Thursday, May 29, 2008

Boughts and Thoughts - May 28th, 2008

All Star Superman #11 - Lex Luthor escapes death row and is superpowered, while Superman's Dead. Most of the issue is Superman tying up some loose ends, and then fighting a red sun.

Astounding Wolf-Man #6 - I still don't know why I'm buying this in single issue format. I'm still enjoying it, but not as much as I am with Robert Kirkman's The Walking Dead (which I'll probably stop buying soon, in favour of the hardcovers).

Burn #1 - This came out last week. I saw it, flipped through it, but passed on it. Then I checked the Anime North website, and saw that artist, Camilla d'Errico was a guest. In a way, I did want to see her there, as her work is pretty good. In another way, no way in hell I was paying the Anime North admission fee. I probably could've gotten in free if I talked to Cyber City Comix owner, Darryl, prior to the show, but opted not to go.

Fathom #0 - I really only bought this because I found the Retailer Incentive Exclusive with the regular issues. I also picked up a copy of the regular Ale Garza cover. If I'm not mistaken, Ale Garza is now part of Aspen Comics, after many years with Wildstorm. I like Garza's work, but he's usually on a title I don't normally pick up. Garza is awesome. Check out this Batgirl by Ale Garza that I won over three years ago.

Giant-Size Astonishing X-Men #1 - Fuck you Whedon! Yea, I said it! I still love your work, and the stuff you create, but Fuck you for what you did to Kitty Pryde. (Thank you for creating Firefly! And I guess Buffy!) Hopefully, someone brings Kitty Pryde back. She ain't dead, so there's always that hope.

Judenhass - Dave Sim's new graphic novel. I haven't read it yet, but really want to get into it.

King Size Hulk #1 - So I made the mistake of not actually looking inside of the book, before buying a copy of each cover. It turns out, the issue printed with both covers attached. If you got the Arthur Adams cover, the Frank Cho cover was the next page, and vice versa. So yea, let this be a lesson... check inside the book, before buying. This did come with reprints to the Incredible Hulk #180 & #181, and an Avengers issue (I forget which one).

New Avengers #41 - Pretty good issue, that connects the first arc of New Avengers into this issue. Mainly deals with Ka-Zar and Shanna.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Joe Shuster Awards - 2008 Hall of Fame Inductees Announced

May 26, 2008 - Toronto, Canada. Canada's first national award recognizing outstanding achievements by Canadian creators in the creation and publication of comic books and graphic novels returns in 2008 for it’s fourth year: the JOE SHUSTER CANADIAN COMIC BOOK CREATOR AWARDS, named after pioneering Toronto-born artist Joe Shuster who, along with writer Jerry Siegel, created the iconic super-powered hero, Superman.

In 2008 four more creators will be inducted into the Canadian Comic Book Creator Hall of Fame - they will be honoured at the JSA ceremony on Saturday, June 14th in Toronto, Canada at the Lillian Smith Library Auditorium (239 College St., E. of Spadina Ave., Toronto). The ceremony will be co-hosted by our returning master-of- ceremonies dynamic duo, Rick Green (the Frantics; the Red Green Show & History Bites) and Rob Salem (Toronto Star & Drive-In TV) and, as always, it will be an evening to remember.

The Joe Shuster Award presentations will kick off in the evening at 8PM and will be preceded by a day long SEQUENTIAL ART SYMPOSIUM which, along with the awards, are free to the public. The Symposium will run from 10AM to 5PM and include participants such as Darwyn Cooke, Tom Grummett, and author John Bell (Invaders from the North). The Symposium will be accompanied by an exhibit of artwork by Canadian comic book artists to salute the historic 70th anniversary of the publication of Joe Shuster’s renowned co-creation, Superman, in June 1938’s Action Comics # 1. The exhibit, entitled Visions of an Icon, will include original images of the Man of Steel by Canadian artists, including Darwyn Cooke, Dave Sim, Todd McFarlane and a vast array of additional creators.

