These past few months, local coverage of C2E2 has been increasing dramatically - and now, after the dust is settling, it's time to sit back, relax, and reflect on my experiences with what is likely to be the first in an increasing series of conventions here in Chicago.
Taking a page from Tom Spurgeon (who has a summary of some major items about the convention), I'm going to give some bullet points about what I heard/felt/experienced around the convention...as well as share some cool stuff.
- In talking with many of my fellow comic-loving brethren, we all agreed - C2E2 made a great effort to remove the bitter taste of last year's Wizard World ComicCon from our mouths. Was it perfect? No - any convention has issues (for example, some shuffling by fans who attended the Doctor Who screening Friday night, scrambling for cabs since shuttles ended two hours earlier). Having a nice, open area that had windows, with plenty of walkable space amongst comic retailers made the show really enjoyable.
- On a personal note, I am glad I got to "hang" and work the Comic Related booth with Chuck and several other people from the site. (And by "work" I mean "verbally harass anyone there who was not named Chuck"). As someone who tends to be more passive and receptive at conventions, this was a great opportunity to learn about "the other side". (It helps that I write for Comic Related as well). Overall, there was a positive experience to working the table....and that much of the positive attitude spilled over into the convention. Unlike WizardWorld ComicCon, which seemed like nothing more than a mass funeral for the dignity of everyone who attended.
- Side note - be sure to leave the evening of Monday, April 26th open. I'll announce it on the blog. There may be another announcement elsewhere.
- Having the major companies have a presence there helped - there was some talk that Marvel and DC were rather tight-lipped, preferring to reveal their "big plans" at New York and San Diego. From my perspective, that's a smart move - C2E2 could have easily been a washout; the fact that it had a relatively healthy attendance made it all the more impressive.
- Personal high note - ending the DC "Town Hall" meeting on Sunday by looking Dan DiDio in the eye and declaring that on my wish list for releases was Showcase Presents The Inferior Five.
- One thing to watch out for next year - keeping food vendors open past 6:30 pm, especially on nights where there are screenings and special events. Sadly, I expect overpriced food at conventions; what I don't expect is being told that I have to walk all the way through the center to a hotel in order to be fed.
- I have a collection of both videos and photos to share from the convention - please note that these were taken with a small Nikon, so quality may vary.
Other than that, C2E2 was (in my opinion, at least) a resounding success. Now, I have a ton of comics to read through (including some indie series that should be hitting the blog in a few months), a slight sense of fatigue (should have worked remote today - oh, well), and quite frankly...a renewed sense of hope in humanity. Obviously, I won't be attending Wizard World this year, because quite simply, it seems as if Gareb Shamus is grasping at straws (William Shatner? Really? How 2007....)
But quite honestly, I feel strongly that (to quote the tagline) Chicago really did get the comics convention they deserved.