Friday, July 23, 2010

In Defense of Comic-Con

I posted this on a blog I read daily, Jeffrey Wells' excellent Hollywood Elsewhere. While I don't always agree with Jeffrey, I do most of the time, and he provides an open forum in this post comments for readers to disagree with him, or each other.

Jeffrey did a blanket put-down of Comic-con which has some basis in fact but is really the Hollywood view of the show even in his negativity, no real feel for why the convention was so good in the years leading up to now or that the good core survives. Ditto for the first few comments I saw, snarky (though not noticeably witty) chime-ins agreeing with Wells.

So I felt it my duty, after attending yesterday and having a successful, life-affirming trip:

I have to put in a few words of defense of Comic-Con.

I go for a single day each year, mainly for business but also because I love the creative community that's the backbone of Comic-Con. I attend maybe one panel a year, prefer lesser-attended events, think the lines are for fans or chumps. I like that Comic-Con taught H'wood that they had to bring the talent close to the fans, that if they're going to make stupor-hero movies that they actually consider the fans now (unlike, say the first Star Trek movie), I like that the artists old and young, publishers big and tiny, are in the same huge room with movie studios, TV networks, videogame publishers and toymakers.

I love the huge explosion of creativity and available new-old art, books, comics, videos, etc., like the two Harvey Pekar graphic books gifted to me by the publisher, one on The Beats, the other on the Students for a Democratic Society. I like talking to independent publishers, creators, even smart people working for the big corporations who actually care.

I love that at its core Comic-Con is about the low barrier to entry to create a potentially huge IP, just pen and ink, good ideas, wit and talent.

And I adore that there were three anti-homosexual protesters across the street and everyone at the convention was laughing, shaking their heads and taking pictures like they were cosplay attendees instead of grumpy/smug middle-aged women with offensive "God Hates Fags" signs.

The core community that comes together at Comic-Con is an accepting bunch, who know the misfit in themselves and have made community.


Google pix of the con here.

1 comment:

jordan said...

Amen, brother.