Featured Post

The Tube Family says Empire's Comics Vault's "shop was awesome"

We were surprised and delighted to have the stars of The Tube Family--the beloved YouTubers--attend our 2019 Free Comic Book Day Festival....

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Upcoming Brian Wood interview

Our INTER -VIEWS series has featured comic book creatives like Kelly Sue DeConnick, Jason Aaron, and Brian Michael Bendis.

We're excited to next interview Brian Wood!

On Tuesday, December 5, 2017, at 6:00 PM, we're sitting down with comic book writer Brian Wood for an interview. It will be LIVE, ONLINE, and you are invited to join us.

Brian has written titles such as The Massive, Star Wars, Rebels, Aliens: Defiance, Robotech, Briggs Land, Mara, Black Road, DMZ, Northlanders, and so many more.

Have something you'd like us to ask Brian? Let us know online, on Twitter or Facebook.

Also, to make sure you don't miss the interview, add the event to your Facebook calendar or visit the interview's broadcast page on YouTube and click "Set Reminder."

To connect with Brian on Twitter, follow him at @BrianWood. We'll see you there!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Black Friday Weekend SALE!

Let's keep this simple. Three days of sales!
Read on for details.

Savings Club Members: Make sure you check your email for additional Black Friday Benefits. Not a member? More info below.

Friday, November 24
Hours: 9am-8pm
  • 35% OFF Graphic novels
  • 40% OFF Toys, posters, and statues
  • Back Issues $5 and under ONLY .50c
  • Back Issues $5.01-$10 ONLY $1
  • Back Issues $10.01-$15 ONLY $2
  • Back Issues $15.01+ 75% OFF
  • 50% OFF Variants & Hard to Find Comics

Saturday, November 25
Hours: 11am-8pm
  • 25% OFF Graphic novels
  • 30% OFF Toys, posters, statues, and games
  • Back Issues $5 and under ONLY $1
  • Back Issues $5.01-$10 ONLY $2
  • Back Issues $10.01-$15 ONLY $3
  • Back Issues $15.01+ 50% OFF
  • 25% OFF Variants & Hard to Find Comics

Sunday, November 28
Hours: 12pm-5pm
  • 50% OFF Back Issues
  • 20% OFF Toys, posters, statues, and games
  • 15% OFF Graphic novels

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Sacramento's Ultimate Creative Women Showcase

Creative Women Mini-Con returns for its 5th year -- and this could be our best year yet. We've assembled thirteen of the region's most talented creative women. And we're throwing a sale in celebration (details below).

Date: Saturday, October 21, 2017
Time: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Location: Empire's Comics Vault

Click here to add the event to your FB calendar.

Everything You Need to Know About Creative Women Mini-Con 2017

In this post, we'll share:

  • A complete list of this year's creative women -- an interview link and social media links
  • Sale details
  • What to expect at the mini-con
Sale Details
  • 50% off Back Issues
  • 25% off Toys
  • 15% off Trades
  • Members: check your email for October's benefit so that you can level up your sale discounts!

What to expect at Creative Women Mini-Con

  • Admission is free.
  • When you support an artist by making a purchase at their table, they keep all their earning. Pay the artist directly, not the store at the counter.
  • Art purchased from the Art Gallery wall should be purchased from the store counter, not the artist's table.
  • The event starts at 11 am and goes until 4 pm.
  • Need food? Visit one of the restaurants in the shopping center and bring it back to the shop if you'd like. Feel free to sit at the couches to take abreak.

2017 Creative Women Mini-Con Exhibitors

Take a moment to enjoy the interviews we did with each exhibitor. Also, below you'll find a little about each creative woman, a link to their most recent interview, and links to some of their online profiles.

Angela Davis: Angela sold her first commissioned painting at fifteen. She's done commissioned pieces for the Deftones' Chi Cheng. She's also collaborated on a coloring book for the city of Sacramento.

Bianca Kim: Bianca creates embroidered fabric pinback buttons with short sayings that can be worn on backpacks, purses and jacket collars. She shows at the Stockmarket craft fair in Stockton, CA. She started 2017 by showing her work in Empire's Comic Vault's art gallery in January and then offered a beginner course for embroidery in her booth at the Stockmarket craft fair in Stockton.
Interview | Etsy | Twitter: @FreshBiscuitsBK | Facebook | Instagram: @FreshBiscuits

Felicia Ann: Felicia is an illustrator and digital painter from Oakland, CA. Of Chinese-Malaysian descent, she blends her rich Southeast-Asian heritage with her enthusiasm for modern science and astronomy. Her art is expressed in the female form, with ethereal portraits that connote her personal exploration of femininity.
Interview | FeliciaAnn.com | Facebook |Instagram: @Felishita

