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Hot Picks 3-17-10 and MegaCon Wrap Up

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This week InvestComics came back from the Orlando MegaCon with Project Fanboy. Check out a little word on that. Also the Hot picks!

screenhunter_22_mar._16_22.07.gifscreenhunter_29_mar._16_22.16.gifThe Orlando MegaCon 2010 was spectacular. I came away with quite a few things I’d like to share with you. I’d like to share some of those things with you……now. The first thing was gaining some very good friends, Scott Williams, Sebastian Piccione and Neil Jorge. Scott and Sebastian are pictured in the slideshow on top of the InvestComics™ page. From left to right; Sebastian, Scott and yours truly. Sebastian is currently working on a comic named Cat. 5 for Earthbound Comics. Neil was at a table drawing awesome sketches for most of the weekend. Neil and Sebastian (writer) are currently working on a comic together called Freedom’s Man. Go to the Earthbound Comics website or Project Fanboy web site to check out more on Sebastian’s busy life! Scott Williams was busy filming panels as well as doing interviews with many creators for his Project Fanboy site. From what I did see and hear, Scott has some great stuff heading our way. There were many creators at the show. The majority of them were extremely cordial while some others screenhunter_23_mar._16_22.08.gifscreenhunter_24_mar._16_22.10.gifwere very busy doing their thing and had to concentrate on the business at hand. I want to personally thank each and every one of them for being so kind to fill out the 10 For The Pros spot that you all will be enjoying for the weeks to come. Look for pros like Mark McKenna, Frank Cho, Tony Bedard, Darwyn Cooke, Adam Hughes, Mike McKone and a HOST of others coming to InvestComics.

While the MegaCon was a lot fun,  I did take something away from it that was a little disturbing. Well not so much disturbing, but a “change” if you will that was a bit overwhelming in the sense that the MegaCon lacked ONE very big thing……..comics! I remember visiting one of my first conventions in 1985 with my father up in New York, right across the street from “The Mecca” Madison Square Garden and I was in absolute awe of all of the comic books in one room! There were some costume players here and there. There were some anime booths, an occasional statue/memorabilia spot, a booth to buy t-shirts and “cheap food.” But screenhunter_25_mar._16_22.11.gifscreenhunter_26_mar._16_22.12.gifMOST of all, there were COMICS galore. If you couldn’t find something at these conventions, it was not to be had. Fast forwarding to March of 2010 at the Orlando MegaCon, the comics were the minority this time around. I’m not saying I haven’t been to a convention in over 30 years, I’m simply stating that the business has changed tremendously and if you’re a dealer, don’t expect to make a lot of money at these things. For every 6 gamer booths I saw, there was 1 comic spot. Got me thinking, what could this mean exactly? Ethan Van Sciver’s line at one point started wrapping around the convention hall, George Perez was signing just about every comic he ever had a hand in, as did Amanda Conner. I was standing there talking to Amanda when a collector put down; I kid you not, about 30 comics for Amanda to sign. Without blinking an eye, Amanda smiled and started signing away. Were these comics bought at the show? Probably not because EVERY single time I passed the comic booth’s there were maybe 1 or 2 people thumbing through some things. The gamers section, the video game section, the screenhunter_28_mar._16_22.14.gifcostume section were about 6 people deep. Here’s the thing. Collectors are bringing their books from their collection from home, from their local comic shop and bringing it to the show. Collectors have to ability to go on line to search for a comic on Ebay or some other outlet to get those comics that elude them much easier today than they did 30 years ago. Why would they pay top dollar at a show when they could get it cheaper elsewhere on line? Having a screenhunter_27_mar._16_22.13.gifcomic booth that just offers comic books in todays “Comic Book Con’s” would be a death sentence if one is thinking about doing a show. One MUST offer other options in order to make money at one of these shows. These shows have basically turned into a big costume party with video games, anime and an array of weaponry to choose from as well (not real weapons, but weapons for costumes). Gone it seems are the traditional comic book shows, In with the showman aspect of the comic/games/anime world. Who can outdo who? Who can look better in the 5000 Supergirl, Batgirl or zombie garb? This is what it has come to, a big Halloween contest in March? Seems it might be. One does realize that I do not mind this, it is fun and very comical to see potato Batgirl (thanks Seb). It does raise a flag to see where this Industry will be in 20 years though. Will the comic books come back to the shows or will it all be these digital stations where you could read a current comic book for 99 cents? It’s “progress, don’t be afraid of it” as Tony Bedard of DC said when I spoke to him about paper and digital. He said the people in general “need to embrace both digital and paper.” I could not agree more. There is room for both, why must we all think that digital will be the death of the paper comic book?

screenhunter_21_mar._16_22.06.gifSo the last day, Sunday, Project Fanboy gave out the 2009 awards. You could view some of the award show on video on Project Fanboy shortly. Check out the front page of PFB as Scott did announce it will be up very soon. As Newsarama accepted the award for best comic book web site, I told Lan Pitts (who was there to accept the award) that I was going to go up on the stage and hijack his speech a’la Kayne. We both had a laugh over it and I thus gained another friend in Lan Pitts. He’s a great guy and you haven’t checked out his blog on Newsarama, you should. Great stuff there.

So with a busy weekend, came a lot of insight as well as some new friends. Project Fanboy really has their stuff together and I’m proud to be a part of their team. Scott and Sebastian, thank you again. As for Neil, you’re an awesome artist and thanks for the super cool Thanos sketch. Matt (“you know the Con closes at 6 right?”) It was great meeting you as well. InvestComics as I said earlier got around to meeting a lot of creators as they filled out the 10 For The Pros. I made a lot of new friends and contacts. Only 3 months into 2010 and things are looking great! So check out some pictures from the MegaCon and then check out this week’s Hot Picks!

Hot Picks 3-17-10

siege3.gifmightyavengers35.gifamericanvampire1.gifuncannyxmen522.gifThere are 3 very big books coming out this week and you really should already know 2 of them. Siege #3 promises to change the Marvel universe forever. Green Lantern Corps #46 concludes Blackest Night. And the final BIG book would be the sleeper of the week. American Vampire #1. Let’s go down the check list with this one shall we? No holds barred Vertigo line? (check), Vampires? (check) Art by Rafael Albuquerque? (check). Variant cover by Jim Lee (check) and let’s see….oh yea Stephen King (check). This book is going to be one of those comics that collectors will in fact miss because of the other biggies coming out this week, unless you read InvestComics™ this comic will not fly under YOUR radar. Getting back to Siege event for a moment, don’t miss the big surprise in Mighty Avengers greenarrow31.gificx317101.gifshield7.gifsupes80page.gif#35. You want more surprises you say? Okay check out Uncanny X-Men #522 for a return of someone in a double sized issue. The Fall of Green Arrow begins this week in Green Arrow #31. Should be a nice read from J.T. Krul. Batman #697 gets into the SURPRISE game this week. Check out who is the Black Mask. The “reveal” will SURPRISE everyone (as the DC solicit says). Michael Avon Oeming will be the new artist of The Shield beginning with issue #7. Look for a quick sellout on this issue. The new Superman 80 Page Giant #1 showcases some new artist. This will be a nice collector’s item for many artist’s “first work” on Superman. …And finally, with the Wizard magazine sort of fading into the sunset these days. Well maybe not, but it sure seems that way doesn’t it? A new comic magazine will debut this week. Comic Heroes Magazine #1. Not too sure how comicheroesmagazine1.gifthis may be any different from what Wizard may offer, but hey it might be worth checking out.

Invest Wisely.

Jay Katz

 

 

 

What do you think? InvestComics would like to know.