2008 HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES:

STANLEY BERNECHE (1947- )

Stanley Berneche was born in Windsor, Ontario, in 1947. Following his studies at Mount Allison University, Berneche became the leading artist associated with the counterculture humour magazine Fuddle Duddle, which was published in Ottawa by Jeffrey R. Darcey (JRD Publishing) from 1971 to 1972. Berneche's main collaborator at the magazine was the writer Peter Evans, a friend from Berneche's university days. Their satirical character Captain Canada, the first national superhero to appear following the Canadian Golden Age of Comics, made his debut in Fuddle Duddle #3. The second Captain Canada adventure appeared in issue #4 (a third and final adventure remains unpublished). At the same time that he was contributing outrageous comics to Fuddle Duddle, Berneche was also drawing the strip True Tales of the RCMP for the Canadian Boy Scout magazine Trailblazers. Following the demise of Fuddle Duddle, he continued to pursue his career as a graphic artist and illustrator. He is currently working on a variety of multimedia, web-related products and services, including website design, the design of next-generation, public-access, graphical user-interfaces, and the development of web-delivered, limited-series illustrations. He also claims to be "shooting billiards to a level never seen before." One of the most talented Canadian comics artists of the 1970s, Berneche made the following statement regarding his current activities --- “I am still the guy who comes up with the ideas... for marketing all sorts of companies on any and all media available. I am still the guy who makes observations on life through illustrations and photo manips available on my multiple social web accounts... for anyone to enjoy or comment on” and as to his future plans --- “Who really ever knows? Maybe another Jeff Darcy is out there waiting to do something new”.

JOHN BYRNE (1950- )

John Byrne is a British-born, Canadian raised and educated, naturalized American author and artist of comic books. Byrne was born not far from the town of West Bromwich, in England but immigrated with his family to Canada in 1958. His first exposure to the American superheroes that would dominate his professional life was at the age of six when he first watched The Adventures of Superman on the BBC. He attended the Alberta College of Art in Calgary for a few years, where he produced some of his earliest work when he created the superhero Gay Guy for the college newspaper. At college he produced his first full-length comic story, The Death's Head Knight, as a promotional portfolio of his comic book art. That book was seen by a fellow Canadian comics fan, John Mansfield, who put Byrne in contact with both the then burgeoning fanzine community and eventually, through an introduction to Roy Thomas, Marvel Comics.

Through Mansfield’s connections he made his first professional sale in 1971 to The Monster Times. Byrne left the college in 1973 without graduating and broke into comics illustrating a two-page story by writer Al Hewetson for Skywald Publications’ black-and-white horror magazine Nightmare #20. Byrne has worked continuously in comics since 1975, following this sale to Skywald in the late summer of 1974. Beginning humbly enough, with the likes of Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch and Doomsday+1 Byrne split his time, while still living in Canada, between working for a local advertising agency and illustrating these books for Charlton Comics. Next came Iron Fist and The Champions for Marvel where he eventually graduated to Marvel's number one cult book, The X-Men (not yet Uncanny) in 1977, and later making his move to the states, to Chicago, when he got married in 1980.

It was his work on X-Men which truly ignited John's star, and from there he moved to Captain America, The Avengers, The Incredible Hulk, Alpha Flight (a team of Canadian super-heroes) and a five year run on Marvel's flagship title, Fantastic Four. Seeking new heights to conquer, in 1986 John accepted the daunting assignment of revamping the oldest and most famous of all superheroes, Superman. The relaunch was a commercial hit and that version of Superman is so strongly identified with the artist that it is sometimes called "John Byrne's Superman". Beginning with the hugely successful Man of Steel miniseries, John brought Superman back into the attention of the fans, and that success continues today. In 1990, John decided to venture into the unpredictable waters of creator owned works, launching John Byrne’s Next Men in 1991. Following that success he brought out Danger Unlimited, followed by Babe in 1995. Since then, he has written and drawn such titles as Wonder Woman, X-Men: The Hidden Years, Lab Rats, Doom Patrol, and Blood of the Demon.

In addition to his comic book work, Byrne has published three novels: Fearbook, Whipping Boy and Wonder Woman: Gods and Goddesses. He also has short stories in the Hotter Blood and Shock Rock anthologies. Fearbook was nominated for a Bram Stoker Award by the Horror Writers of America as "Best First Novel".

