12 Oct 2012

NYCC Trip Day 2: Open Says-Me... And About 15,000 Other People!‏

Stewart R experiences his first day at NYCC...
You know that an event is kind of a big deal when you speak to several people during the course of a morning about what you're doing on your short vacation and they inform you of their failed attempts to get tickets to go! No less than three randoms who we bumped into stated their disappointment at not being able to score even a day ticket to NYCC and that indicated to me just how busy this shindig might get! The doors on the preview Thursday - open for just professionals, press and those lucky enough to have a full 4 day ticket in their hands - didn't part ways until mid-afternoon and when they did there was already a buzz about the chasm-like surrounds of NYC's Javits Centre that I've certainly only experienced once before - that of excited expectation in a crowd when Stan Lee was making his rare appearance to the shores of the UK for the London Super Comic Convention earlier this year. I was in for something special and I could only guess as to what it could be.

The scale of what they put on at this show is remarkable. Artist Alley alone takes up almost as much space as LSCC had for its entire convention and the main room WILL take me the best part of two days to check out in entirety and that's no lie. I made a vague plan to get most of my star talent-spotting and signature-capturing done on the quietest day and I'm patting myself on the back somewhat for sticking to that plan.

I spoke to Matt Hawkins about his awesome Top Cow series Think Tank and what we have in store for the end of the first arc and the upcoming, 4-part second arc... those of you picking this up already may be in for a surprise!  Rashan Ekedal is currently working on the art for the second arc and Hawkins seemed hopeful that the artistic partnership might continue after that was complete.
I managed to get a few words with the lovely Fiona Staples about her art on Saga, offering her a few compliments on the tremendous work that's she's bringing to that series and also got to speak to Alex Di Campi, author of Kickstarter project Ashes which I've invested in.  It was great to actually hear her talk about the near completion of the book that has caused her so much stress and grief over the past year or so and see the pride and relief in her eyes at almost having the finished product to put into the willing hands of the readers. 
Finished products was also the subject of conversation when I made an entertaining stop at the Man Of Action table. Joe Kelly was very open about the state of delay with his Image properties Bad Dog and Four Eyes, stating that it had always been weighing on him that readers and fans have been waiting for further chapters and that Diego Greco has finished work on one chapter and is working on the final chapter in the arc of Bad Dog with further stories planned. Max Fiumara is also going to be back for more Four Eyes issues and Kelly was enthusiastic about having these works in the pipeline yet showing his conviction that the heavy delays experienced so far should not be repeated and that having finished items ready to ship on a regular schedule was the important aim, even if it means waiting a little longer.
This topic of conversation was repeated when I got a few words and a signature from Duncan Rouleau, a man whose work I've admired for several years now, and who also expressed his regret at creative delays. Luckily for his fans we're very near to getting the last two chapters of The Great Unknown on the shelves - he let out an all-too-knowing chuckle when I said 'Okay, I'll ask you the question you'll be sick of by the weekend's end' and said nothing more - and he seems very optimistic about the optioning of the property to bring it to the big screen. I was then taken a little aback when I complimented him on his Metal Men series for DC, a comic that was highly inventive and quite the brain-strainer, and he said that we might well be seeing more work from him with the team of elemental robots! Now that my friends is great news if it all comes together, especially considering that when I got to ask Dan DiDio about it at a Bristol Expo panel back in 2009 and he had stated that DC had wanted to move away from Rouleau's iteration at that time I had figured that was a 'nail in the coffin' moment.
By this point in the long day I was already feeling the effects of jet lag, the long walk around the city and the initial trawl of the longboxes, so put the quest to speak to Scott Snyder to the backburner. There's always tomorrow!

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