Uber-fanboy Jesse James hit ECCC in Seattle this weekend for Bleeding Cool. This is what he brought back with him;
One day my company offered me a new position in Seattle. I lived in Florida at the time. The Pay was awesome and the new perks I just couldn't resist. However, he said "can you look past the Rain?" I said of course! Well I stayed in Seattle for 3 years and finally moved away and took a pay cut to "Move away from the Rain".
However, then there is Emerald City Comic Con. Yes, the one Con I don't care about the Rain, Snow, Zombie or Skynet warnings. Every year I look to this one convention to bring me peace and sanity to my yearly convention travels. There is always a sense of calmness as you map your way through the aisles either upstairs or downstairs. Yes, this is my Fanboy Utopia con of the year before I go into my full swing of cons every other week until November.
Then 2012 Emerald City Comic Con hit me in full swing. I noticed that the plane was jammed packed with comic fans and the airport in Seattle was a madhouse. Rental cars were hard to come by and rooms were sold out. Well that was a definite sign of the madness to come.
As I parked my car downtown and came up to the street 3 blocks away I felt like I was in New York. There were People everywhere and my path to the con seemed blocked. However, as I turned the Corner to the Convention, I saw the masses that had converged on the one entry way to the con. It was as if the Borg where behind them assimilating anybody that was in back of the pack. So I bobbed and weaved to where all is calm, Badge pick up.
I was all excited to put that good ole red press badge on and start the adventure. I turned the corner and saw the crowd. It's massive and long. I fight my way to Cossie Square where there are tons of Cossies doing photo ops in the middle of the hall. I'm anxious because now its 7 minutes and I haven't made it to the entrance yet to the actual convention room. Then I see the doors. It's almost slow motion as I pass the line from the outside of the con to the inside. It hits you like a Hurricane, you think you are prepared but when it actually comes its more then you expect.
Avatar leads the way. Its booth is huge and its merchandise is at its finest with every corner hosting a bounty of comics from every title in its own exclusive area. You get a very nice taste of this company and you leave with a "got to see it again before I leave attitude." The one think about Avatar any show they do they do it big and are very consistent about their appearance at every convention.
I don't know what was next but let me say this ADVENTURE TIME by Ka-Boom was the comic book hit of the show as far as I can tell. The lines were enormous for their signings. I love the fact that looking down the line every age group was represented. There was a lot of cheering as each artist and writer arrived as well. This is the cool thing about comic collecting every title has a fair shot to make it in our world.
IDW was sporting some cool merchandise as well. To see the Turtles return back into the Comic book world is awesome.
Of Course Image was right smack in the middle with its Empire State Building look. It's a statement of who they are and how much they appeal to their fans. They sport everything a fan would want in their comic cave back home. Of course Kirkman's line was enormous. However, everybody in line seemed content and happy they get to meet him. It was amazing to see how many people walked away with goodies every time I passed that area.
There were a ton of venders sporting their goods. In Seattle it's an awesome place for Golden Age and Silver Age comics. It's almost scary to think that there was so many great comics are in one room. There was a lot of original art as well both in the vender and artist alley area. There seemed to be very little modern age comics and was quite surprised to really only see Jay Company slinging comics.
I spent some time with Greg Capullo and his wife. I got too meet Greg Horn for the first time. I strongly suggest stopping by his booth and chilling with him for a while. I played some pool with Brian Pulido and hung out with John Layman at the Tap House. I also had dinner with Tony Parker at the Fox sports restaurant. I took third place in a pool tournament against artist and writers as well.
Now here is the deal, the Cossies ruled this show. The best of the Best seemed to flock to this show. I really don't get into Cosplay and spend little time even gazing at the amazing folks at any show. From the bag pipe playing Darth Vader to the numerous Red Suited Star Trek personnel. It was just spectacular. The Cossie picture area made it really easy to jump in on pictures. They also made sure that every kid had a chance for a photo op. I have a different and better respect for Cossies and will definitely spend more time watching them do what they love at the shows.
I really didn't like the concession area and won't spend too much time on it. This con needs to get more concessions to the fans and better seating. There were fans sitting everywhere eating pizza and you really had to watch were you walked near that area.
Now anybody will tell you I hate Panels. I don't like the ideal that I flew across the country to sit down and listen to someone tell me something. However, I really enjoyed the DC panel. I learned a lot from the panelist and also enjoyed the interaction from the crowd. This is something I plan on doing a lot more in the future.
Over all I really enjoyed the change up of the con. I think their growth has now caught up to them and surpassed their current structure. I'm hoping that the name brand Emerald City can maintain its culture and its enormous support for locals and independents as their attendance increases over the coming years. I myself return home knowing that Emerald City is a con to be reckoned with. If you're planning to attend next year you won't regret it just remember to "Look Past the Rain".