Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Deep Discussions with Decapitated Dan: Decapitated Dan

Don't you think it is about time I interview myself? No seriously this week were going to take a look back at C2E2 as I share with you all my experience of the show and how I thought it went. So lets just jump right in, and yes I will be recalling as much as I can so it may get a bit long winded.

Alright so Friday morning hits and I was really pumped up to go. Show didn't open to the Press until 1 pm, and it was only 7 am so I had a little while to wait, before heading over to my buddy Kenny's. I went through made sure I had all my stuff for the show, in retrospect I probably should have taken some comics from home to have signed but oh well.

So jump ahead a few hours, it was about 11 when we left Ken's and headed down McCormick. We live about an hour or less out of Chicago, so it's not a long trip at all. I have to say I love the location so much better than Wizard, and I will also add that if you want to complain about parking costs, remember that Wizard World is located off the tollways so it adds up to be about the same.
So anyways we get to the show and head into the Press office to pickup our passes, very easy and smooth process I have to say. 
So off to the show. Even though it was only 12:15 they let us in, thank you press passes. I was amazed at the size of the room. It had been awhile since I had ventured over to McCormick. One of the best touches in my opinion was the carpeting, very nice on the feet. That and the size of the aisles. I like to say that at WW if a bigger person is heading your way you have to move, but here there was room to spare.
So we headed over to say hey to my brother in law Jimmy at the Challengers Comics booth. We talked for a bit about how the setup went, nice and smooth, and then headed back to check out artist alley. I had my list of people I really wanted to talk to and meet, basically just put faces to emails with all the messaging we do back and forth. So I will say it was great to meet Gary Reed, Mike Hoffman and Jeff Balke. By the end of the weekend it was just like hanging out with old friends, whenever I would head back to say hey. Very cool stuff. So I met some other people while walking around but I didn't get sketches from anyone. Not my thing to have done I guess.

So after about 2 hours of walking and talking in Artist Alley, and by the way you could tell when the doors opened because people flooded back to AA to get stuff signed. Anyways after leaving AA we headed up to the comic site area/web comics. We basically made our way from the back to the front. So I met up with my buddies from Comicrelated.com and talked to my friends at Legion Studios, who have a great looking movie coming up.

So it was about 3 when I realized that I had not been over to the Avatar booth yet to pick up my C2E2 Crossed: Family Values exclusive #1. So I kinda ran up there and picked it up, along with a Crossed #2 to get Jacen Burrows to sign. He signed both, we chatted for a bit and I also grabbed 5 of those Crossed masks. Awesome stuff for sure, oh and a review will be coming of Crossed FM #1.

So then we went over to the Marvel and DC areas. These kinda disappointed me, well Marvel really let me down. It was kind of just like an open area of nothing. A stage, some banners, some people signing but nothing with an actual comic book. DC had more going for it, with more people signing, and just more to see.

I was happy to see Michael Nelson and Declan Shalvey at the BOOM! Studios booth as we talked 28 Days Later and Dingo. I really didn't stop at any other booth's. Walked by Image and Top Cow but nothing interesting going on. Oh you know I did stop by the Dark Horse booth and pick up my B.P.R.D. member card. That turned out to be really cool. Most Publisher booths had books for sale but at cover price, so if you wanted to find it at the seller booths it would be cheaper.

So we were all done seeing the main attractions and we headed over to look for deals, which there weren't many to be had. It was around this time I started to realize that we had basically done it all. The show was open until 7 and it was only 4:30. So we decided to brave the traffic of rush hour and head on home.

I think all together I only dropped like $10 on books. Not much to be found and we kinda knew it was time to take off. The show was for the most part dead on Friday. I attribute some of that to how wide open it was so people were more spread out, but also it was kinda empty. I was also debating whether or not I wanted to go back on Sunday, I was going to skip Saturday just because of the rush of people and because of ride options. Did I mention I have never driven in Chicago. Don't know why but I never have. So after some debate in my head I decided to go back on Sunday.

