Monday, February 09, 2009

New York Comic-Con - The Other San Diego

This past weekend I journeyed to New York City for my first official New York Comic-Con. I had heard from folks in the know that this is not like San Diego, because there's no movie studios and gamers and all that crap. Just comic folk. Plus, it's not 3000 miles away. plus, I love New York. Who's the big winner? Dursy! Dursy wins!

And, yes, I was. It was a lot of fun, despite the fact that it is actually a lot like San Diego Comic-Con, only a smaller auditorium. There's still tons of sweaty, overweight people in costumes taking pictures of each other and looking for that rare deal on a limited edition Paste-Pot Pete action figure, and, of course, Lou Ferrigno was there. I guess that is to be expected. It's just the shear volume of it still astounded me. Even with people losing jobs by the minute and comic prices rising, I still saw hundreds of people spending hundreds of dollars on "collectibles." I sat by the ecselator at one point and watched all the costumed folk trudge out of there will huge bags and boxes overflowing with swag that they had bought. It literally looked like they were only leaving because they couldn't possibly carry anything else. I'm not sure how I feel about that. It's pretty good, I guess, that they still have money to fuel their passion. It's also kind of weird that there are people who can't afford to eat or pay rent, and these guys are blowing gobs of money on old crap. I mean, I'm all for having a little fun, despite the cost (I was there, after all, and I'm certainly broke), but there are lines that were obviously crossed.

To that point, I made my usual stop at Terry Moore's table, and bought a limited edition Echo print, with the money going to the Comic Book legal Defnse Fund (that took some of the sting out of it.) I also was able to find some old Strangers in Paradise issues for a good price, including my holy grail, #30. This completes my collection, as I now have all 90 issues of the series, including a couple of the rare first print ones when he was first startingn out. To mark my triumph, I waited in line for a few minutes and had Terry Moore sign my #30. When I told him that I had achieved my goal, he seemed rather impressed. The real feat, actually, was to impress one of my idols. I should have told him that I did buy several of them from his website store. Then he would have really liked me.

However, I saw a piece of Strangers in Paradise original art that I really, really wanted. For those who know what the series is about, the page I was going to buy was the one rigth after David passed away, after winking at Katchoo, the love of his life, and Katchoo is in the hallway, and the emotions on her face are captured so beautifully, from shock to horror to sadness. tehre is no dialogue on the page (not that original pages have dialogue on them, but it only makes this one even cooler.) I was amazed that no one had actually bought it yet, quite frankly. I even told Terry Moore's wife that same thing, and we had a nice long talk about the beauty of original comic art, the way the ink looks on the page, and the size of the drawings. The price tag? $425. Realtively cheap for original art, but I could not justify spending that kind of money on a comic book page, even if it is my favorite comic. There was no way. I drew the line, thanked Robyn Moore for the talk, and walked away, almost wishing I had haggled with her for it.

Of course, after leaving the convention, I spent a bunch of money on dinner, and then a little mroe on a cab-ride to the iFanBoy party at a bar called Stitch. Then I spent another $40 on drinks while there, chatting the night away with my old high school friend Clay, whom I had not seen in years, even though he lives in Brighton as well. I also chatted with the stars of the iFanboy podcast, and warned them I had staretd a podcast of my own and that we were coming to get them. Cryptically, Josh Flanagan said, "I'm glad I'm not starting a podcast now."


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