His post-2000 works have often gone off the beaten tracks of the DC and Marvel universes and filled in characters and events in time periods mostly skipped by other comics (Marvel: The Lost Generation) or alternate timelines (DC's Superman & Batman: Generations) which featured characters who actually age during the course of the series unlike the usual tradition of most ongoing comics. His 2000s work has been mainly for DC Comics: JLA (the “Tenth Circle” story arc), Doom Patrol, Blood of the Demon, and a brief return stint drawing Superman (with writer Gail Simone) in Action Comics. Afterward, Simone and Byrne reteamed to launch The All-New Atom series in 2006, with Byrne penciling the first three issues. In 2007, publisher IDW brought Byrne on board for the final issue of the miniseries Star Trek: Alien Spotlight in 2008, and FX, written by Wayne Osborne, also published this year. In 2008, a five-issue arc on JLA Classified for DC featured Byrne re-teamed with writer Roger Stern, his collaborator during his renowned stint on Captain America.

At the present moment, Byrne’s current workload includes some monthlies, in the form of several back-to-back Star Trek related mini-series for IDW --- the first, Star Trek: Assignment Earth, launched in spring 2008.

PIERRE FOURNIER (1949- )

Published in 1973, Pierre Fournier’s satirical superhero comic, Les Aventures du Capitaine Kébec was a keystone of the “Springtime of Comics” movement that saw a new generation of artists creating comics in Québec. Fournier was involved as a writer/artist, editor, art director, publisher and a passionate promoter. In 1974, he organized Québecomics, the first exhibition of its kind, shown in New York, Eastern Canada and Europe. In 1975-76, Fournier produced and hosted a popular television series, Les Amis du Capitaine Kébec, entirely devoted to comics.

Fournier contributed to every issue of the humor magazine Croc (1979-1995) either illustrating his own strips or writing for a who’s who of Québec artists. With his longtime friend and collaborator, artist Réal Godbout, Fournier co-created and co-scripted the now legendary Michel Risque and Red Ketchup strips serialized over a period of fifteen years in Croc and Titanic.

In 1986, Fournier was the founding president of the ACIBD, an association of comic art professionals. In 1991, he was presented with the prestigious Albert Chartier Award for his outstanding contributions to comics.

In the late 80’s, Fournier worked as an inker for Marvel Comics and he was an editor and art director for the English-language Matrix Comics of Montréal. In 1990-91, he contributed to the Québec edition of Mad magazine and edited Anormal, a humor and comics magazine aimed at young teens. In recent years, Pierre Fournier has written extensively for screen and television. He is also an authority on classic horror films and writes the Rondo-nominated blog, Frankensteinia.

The Michel Risque and Red Ketchup series are currently enjoying a critically acclaimed and best-selling revival, all fourteen graphic novels being published by La Pasteque of Montréal. In February 2008, Fournier’s Capitaine Kébec character was chosen as the most iconic image of Québec comics and featured as the cover of Mira Falardeau’s Histoire de la bande dessinée au Québec, a history of Québec comics spanning the mid 1800’s to today.

EDWIN R. “TED” McCALL (1901-1975)

Although he spent most of his life as a journalist and newspaper editor, Edwin Reid (Ted) McCall is best remembered as the co-creator of Canada’s earliest adventure comic strips and of probably Canada’s most successful wartime comic book hero Freelance.

It was through his work as a journalist that he entered the world of the comic strip. Reporting on the exploits of the RCMP, he decided here was material for a strip and so with Harry Hall a newspaper illustrator who later created his own strip “News ‘n Nonsense”, McCall launched “Men of the Mounted” in The Evening Telegram on February 11, 1933. Although the strip was successful and can still be found in a Big Little Book of the same title, McCall could not break out of the small Canadian market into the large American and so he shelved the project February 16, 1935.

He turned to the Robin Hood story and this time with illustrator Charles Snelgrove created the strip “Robin Hood and Company” which first appeared in the Telegram September 23, 1935. This strip broke into the international market and at one point was in 80 newspapers. This time the Second World War intervened. As paper supplies to newspapers dwindled they cut back on unnecessary features like the comics. McCall suspended the strip February 16, 1939.

He then convinced Sinnott News to organize a comic book company Anglo-American through which he republished his “Robin Hood and Company” strips and then proceeded with new stories. He later resurrected the Men of the Mounted concept under several names: “The Red Sentinel” and “Kip Keene of the Mounted”.

But his greatest contribution was the creation of Freelance. For this one he obtained the services of Ed Furness a commercial artist with an interest in cartooning. “Freelance” was the only character in Canadian wartime comics to have his own comic book. The anecdotal evidence suggests that Freelance was the best selling comic of the time. Maurice Horn (The World Encyclopedia of Comics) said that the comic’s success was “… primarily due to McCall’s deft writing, inventive plots and earthy humour.”

