Monday, November 19, 2007

Wizard World Texas 2007 Report

Looking back on my report on Wizard World 2006, it occurs to me that something I said last year was double true this year; Often times, all the fun in a convention is there for the making... it's about the people you meet and the experiences you share with your fellow fans.

This occurred to me after reading a report on this year's Wizard World written by my close friend and writer/artist of Deranged Comics; Don Cook.

Don noted in his personal journal that it seems like fewer and fewer guests of note come to Wizard World Texas every year. The first year, we had the likes of Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes for media stars and legends such as Kurt Busiek and George Perez striding among us mere mortals and our $5.00 hot dogs. This year, we has some woman whose biggest claim to fame is being a MySpace babe and Lou Ferrigno. Three guesses who had the busier booth.

Granting that Don has a point on how Wizard World Texas in particular and Dallas Comic Cons in particular don't usually get the A-List in terms of professional support/attendance, I still stand by the idea that you can have fun at a convention with one vendor, the guest of honor is CarrotTop and the hot rare collectible being the first batch of fliers where CarrotTop was spelled with one 'r'.

Why? Because I had fun this year, despite the lack of any writers I cared about (well, writers I cared about who were advertised - nothing I read about the Con in advance mentioned that Jack of Fables co-writer Matthew Sturges would be there), only five artists I cared to get an autograph from and failure in my yearly quest to find a Starman Jack Knight variant figure. I got to meet a lot of very cool people; fellow stargazers all.

Some were established writers and artists with an independent published work, hoping to expand their fanbase. Others were aspiring talents, looking for a publisher willing to give them a chance. And then there are the common folk; the fans who just enjoy dressing up and sharing their love of a character and the joy of living every day like it's Halloween. Many fans, but all with a deep love of the genre no matter how they choose to express it as they journeyed through the World of Wizard.

Accompanying me on this journey was my good friend Halo Husberg - artist/photographer and probable Costume Contest Winner if I ever get her to show up at one of these things in her White Queen outfit. What follows is a brief photographic chronicle of where we were, who we met and how utterly cool a convention can be even when you are just there to work.

Writer Devin Richard & Writer/Artist Mike Charles of Angel Comics - a new Indy company based out of Houston, Texas.

Artist & Angel Comics CEO Roderick E. Thornton.

Artist Michael Brooks of Angel Comics

Some bloke whose name we didn't get who has a comic published by Drunk Duck! - a web comics community which hosts over 8,000 web-based comics.

Chasen Grieshop of Particle 9 Productions, hard at work on a new piece.

The gear table for Wrestling Wear Galore - the only place that I know of where you can get a real Iron Man, Iron Fist and Nacho Libre wrestler's mask!

Rowan Of The Wood author Ethan Rose, dressed as his own titular character.

A fearsome barbarian, on-call to train aspiring heroes courtesy of Barbarian Battles

The Barbarian tests his metal against young warrior Connor Yarbrough.

(from left to right) Jack of Fables co-author Matthew Sturges, DC Comics VP of Sales Bob Wayne,
DC Comics Executive Editor Dan DiDio, Justice League of America artist Joe Benitez & Action Comics artist Adam Kubert.

The Scottish Batman, Quinten McKinnney. (Didn't Grant Morrison just do a comic about this?)

Fat Momma; first runner-up on last year's Who Wants To Be A Superhero?

Feedback; the winner of last year's Who Wants To Be A Superhero?

The Defuser (winner of this year's Who Wants To Be A Superhero? and Major Victory honor us with a pose.

Aspiring artist Marshall Wilson checks his portfolio.

1st Place Costume Winner - Toney Dempsey as DC Comics' Scarecrow

2nd Place Costume Contest Winners - Ryan McKinley and Matthew Ham of Central Oklahoma Ghostbusters.

3rd Place Costume Contest Winners - the husband and wife team of Ned and Margie Cox, here dressed as Hal Jordan and Katma Tui.

Costume Contest Finalist Chris Newman as Grim Girl

Costume Contest Finalist Mike Bartosh as Gambit.

Gemini Force model Amber Emery. She poses for her boyfriend's comic. Lucky guy!


President Nelson who did a great portrait for me in a short amount of time and refused to take extra payment for the rush.

Humbert Ramos, who stayed a little late to get through the line of fans who had been waiting for a while to get autographs.

Joe Jusko, who not only allowed me to get the perfect Christmas present for my girlfriend but also gave me the good news that the Sheena mini-series published by Devil's Due is indeed going to continue as a monthly series!

Phil Hester, who gave me an autograph and a quick Ollie Queen sketch in record time.

Michael Lark, who couldn't stop to talk but ran his booth with a sense of elegance, despite his speed.

Mike Hankins of Dorm Dorks, who had what is easily the funniest new web-comic I've seen in a while. Expect a full review later.

The gents at Cat Torpedo Comics, who remembered me from All-Con 2007. A fact which is nearly as impressive as their stellar work on WonderTeddy and The Silver Spectre.

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