On New York Comic Con 2012
I attend a lot of fan conventions each year, but the one I’m sure never to miss is New York Comic Con. It’s sort of like a baby San Diego Comic-Con with slightly fewer movie stars and much cooler weather.
The fact that it’s in one of my favorite cities on the planet also gets it a few points in my book. So, despite it not being the biggest and grandest of them all, it’s in many ways the best.
San Diego is pretty cool, but it’s ridiculously crowded and it’s difficult to find a table to eat anywhere without having to wait forever. It’s also close to Los Angeles so you get that whole Hollywood vibe which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.
Then there’s PAX East which is a gamer’s paradise. It’s in an area of Boston that’s being redeveloped so you’ve got to take a free shuttle to get to anything else, like food. The only one I’ve attended that comes close in terms of location is GenCon, which takes over Indianapolis and provides plenty to do after the halls close. Still, New York beats them all.
First, it’s got incredible cosplay. It’s not all quite as fancy as what you’ll find in San Diego, but there’s lots of it and it makes the convention fun. I saw more Deadpools than any other single character and no two looked alike. I saw Thor passed out in a pile of Pop Tarts. I saw a Wonder Woman with more hair on his chest than his head. NYCC has it all.
There’s also a wonderful blend of fandoms that’s hard to find at other conventions and it really does provide something for everyone. First, there was the main floor which, like SDCC, had huge booths from big names like Marvel, Lego, and Square Ennix.
If that wasn’t your thing, then you could cross through the sewers of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle hallway and find some of the smaller, indie vendors selling everything from t-shirts to comics to weapons.
Another corner housed tables and tables full of comics for sale. I always feel like this is where the really hardcore fans hang out. They’ll pour through the longboxes, one comic at a time, pulling a pile of comics that will likely complete their carefully honed collections back home.
One of my favorite areas at NYCC is Artist Alley. Here you’ll find well know artists next to people who’ve only just started in the industry. They’re all selling their wares, signing autographs, and talking with fans. No other convention makes the artists this accesible and it’s wonderful to be able to interact with them and watch them working.
All of these things make NYCC an event that every fan should experience. Sure, save your pennies for a pilgrimage to SDCC, but don’t write off New York. You’ll be missing out on an incredible weekend of comics, cosplay and fun in the city that never sleeps. I still have the circles under my eyes as proof.
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