For decades, San Diego was the city that had the distinction of hosting the biggest comic book convention. But the numbers don’t lie. According to Reed Exhibitions Group Vice President Lance Fensterman, New York squeaked by its left-coast compadre by a few thousand attendees this year. Like Spider-Man, that’s amazing.
Over the years, Comic-Con International has become an entertainment juggernaut with its over-flowing guest list of industry veterans, Hollywood stars and cosplay heroes. A trip to San Diego was mandatory for Nerdists and Big Bangers who loved movies, TV, comic books, cartoons, science fiction, video games, toys and collectibles. Even Comiket in Japan, a convention that annually attracts a half-million fans, pales in comparison to SDCC’s pop culture supremacy.
But things change. This year New York Comic Con threw down the gauntlet and eclipsed SDCC in popularity. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. Everything is bigger in New York, after all.
There were lots of industry announcements during the convention. For example, the “Whedonverse” continues to gain steam with a slew of new books based on Joss Whedon TV shows and movies (including Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Serenity and, uh, The Avengers). More comics based on Aliens and Predator movies are in the works. Kate Beaton (Hark! A Vagrant) has signed a deal with Scholastic. A big Transformers/G.I. Joe crossover event is being planned. And a slew of creaky old heroes like Magnus: Robot Fighter and Turok: Son of Stone are coming out of retirement.
DC Entertainment will be publishing a weekly Batman series throughout 2014 called Batman: Eternal. Lois Lane will be starring in her own book. And Superboy may die. Over at Marvel, expect to see the return of Miracleman (by Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman), a zombie series written by director George Romero, and various character re-launches featuring Black Widow, the Silver Surfer and the Punisher. Loki, the god of mischief, will even be getting his first-ever series, Loki: Agent of Asgard.
But more than anything, NYCC was about spectacle and community. Where else can you hang out with your friends, your family and the entire roster of the Justice League of America? And if you want to dress up like a zombie or Marceline the Vampire Queen, even better.
The accompanying photos of NYCC are from photographer/writer Viki Reed. For more information, check out her website and/or “viki reed photography” on Facebook, Flickr and Tumblr.
Based in San Francisco, Eric Searleman is a senior editor at aNewDomain.net. He’s worked as a newspaper reporter, a fiction editor, a comic book artist — and even a rocker. He’s edited novels for Eraserhead Press including “Trashland A Go Go”, and he’s illustrated books for Immedium including “Animals Don’t, So I Won’t”. Read Eric’s blog about superheroes at http://superheronovels.com/author/esearleman/ or check out his bio on aNewDomain.net.