Sun, Sangria and San Diego…

• It’s the San Diego Comic Con this weekend and many British comic creators, including Grant Morrison, have headed to the sunshine state for the monstrous event, surrounded by thousands of sweating people and lovely ladies in very few clothes (pic right admittedly from last year’s event), promoting all manner of comics, films and other media just before they head off to promote wardrobes and interior decorating in a similar manner at some other major convention.

Yes, we are a bit jealous, although over on his Newsarama blog, Jeff Trexler has raised concerns once again about how the event is developing. “There’s a rising concern in some quarters that Comic-Con International has sold out in ways that go beyond the lack of on-site registration,” he feels.

“What once had been an educational community seems to have morphed into a PR-palooza, with the celebration of an art form giving way to corporate hype and celebutards…” You can read his full article here.

Coverage is pretty much everywhere on the US comics and other media sites: the G4TV site has a number of videos at the event and US mainstream media have their own reports on the event and its impact on pop culture, including the Washington Post, The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times (“Get Your Geek On“. No, really). Even The Times has its own take on the event, noting
the first Comic-Con, in 1972, was held in the basement of a San Diego hotel and drew 300 people, almost all male. It’s much more of a family affair now.

Highlights of the event so far include a premiere for the new straight to DVD Stargate: Continuum film and promotions for
X-Men Origins: Wolverine, next year’s entry from the X-Men series from Marvel Studios and 20th Century Fox and the the vampire film Twilight.

Some of the best coverage I’ve read thus far is on Newsarama, offering full coverage of the event, including a report on Grant Morrison’s new animation project for Virgin Comics, working alongside Stan Lee, as well as his X-Men work.

While downtheubes is primarily devoted to British Comics, news that novelist Orson Scott Card’s classic SF Ender’s Game is coming to comics, a new Marvel Comics project, stirred interest here: and we’re told the art by Pascal promises to be beautiful. Chris Yost is writing. Let’s hope this adaptation isn’t as wordy as the disappointing comics version of Card’s fantasy novel Red Prophet. The good news is that apparently the creators were being so faithful to the story that the editors felt the comic had too much narration and Yost was sent back to re-work the story without narrartion.

Among the talents at ComicCon will be Active Images, run by former Marvel UK editor Richard Starkings, along with Comicraft’s “secret weapon” John JG Roshell.

Aside from hot-off-the-presses copies of the Elephantmen: War Toys and Elephantmen: Wounded Animals trade paperbacks, the latest issue of Elephantmen (#13) and the Beautiful Deluxe Edition of the Kelly/Bachalo masterpiece Captain Stoneheart & The Truth Fairy, recently much praised by top British creator David Hine, they’ll have two show exclusives — the new Tim Sale sketchbook, Heroes/Villains/Babes and the glorious hardcover edition of David Hine’s gothic shocker, Strange Embrace, which features an exclusive print signed and numbered by Dave.

For those creators not at ComicCon, there’s still an opportunity to benefit from the event, as Comicraft always hold their annual half price font sale right now – well worth checking out if you’re looking for a new lettering font to dress up your new comic.

Newsarama Coverage of San Diego ComicCon

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



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