I attended Comic Con and Supa Nova this year in Sydney. The last time I attended something like this was some 15 years ago.
Back then, it was an event for the nerds, outcasts and other people who got laughed at. Nowadays, it is practically a family event, with many parents dressing their kids along. All for the better I suppose. Both events were packed. I guess a lot of the cosplay participants would still get laughed at by people not into it. But there is now such a large community of its own, there seems to be an overwhelming internal support.
This is Angela. She was a small character created by Todd McFarlane of Spawn. She had a short mini series of her own and then disappeared partly due to licensing issues. Her comic left an impression on me and I am delighted she got revived. As it turned out, after years of ownership and legal dispute, she has now crossed ownership and is now owned by Marvel.
The last time I went was when around the time X-men just came out. You could probably argue this made comic books become mainstream. It was around this time that I more or less stopped collecting comics. Some would say I grew out of it. But it was a little complicated than that. If you read DC and Marvel, there was certainly a business model of sorts. I for one was getting tired of spending money on comics when other life priorities took place. Spending constraints meant I could only read limited titles.
What I hated the industry was that every so often they would have cross overs – stories involving different characters – so instead of buying one superhero, the story involved other super heroes so you are kinda forced to buy other titles as well. Worse still was that often the same title would have multiple front cover for the same issue so you were forced to buy 5 of the same titles for that particular month.
I was pretty serious for a while. All the comics I have are still wrapped in acid proof plastic covers as well as a hard paper backing board. They are all stored away in archive boxes at the moment. I was quite proud of collecting Uncanny X Men (not to be confused with X Men – which was a different series and then Woverine had his own series) from issue 150 to maybe issue 2 hundred something.
Along the way I also steered away from mainstream super heroes to the more independent creator issues. I picked up Cerebus issue 150. The writer started the comic back in the 70’s and made a pledge to write 300 issues. At 12 issues a year, that was 25 years of writing, practically a life time. Dave Sim did finish it and I collected his last 10 years of issues without reading until it was complete.
Bone by Jeff Smith (this is absolutely kid friendly and in my view as important and as good as the Harry Potter series) was another title. I was hooked after 10 issues and collected his last 50 issues without reading immediately until it was complete.
Akira, the Japanese anime, was some sort of a breakthrough for Western mainstream introduction to Japanese comics, or manga as it is known. This was a rave for Western university students at the time and led to a wave that was full of R rated violent and obscene Japanese anime. But it somehow led to the Ghibli now world famous more family oriented stable of manga and anime. The colour Akira series was fantastic. The last 5 issues probably took 5 years to be issued so I waited and waited…. There’s been constant rumors of Akira being made into a live action Hollywood movie. I am sure at one stage James Cameron was involved.
It also took Hayao Miyazaki some years to finish the last 5 issues of Nausicaa. I have them and have yet to sit down and read the whole story from issue 1. (The manga is so much more better than the anime.)
I have all but the original series of Sin City. It was originally part of a Dark Horse monthly comic of different stories. I did have that series but I ended up trading that set with a friend for something else. I still kick myself for that one.
Here is a trivia question. Who does Disney own? Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and many others. If you can’t beat them, just buy them out.
As it was pretty crowded, I travelled light and shot with a simple 50mm 1.4.