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Kids' Internet

Web Has Its Version of Funny Pages

April 19, 2001|KAREN JONES | karen@kjnyc.com

Comic books are a popular art form for children of all ages, and devotees find plenty of fun at Marvel.com and Comics.com.

Marvel.com

Best known for its Spider-Man and X-Men properties, Marvel.com (http://www.marvel.com) serves as a comic book forum for fans. Visitors can peruse new issues of Ultimate Spider-Man and Ultimate X-Men each week and information about their movie and TV adaptations.

The Comics section features biographies, critiques and information on a bevy of Marvel characters such as Thor, Captain America, Blade and Avengers. Fun & Games offers jazzy interactive games, downloadable wallpaper and audio clips, printable coloring pages and interactive comic strips.

There is also a Community area where Marvel editors and creators discuss the creative process with online fans via message boards.

The truly converted also can sign up for MarvelOnline.net, a service provider offering 20 Marvel character domain names, exclusive sweepstakes, contests and limited-edition comics. It costs $15 per month.

Comics.com

Comics.com, the online venue for United Media, is a showcase for more than 90 popular comic strips such as Peanuts, Dilbert, Ripley's Believe It or Not, B.C. and Raising Duncan. At http://www.comics.com, the site features the work of leading editorial cartoonists plus New Yorker magazine's celebrated cartoons.

Each day, the home page posts a featured comic strip. Depending on what comic page is visited, users can view 30 days of the strip, e-mail it to friends, read author biographies and download comic-themed cursors and wallpaper. There also is a store where visitors can order customized T-shirts, mugs and mouse pads.

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Karen Jones is a freelance writer specializing in children's interactive media.

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