With the end of the war the Canadian comic book industry crashed. McCall and Furness attempted to turn Freelance into a comic strip detective but could not interest Fawcett Publications of the U.S. to distribute it and so the project was dropped.

McCall left the comics field and rose to become Managing Editor at The Evening Telegram. He died of a heart attack in 1975.

ABOUT JOE SHUSTER (1914 – 1992)

The Joe Shuster Awards are named in honor of the great artist, JOE SHUSTER (1914-1992), whose clear, dynamic style and inventive visual flourishes set the standard for graphic storytelling during the infancy of the North American comic book industry. It was Superman, a co-creation of Shuster and Jerry Siegel, which electrified the industry 70 years ago in 1938 and, almost overnight, transformed comic books into an enormous pop-cultural phenomenon.

ABOUT THE JOE SHUSTER AWARDS

The first and most widely recognized national achievement award for Canadians working on comic books, graphic novels and webcomics, the Joe Shuster Awards were established in 2004 and first presented in April 2005. The awards are named after Joe Shuster, the Canadian-born co-creator of Superman, and are named as such with permission of his estate. The Joe Shuster Awards honour the people who create comics, publish comics and sell comics.

Creator nominees are nominated for their body of work during the previous calendar year, not just for one specific work. Winners are selected by jury vote to ensure that works are given adequate consideration. There are three additional popular vote awards: Favourite English Canadian comic book creator, Favourite French Canadian comic book creator and Favourite International (non-Canadian) comic book creator. Voting for those categories is done on-line at www.joeshusterawards.com – voting ends May 31, 2008.

Hall of Fame and Retailer Awards are selected by individual committees after a review and discussion of eligible candidates.

The 2008 Poster was drawn by Canadian comic book artist Tom Grummett with inks by Terry Pallott; coloured and designed by Paul Rivoche with art direction and concept by James Waley. The Joe Shuster Awards logo was designed by Dave Sim and Tyrone Biljan.

The Joe Shuster Awards are run by the Canadian Comic Book Creator Awards Association (CCBCAA), a not-for-profit organization that relies on sponsorship, eBay and convention sales of prints and memorabilia, and private donations. 2008 sponsors include: Lionshead Resort, Comic Guaranty LLC (CGC), Comicspriceguide.com, Sips Comics, Diamond Distributors, Quebecor World and Mirificent Enterprise.

For more information please visit our website, www.joeshusterawards.com or contact us by email at joeshusterawards@yahoo.ca:

James Waley
Executive Director

Kevin Boyd
Associate Director

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Search for Fit

Been trying to look for Wii Fit. I actually didn't keep in mind when it was released; otherwise, I would've been at the store when it opened yesterday to get it. Instead, I found out after my bro got off of work, and checked for it. After several Best Buys, Future Shops, Wal-Marts, and Toys-R-Us', I found nothing.

There was a bit of hope last night, when I was on the Best Buy website. After checking around 5pm to see it sold out, I went back around 8pm, to see one left. I quickly went to process it, but after entering the address information (which was really just using the saved info), it had already been sold. Blast!

Then today, while searching store stocks online, I found that the Future Shop at Weston Rd./Hwy. 401 claims to have them in stock. Also, Hwy. 403/Dundas, but that's a little too far for me.

I went to the Weston Rd. location (this was like around 4pm), and they say it's sold out. I check one of the computers to use the Future Shop website, and it claims it's still in stock. So I ask another employee about how often the website updates the store inventory, because it still says in-stock, and one of the other guys tells me it's sold out. He claims once a day. Then he proceeds to get defensive, "Why would the other guy lie about it being sold out? If he says it's sold out, then it's sold out."

Dude, I just asked you a fucking question. I didn't question employee integrity. I just wanted to know about the fucking website.

Not satisfied with that answer, and with him being all defensive, I ask someone at customer service, because they should be more knowledgable.

The girl tells me she doesn't really know how often it updates. Says at least once a day, but usually more. Also proceeds to tell me, if items are shown in-stock, but out of stock in stores, there could be a possibility of theft, as the inventory doesn't take into account theft. I like that answer more, and just the fact that she took the time to answer, even though she wasn't 100% sure. I thanked her, and left.

I'll still be on the look out for Wii Fit, and more importantly, that Balance Board.