Hannah Moore: Hannah has always been crafty and enjoyed small objects. She keeps things cute for Ghost Thunder. The animal kingdom, cartoons, comics, and video games are constant inspirations.
Interview | GhostThunder.com | Twitter: @Clonie | Facebook | Instagram: @CuriousZoology | Twitter: @_GhostThunder

Heather Merrifield: Heather's focus is to capture moments that might otherwise not be captured, be it in action shots, everyday moments, or the strange and unusual. She will show at an upcoming exhibit at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento.
Interview | Facebook | Instagram: @HeatherLeeArtPhotography

Jen Monson: Jen is constantly delighted by new ideas. She uses trial and error to explore new approaches to her art. Her ultimate goal is to help others feel a sense of peace and joy. A smile on someone's face is the ultimate final touch.
Interview | Twitter: @JenMonson | Facebook | Instagram: @jenuoneart | Etsy

Kassandra Gamez: Kassandra is a comics creating artist. She's worked at some cool companies, but maybe not in the art department, for example, dA and Disney Interactive. Kassandra is a huge fan of comics, zines, and Corgis. This will be her first time exhibiting at CWMC. 
Tumblr | Twitter: @Kozispoon | Instagram: @kozispoon | DeviantArt

Kelly Van Gaasbeck: Kelly's focus is storytelling and whimsical thoughts. She works mostly with ink, metallic and monoprints. She spent 2 years in Japan, teaching and learning and wandering across the country, where she came to love telling stories in small spaces.
Interview | Facebook | Instagram: @Fireflirt

Kristine Balog: Kristine is an Art Historian, oil painter, and author who has dedicated her life to the Italian Baroque painter Caravaggio. She is both an academic and creative, teaching Art History as a profession and channeling her passion into creating comic books and authoring novels. She has authored numerous academic articles and has been teaching at the collegiate level for five years.
Interview | KristineBalog.com | Twitter: @KristineArt | Facebook | Instagram: @KristineArt |

Maia & Kaimani: Maia and Kaimani are 9 and 8 years old, respectively. Both Maia and Kaimani are enthusiastic artists who enjoy making comics, drawing, painting, jewelry making and pretty much flexing their imaginations in any creative capacity. Growing up with empowering and inspiring storytelling such as the films of Hayao Miyazaki and shows like Steven Universe, they are also equally influenced by their comics-making dad, their jewelry-making mom, and Sacramento's thriving comics and art scenes.

Megan Risk: Megan works primarily in the traditional mediums: graphite, colored pencils, pressed pastel, etc. Recently she's expanded into the digital art world, mixing it with the traditional mediums. While she started working in portraits and landscapes, she has also explored the realms of horror, supernatural, fantasy, and superhero. Megan sold her first commission when she was 23.
Interview | MeganERisk.com | Twitter.com: @MegERisk | Facebook | Instagram: @MeganERisk

Rachel Strum: Local wand-maker Rachel Strum handcrafts fantasy wands. With a background ranging from illustration to stained glass, Rachel’s experience in mixed media has inspired wands unlike any others. Beginning by hand selecting quality supplies, pairing gems individually with wood bases, and then intensively layering mixed media, her wands capture the imagination and inspire a sense of beauty. The delicate balance between beauty and practicality within all her whimsical creations has sprouted from the needs in her life, be it simple toys or giant strawberry pillows. Transforming common materials into playful creations is a labor of love inspired by Rachel’s belief that everyday should come with a touch of magic.
Interview | Etsy | Facebook | Twitter: @CitrusAtelier

Sarah René Kraft: Sarah is a Sacramento-based illustrator, colorist, storyteller, and all around sketchy lady. Experience her work in the illustrated comic world of the Greek mythology-inspired “Blind Follies,” and her upcoming artbook in progress "Lemiscus," among other various arts and projects.
Interview | Instagram: @SketchyKraft | Twitter: @SketchyKraft | Facebook

Sarah Troedson: Sarah is a composer working in silk, gemstones, pearls, crystals, precious metals, glass, and yarn. Handmade lamp-worked glass beads, silk cord, silver charms, bamboo fiber and baby alpaca yarn are the notes in her music. Colors and textures are the melody and harmony. The "music" she composes is fine jewelry, crochet and woven accessories created with a sense of joy.
Interview | RocksMapsandCrafts.com | Twitter: @RocksMapsCrafts | Facebook | Etsy

Friday, August 25, 2017

Cosplay Sketch Featuring Model Jennifer Ravensong

Whether you’re a cosplayer or an artist — or both — be sure to participate in our twice-a-month Cosplay Sketch.

Meet the model and talk cosplay, then have a seat and sketch, paint, sculpt, or draw the model. Entry is $10 at the door — and all proceeds go directly to the model.

On Tuesday, August 29, 2017, from 6 - 9 PM, cosplay model Jennifer Ravensong will pose as Poison Ivy for your sketching pleasure (click to add this event to your FB calendar).

