I’ve been trying to find time to get some thoughts together about WonderCon … apologies if this seems stream of conscious and doesn’t make much sense …
While I attended the Fables Forum panel, my wife was at the Jericho and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles panels at WonderCon on Sunday, taking the pictures in this post. Above are Lennie James, Alicia Coppola and Brad Beyer from Jericho.
I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that WonderCon saw an increase in attendance this year. Comic-Con International’s David Glanzer told ICV2 earlier this month that they had increased the floor space, and you could really tell. Even with all the extra space, it seemed like Friday saw more people than last year. Saturday, which was a madhouse last year, didn’t seem quite as crowded, but that’s probably because a lot of people were packed into Hall A to see the movie panels.
Of the panels I attended, the BOOM! panel on Friday evening was sparsely attended … of course, they were up against the Wanted/Kristen Bell panel. The Brian Wood/Becky Cloonan panel was in a small, very wide room, and it was packed. Both the Vertigo panel and the Fables Forum also were well attended, and the X-Files panel was packed — but not to the point where they had to turn people away, unlike the big media panels at San Diego. I think that’s what was nice about WonderCon; it had a slight Hollywood presence, but not so much that they overwhelmed the comic presence.
Speaking of Hollywood, here’s the Terminator panel: Thomas Dekker, Summer Glau and Brian Austin Green.
And the comic presence seemed really big this year and more enthusiastic. Last year WonderCon followed right on the heels of the first New York con, and everyone seemed to still be recovering. Even though there wasn’t any real big news announced — the two big items that did come to light, DEMO Vol. 2 and JMS at DC, weren’t exactly surprises by the time they were announced — there was still a really nice vibe at the show. There were also a lot of creators at the show who I don’t remember being announced, which was pretty cool.
DC had a lot more room this year for their booth. The creators who seemed to have the longest lines any time I walked by were Jim Lee and Becky Cloonan. Image had more of a standard “con” booth than I’ve seen from them in the past. Typically their space is a loose confederation of creator tables, but at WonderCon they had a backdrop and a host of Image books for sale. Noticeably absent was Top Shelf, who attended last year but not this year.
The book of the show? Mark Evanier’s Jack Kirby book. Heard it was very hard to find on the show floor, no doubt helped by the fact that Evanier was there to sign it.
It was great seeing several folks again and meeting others. Had a great conversation with Jason McNamara about two of his projects. Looks like we’ll be doing an interview about’em, so watch for that. On Friday, had dinner with Carla and Graeme and their respective spouses, Matt Brady, Ian Brill, Annalee and Charlie from io9.com, which really covered the heck out of the con. Carla told us about a Dr. Who convention she went to down in L.A. that featured a wonderful fan art show she’ll have to talk about in her own column sometime. She also has a con report up on her blog.
Chatted with Chip from BOOM! about various things, like North Wind and the movies his wife has appeared in. Saturday afternoon my brother and his roommate came to the con for the X-Files panel, which was awesome; the trailer was very cool. Someone asked Duchovny and Anderson what it was like getting back into character, and Anderson gave this really long, drawn-out answer … Duchovny said something like, “I just read the words.”
Walked around with Matt Maxwell Saturday evening on the show floor, after he sat down behind me at the Vertigo panel. He was hoping to have copies of his new comic before the show, but there were problems at the printer. Steve Lieber and Matt Wagner were both fun to talk to. Closed down the hall on Saturday talking to Rory Root from Comic Relief with Ian and Matt.
Matt Silady taught Graeme and I the superhero handshake. It’s more of a visual thing, so I’ll try to take a picture of what it looks like.
Overall, wonderful show … not sure what else to say. Sometimes it’s hard to judge when you’re there to cover panels and do the “work” thing, but everything seemed to run smoothly, there was plenty of room to move around and a lot of excited exhibitors, pros, celebrities and guests. You can’t ask for much more than that.
Brian Austin Green. Someone asked him if working with Shannon Doherty prepared him for fighting Terminators. He said yes.