*NOTE* I checked the Future Shop website again at 7:44PM, and the Future Shop at Weston/401 has now changed its store inventory to sold out.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Boughts and Thoughts - May 21st, 2008

1001 Arabian Nights: The Adventures of Sinbad #1 - Damn me and picking up Zenescope stuff. I said I wasn't going to continue this, and I won't be after this issue. It wasn't bad, but I'm just not interested.

Captain America #38 - This pretty much explains the covers that are coming up.

Dark Ivory #2 - Enjoyable issue. Looking forward to the rest of the series.

Echo #3 - Interesting. Looks like we have a villain.

Justice League of America #21 - So Z-list villain commits a crime, takes on members of the heroes team, and gets saved by some unused character (that made his return a few weeks back). This unused character is now organizing a super-villain team, and promises those that join, with get whatever they want. Also, this unused character has powers that the heroes don't know about (probably because they are being made up, since the character has really been unused). It's like I'm reading New Avengers again, with Libra playing the role of The Hood. What the hell, DC? Use a story that was done a decade or so ago. Not one from last year.

Justice Society of America #15 - Pretty much an entire issue of fighting. Also, it's always nice to see someone being eaten in one shot.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Fan Expo Canada 2008 Comic Book Guest List - Thoughts

I had my little bit of excitement on this blog, but I'm truly more excited that I wrote. Words can't express how excited I am for Fan Expo this summer. But with that excitement, also comes with the realization that I will probably be broke at the end of the convention.

Of course, that's not a guarantee that I will be broke at the end of it. It's just, I'm going to try to be, by the end of it. :)

Because of Fan Expo, and as I stated prior leaving for Motor City Comic Con, I have decided to cutback on the amount of sketches I would have gotten at Motor City, and the upcoming Paradise Toronto Comicon. As much as I would like to go around and get a whole bunch of sketches, like I usually do, I will be trying for a few commissions. I probably will not be the normal sketch-whore that I have been in the past (at least, until after Fan Expo).

I will also be changing the way I normal do cons, for Fan Expo, as I want to enjoy the convention more, than getting a whole lot of books signed. This, because my thoughts after last year's Fan Expo. I truly enjoyed the convention, but with all the planning on getting books signed, it just became stressful for me, which caused my slight disappointment, even though there was just one thing I missed out on, but I did end up with something more sentimental. I just can't have everything my way.

The guest list is stellar this year, containing a great mix of new and old professionals, as well as, out-of-town and local pros. Fan Expo's Comic Book Co-Ordinators have really outdone themselves this year. I told ya I trust them, and they blew me away with this list.

Hopefully, everyone else enjoys this list as much as I do.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Motor City Comic Con 2008 Report

Motor City Comic Con 2008 ProgramThe drive was long. The roads were rough. The border line... was surprisingly short.

On Saturday May 17th, 2008, my bro and I made our third trip down to Motor City Comic Con. Like the previous two years, we only went down for the one day. Unlike the previous two years, we only spent five minutes in the line at the border, and had an easy border guard that really looked like he didn't want to leave his seat to check any cars.

We arrived in Novi, Michigan around 9:30am. Earlier than the previous two years. Bro had intentions on checking out a Target, for certain items, so with this extra time we had, we went to the nearest Target prior to the con, instead of after it as originally planned. Target was at the next major intersection from the convention. While driving towards the Target, we also noticed some fast food joints nearby, which we didn't know about the previous year when looking for food, but that was also the opposite direction from home.

At Target, I made my first purchase of the trip. Mighty Muggs Venom. There are a few of these Mighty Muggs that I would like to pick up, but they are quite expensive for pointless toys. In Canada, they range anywhere from $12.99-16.99 (plus 13% tax in Ontario). Bought this one for $9.99 (plus 6% tax). Bro picked up a couple of Mighty Muggs as well, and some Polaroid film. Had the option of picking up a Lando Calrissian Mighty Muggs, for Billy Dee Williams to sign at the con, but passed on it. Would've been nice to go and meet the coolest mofo in Star Wars, but I would've rather had a bottle of Colt 45 signed (which I heard he does not sign).

Since bro didn't want to pay by plastic, I ended up spotting him for this. Con hasn't started, and he owed me money.

