that it will "invite new readers to the medium through the unparalleled reach of digital comics," noting that "[n]o other comic book company to date has offered this much free content in one promotion covering such a wide variety of characters and creators. Marvel #1 represents a true first in the industry."

As far as the question of limits on the downloading of 700 comics, Marvel says that fans should download each comic.

"We encourage it!" Gabriel says.

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