Free nostalgic comics on the iPad

One of the things that got me excited about getting an iPad was using it to read comic books, so I figured I would be using the excellent Marvel app to buy a few issues every now and then. But recently I've stumbled upon a few sources of fantastic comic nostalgia that are totally free and will keep me reading for quite some time! Being the huge Planet of the Apes fan that I am, I've had the awesome Hunter's Planet of the Apes Archive website bookmarked forever, and I remembered that it includes PDFs of tons of Apes comics from the 70s (as well as lots of other fantastic material). Since I wanted to read these on my iPad, I looked for the best app for the job that included a built-in way to transfer the files themselves, and GoodReader was the answer. Not only is this app fast and excellent for reading PDF comics, but it allows me to download them right from the web (or my local iMac via FTP) and even organize them in a folder structure! I have been totally enjoying the comic adaption of the first Apes movie (which I discovered includes scenes and dialogue that were cut from the film, after listening to some excellent commentary tracks on Blu-ray).

I used to read lots of Gold Key Comics when I was growing up (including classic Star Trek, Magnus Robot Fighter, and even Boris Karloff stories), and I found a terrific blog called Gold Key Stories that features complete issues as CBR files, another popular format for digital comics. Of course, there are some true CBR reader apps for the iPad, but since I was so happy with GoodReader I decided to see if I could convert CBR to PDF, and it turned out to be easy after two seconds of Googling. I found some simple instructions for using a program called Jomic to do the job, so now I can download these cool Gold Key files, convert them to PDF, and transfer them to my iPad with GoodReader so I can read them. I'm certain there are lots of other cool websites out there with more nostalgic comic books available, so after I get my fill of Planet of the Apes (like that could ever happen!) and Gold Key goodness, I'll start searching for more digital awesomeness to enjoy!