It was with some trepidation that I drove down to Providence to attend the Rhode Island Comic Con this last Sunday.
Why trepidation? Well it sounds like Saturday was a horrendous experience of over-crowding/over-selling and angry patrons. Here is the Providence Journal's coverage: http://www.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/content/20141101-crowd-at-ri-comic-con-swells-to-over-20000-fire-marshal-not-allowing-anyone-in.ece
But you can go to Bleeding Cool, Twitter, or Facebook to get the lowdown as well.
Happily, Sunday seemed to be better organized. I will admit I went down early and planned to wait outside in the raw, wet weather to insure getting inside. But the venue lined us up and got us in on time. The place never seemed overly crowded. And when I left in the early afternoon, there wasn't anyone waiting outside.
As I have said before, this is a "Comic Con" in name only. The big draw seems to be the celebrities which are in attendance. For me, there were basically two people I went there to meet: Pat Broderick and Jim Steranko.
I have been a fan of Broderick since the 70s and early 80s and his run on Micronauts and (Fury of) Firestorm. My hope was to grab a commission from Broderick. And, as I am starting to branch out in my commissions, I thought I would have Broderick sketch her in the hot pants costume of that time period.
I could not be happier. This is a fantastic commission. The smile, the pose, the costume, the pure Broderick of it all ... it is fabulous. This is my first commission of Supergirl in this costume!
I also loved getting Broderick's signature on my favorite issues he has done including Fury of Firestorm #1, Fury of Firestorm #12 (I love that issue), the first appearance of Firehawk, and a Captain Atom starring another of my favorites ... Nightshade!
It was so fun to meet one of my first favorite creators.
Head to www.patbroderickart.com for more info on Broderick!
I also got to meet Jim Steranko.
A comics legend, I brought Superman #400 to be signed. Steranko did a surreal sort of story at the end of the book, done in this 'mural style' (his term for the art). He told the story of how he was asked by Julie Schwartz to do a story for the book and he had to demand to be the writer as well. He wanted to tell his story.
I asked him to sign the book. I was hoping to have him sign the cover (which had already been signed by cover artist Howard Chaykin). Superman #400 is one of those anniversary issues with multiple stories and pin-ups. My hope was to get as many sigs on the cover as possible.
Steranko did not want to sign the cover as that was not his work, it was Chaykin's. He would feel uncomfortable. Basically, he only wanted to sign his work. Which means, I have this signature inside the book.
I have to comment on one more thing regarding Steranko.
He had a pile of his 'Supergirls' calendar pin-ups, basically nudes in obvious mock-ups of comic characters like The Phantom, Captain America, Robin Hood, Uncle Sam, etc.
And one of them is this 'Supergirl'. I asked if there was any backlash from DC. Indeed, DC said they were going to sue Steranko given the name of the calendar (Supergirls) and this page. Of course, DC can't trademark the word 'super' and the symbol (a dollar sign) isn't the Superman shield.
But then Steranko said he told DC 'how could this woman be related to the anemic, weak, sexless Supergirl character'.
Sheesh ... Steranko thinks Supergirl is anemic, weak, and sexless.
I ended up grabbing a bunch of $1books. I can't get enough of the original Starfire! And Kirby doing 2001! Sold!
So, all in all, at least on Sunday, the RI Comic Con was a success.