Good news, everyone! MTV Geek will be heading down to North Carolina this weekend for hundred degree weather, eighty percent humidity, and, oh yeah, one of the best darn comics conventions in the country: HeroesCon.
Unlike San Diego or New York Comic-Cons, who have a rep for mixing big media properties and stars with the plebes in Artist’s Alley, HeroesCon is all about the comic books. Not only that, but it’s a family friendly festival, meaning you can still expect to see a Slave Leia here and there, but they’ll be carrying balloons – for the kids!
While the video crew does the heavy lifting, talking to bigwigs like Jonathan Hickman, Frank Cho, and Darwyn Cooke, your faithful blogger will be slaving in the trenches, picking up scraps of funnel cake from the floor, and slowly turning into some sort of prehistoric horror right out of Kamandi. Also maybe covering some panels or something, unclear.
Anyway, since this is my first time down at the lovely HeroesCon, I thought I’d give a preview of some panels, tables, and more that you might want to check out if you’re there. Oh, and feel free to say hello to me, too! I’ll be the guy growling in the corner, his face covered in crumbs and powdered sugar:
Unlike some of the bigger conventions that thrive on big panels, and big reveals, HeroesCon focuses on getting high quality writers and artists, and having them, you know, hang out. There’s going to be a fair amount of attention on some of these guests, particularly given DC Comics bombshell announcements this past week; and a few more guests shiftily wondering if they’re able to break their Non-Disclosure Agreement long enough to announce their Gorilla Grodd vs. Detective Chimp ongoing series*. But here are a few tables we’re interested in checking out:
*Note: this is not a real thing, but I wish it were.
Cliff Chiang – Maker of fabulous posters and prints, and the artist of the new Wonder Woman ongoing (plus an all around great guy) always has some cool art going on at his table.
Tim Sale – The legendary artist has drawn some of our favorite stories ever, from Superman For All Seasons, to Hulk: Gray.
Skottie Young – One of the smartest, most talented guys in comics, he’s been working on the superb Marvel adaptations of L. Frank Baum’s Wizard of Oz series for the past few years. He’s also insanely knowledgeable – and well spoken – about issues affecting the industry. Buy a sketch from him, and get him into a discussion while you do, you won’t regret it. He might, though.
Indie Island – A massive set of tables in the center of the Con, featuring everyone from Evan Dorkin to Roger Langridge, spend some time marooned here, and but at least one thing you’ve never heard of.
Chris Sims – Comics commentator, and head of the Action Age of Comics, Sims always likes it when people go up to him and tell him what they don’t like about Batman, particularly if you refuse to explain your points. Tell him I sent you!
With less of a focus on Hollywood, and more of a focus on the craft of comic making, the panels at HeroesCon should be educational, to say the least. Here’s some of our highlights:
Comics Goes To The Movies (Friday @ 2:30pm) – Heidi McDonald hosts Tommy Lee Edwards, Nick Drington, Peter Krause, and Geof Darrow; all comic book artists who have worked on conceptual art for Hollywood. Worth it just for Darrow’s insane stories of his time working in Japan.
Project: Rooftop – Superhero Fashion (Friday @ 3:00pm) – The Project: Rooftop gang was redesigning superhero costumes long before DC rebooted their entire line. Find out what goes into making a new costume for a classic with the founders.
Approaches To Humor (Saturday @ Noon) – Talking about comedy can often kill the humor, but we wouldn’t miss a panel that brings together Richard Thompson, Roger Langridge, and Evan Dorkin.
FF: Retooling The Flagship (Saturday @ 3pm) – Jonathan Hickman and Steve Epting talk about turning the Fantastic Four into the Future Foundation, and we’re sure, field no questions about Johnny Storm coming back to life.
HAMMER TIME (Sunday at 11:30am) – Sadly not about MC Hammer, but with Matt Fraction, Roger Langridge, and Jonathan Hickman discussing their various takes on the God of Thunder, we’ll live with it somehow.
So that’s what we’ve got folks! We’ll also be getting some cosplay round-ups, and tons of video content. What did we miss? What do you want us to cover at HeroesCon? And can anyone buy me a sandwich?