Got to the Rock Financial Showplace, and noticed they decided to have people enter from another door. The line was quite long, but it moves fast, so not too long after the doors opened, we were inside! Upon entering the convention, one major difference was that media guests and comic guests were seated in the opposite sides of the convention floor, than the previous years I've been down. Found it weird when I was looking for comics guests, and found Monique Dupree (apparently, a Scream Queen).

Buffy Summers by Georges Jeanty (2008)My plans, see Georges Jeanty, Chris Claremont, and Daniel Way, because those are the three I had to most books to get signed, and I wanted those back in the car, so I didn't have to carry them. Georges was at his table, working on a sketch for someone. I was next in line, and got the Buffy sketch I was thinking of getting when he was in Toronto. I got two from him that weekend, so I passed on the third, which I now have.

While getting the sketch done, I noticed an unannounced guest seated next to Georges... Joe Benitez. Now, this does bother me, because I do have books I would have liked to have signed by him, including the Ultimate Spider-Man 100 Project, which I did bring for Billy Tan, but didn't realize he had a piece in there, until I got home to see what I could have potentially gotten signed. I don't know when he confirmed the con, but the convention updated its guest list on Wednesday. Ultimately, I'm really just disappointed that I didn't get that Ultimate Spider-Man 100 Project signed. The other books I had weren't really that important to me.

Daniel Way was seated on the other side of Georges, so I was able to get my books signed by him. Chris Claremont had yet to arrive, so I made the trip to the car to unload the Georges Jeanty books and Daniel Way books. I brought in the rest of my books to get signed, because many of the other guests were already at the convention.

Stargirl by Art Baltazar (2008) Dr. Strange by Art Baltazar (2008) Green Goblin by Art Baltazar (2008) Spider-Man (Black Costume) by Art Baltazar (2008)
New Captain America (Bucky Barnes) by Art Baltazar (2008) Wonder Woman by Art Baltazar (2008) Secret Invasion Wolverine by Art Baltazar (2008)


I went into this convention wanting to get some sketches done by Art Baltazar (Tiny Titans), but didn't know what to get. I ended up choosing Stargirl, since I had brought reference of her, just in case. The Dr. Strange, Green Goblin, Black-Costumed Spider-Man, and New Costume Captain America, were all pre-done by Art Baltazar, and I purchased those. The Wonder Woman and Wolverine (on Secret Invasion blank cover), I had done later in the afternoon.

Stargirl by Christopher Jones (2008)Also at the con was Christopher Jones (The Batman Strike!). I did find out that The Batman Strike! series is coming to an end at issue 50, in October, which will be a Halloween issue. Also featured in the issue will be Etrigan, which Christopher Jones will be designing for the book, since Etrigan never appeared in the show.

Christopher Jones did have a lot of reasonably priced original art from The Batman Strike! and Justice League Unlimited, which I had considered picking up, but with my whole "saving for Fan Expo" mentality, I ended up passing.

When Chris Claremont arrived, I jumped into his line (which was quite short at the time), and got all my books signed. After dropping off my books in the car, and my hoodie to reveal my super-hot Digital Kontent t-shirt (which I sadly didn't get any pictures of myself in it... nor did I get any pictures of me at the con at all), I helped out bro with getting his signed.

In a funny, but weird sight, Al Feldstein (former editor of MAD Magazine), left his table, and tried to squeeze in Claremont's line, because it was blocking his table. I had originally wanted to get the EC Comics Sampler (FCBD book) signed by Feldstein, but noticed the sign on his table saying his autograph was $20. Opted to skip that, because it's a FCBD book. Didn't even want to get the program signed, because I didn't want to pay $20, for someone who's work I never followed. By noon, all but like five books I had brought, were signed. One for Al Feldstein, three for Arthur Suydam, and one for Guy Davis.

I ended up skipping Arthur Suydam, although his deal is better than Feldstein, I just didn't really want to buy anything to get signatures. Not until I get more books for Suydam to sign.

Wonder Woman by Billy Tucci (2008)I did spend some time looking for Guy Davis. But after an initial walkthrough of the artist alley, I stopped looking, and went to see Billy Tucci. I had always wanted to get a sketch from him, but he's such a talkative person (and a very nice person). Every time I have seen him, he was always talking to someone, and I never felt comfortable to interrupt his conversations to ask for a sketch. This time around, I noticed Fallen Son blank covers, as well as other sketch covers, for sale at his table. All of which, came with a sketch of your choice. So I asked for a sketch in my sketchpad, which he was happy to do, and I was happy to receive. I ended up changing my initial character I wanted to get, and got a Wonder Woman.

