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Koete

Baltimore Comic Con 2008

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Baltimore this year was an absolute blast. It was also insanely crowded, so much so that lines for one creator were running into another's line. It was pretty hectic, but still a blast. I went to the Kirkman vs. Bendis panel which was absolutely fantastic. From the beginning when the told each other to eff off back and forth a couple of times to Bendis hypothesizing the Luna brothers prostitute themselves to Kirkman's graphs, it was a hell of a debate. I also went to the Michael Turner memorial panel which wasn't as full as I would have thought. There were a lot of die hard Turner fans there, and even if you weren't the biggest fan of his art (I had no problem with it), you could tell from the stories they told that Turner was a great guy. The highlight of the Con for me was meeting Darwyn Cooke. I think his work is brilliant and it was great getting the opportunity to shake his hand and tell how much I enjoyed his stuff. Last year I picked up the first volume of The Goon at Eric Powell's table after seeing his work in Action Comics and shook his hand this year as a total Goon fan (seriously gang, it's the best book on the racks). I also got to meet Kirkman and talked to him a bit about the debate panel. I almost missed out on meeting Mike Norton as he wasn't listed individually in the program as he was with Cadance Comic Art. I saw his table on Sunday and picked up his first six issues on GA/BC, which he also offered to sign, and talked with him a bit about a creator owned project he's developing. Along with the creators I met, I picked up a ton of swag. More than I had originally budgeted for, but when there's an ATM in the convention center...

All-Star Squadron #1, 3-6, 9, 11, 16-17, 22-23, 27-28, 41, Annual #2

Alter Ego magazine #4, 45, 74

The Black Plague #1

The Call #2

Captain Marvel Vol. 3 Crazy Like A Fox TPB

Criminal Vol. 1 TPB

The Cerebus Guide To Self Publishing

Dire Destiny sampler

Fallen Angel #10 and 11

Fist of Justice Collection

Fist of Justice #1 and 2

Fist of Justice t-shirt

G-Man #1

Green Arrow/Black Canary #7-12

JSA Presents Green Lantern TPB

Justice Society Vol. 1 TPB

Local #8 and 9

"Norton's Pub" Goon hat

Powers (Image) #18 and 20

Rasl #1 (picked this up for 50 cents!)

Rocketo #7, 9-12

Shark-Man #1

The Vinyl Underground #1-5

Toupydoops #3

True Story, Swear To God #17

Also got my first ever sketch, Alan Scott by Chris Giarrusso:

http://img512.imageshack.us/my.php?image=09290813092wr3.jpg

Overall it was a great Con, better than last year. My only regret was that I didn't get to meet Geoff Johns, but his line was extremely long, partly because his line was also James Robinson's line. Can't wait for Baltimore Comic-Con 2009.

Oh and Mike, I picked up the Hero Initiative pin you wanted. Shoot me a PM with your address and I'll ship it on out to you.

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Another year, another Baltimore Comic-Con. This was my third year going and the best time I've had yet. The convention was held in the area of the center where it was held the first time I went. It was a bit congested where it was held last year, but this year, there was plenty of space. I went both days and each one was a mix of comic buying, creator meeting, and panel attending.

I went to the convention looking to fill some holes in my Grant Morrison collection and I made out quite well on that front. I picked up a bunch of single issues I needed, a few of which were $2, but most were .50 or $1. Also picked up a bunch of half off trades, including one that was part of a buy one, get one free deal. There were a ton of great 50% off trades for sale, but alas, I only had so much budgeted for the con. I'm thinking of "waiting for the convention" from now on. Here's a list of all the books I picked up:

Animal Man #5-7, 15, 19, 21, 25-26

Larry Marder's Beanworld Holiday Special

DC 100 Page Super Spectacular Replica Edition

DC Comics Presents: Mystery In Space

DC One Million #1-3

Fist of Justice #3

Hellblazer #1 Millennium Edition

The Invisibles Vol. 1 #1

JLA #1,000,000

Secret Origins #46

Spawn #16-18

Swamp Thing #140-143

Larry Marder's Beanworld Vol. 2: A Gift Comes HC

Bullet Points TPB ($5)

Captain America: War and Remembrance TPB ($5)

Death Comes To Dillinger TPB (.50)

The Invisibles Vol. 7: The Invisible Kingdom TPB (50% off)

JLA Presents Aztek: The Ultimate Man TPB (Free with TMNT Collected Book Vol. 1 TPB)

Kid Eternity TPB (50% off)

Secret Six: Unhinged TPB (50% off)

Skrull Kill Krew TPB ($4)

TMNT Collected Book Vol. 1 TPB

Sense of Wonder: A Life In Comic Fandom PB ($4)

I met three creators this time around, two of them on Saturday. The first was Jeff Parker who, if you don't already know, writes the best book Marvel's publishing these days, Agents of Atlas. We talked about the book's future and there's a lot coming up before the new ongoing, including a three issue mini-series about Marvel Boy's past. I gave him my hardcover of the first mini-series to get signed, and not only did he sign it, but he did a quick sketch of M-11 on the inside cover as well. Next I went over to J.G. Jones' table and told him he draws a mean Darkseid. He signed my Final Crisis HC with, "Yes, I killed Batman -- and I'd do it again!" Awesome. On Sunday, I met Larry Marder, the creator of Beanworld. Beanworld is probably one of the most unique and original comics I've read. It's not a comic that can really be explained, it's something you've got to experience for yourself. I bought his last copies of the second Beanworld hardcover and the holiday special, which yo can see here. I forgot my camera again, so this is the only picture of me from the con. All of them were very approachable and really nice guys to talk to.

I went to three panels this time around. The first was moderated by Mark Waid and was about comic books in the 70s. The panel of guests was fantastic: Walter Simonson, Len Wein, Bernie Wrightson, Chris Claremont, and Steve Englehart. It began with going down the panel and having everyone talk about how they got into comics and then went into discussion about the industry during that time. As a history nerd, it was fascinating to hear how they worked and what they thought of the industry in the 70s. I also went to a panel spotlighting Stan Sakai, creator of Usagi Yojimbo. I've never read Usagi, but I've heard a lot about it and went to this panel hoping to learn a little more. The panel was perfect for that, as Sakai talked about the origins of Usagi Yojimbo and his creative process. He also shared several hilarious anecdotes about Stan Lee and Serio Aragones. After that panel, I went to the Chris Claremont panel, which was very laid back and informal. I got to ask Chris if he ever thought about returning to Excalibur and he said that if X-Men Forever and the upcoming Forever mini-series that begins with "New" are successful, who knows what might happen. Seriously, how awesome would a five issue Claremont/Davis Excalibur mini be? The panels were great, but unfortunately, the rooms that the panels are usually held in were being used and they had to be held in the convention hall. Things were a bit noisy at times, but besides that issue, great panels.

Baltimore's a great show and I can't recommend it enough if you're in the area. I'd say I'm really looking forward to next year, but there's a good chance I'll be at Fan Expo Canada the same weekend as Baltimore.

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