By Susan Monk
The bad news: I might be Comic-Conned out for a while.
The good news: I've really enjoyed all of the events I've gone to this summer.
It began Memorial Day Weekend in Houston with Comicpalooza, a four day extravaganza held at the George R Brown Convention Center. It was Geek Girl Soup's third year attending & the convention has grown each year. In August I went to a smaller event: the three day Houston Con held at a north Houston hotel. A week earlier, Will (a friend visiting from Portland, OR) was attending a friend's wedding at the same hotel. We met for coffee the next day & he told me about the Rose City Comic Con (RCCC) coming up in Portland in September. He was unable to go this year because he would be celebrating the 10th anniversary of LOST in Hawaii. However, I knew I’d be visiting a cousin in Portland, so I scheduled that trip to coincide with the RCCC.
I sent in an application for a media pass. Not being a local, I wasn't sure if they would grant my request. Much to my surprise, they approved it. Now because I was in Portland primarily to visit family, Mom was with me. That can only mean one thing: rental car adventures! Friday morning we headed back to the airport (around the same time that Will was en route to Honolulu) to exchange our second (the first never made it off the lot Thursday) rental for one with GPS. Because I was going to RCCC Saturday, Mom wouldn't have the Google Maps app on my phone to talk her through the unfamiliar streets. Once we had the right car, we zipped over to the Oregon Convention Center so I could pick up my badge & program guide for the weekend. Inside, people were already setting up the floor area for exhibitors, artists, & celebrity guests. I left filled with pre-con excitement & ready to plan my day at RCCC.
Blue Star Donuts for dessert.
Despite not sleeping well, I woke up early on Saturday with a plan to visit various exhibitors and panels throughout the day. I was able to get onto the floor early & snapped a few photos of the Batmobile, Back to the Future Delorean, & a few of the R2 units built by the R2-D2 Builders Club.
The first panel I attended wasn't one that I had planned, and I find that those are sometimes the best ones. It was titled "From Script to Panel" with comic writers Chris Roberson, Willow Wilson, Joshua Fialkov, Jen Van Meter, & Dennis Hopeless.
Next I went to the Image Comics panel featuring Greg Rucka (Lazarus), Kelly Sue DeConnick (Pretty Deadly), and Matt Fraction (Sex Criminals).
After that panel I took a lunch break. Being away from home, I didn't bring my usual rolling case with recording equipment, snacks, and lunch. There were lots of fried foods available at "con prices." I ended up with a beef & veggie stir fry (because they were out of chicken) over noodles. It did the job and I got back to exploring RCCC.
My next panel was "Deconstructing Pretty Deadly." This one featured Kelly Sue DeConnick, Samantha Cross, & Jason Padua.
Next was the Tony Moore Q&A.
After that Q&A I had a break to walk around the floor again. I had my eyes on some artwork at the mercenaryartstudio.com booth and I was lucky enough to get one of the last Sons of Anarchy prints they had for sale. I also nabbed a couple of other things that I still need to figure out how to get home without ruining.
Next I got some coffee and headed back to the panel rooms. There was already a line for the Matt Fraction Q&A. The people in front of me were from a Portland comic podcast that I think was called the Comic Book City Podcast (I'm sorry I didn't write down the name, Bad Susan, but this one seemed to fit what I learned in our short conversation). This was the first con they've covered as podcasters and I’m looking forward to hearing about their weekend at RCCC.
Matt Fraction's Q&A with Ben Saunders was my last panel of the day, and it was also the most fun.
Even if it was just for one day, I'm glad I was able to attend the Rose City Comic Con. It was nice to go more for the comics this time than for the celebrity panels and interviews — not that I don't also enjoy those, but comics are what started all of these conventions! I only wish I had time to taken more photos of some truly amazing cosplay, as I saw some marvelous costumes (Groot, Pokemon, Frozen Princess Elsa).
So a big thanks to the RCCC, for letting me experience a West Coast Con.