Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Terrificon Recap #1: Kevin Nowlan Commission, Supergirl Sigs, & More

I talk a lot about my 'convention season', basically the summer and early fall when I am lucky enough to attend several comic conventions situated within driving distance of my house.

Very quickly, Terrificon, a comic convention in Connecticut, has become the 'big con' on my list. This is a tremendous show and I would say for folks considering a stay in New England for a convention, this is the one to hit.

Unlike many comicons of today, Terrificon is clearly a comic book centric convention, focusing primarily on comic creators and less on celebrities (although they have some of them in attendance as well). The guest list has been impressive and is really a great mix of legends, creators from my youth, and current writers and artists, really running the gamut. Trust me when I say that I brought a ton of comics to get signed because I hadn't run into many of these folks elsewhere.

Also, most of the creators weren't charging for signatures. Instead they had a donation bin for the Heroes Initiative on their table. I didn't mind being very generous to that cause.

Lastly, the venue is at the Mohegan Sun Casino. It was a new exhibition hall. It was massive meaning plenty of room between the aisles to navigate. That also means free parking. And at the casino the meal options range from food court to quick decent meals to full on sit down restaurants. Absolutely no complaints.

Great fun!

So what did I get accomplished?

If you go back and read my Terrificon Prep Post, you'll see that my number one commission hope was to get a Kevin Nowlan sketch. I've been a fan of Nowlan's for some time. I think the first time I truly noticed his art was with the sort of mournful origin of Man-Bat way back in Secret Origins #39. But I think I really became a fan with is work on Superman vs. Aliens. In that story, Superman meets a young girl named Kara from a place called Argo, who in a very Newt-like way has survived alone against the Xenomorphs. The book ends with her adrift in an escape pod in space.

I have to say, I feel lucky. I ran to his table when the doors opened. There was already a line of people. I told him I would be at the con all three days so there was no rush. I ended up being 6th on his sketch list which rapidly filled. He asked me to drop off my sketch book on Saturday morning.  Truly, had I gone to some other table first, I would not have got the commission. This is why con prep and prioritization so key!

Clearly the Kara in Superman vs Aliens was a riff on the Silver Age Supergirl, I always wondered if the book was a backdoor pilot to doing away with Matrix and bringing back a more Timm-verse like Supergirl. So I asked for Nowlan to sketch that version of Kara had she made it back to Earth and adopted the Supergirl moniker. He thought that was a great idea!

Check out this fabulous sketch.

Nowlan was this wonderfully amicable gentleman, talking with fans at length about comics. I didn't want to seem like I was hovering, waiting for the sketch, so I didn't really talk to him until Sunday when I finally got to gush a bit about that Man-Bat story and this Kara.

Again ... I consider myself lucky to have made the list.

People! You must prepare for cons, especially if you have a mission!

Nowlan also was kind enough to sign books for me, including my Tyler Kirkham variant of Action Comics #1000. That brings the signature number on that issue to eight: Kirkham, Jim Lee, Peter Tomasi, Tom King, and Clay Mann all signed in Boston.

At Terrificon, I added Nowlan, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, and Jerry Ordway.

As always, I try my best to get Supergirl significant issues signed by creators.

I told Roger Stern how much I liked what he did with the Matrix Supergirl, making her more independent. I thanked Charles Soule for making Red Daughter a great story, something I didn't think was possible when I first heard it was happening. I got Paul Mounts to sign the latest Supergirl cover which he colored with Amanda Conner. And I got David Michelinie to sign his Supergirl issue of Action Comics.

But my biggest thrill of those creators was telling Michelinie how much I liked his Starfire character from DC's 70s Sword and Sorcery.

And I got to meet comic living legend, inker Joe Giella!

I was very happy to get him to sign my copy of Action Comics #484 in which the Earth 2 Lois and Clark get married. He inked it over Curt Swan! I had already had Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez sign that book last year.

So overall, I will repeat that this is the comic book convention that folks in the Northeast should attend.

I'll have one more wrap-up post next week! There you'll see my other commission!


Anonymous said...

"Clearly the Kara in Superman vs Aliens was a riff on the Silver Age Supergirl, I always wondered if the book was a backdoor pilot to doing away with Matrix and bringing back a more Timm-verse like Supergirl."

Over Superman Homepage, some reviewer was convinced Kara In-Ze was a riff on Jurgens Kara... even though their personalities are nothing alike. I guess that reviewer can't possibly believe Bruce Timm was inspired by the Silver Age.

I wonder... Should this Kara become popular, PAD's Supergirl would have been created? And in the 00's it'd have been revealed she was actually Superman's cousin?

Regardless, great sketch.

Martin Gray said...

I so wish I could have been there, so many living legends, still capable of making great comics. Joe Giella!

Professor Feetlebaum said...

Nice to see Joe Giella active and looking well! He recently turned 90 (his birthday was in June). I was able to meet him in San Diego several years ago, where he signed my Green Lantern Archives volume 1 (also signed by Julius Schwartz, Gil Kane, Murphy Anderson and John Broome). There are pictures of Giella at Terrificon on his Facebook page.

Congratulations on the Kevin Nowlan commission. I like that he put the "S" in the background. Brings to mind the cover of Supergirl #60.

Anj said...

Thanks for comments!

This was such a great con. And I love the commissions!