BY SEAN CLARK
I’m not very versed in comics. I never really read them when I was a kid, and though I’ll occasionally read a graphic novel, serialized comics just aren’t something I can get into, mostly because I don’t know where to start. So maybe it’s no surprise that ClickWheel Comics app has a whole bunch of titles I’ve never heard of before, and a couple of which I have. It’s a free download that gets right down to business: a menu offers the available series and then you select the issue within each header, then the format (or more to the point the provider) and you’re off.
It’s rather hard to compare a comics reader, which essentially is a pre-populated image viewer rather than something that handles document formatting, to the ereader apps, but here’s a quick rundown of the features: you load a comic then slide gesture between pages. You can pinch and pull to zoom in and out on detail. Not very complicated.
As for the content, there’s a little bit of everything from Judge Dredd to Dinosaur Comics (a completely brilliant web comic that should be reason enough for you to make the free download). Most content is free (including Dinosaur Comics) and a few require purchase. I’m not sure how this works but I assume you need to set up an account with the comic provider. The offerings aren’t exhaustive–25 series available, but the app seems to upload fresh content pretty regularly though.
Unfortunately, ClickWheel Comics is pretty glitchy. It crashes and hangs a lot (over 50% of the time for me), which can be quite frustrating. This may be because it requires a Wi-Fir or 3G connection, which was a dealbreaker with other apps. The glitching seems to happen with the more detailed stuff especially, so if you’re in it for the Dinosaur Comics, no worries–it didn’t crash on me once with DC. Because of this and the lack of more mainstream comics, I can’t really recommend ClickWheel Comics as a go-t0 ecomic app. (I’m not sure one exists. If so let me know below.) However it is free, and it will put Dinosaur Comics in your pocket, so it’s worth taking for a spin if you’re bored.