I’ve been a fan of comics my whole life and a pretty serious fan/collector for the last five years so it’s kind of shocking I have never been to a comic book convention until today. After spending about three hours at the Phoenix Cactus Comicon 2008 in Mesa I’ve got to admit it was a blast. First off I was way too excited to be there and when I was greeted by a bunch of Stormtroopers and Tusken Raiders I knew it would be a good day. As my friend Dana told me, “you’re such a con newb.” It was just so amazing seeing so many writers, artists, tv stars, and most importantly fans, show up in one place to celebrate something we all love. Walking through the vendors/artists area was probably the highlight of my visit. Never before have I seen so much comic book/anime/video game/sci-fi artwork and merchandise on display. It was crowded, loud and full of people dressed in comic book and anime character costumes. For a fanboy like me that’s a recipe for a good time. I actually wish I would have dressed up for the event. Standing in a sea of anime characters, I couldn’t help but feel naked without my Cloud Strife (from Final Fantasy) costume. I think I’ll leave that in my car from now on.
Being a huge fan of both of their works, I was probably most excited to attend the Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness panel. They were there to promote their new run on the (red) Hulk although most of their 45-minute Q & A session was about Heroes (Loeb is a co-executive producer and writer for the hit tv show), the writer’s strike, getting into the comic book biz, favorite projects they’ve worked on together (Superman/Batman), and generally what drives them to be creative and have fun doing what they do.
My only regret is that I couldn’t stay longer, but some of us have to work on Saturday. Here are some photos I took at the convention. Hope you enjoy them. And if you’re not busy tomorrow check out the second day’s schedule of events at the Phoenix Cactus Comicon 2008.
Ed McGuinness and Jeph Loeb signing autographs.
Wil Wheaton (from Star Trek: The Next Generation)
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Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca in Star Wars),
Lou Ferrigno (TV’s Incredible Hulk)
Walter Koenig (Chekov from Star Trek)
Matt Wagner (Grendel)
Mark Waid (Kingdom Come, Hunter-Killer, Legion of Super-Heroes, Editor-in-Chief of Boom! Studios). Mark was the only writer that I actually talked to (cause I’m shy) and he gave me hope that someday Hunter-Killer would return.