My usually hyperactive pen is sleepy and still-ish. Straight to the ramble.
1) I watched Season 5 of The Guild last week, and therefore was prepared for the variety of costumes at Boston Comic Con. I wasn’t expecting the bulk of activity to take place in the exhibition hall, rather than in the conference rooms. Maybe this isn’t the norm, but the Boston crowd spent most of its time in the marketplace.
After watching The Guild’s Zaboo grow hysterical in the name of seat-saving, I was worried about getting into the DC artists’ panel, but when I asked a staff member how early I should line up, she looked at me as if I had three heads. (Having three heads at a Comic Con isn’t remarkable; her look was less condescending than it sounds.)
2) If you want to make an argument that female superheroes are more sexualized and fetishized than men, go to a Comic Con. When a young female puts on a Wonder Woman costume or dresses like Poison Ivy, she conveys all of the sexy and little of the power of Wonder Woman or Poison Ivy. As you look at these women, you not only admire their bold willingness to strut around a bland convention center half-naked and, if you’ve borne children, covet their general gravity defiance, but also realize that what the critics say about female superhero garb is true.
Because when a young man walks by dressed as Blue Beetle, he mostly conveys that he likes Blue Beetle. As you look at these guys, you mostly just think about Blue Beetle. That’s it. Although I’m not going to lie, I did notice one Spider Man’s ass. Because he had a wedgie.
3) Speaking of DC artists, wow. I realize this is the norm for regular comic convention-goers, but in what other universe do the people making the art you love hang out with you? These guys – Jamal Igle (The Ray), Francis Manapul (Flash), Ivan Reis and Joe Prado (Aquaman), and my idol Cliff Chiang (Wonder Woman) — spoke frankly and happily about their work to the fans, both those who attended their panel and the folks like me who approached them on the exhibition hall floor.
Special shout-outs (because they crave recognition from small-time bloggers) to:
• Cliff Chiang, who remained friendly and interested in what I had to say, even after I told him I was flattered to meet him;
• Francis Manapul (pictured above), who drew an amazing Flash for my friend Cindy Johnson/@HarborDove (also pictured above), and who talked with her for a half-hour about his art. Cool fact he shared with her: After spending years tracing comic book figures, Manapul wanted to draw them freehand and so bought himself a physiology textbook and used it as a how-to manual;
So my pen got busy after all.
But now it needs a nap.