Boston Comic Con (part 1)

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As I did when I traveled to Dubai Comic Con, I will talk about this trip over the course of 3 posts, in 3 days.  The first (this one) will be about the con in general, tomorrow will be the swag and things I got, and we will end with the cosplayers, which were awesome.

You can hear some of our thoughts on the con in the latest WIP (the What If? Podcast), but I’ll give you my side of things. 

My family and I got down to Boston and went right there on Saturday.  We had to wait in a line that was about 3/4 of the way around the actual building.  Luckily, it moved quickly and we got inside in about 30 minutes.  People who hadn’t bought tickets online as we had had to wait in a different line,. which took some of them over 3 hours.

Inside, I was blown away.  The place was huge, and packed.  Booths and tables were every where, selling comics, toys, art, and tons of other stuff.  I had made a game plan for myself on Saturday, and so my wife and daughter spent some time wandering around while I tried to get all my stuff signed.  I’ll talk more about the signatures tomorrow, but I was very pleased with how accessible the artists were and how many I got to see.

A note of disappointment.  Skottie Young canceled.  Nothing against him personally.  I don’t know the guy and I don’t know why he didn’t make it, but I was very disappointed.  I didn’t care too much about getting him to sign some things for me, but I know my daughter had been looking forward to seeing him.  She dressed up as Dorothy from the Oz comics, but alas, was mistaken for Kiki a couple times.

Speaking of costumes, I went as Robin, using a rental from a great costume shop in my town.  My wife though, went as Laurie from the Walking Dead.  Yes, no one really liked Laurie, but being pregnant, she didn’t have too many options.  However, she pulled it off very well.  She got tons of comments, and many people wanted to get her picture.  Good job babe!

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There she is posing with a guy dressed as Rick.  We also some a few Carls.

Even though the place was crowded, it seemed well organized and everyone from the staff to the patrons were very polite and thoughtful.  There was a multitude of big names in the comic industry and also a few celebs.  I didn’t get any actor autographs, as they were charging more money than I was willing to spend, but I did get this shot of someone you might recognize as the best ship mechanic flying.

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The second day for us, Sunday, was not as crowded, but still felt full.  I had gotten all the signatures I had wanted Saturday, so Sunday was set aside for shopping and making sure that we had really seen everything we wanted.  You’ll see all those great things we got tomorrow.

I hope everyone else who went had a great time and I look forward to hearing about anyone else’s time there.  Come back tomorrow to learn more.

Middle East Film and Comic Con (part 1)

This weekend, my family and I took a drive up to Dubai to attend the MEFCC.  We went on Friday, stayed the night, and went to the beach on Saturday.  It was all of our first comic conventions, and I have to say, I think we were a bit underwhelmed.  We got there when it started and didn’t have to wait in line too much before getting inside the hall.  These guys knew what they were doing though and brought their own entertainment for the wait.

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The area itself was a lot smaller than I thought it would be, but no worry.  We were planning on spending a long time there, and figured we’d at least be able to see everything.  Including some sweet Iron Man armors.

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And we did.  Most of the space was taken up by stalls selling things, which we expected.  There was a huge area selling graphic novels at prices above Amazon and a few selling very expensive t-shirts and statues.  No problem for us.  After all, that’s what the internet is for.  I don’t need to spend tons of money on stuff like that.  There were also Legos for sale and man oh man, I wanted that Death Star soooooo bad!

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The $800 price tag made me change my mind though.  We continued on and wandered through the artist alleys for a while.  They were the most interesting for me and I loved to see the different styles and mash-ups that people created.  Some of the stuff was quite good, but again, rather expensive.  I like the art, but I had to factor in what I’ll be able to bring back to the US when we move home this summer.  So although we didn’t buy anything, my wife took some shots of a couple cool items.

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There was also a large gaming area, where people sat around televisions, rolled 20-sided dice, or played some cards.  If I had gone alone, I might have been more interested in participating in those things, but I know my girls didn’t want to sit around and watch me do that.  There was a space for the celebrities.  Now the celebs in Dubai were not exactly the ones I was chomping at the bit to see.  The only one I really missed was Seth Green, but again, being the cheapskate I am, I wasn’t going to pay to get my picture taken with him (although the height difference would have been funny) or his autograph.  Now if I had brought a Robot Chicken DVD or, better yet Idle Hands, I might have had to do that.

I must say, the highlight of the event was meeting one comic book artist.  There were two there that I had heard of, but unfortunately, I didn’t have any of my comics, and Humberto Ramos never seemed to be at his table very long anyways.  But that doesn’t matter because I met David Lloyd!  Here I am looking on in awe as he sketched for me.

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He was a great guy and very easy to talk to.  He had no line (to my astonishment) but was very friendly and asked a lot about me.  He was promoting his website Aces Weekly, which I will be checking out and reviewing hopefully this week.  He described it as a series of stories, done by many different writers and artists which were created for electronic viewing.  For a very small fee, I got a code to buy an entire volume of it and got a signed sketch!

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I was blown away.  He didn’t seem to mind that I only knew him from V for Vendetta, and was eager to share his other work.  That one part of the day made the whole trip worth it for me.

The main reason that I was a bit disappointed by the MEFCC was summed up by my daughter.  “I thought that there would be more comics.”  I was hoping to find some cheap back issues or some reasonably priced ones to add to my collection.  There were two (2!) people I saw selling issues.  One had maybe 20 or so, going back to the 90’s and all priced at about $10 each.  The other was selling very rare, early comics, for thousands of dollars.  Neither one made me reach for my wallet, but mostly because I couldn’t afford the old gems.

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I got some good pictures of some of the cosplayers, of which there were not too many that I saw, and got a few people to do a quick survey for the site.  I will be posting those pictures and survey results in parts 2 and 3, respectively, very soon.  All in all, I still had a good time.  I’m looking forward to the Boston Con even more now though, and am hoping that it will be even better.  At least there I know I will be getting some of my actual comics signed, so that will be great.  Thanks MEFCC!