Albuquerque Comic Con, 1/14/12
January 19, 2012 § 7 Comments
Skipping barefoot across the lawn. Eating peanut butter by the spoonful out of the jar. Sitting cross-legged in a corner by the window with a comic book open in your lap. The simple, splendiferous joys of childhood.
When I was a little girl, many lonely weekends and lazy summer days were spent with friendly ghost Casper and his magical best friend Wendy. Tween growing pains were sweetened by the adventures of Josie and the Pussycats. The leap into adolescence was fueled by the excitement, romance, and tragedy of the young superhero gang The New Teen Titans. Then my family moved to another city and away from the neighborhood store where I would spend all my allowance on Betty and Veronica and Scooby Doo. Comic book prices rose as the content shrank and the supply dwindled. A possessed person pretending to be me sold a chunk of my comics (yep, don’t want to talk about it) and the rest of my collection got boxed up and stored out of sight. Years passed.
Last year, Albuquerque launched two inaugural comic book conventions, and I rediscovered my childhood, my bliss, a piece of my soul.
As a kid, Lou Ferrigno was bullied because of the way he talked (he is partially deaf) and he would escape into comic books, imagining himself to be the big strong hero. He then grew up to became a world-class body building champion, winning Mr. Universe twice in a row. As the Incredible Hulk on the TV show that ran from 1978–1982, he embodied with his own flesh, blood, and muscle the rage-fueled character of enormous size and power. Since him, the Hulk has only been able to be recreated by CGI. The man just turned 60, yet looks 40. A testament to the transformative power comic stories have on real lives.
Brent Spiner said that often times, when playing the emotionless android Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation, his fans did the work for him. In the episode where Tasha Yar’s sister betrays the Enterprise, there is a scene where Data gazes at a memento she had given him, contemplating her betrayal. Spiner was supposed to be conveying hurt and confusion, but his mind was just blank. “I would get letters from people saying, ‘I could see what you were feeling in that scene,’ but I wasn’t feeling anything.” It was all about what the fans imagined he was feeling. “It was a very symbiotic relationship.”
The Battle of Art vs. Commerce
Daniel Gillies, who plays the supremely powerful Original vampire Elijah on The Vampire Diaries, took the part because “I needed a job. I was $120,000 in debt.” He wrote and directed a film titled Broken Kingdom (currently in post-production), a passion project, and one that he had difficulty financing—hence the debt. People that he approached for funding wanted him to cast his famous friends and make the story —“about a poor black kid in the slums of Colombia”—more appealing. Potential financiers often pretended to be on board and would “dangle my dream in front me like a carrot on a donkey’s nose. I still get angry thinking about it.” The panel mediator commended Gillies for seeing his project through without getting bitter, and Gillies replied, “Oh, I got bitter. But I also got enlightened. I found out people are not as sweet as I thought they were.” He said that while he did not regret the experience at all, he would definitely make it easier on himself next time around, and try to make the project more commercially viable.
“Patrick was this serious British actor and the rest of us were just clowns. When we were filming the episode where Tasha Yar dies and we’re all on that hill saying our goodbyes, Patrick starts whirling around singing, ‘The hills are alive!’ That’s when he became one of us.” — Brent Spiner on Patrick Stewart
“Me, personally, I would be drawn to Katherine because I think she’s more interesting. Elijah would be drawn to Elena because he would value her purity and nobility, qualities she possesses at a young age that some people don’t achieve in a lifetime.” — Daniel Gillies on Katherine vs. Elena
Artist Jon Hughes is my hero. I bought two beautiful Wonder Woman prints and can’t wait to hang them on my home office wall. Check out the gallery on his website.
Check out Albuquerque Comic Con’s Facebook page for some awesome fan photos!