Friday, July 20, 2012

Comic Con Recap

GQ and I went to the San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) this past weekend. It's something I've been looking forward to for two years; ever since the last time I was there.  There are so many things I love about it and so many things that get me all crazyexcited.  Everything from the airplane ride out there - look, those people are from Cartoon Network - look, that guy has a Green Lantern shirt like yours - I wonder how many of these people are Cos-Players - to getting the pass & my swag bag to actually getting to go into the Exhibit Hall and see the cornucopia of things I love; comic books, super heroes, TV shows, movies, art, toys, t-shirts, movie props, and more.

I thought about and did write a post about how it wasn't what I really thought it was supposed to be.  I titled it, "The Dream Is Over". (Sheesh, talk about melodramatic). It didn't turn out like it did the first time GQ and I went, but you know, almost nothing is the second time around. I couldn't even really bring myself to take 1,548 pictures of all the people dressed up in their Cos-Play. I LOVE SEEING PEOPLE IN THEIR COS-PLAY OUTFITS!!!!So what's the deal?

I forgot about one very important aspect.  There are also 100,000+ others that are just as, if not more, excited as me. And we're all together in a space that, truth be told, isn't that big.  I mean the San Diego Convention Center is big. Don't get me wrong. Actually it's huge.  The problem is that Hall H, which holds approximately 7,000 people, has 15,000 - 25,000 people that want to get in it.  Ballroom 20, which holds 2,000 has 5,000 people that want to get in it. Clearly A LOT of people are not getting into those rooms.  Not only are they not getting in, they're standing in line waiting to get in for hours. HOURS. GQ stood in line for more hours than I'm willing to put down here.  It was not such a great experience for her, but going to SDCC you know you're going to wait in lines. As I've said, there are over 100,000 people there, and out of those 100,000 bunches and bunches want to see the same thing you want to see. So, a lot of people were probably disappointed that they didn't see what they wanted to see.

Personally, I went to several much smaller panels. Panels about comic books. That's a decision I made earlier this year when we bought our tickets.  Last time we went I stood in those lines and saw some great movie and TV previews, and got to see some cool, and not so cool, Hollywood stars and it was fun. It was more than fun actually because it was a new experience.  However, I wasn't ready to have that particular experience again. I saw some artists, writers, editors, and big-wigs from both Marvel and DC comics, and that was awesome for me. I was really happy with the panels I attended.  I got to go onstage during one of the Marvel events that I attended and preview an Infinite Comic. Infinite Comics are Marvel's next step in digital comics. I used to have a subscription to Marvel Digital Comics, and it was a huge collection of old comics that Marvel had gotten scanned into digital form. Infinite Comics are comics actually made for the digital format. They're very, very cool.  My only complaint about my panels is that sometimes there were two going on at the same time, and I had a hard time deciding which one to go see. Not a  bad complaint, I know.

The guy with the beard is Ultimate Spider-Man artist David Marquez.

The big guy there is the Chief Creative Officer of Marvel Comics (WHAT A GREAT JOB!!!)
Coming in October, Avengers Babies vs. X-Men Babies

The exhibit hall is my favorite part of the SDCC experience.  It has everything that I really love. It's the saying, "a kid in a candy store" except that I'm not a kid, and the candy store is more like a giant toy store. It's a world made for me.  The only thing lacking is good pizza, good coffee and drinks served with ice. Now, realistically, this year it was really overwhelming for me.  There were just too many people, and I don't know if there were more vendors or exhibitors or what, but it was full-on nuts in there. The pic above is GQ and me going into the exhibition hall after waiting for 3 hours with a young woman who was there for the SDCC exclusive toys. ESPECIALLY THE MY LITTLE PONY, and that's just one of them.

American Dream - Huzza Huzza!

These two folks are OMG DJ Judy and Agent M. They also get to work in super-awesome positions at Marvel Comics. You should look them up on Tumblr.

Do you know who that guy up there is?  If you said Gene Simmons of KISS you'd be right because that's exactly who it is! He was signing autographs for the Archie Meets KISS comic books. I asked the guy next to the guy with the glasses if I bought a comic could I get an autograph, and he gave me a look like one of Santa's Elves gives Ralphie in A Christmas Story when they're in the mall visiting Santa and said, "Yeah, if you go get in that line. Way. Back. There."

One of the other comic book panels that I sat in on was DC writer, Scott Snyder.  He is the current writer of Batman and American Vampire.  He's co-writing American Vampire with Stephen King.  Yes, that Stephen King. He writes comic books, too.  Scott Snyder just finished Batman - Court of Owls and is getting ready to reintroduce The Joker to DC after a 10 year absence. His plan is to make the Joker so severe and so crazy that no one will want to write another Joker story line for 20 years.

The last panel I will talk about is the Marvel Television panel.  I heard about how The Avengers - Earth's Mightiest Heroes is being transitioned into Avengers Assemble! which will be closer in spirit to the Avengers movie.  Head of Marvel TV, Jeph Loeb, asked the audience no less than three times if they had seen The Avengers. He's clearly very pleased with its success, as is the rest of Marvel. I heard about Ultimate Spider-Man cartoons that are on Disney XD tv and got to see a special screening of a not-to-be-seen until September episode where Loki turns Spider-Man into a pig - Spider-Ham.

The guy in the picture below is Bryan Lee O'Malley. He's the author of the Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series, Lost at Sea and his new one coming in 2013, Seasons. I got an autographed copy of the Evil Edition of Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life as well as a signed print from Seasons, of which there were only 200 copies.

So what's my overall take? Well, when it was all going on I wasn't sure that it was so great, but having just reread this post I think I had a pretty great experience.  I do wish GQ had had better luck with what she was going to see. I think the problem is that this thing is just getting biggerer and biggerer and biggerer, and that's not necessarily a good thing.  This is only my second time going. GQ's been three times, and in that time period it's gone from 'Wow! This is kind of nuts.' to 'Holy crap! This is INSANE!' 

Will I go back? I'm not sure.  GQ and I discussed trying out NYCC and seeing what that's like because it's put on by the same people, but it's either September or October in New York, so... Of course Marvel did announce the sequel titles to both Thor and Captain America which I would really be interested in seeing those panels, but I am really not interested in getting in line at 3 in the morning so I have a chance to see them 12 - 14 hours later.  I don't think I am willing to make that sacrifice. Of course, to quote Chuck Berry, "you never can tell."

Here are more pics from the trip -

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