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Holiday Gift Guide: Digital Comics

Digital Comics for a holiday gift

When it comes to the holiday gift-giving season, comic book readers are notoriously difficult to shop for. I mean, most of us are down at the shop buying our favorite stuff every single week, so when the time comes for people who like us to get us something we want, well, a lot of times we already have it. That’s why we’re stepping in with a public service, bringing you comics-related items sure to make the season brighter, whether you’re browsing for a gift or just looking for something to drop hints about so that you don’t get stuck with a random assortment of back issues again.

It’s the final day to buy Christmas presents without having to add “sorry it’s a little late” to your gift-giving experience, and if you haven’t found anything yet, here’s an easy way out:Digital Comics, one of the easiest gifts there is!

ITEM: Digital Comics

CLASSIFICATION: Zeroes and ones, arranged in an aesthetically engaging sequence.

AVAILABILITY: 99 cents and up from Comixology, ImageComics.com, 2000ADOnline.com, VizManga.com and others.

In the dark times of, like, four or five years ago, still having presents to buy on December 24th could pretty much ruin your holiday. Now, however, in the bright and glistening world of the future, we have the ability to buy and send the perfect comic book present to anyone without even getting out of bed. Truly, these are wonderful times, and it’s mostly because of digital comics. And the best part is, you can give them right now and still be early for Christmas, covering up your laziness pretty handily.

Comixology makes it pretty easy, too. Each comic for sale has a little button that looks like a gift box and when you click on it, surprise, the option is there to purchase that comic and send it as a gift. It’ll show up in your gifting target’s email and they can just login to collect it and start reading — and even if you’re not sure which of their thousands of comics to go for, they have digital gift cards that let your giftee pick their own present.

Outside of Comixology, Image and 2000 AD have their own digital storefronts that offer DRM-free digital editions of comics, which means that they can be put on any device that can read a PDF, CBZ or CBR file without requiring a proprietary app. They don’t have the automatic gifting of Comixology, but DRM-free files mean that you can just send them directly via email, or even put them on a flash drive, put said flash drive in a gigantic box, wrap it up, and give someone a very confusing Christmas morning before they realize they now have a whole lot of Judge Dredd and Sex Criminals to read.

As far as which specific comics would make a good gift, well, we’ve got you covered there, too: Check out our Best of 2013 list, where we’ve provided links to where you can buy things in both digital and physical formats. Personally, I’d recommend Batman ’66, Adventure Time and My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic as great all-ages options, digital collections of Daredevil and Hawkeye for older readers, and fully independent titles like The Private Eye and Fantasy Basketball for people who like things outside the standard cape comics.

They’re a great way to get a quick, usually inexpensive gift that can open up a whole world of possibilities — especially if you’ve also gotten someone an iPad or Kindle Fire and want to add a little icing to the cake.

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