This past week was a four day event known as New York Comic Con. I had only been there once before on a one-day professional pass (that’s right I’m a professional!) that I got through work. I decided to give in to a large experience and got a four day pass even if in the end I was only able to go to three days, skipping Saturday in fear of the even more massive, massive crowds. Comic Con is a fascinating event; a convention center filled with blocks of comics and toy dealerships as well as what's known as artist alley, which is more dedicated to independent comics and artist promoting their wares. This includes various steam punk, fantasy, and bondage outfits, weapons, sculptures, and toys. There is, of course, many problems with this event. The convention center is far too crowded making me feel bad for small children and handicapped people of which there seems to be an awful lot of, well, more than, say, at any sport or Rock concert event I’ve seen. So much of what is there is somewhat useless as New York City is filled with comic shops and toy stores. If there were bargains if I could understand, but some of the pricing borders on scams. The best thing for comic con is artist alley as there you can find actually unique items. The problem is that the same artists want to sell their material and sometimes they can be rather pushy.
I did get some great stuff, unfortunately, at the same time, some not so great stuff. Bill Plympton’s handler made a big deal out how fast he did a sketch of me; well guess what, I rather have something good for my money than the shit he drew! FU Bill, try to treat a fan/paying customer with respect. And there are plenty of great and friendly artists who will do just that: CW, Jason Thomas, Jason Deeble, Ivan O'Neill, Fat Artist (not sure if that is his legal name), and Selina Briggs to name a few. Some of the artists want a crazy amount of money for their unknown work whether comics or art, and I can’t understand how they pull that off, but if you will do a sketch for me cheaply, or better yet for free, I will buy some of your work as well (although most people probably don’t do this, even if they should). This, naturally, lead me to getting into trouble such as when I got a sketch for a dollar and the artist kept giving me free stuff which I gladly took until the final item, which, after I express interest in, he wanted $20 for. It was hard to say that I was interested in stuff for free but that the crappy exploitative poster of a fake-porn comic was not worth paying for. This brings me to some observations.
It is also really cool to see so many people dressed as comic book characters. Despite what I might have thought, there is apparently no limit to how many Deadpool characters people will dress as or the degree of pseudo-porn you can have and pretend it is a comic. What makes this last part worse is the amount of young women that eagerly jump in on this. It seems that if you want to promote your work, just have a mostly naked chick with huge tits hawking your wares. The normally shy nerd will come out of his shell for these events and the one time feminists will see their sisters as empowering and try to act the same. I’m not sure if this last part is some ego stroking need for some women as there are many that probably wouldn’t get looked at twice in public but put their 300lbs in a sailor moon costume with their DDs and they are the bell at the ball. (Note: If you feel that you don’t match the standard of beauty, dress as a female superhero and finds some comic fans.) Yet at the same time there are incredibly attractive women going around in string but little else that couldn’t possible need the attention fix. The only thing I have to say to them is: “Where the hell are you when it comes to my life?! I’ve never met the model who is both a nerd and attracted to them!” Props to the women dressed as an original Star Trek doctor as you are very attractive but didn’t wear anything that crossed the line.
Anyway, while I knew “Welcome to Nightvale" podcast was popular, I had no idea that it would have blocks long lines for meeting cast members—btw I just ordered merchandise to support you when I could have got it cheaper without waiting or paying for shipping. Speaking of lines, what is the interest in that? I just don’t want to wait two hours to meet Lucy Lawless for five seconds or spend $20 to shake hands with an 1980s wrestler or Mike Teevee (seriously, have you done anything else, child star?).
As a means of socializing NYCC is a contradiction. On the one hand I ran into a few people that I have not seen in as many as five years (I’m glad they recognized me, because maybe I was passing by all sorts of people I once knew as I seem to be face blind). Since this is a group of “my people,” so to speak, you would think it would be easy to chat it up and make friends. Additionally, call a person by the name of the costume they are wearing and they are very excited to let you take of picture of/with them (this is where the creepy guys get to put their arms around the half naked with boob popping outfitted barely legal girls (here’s some math for you: increased breast size + lower clothing size = more popular (but I guess you can say that about anything in life)). Yet, on the other hand, I find NYCC to be rather isolating. The most fun I had was when I met up with Donette and wandered with her. It is something about having someone to immediately share the experience with that truly make the event, and yet to find a group of people that want to do this with me is ridiculously hard for some reason despite the hundred thousand people plus that attended and my own circle of seemingly comic loving friends.
Still, for whatever the problems, NYCC is a fascinating event and worth experiencing. Rather than continue to bore you with observations I'll let you see some of the creative and fun things you can see (I'm especially big on the little kids in costumes although I wonder how much of it is their parents forcing them to dress as the character verse because the kid's a fan). These two that you might not recognize are Pippi Longstocking and Kiki (as in Kiki's Delivery Service) which you should learn about (and, appearently, I like tales of girls with _i_i as their names).