Check our Facebook calendar for additional upcoming sessions.

Who Is Cosplayer Jennifer Ravensong?

Jennifer Ravensong (on FB at J Ravensong Productions | Instagram | Twitter) is a fictional character, with a solid mythology.

Known in some parts as the Villainous Vixen Ravensong, no one knows who the Lady Ravensong truly is; her name and face have changed so many times.

What is known is that she will never remain the same for very long, always changing and morphing to blend into her environment. 

She is known to win the affections of men and women alike, only to bring them to their undoing. A black widow by nature and a siren at heart, she will woo unsuspecting victims with the beauty of her words and song and is sure to drive you to madness. 

While it is said she has a heart of gold, very few have seen past her walls, but to those she holds dear, she is an angel in disguise.

But never trust a villain or a woman….especially a villainous woman.

She was trained in the Companion arts from birth and was then discovered to have a very high count of metachlorian.

She trained in the Jedi arts under Mace Windu before she was betrayed utterly and turned to the darkside. Now a Sith, she carries her light saber with her always but only resorts to its use in the trickiest of situations.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

6 Stand-Up Reasons To Laugh Your Freckle-Muffin Off Friday Night

6. It’s 100% Free laughs. Every last Friday of the month, starting at 8 PM. Check out FB Calendar for upcoming events and the lineup.

5. Our host’s own laughter will crack you up. It’s so contagious. He’s Mr. Joe-Joe Louis. He holds a PhD in English and is the creator and producer of both Comedy Night at Empires and the Secret Moving Van Show, both in Sacramento. He is also the creator of Joe-Joe Has Fun, a twice-daily Let's Play show starring both him and comedian Kim Martel.

Joe-Joe Louis, Sacramento comedian
Joe-Joe Louis, Sacramento comedian

4. There may — or not — be singing. Especially if Christian Amaral has anything to sing about it. He is the co-host of the monthly High Anxiety Variety Show, as well as the creator of 3 failed podcasts.

3. People wear cool stuff with, like, skulls. Yeah, skulls. Take Robert Barry, for instance. As the creator and writer behind the long standing pop culture site retroCRUSH, he's written hundreds of essays, interviews, and film reviews. Can’t wait to see what he wears Friday night.

Robert Berry, comedian
Robert Berry, comedian

2. One comedian may be punnier than the others.
We’re talking about Damian Harmony. He, along with his partner Daniel Humbarger, has run the Capitol PUNishment pun tournament in Sacramento for the last year. He is a father of two, and could really use the money from comedy so that his kids can eat meat sometimes. So, please, make good use of the tip car. See also, bullet point #3, again.

Damian Harmony, Comedian
Damian Harmony, Comedian

And the #1 reason to laugh your freckle-muffin off with us every last Friday of the month is...

1. Random stuff happens, for example, A.J. DeMello landing in the #1 spot of this post. Oh, yeah, lots more random headed your way. With a delivery ranging from caveman to out right joker, A.J.'s sharp, no-nonsense material and nonchalant pacing leave audiences laughing and hurting.

Friday, May 12, 2017

"My first Free Comic Book Day"

Hearing about someone's first Free Comic Book Day experience is a real gift to us. We think you'll enjoy seeing FCBD through the eyes of a first-time attendee.

You can enjoy more of Toni Bee's videos online by subscribing to her YouTube channel.

Image by Toni Bee

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

"I want all of you to go to your local comic shop this Saturday"

"Free Comic Book Day." Artist: Sergio Aragonés
Today we're sharing a guest post with you. This guest post originally appeared on Eben E.B. Burgoon's Facebook profile

Eben is one of Sacramento's creatives. He creates comic books, including Eben07 and B-Squad, and he creates comic book creators, teaching children how to create their own comic books.

We asked him if we could repost it to our blog, and he said yes. We've used the opening words of his post as the title for ours.

Before we get to that, we have something to add.

Sacramento is a unique town in many ways, but especially when it comes to comic shops. Very few towns support as many comic shops as Sacramento does. We count at least fifteen, but wouldn't be surprised if there are more and we just haven't heard about them yet.

Our town has embraced comic book and geek culture -- from Sac-Con to Wizard World Sacramento, from Art Mix: Crocker-Con to SacAnime and Free Comic Book Day Festival, and so on.

And Sacramento comic shops return the support. As a comic shop we do our best to champion our local creatives -- and not just comic book creators. We champion literacy and small business and the arts and local interest groups and so on.

So, Thank You, Sacramento! 

"I want all of you to go to your local comic book shop this Saturday. Seriously. Stop with that "pFFttt" noise - yeah, I heard it. You, yes, you. Stop for a second. Say it aloud with me. "SIRI. Remind me to go to a comic book shop this Saturday."

