NYC Comic Con 2011
Ah… what a grand affair.
The Javits center is an appropriate venue, large and spacious, and by now the organizers must be running this from a boiler-template.
As in previous years this comic books convention ran concurrent with the anime-manga convention. Everyone seems to love it that way. The comic crowd were everywhere taking pictures with the manga crowd and viceversa.
Like every year for the past four years, the guy in the Boba Fett’s costume was by the entrance playing the Star Wars theme on his accordion, for the delight of all star wars fans.
The organization is pretty decent, although it works to the advantage of the organizers the fact that most attendees like to things on their own and at their own pace.
What’s inescapable is the fact that for the last 3 years we have been witnessing the spread and sprawl of the Gaming booths throughout the conventions.
Dice UBSoft, EA Games, Square Enix, etc etc…were out in masse, taking up lots of exhibition space, and giving the convention a different flavor. I mean, I know that comics and games do go hand and in hand, (I am an avid PC Gamer myself) but when Gamers exhibitors take as much room as the comics themselves, it sort of puts things in perspective.
Willy Wonka Nerds had a cute large stand, giving out some stuffed trinkets.
Right in front there was a great Arcade machine (and
by great I mean LARGE) were you could feel like a kid again, playing the classics.
Another big change was the area where they have set up shop the comic stores. It was immense, bigger than in previous years, and I am not referring only to Midtown Comics (who were the ones occupying more space), but also to a lot of smaller stores specializing in memorabilia and other items.
There were tons of good stuff to choose and pick and those small stores dragged us into their clutches like luring sirens in Aegean Sea. Now, the advantage of this is that some members of the ComicWatcher delegation spend countless hours perusing through geeky merchandising and left with shopping bags overflowing; another advantage was that I found Bill Siekenwickz signing stuff, and he had no bucks, no prints no posters for sale, so I was able to find an issue he did on a bin, and take it to him for signing! Cool!
Also the Original merchants, (the ones who sell you comic book
original pages) were there and their wares were good, as always and pricey.
Again, thank you, attendees and costumed convention –goers because you made it all worth it. I admit that at first I felt a bit awkward being there by my lonesome (my lovely wife couldn’t come with me this year, breaking a tradition of coming with me every single year, despite our best efforts and her utmost desire to make it), but once you get in the spirit of the things and you start tasting the camaraderie, you quickly overcome your apprehension at asking people to pose, and fear getting freaking out looks by the costumed youngsters at this old coot asking them for poses.
But I can’t help it. It makes feel good, it makes me feel young again, and it makes me feel awesome to see that other share the love for the art that I experienced when I was their age, and never left me. I just stopped showing it off at every chance, but it is there.
So, I spent most of my time in the artist alley section, and getting to know a lot of the new independendants and the new creators out there, as well as getting to know some of the guys I’ve admired for a long time.
Chris Claremont had a table were he was showcasing a new novel he wrote, and had the caption “A story with words! What a concept! Try it! You may like it!”
And please, do not hesitate to leave me your comments and your experiences, and highlight anything here that you think we may have missed.