Saturday August 3rd marked the opening of the sixth Boston Comic Con and what a show it was!
When I attended in 2012 I thought it was a great convention. No big companies, lot’s of great talent. The vendors tended to be local and they didn’t overpower the show. After the events in April that led to canceling and then the subsequent rescheduling of the show I was a little concerned that they might jump the shark.
It was undue concern, the organizers of BCC took great pains to reschedule, relocate, and re-publicize the show and they did it, somehow, without shutting out all the things that made last year so great.
There was an amazing line-up of talent there this year, both celebrities and soon-to-be celebrities; Mike Mignola, Scott Snyder, George Perez, Brian Azzarello, Mark Bagley, Tony Daniel, Bill Willingham, Steve Niles, James O’Barr, Terry Moore, David Petersen, the list goes on and on. And let’s not forget the publishers, while last year I think Zenescope was the largest publisher in attendance this year we had Boom!/Archaia and IDW sharing back to back booths. And while Marvel and DC (and Darkhorse) didn’t have an “official” presence we did have Mark Chiarello, Art Director for DC Comics, at his table reviewing portfolio after portfolio. And DC even hosted a panel (which was of course very well attended) with Tony Daniel, Aaron Lopresti, Dan Didio, and Scott Snyder. Speaking of panels there was also a Locke & Key panel (with Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodriguez, Chris Ryall) and a Fables panel (with Phil Jimenez, Barry Kitson, Bill Willingham, Chrissie Zullo). As well as a Comic Writers Panel, Women Creators Panel, Independent Publishing Panel and a bunch more. It was a full-blown convention, this was no church basement affair.
The most important (and welcome) thing about this convention? There were table upon table of people who make comics. People you’ve never heard of, people you may have heard of, people making comics. There may have been some overarching method to the layout of the space but I can honestly say I felt no separation between artist alley, the publishers, the famous, the infamous, and the unknown. And for me that makes an amazing show.
Some of my favorite moments from Saturday? Everywhere I turned there was an artist or writer I’ve wanted to meet.
One of the first I ran into was James O’Barr (Creator of The Crow), I stopped at his booth just to pay him my compliments on his new Crow series at IDW. I was totally unprepared for his easy-going personable manner and Texas drawl. I made a mental note to catch the panel he was on (Independent Publishing) later that afternoon. I also got to say hello (and buy some stuff from) Steve Niles whose My?tery Society 2013 Special is now sitting, signed, on my desk. By the way, when you’re a New Yorker in a foreign land (yes, Boston is a foreign land) and you run into Frank Tieri (Deadpool, Punisher Noir, Batman and the Outsiders, Gotham Underground) you feel right at home, his no-nonsense Brooklyn accent is a wonderful addition to any convention (not to mention he’s a brilliant writer and panelist).
Along with meeting new people another great thing about conventions is getting to see the artists and writers who you’ve known a while. I made a beeline for C.P. Wilson (artist on Th3rd World Studios’ The Stuff of Legend) to congratulate him on being tapped to draw Joe Hills new project Wraith: Welcome to Christmasland for IDW. If you haven’t checked out The Stuff of Legend you really should it’s a wonderful series. I also made sure to get to Erica Schultz’ booth because I needed my M3 fix, this series is on issue seven and if you’re not reading it you need to get the first trade and catch up! I also found the First Law of Mad Science boys. I seek them out at every convention, Mike and Oliver are great guys, always fun to talk to and their book is a really great sci-fi series. Issue 4 is available now (I’ll have a review asap). Brandon Barrows is another one of those people I need try to find, his graphic novel Jack Hammer will be re-released this year through Action Lab don’t miss it, this time around he turned me on to VOYAGA, his book with Ionic and Montemayer, it’s a sci-fi action book about time travel, well sort of, I’ll explain in my upcoming review.
Speaking of upcoming reviews I met a ton of new people and got interested in a bunch of new books! I’ll be reviewing Healed!, Farlaine The Goblin, Pieces of Eights, Kantara, Alex Cormack’s Future Proof, Kill Shakespeare: The Temple of Blood, The Underburbs, as well as M3 #7 and First Law #4.
Jeez I haven’t even mentioned the panels! Let’s save that for a later piece, here are a few pics I took over the weekend,
More stuff to come… but I think it’s safe to say that this is a convention you should attend, make plans people. See you in Boston!