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Complete Guide to Free Comic Book Day Festival 2017

We're giving away 20,000 free comic books on Saturday, May 6, 2017 and features:
  • Charity raffle! 
  • Live wrestling! 
  • Roller derby athletes! 
  • West Coast Avengers cosplayers! 
  • Stormtroopers! 
  • Face painting! 
  • Balloon art! 
  • Food trucks and more! 

2017 Free Comic Book Day Festival
DATE: May 6, 2016
(Add this event to your FB calendar)

Doors open at:
  • 8 a.m. for Savings Club Members
  • 9 a.m. for new guests
  • 25% OFF Graphic novels, collected editions, toys, statues, variant wall (variants and back issues on the wall), and variants in the box. 
  • NOTE: art wall not on sale, regular price only. 
Back issues
(not including back issues on the Variant Wall)
  • IF COVER PRICE is $15.01+ = SALE is 75% OFF cover price 
  • COVER PRICE $1-5 = ON SALE FOR .50c 
  • COVER PRICE $5.01-10 = ON SALE FOR $1 
  • COVER PRICE $10.01-15 = ON SALE FOR $2 
Parking is available on Larkspur. It's the street next to the shop.

Click to Expand


If you're not a Member, you can skip this section. Or maybe read it. Sign up by 12/31/2017 to receive the special treatment in 2018.

Members, whenever you get here, use the Members's Only VIP Line, a.k.a., the short line. But if you get here early...

We're opening the store one hour early for our Members to access free comics, to meet Sacramento creatives exhibiting in the store (full list below), and to take advantage of our storewide sale (details below).

Every Saturday in May we are celebrating Free Comic Book MONTH. It features FCBMonth-exclusive comic books, collected editions, and posters -- for FREE. Members can come any Saturday they want or every Saturday. NOTE: Only Savings Club Members who enrolled by December 31, 2016 are eligible for this benefit.


Here's a complete list of guests for this year's festival.


  • Wandering Boba 
  • FreshMed Mediterranean Cuisine 
Artists and Writers
Community Groups
  • Supreme Pro Wrestling: enjoy live wrestling. 
  • The 501st Legion: Mingle with the Empire's baddest troopers. 
  • West Coast Avengers: Cozy up to Northern California's coolest cosplayers. 
  • Sac City Rollers: Have wheels, will fly! But they're always happy to stop for a photo. 
  • Cracking The Vault Podcast: It's the shop's official, all-ages podcast. Chat with these folks and you may get featured in an episode. The FCBD Preview episode is up now. | website
  • Reality Comics LLC: These folks produce some fine video about geek culture, comics, and more. Be sure to spend some time with them. 
  • The Capeless Crusaders: These vid- and podcasters are a rip roaring good time. Join them as they talk about comics, geekery, and more.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Ben Interviews Bendis April 21 at 3 PM Online

This Friday, April 21, 2017 Ben interviews Bendis -- and we can't wait. 3 PM can't get here fast enough, tick tock, tick tock.

Not only is Brian Michael Bendis one of the hottest modern comic book creators -- he's also the ultimate fan of comic books.

We hope you'll join us. If there's anything you'd like to ask him, let us know in the comments as soon as possible.

You can watch online here starting at 3 PM tomorrow (or shortly thereafter).

Just to whet your appetite, we're including his TEDxCLE talk for your viewing pleasure.

Brian Michael Bendis at TEDxCLE: "The little boxes"

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Vaulty Award Winners Recognizes Best Comics of 2016

Our podcast crew, Cracking the Vault's Tony Asaro, Amy Nunag, and Patrick Clarke, recently recognized the best in 2016's comics via our annual comic book awards, The Vaulty Awards.

This year we added a Listener's Choice selection, so now your favorites are recognized also.

Don't miss out on these awesome comics, available in a comic shop near you.

Episode 90 of the podcast (listen here) announced the winners, but we've put them in print for you right here.

So, without further ado, here are the winners!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

The Year of the Creatives Begins Today

You probably noticed how much we love Sacramento. If not, just take a look at our calendar of events -- past and present.

In 2017, we've decided to really connect the dots. We're celebrating creatives and creative acts all year long.

Get into Sacramento's creative culture

We hope you'll join us in getting to know Sacramento's creative culture. Maybe you'll learn something about our creative community that you didn't know or hadn't experienced before. If you do, please share it with us.

Do something creative you haven't done before

Today is the first day of 2017. Three hundred and sixty-four days from today what creative endeavors would you like to have accomplished? Better yet, how about 90 days from now? What one or two new creative endeavors are on your bucket list? Let's do it -- together -- because we have one or two things on our list also.

Next time you're in the shop, asks us what we're up to and let us know what's on your list. Also, stay tuned for new opportunities to experience Sacramento's creative culture.

And if you're not already on our mailing list, you might want to sign up. It's going to be an exciting year.