I also had a chat with Mark Sparacio and Marc Wolfe (separately), just to quickly catch up, and talk about the upcoming appearances in Toronto.

Liz Sherman by Guy Davis (2008)Johann Kraus by Guy Davis (2008)I did eventually find Guy Davis, who was the last person I had a book to get signed. He also remarked the cover with a Johann Kraus sketch. I also got a Liz Sherman sketch, to go with my Hellboy sketch from last year.

I still do have plans to start reading both Hellboy and B.P.R.D., from the beginning of both series. Sadly, I haven't gotten around to it, like I would have. I will be picking up the Hellboy Library Edition in the near future.

Stargirl by Katie Cook (2008)Katie Cook is someone I never heard of, but while doing my research of the names being added to the guest list, I immediately took a liking to Katie's work.

I ended up finding her table halfway through the day, and got onto her sketch list, for this awesome Stargirl sketch, colour with watercolour paints.

While waiting for the sketch to get done, I did get some of that convention concession stand pizza. It's greasey, it's cheesey, it's doughy, but damn, is it good. It's like a treat for me every year. I also went roaming around the dealers area looking for some deals on hardcovers, but all I found where pretty beat up hardcovers, and stuff I didn't want to buy. I also went bin diving, but for some key silver age issues. I did come close to buying a specific issue, which I do want, but ultimately passed on it, because of the damages on the book, and that it wasn't that cheap (though was a reasonable price). I searched through several booths, and went back to a specific one several times to see if I could justify spending on it. I'll keep an eye out for a better copy of it, at a reasonable price.

This was also a time to take pictures around the con, and of the media guests. Got myself another picture of Lou Ferrigno, just because of his reputation of telling people it costs them money to take a picture of him, with their own camera. I guess I owe him money again... The pics will be below.

Wolverine by Billy Tan (2008)Near the end of the day, I went back to see Billy Tan, who I saw earlier in the day to get some books signed. I was able to get a quick Wolverine sketch. Also, while talking to him while getting my books signed, when I brought up my Dark Tower hardcover to get signed, he mentioned how the cover was changed, and the eagle he drew was removed. He pointed out he has the actual cover on his website, which you can check it out here.

I also had a quick conversation with David Finch, and Congratulated him as his wife is pregnant, which he announced on his message board back in April.

As the con was soon closing, I went to pick up a mini-head-bust that I saw for a pretty decent price. It's the Alex Ross Designed Captain America Head Bust. It was either this, or the Marvel Icons Captain America bust, which is also nice, but I opted for the Alex Ross version. Doubtful that I'll get it signed by him when he's at Fan Expo.

Zatanna by Uko Smith (2008)The last piece, was picked up at the very end of the show. It is a commission by Uko Smith, who's work I've seen on ComicArtFans. My bro was the one that pointed him out to me, and set up getting our names onto his sketchlist. Damn, am I happy that I got something done by him. After a conversation with him, which the Toronto conventions were suggested to him, the convention came to an end for us.

We decided to get some food before heading home. Nothing major, like last year. So we settled for McDonald's, at Grand River Ave + Wixom Rd. I specify the location, because this must've been the worst McDonald's I've ever been to. The guy at the cash (at around 6:30PM), must've either been stoned, or just a complete retard.

The first thing I asked him, something my bro wanted to know, which Happy Meal toys did they have (as we knew it was the Speed Racer toys). He proceeds to check, and then come back and say, "Speed Racer toys." Fine, acceptable answer, maybe I should've worded the question better. So I asked if they have the "white car". He checks the bags, then goes out to the display to look at the cars. He comes back and says he can't find anything.

The fact that he had to check the display already had me thinking he's a moron. WHITE car. If you see coloured cars, then it's not WHITE.

So I proceed to order. Five items from the dollar menu, three burgers and two fries. We need a dollar menu in Canada, forget the "Value Menu." I want a dollar menu.

Next person orders. The workers seem to be pretty slow. Two elderly women working at the food stations, and teens working the cash. The person that ordered before finally gets her food, two salads. Okay, fine, slow service, but I do have some patience.

The person after me starts getting their food, meanwhile, I'm still standing in this moron's sight. The person before me comes back, and said her salads are frozen. WTF? Frozen salads, that they make fresh at the store? Manager deals with her. Person after me gets her entire order.

