Last Week’s Comic Con

This past weekend, the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center hosted the tenth New York Comic Con. The final tally isn’t in yet, but it looks like NYCC surpassed last year’s attendance record of 151,000.I’ve been to every NYCC save for the first one. I’ve borrowed someone’s pass, been the guest of a pro and I’ve attended as press. They are all fantastic ways of catching the show. This year, I spent my money and I got to revel in being a fan again. I didn’t need to worry about filing a story or rushing across the floor to get an interview. The only rushing I did was getting in on Sunday to pick up my sketchbook!

I spent most of Thursday going to panels. I caught the tail end of the Comic Book Men panel. It was basically a Kevin Smith Q&A and it was super entertaining. The part that stood out to me was when he professed his love for The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. However, the next panel is what we came for – Star Wars Rebels Season 2 panel. Dave Filoni, Taylor Gray, Ashley Eckstein and new cast member Sarah Michelle Gellar discussed where the show was going now that we all know Ahsoka Tano is alive and actively working with the emerging Rebellion. They showed some clips, including two scenes where Ms. Gellar’s Seventh Sister shows off her Dark Side skills. They then teased us to come back and watch the next two episodes of the show at 5:30.

We then headed to Artist’s Alley where I was lucky enough to commision some sketches for my sketch book. Joe Quinones (Howard the Duck, Black Canary & Zatanna) and Mark Mariano (Happyloo, The Other Side of Hugless Hill) drew me some sweet pieces of Spider-Man and BB-8 respectively. There were a lot of talented artists in this year’s alley, but I was disappointed to see a growing number of print sellers in the alley instead of artists (and some of them weren’t even selling their own art!). It’s called Artist’s Alley, not laser printer alley. Hopefully NYCC organizers, Reed Pop, will fix that in 2016.  That said, there were a  lot of incredibly talented artists sketching and selling books/prints. I noticed artist like Erica Henderson, Sanford Greene, Babs Tarr, Gabriel Ba, Fabio Moon, Amy Reeder, Joe Staton, Walt Simonson and so many more spent the con interacting with fans new and old. It was a wonderful scene to behold.

I have a confession to make, I’ve become addicted to the Topps Star Wars Card trader app on my iPhone. The Topps booth was giving away 75,000 points to users as well as access to an exclusive Hyper Color Star Wars Rebels Illustrated set and an exclusive Her Universe Ahsoka Tano card. We made sure to check the Topps booth a few times over the course of the show to rack up the points. We then headed back to catch the Rebels episodes.

I spent the next three days walking the floor, checking in with a busy Matthew Rosenberg (We Can Never Go Home, Menu) where I bugged him about We Can Never Go Home # 5. I got to talk to Paybacks writers Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal about this year’s breakout character, Bloodpouch (yes, Bloodpouch is awesome). I also got to pick up my Stray trade paperback from Vito Delsante (I am so psyched to reread it and bone up for Action Lab’s Actionverse). I also got to check in with friends of Unwinnable, Big Kev’s Geek Stuff.

No con recap is complete without a swag recap. the best deal I got was DC Archives  Kamandi Vol. 1 and 2. I got some other cool stuff like Hallmark’s NYCC exclusive Alien ornament, Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon’s Two Brothers, Jonathan Case’s The New Deal, a bunch of Ann Nocenti/Lee Weeks Daredevil comics, Mister Miracle # 17, Dell’s adaptation of Masque of the Red Death as well as a bunch of free pins and posters. It was a pretty sweet haul that may find its way into future LWC columns.

New York Comic Con grows every year. I am happy to see there was a lot of comic book content at the show. I noticed the Artist’s Alley was was much more well traveled this year, which is a HUGE plus. Dark Horse, Image, Archie, IDW, Oni Press, Valiant, 2000 AD and more had a considerable presence on the main convention floor. Marvel did too, but all they did was blast bad pop music, yell over it and then throw crap at the audience. DC, while not on the main floor, had a cool set up on the north end with a signing booth and props and costumes from Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. it was a lot of fun to see.

I enjoyed this year’s NYCC and I am looking forward to this summer’s Special Edition . Until then, I have a ton of comics to read!

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