Monday, August 30, 2010

Fan Expo Canada 2010 is done!

So it's back to work after the whirlwind that was Fan Expo Canada 2010. Talk about a crazy weekend. I tweeted throughout but here's a bit more details about my weekend (and my brother's as well for some of the stuff). Both of us went with premier passes and the Stan Lee package.

We weren't 100% sure what was going on for the opening on Friday so we got there around 10:30 thinking they'd process tickets at 12 and line us up again to enter the building. Long story short, the next few hours were spent waiting and confused but we did get in a little after 2. Our first stop was Stan Lee's booth where the Stan Lee package tickets came in handy (jumping us to the start of the line). To further take advantage of the early entrance I decided to snag a couple autographs like Dean Stockwell's (I'm a Quantum Leap fan, I had to ask him if he got to keep any of his wardrobe from that show) and Felicia Day (thanked her for linking to this blog back when I did the Codex sketch, she was really nice about it) and Amy Okuda. I also snagged artwork from Darwyn Cooke (who wasn't doing commissions but fortunately for me had a Hulk piece in his portfolio) and signed up for commissions from Jeff Lemire (of Sweet Tooth fame) and Craig Yeung (getting Hulk drawings from each of course). Then it was time for the Jim Valentino versus Wilce Portacio sketching duel. They were great, the moderator wasn't. Then off to the Stan Lee photo where again, the Stan Lee package helped us out a lot! Somewhere in there I also found time to say a how-do-you-do to Andy Belanger and Caanan both of whom I met at last year's Fan Expo. At some point I signed up for another Andy Belanger Hulk pic and bought Caanan's Max Overacts book. The night was finished with the Stan Lee meet and greet. It was a crazy time and I know it was very disappointing to some who didn't get the quality time they wanted with him but my brother was fortunate enough to get a few pictures with him and I shot some video as he walked by me so it was great for us.

Saturday was a slightly different day. I attended the "Future of Comics" panel in the morning, the Stan Lee panel at 1pm (again, Stan Lee package came in handy and Stan had the crowd in the palm of his hand), then somehow managed to make the Olivier Coipel versus Gary Frank sketching duel (great duel with a much better moderator than the other one I attended) despite the unbelievable crowding on that floor, and Darwyn Cooke's "how to" panel. Other than that it was browsing the Artist Alley (picking up some of the art I'd ordered) and merchandise sections. It was a crazy day at the Expo crowd-wise and I'm glad we brought food so we didn't have to leave the building. I'm also glad I didn't go for any celebrities that day.

For Sunday we decided we wanted to focus on Shatner. We had talked about it on Saturday and my feeling was that if we could get in early enough we could go straight for an autograph if he was signing right away. I thought about the photo but I figured it would be too crazy and I'd be way too exhausted by that point (5pm). Unfortunately he wasn't signing right away but after buying our autograph tickets I decided to spend the next 3 hours waiting for him. Brent wandered for a bit but I didn't really feel like it all that much. While waiting (and after getting to know those around us) we got to watch the celebrities be taken from one location to the next (we were lined up in a back area of the con). I have to admit that I sort of like celebrity sighting so it was cool to sit there and say "Hey there goes Adam West/Summer Glau/James Marsters/Felicia Day/etc". After the Shatner autograph (which was a whole lot of confusion and madness) I was pretty much done. I snagged a couple more things in Artist Alley (a Steve McNiven headshot of Nemesis and sketchbooks from Dale Keown and Jill Thompson) and a couple toys for my nephews and that was it for me.

And with that, it was dinner and a 9pm flight to get me home at 11pm. My brother and I both had a great time (I know others didn't and I do feel for them) and now it's back to the somewhat less exciting normal life of work and other stuff.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Comic Reviews for August 20th, 2010

I know it's been way too long since I posted here. And it's going to get worse, I'm finally making the move to stop monthlies altogether and just pick up the TPBs. But here are a few quick reviews of books I read recently.

Incredible Hulk #611 -- Great writing, amazing art, really good story. And the nice thing for me, you didn't have to be reading the World War Hulks stuff (that I didn't like) to enjoy this issue. One of the best Hulk issues I've read in a good long while.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Riley one shot -- I haven't been enjoying the Buffy series as of late and I'm not a big Riley fan so I was reluctant to pick this one up. I did enjoy it more than I thought I would. I thought it was better executed than some of the issues of the ongoing. Not sure I feel it's worth it though, it's really just a long discussion between Riley and his wife. Good characterization but doesn't really feel necessary as a full one shot.

The Man with the Getaway Face by Darwyn Cooke -- I really enjoy Darwyn's work and I thought the first Parker book he did was really well done. It wasn't really a genre that I'm particularly keen on but it was an enjoyable book to read. And I'd say the same about this book, very well done, enjoyable to read, makes me wonder what the next book (coming out this fall I believe) will be (as I know nothing about the original stories).

Next week is Fan Expo Canada and I'm really looking forward to it. I really enjoyed myself last year. I'm looking forward to seeing a few of the people I met last year like Caanan Grall and Andy Belanger. I also bought the Stan Lee package so that should be fun.