By Carolina Cooney
After having to cancel their original mid-April date due to the Boston Marathon bombing, Boston Comic Con was back this past weekend and by all measures it was a resounding success. Their new location at the Seaport Convention Center was a big improvement over the original location, with better lighting, a higher ceiling, and much less of a basement feel. The date change, although unfortunate, was also likely a boon for attendance—hot on the heels of San Diego Comic-Con, fans from the tri-state area and beyond were itching to get a taste of the excitement in their own backyard.
Even with a rather hefty ticket price, $25 for a one-day pass, $40 for the weekend, lines snaked well past the convention center and down numerous blocks for hours on both Saturday and Sunday. While a few of the original artists planning to attend had to cancel due to the rescheduling, leaving an empty table here and there in Artist’s Alley, most were able to honor their commitment and spirits were high.
Artist George Perez was in high demand and seemed to having the longest line of any exhibitor. The quick-witted Howard Chaykin had a steady stream of fans waiting for signatures, and Steve Niles and Terry Moore both seemed to be enjoying visits from dedicated fans. Independent comic artist Tana Ford sold out of her latest work, DUCK 2, by Saturday afternoon. But while some artists seemed to have bustling sales, other HUGE names were surprisingly approachable. Neal Adams was wide open, selling quick sketches for $100, original pin-ups ranging from about $200 to $1000 (many still priced in pounds due to a recent European show), and a photo opportunity with him for $20. Bill Willingham, of FABLES fame, and Hellboy’s Mike Mignola also had some idle moments.
Cosplay was in full swing, of course, and after San Diego’s polished professionals, participants in Boston were endearingly DIY. Batman, Superman, and the Joker were popular choices, with a few Deadpool, Spider-Man, and Harley Quinn thrown in for good measure.
No word yet on whether next year’s show will stick with the new location and later date, but if this year’s show is any indication, they would be wise to consider a permanent move.
[Carolina Cooney is a freelance reporter and a History of Comics instructor at the Academy of Art University.]
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.