Comic Con: A Geek’s Dream Come True
For as long as I can remember, San Diego Comic Con seemed to be a twisted fantasy that would always be impossible to attend so long as I lived in the Midwest. True, there is a Chicago Comic Con held every year north of the city which would be of great convenience if the schedule wasn’t so mediocre and the price of admission a waste. It was to my great surprise therefore when I learned of New York Comic Con, which had both a great array of panels and artists as well as a location close enough to me that I could attend it over Fall Break. Finally, all my wondrous dreams of geeking out amongst other fans of Batman, sci-fi, and collectable movie posters would come to fruition.
Not only was the experience completely overwhelming in a positive way, but I quickly discovered that out of the entire universe of nerds, I’m clearly in the 99 percent. Comic Con seems to attract the 1 percent that dedicates their lives to cosplaying, collecting every comic known to man, and stalking Stan Lee like it is their day job (do they even have day jobs?). Donning a “Breaking Bat” T-shirt (Walter White in a Bane mask) paled in comparison to someone in full Bane or Walter White attire. In fact, as I ran out of comic themed tees and my wardrobe transitioned to a more casual and “normal” style, I actually ended up looking like a huge loser. Needless to say, I fell in love with Comic Con.
Day one started with such a grand experience that it was difficult to imagine how the rest of the weekend would compare. Near the DC Comics booth in the center of the Javits Center I ran into none other than Grant Morrison, the writer who made me fall in love with Batman comics and is about to end the epic storyline he’s been crafting since 2006. After my jaw was lifted back to my face by a crane, I delicately approached him in fear I would scare him off and graciously asked for a few autographs. He gratefully obliged in a thick Scottish accent that lit me up more than Scarecrow did to Batman’s armor in Nolan’s “Batman Begins.” As he disappeared back into the sea of cosplayers, I was left with the impression that I might have just met The Dark Knight himself.
Aside from standing in line for hours to get other writer’s and artist’s autographs, the evening was made brilliant by the Legendary Comics panel where I saw exclusive footage of Guillermo Del Toro’s upcoming science-fiction-adventure film “Pacific Rim,” which I’ll dissect in detail in a future article along with the “Halo 4” footage and game play I experienced.
Day two proved to be just as strong, even if it did not surpass the sheer awesomeness that was my first day of Comic Con. Early on, I went through all the comic booths to pick up the remaining issues I was missing of Grant Morrison’s storyline as well as some other issues which my heart felt empty without. While waiting in line for “Halo 4” footage, I ran into Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo, the writer/artist team behind the current main Batman storyline. After snagging another few rare signatures and being blown away by the beauty of the new saga of Master Chief, I was pretty damn exhausted from traversing the Javits Center for the second consecutive day.
Just as I was about to head out, I heard a small but strong cheer coming from the direction of Marvel’s booth and made my way over to see what the commotion was about. To my surprise, Clark Gregg (Agent Coulson from the Marvel film series) was announcing his involvement as the lead character in “S.H.I.E.L.D.,” the upcoming TV show by Wesleyan’s own Joss Whedon ’87. After his announcement, he offered a photo opportunity for five brief minutes on the side of the booth. Shoving my way to the front, I was one of the extremely lucky few to take a snapshot with him before his departure back to L.A.
At the end of the entire experience, I boarded the bus from Penn Station and traveled back to Wesleyan tired and defeated. After getting off at Wyllys, I actually sat down on the side of the road ready to pass out from exhaustion. It appeared that Comic Con got the best of me. Would I have taken it all back? Not a chance in hell.