So here it is, Sunday morning 7 am and I am already out the door. The deal for getting a ride today was that I had to head up there early with Jimmy, my brother in law who was helping with Challengers, stick around all day and then help take down after the show closed. I didn't care, figured it was worth it to go again. Plus I told so many people I would be back on Sunday. I also had the freedom to do as I wanted and not worry about hanging out in one spot for longer than I wanted.

So we got up to McCormick around 9 am, show opened at 10, and we just got the booth ready. After a little while I head over to the Comicrelated booth again to say good morning to them. We chatted for a bit and Gary Reed joined us. Then we all kinda split off. I headed over to Artist Alley to see how the weekend treated Jeff Balke and Mike Hoffman. We discussed how it had all gone so far. Then I just kind of walked around for a few hours. A lot of back and forth. I was kinda waiting for 2 panels to start later in the day.

So I browsed for deals, ate lunch, watched some people read their indie books on the Variant Stage. I will say this, if you go to a show pack your own lunch and keep it in your bag. I did at WW and at C2E2 and I saved money doing so. Sure it was a warm sandwich, but know what your going to eat and be prepared for it. I can't even tell you how many time I heard people complain about food prices.

So it was around 1 and I was tired from walking. I looked in the little con book and seen that Mark Waid and Jeff Smith were doing a panel on making it in the Indie world. Then in the same room 30 minutes after that ended was the X-Men panel. I figured why not sounds good, and it was. I really liked how they put things into perspective for new writers trying to make it. Jeff Smith luckily looked at his watch towards the end and realized he needed to go catch his plane. Funny stuff.

Alright so that first panel ended and I gave Mike Moreci a text to see where he was, yet another person I wanted to meet up with and almost forgot. He came up to the panel room and we chatted about how his weekend went and comics. Really awesome guy to talk with and I was glad I remembered to text him. He took off as the X-Men panel was about to start.

So the panel started, they introduced that members and started the slide show. The big things were a new Wolverine Book, an X-23 Book, Daken book (WOW WOLVERINE. LAME!), and Mutants vs. Vampires. No signs of Iceman. When they opened it up to questions I took off. It was really nice to go and sit down for 2 hours though.

So it was all winding down at this point. About an hour to go til the show was over and I headed back to say bye to my buddies and the Comicrelated.com booth. Then made my way to really look for some good deals, since it was the end of the day. I went into the show looking to pick up some of the classic horror reprints. I was able to find Essential Man-Thing Vol. 1, Showcase House of Mystery 3 and House of Secrets 2 all for $5 each. That was really about it. I was unable to find the Deadworld's I still needed and some good deals on Creepy and Eerie. Overall I think I really only spent $40 the whole weekend.

So the show closed and it was now time to pack it up. We got the booth broke down in about 20 minutes while two guys ran off to get the vans and get in line. This was at 5. At 7:30 the finally had the vans in and we loaded them up. It seemed like forever, luckily I had some books to read, lol. So we got loaded then headed over to the shop to unload. We got done around 9-9:30 and were on our way back to Jimmy's. I finally walked back in my front door at 11 pm. It was one long ass day, and I had to crash and get up for work on Monday.

So overall I loved it. I think that they did a great job. There was a lot more to see than at WW, because publishers showed up at this one. The crowd may not have been what most people were expecting and I can understand that, but it was a first show. Talking to some of the sellers, they were pleased but not super happy with sales, but this didn't seem like a buyers show. WW really has turned into this massive show for buying, where here it was about the industry. Which I liked. I also liked the lack of celebrities. Matter of fact I didn't see a single one. I like that it was about comics.

For me it was about getting to meet people I have been talking to online for the past year and expanding my connections to the horror world. I wouldn't take any of it back as it was all very enjoyable and I highly look forward to next years show, so get your plans ready to meet me there next year!

If you would like to see the entire picture gallery you can (there is not that many) here on my Facebook page.

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