So I ask the dumbass, when is my food coming up. He asked me what I ordered. I tell him, three burgers and two fries. He brings me one order of fries. I SAID TWO, JACKASS!

Finally, I get the food, proceed to the table. I was ready to make a somewhat loud scene, but a family with kids was near the table, so I opted not to. Just ate, and left. Did leave a nice mess at the table.

The drive home wasn't too bad. The roads were terrible. Not so much because of the weather. More, because the roads seem to be getting new pavement place on, so the old layer was stripped off.

The border line was longer going home, but we did get a nice border guard. Asked what we bought, I openly said "toys." She looks at me with a smile, and asked, "What kind of toys?" I said some little collectibles. She continues to smile and says, "You two are the coolest" (possibly with some sarcasm, but whatever) and tells us to have a nice evening.

I have no problems admitting I buy toys. :)

PHOTOS (Which you'll probably see on my bro's blog, since he decided to take all the good ones I took. Though, he'll have more photos around the con.

Darth Vader (L), Slave Leias (R)


More Slave Leias


Chase Masterson (L), Trisha Paytas (Ms. Limelight/Who Wants to be a Superhero?)(R)


Lou Ferrigno (L), Joe Pantaliano (R)


Erik Estrada (PONCH!) (L), Mick Foley (R)


Juliet Landau


The stuff I bought, out of package! Check out the Motor City Comic Con Program covers in the background (or click the first picture to this post). Front cover (Iron Man) by Marc Wolfe. Back cover (Indiana Jones) by Matt Busch.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Off to Motor City!

My bro and I are heading down to Motor City Comic Con for the day. Expect a report later this weekend. Don't expect to see too many sketches, as I've decided to cutback significantly, to save up for Fan Expo Canada 2008 (this does also mean I'm cutting back at Paradise Toronto Comicon, though I do plan to get more sketches done there, than Motor City).

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Fan Expo 2008 Comic Book Guest List!

HOLY ****!!! This list is all kinds of AWESOME! I am all excited, because of all the opportunities to meet such amazing creators. I am salivating, because of all the potential commissions/convention sketches I am hoping to get. I doubt I'll get them all, but damn, to get one or two done would be great.

But enough of me, Here is the Guest List!:

2008 Comic Book Expo Guests

Featured Guests
ALEX ROSS
Award winning illustrator

BRIAN BOLLAND
Legendary illustrator

MARK BAGLEY
Artist, Trinity, Mighty Avengers & Ultimate Spider-Man

ADAM HUGHES
Cover Artist, Catwoman, upcoming All-Star Wonder Woman

STEVE McNIVEN
Artist, Amazing Spider-Man, Wolverine

TIM SALE
Captain America: White & Heroes artist

J. SCOTT CAMPBELL
Artist, Gen 13, Danger Girl, upcoming Spider-Man

GABRIELE DELL'OTTO
Cover Artist, Secret Invasion

MATT FRACTION
Writer, Invincible Iron Man, Punisher War Zone, Immortal Iron Fist, Casanova

MARKO DJURDJEVIC
Marvel cover artist

PETER DAVID
Writer, Stephen King’s Dark Tower, She-Hulk

Special Guests
KEITH GIFFEN
Legendary writer/artist

MIKE CHOI
Uncanny X-Men and X-Force artist

ALEX MALEEV
Halo: The Uprising and Mighty Avengers artist

KEVIN EASTMAN
Creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles & Editor of Heavy Metal

CLIFF CHIANG
Green Arrow/Black Canary artist

GEORGES JEANTY
Buffy the Vampire Slayer artist

C.B. CEBULSKI
Avengers Fairy Tails writer

STUART IMMONEN
Ultimate Spider-Man artist

KARTHRYN IMMONEN
Hellcat writer

KARL KERSCHL
Teen Titans:Year One artist

LEONARD KIRK
World War Hulk:Warbound artist

ALVIN LEE
Heroes For Hire artist

FRANCIS MANAPUL
The Legion of Super-Heroes artist

CAMERON STEWART
Apocalipstix artist

TY TEMPLETON
American Splendor

J. TORRES
Teen Titans Go! writer

Studios:
MIRAGE STUDIOS
UDON STUDIOS
BRIGHT ANVIL STUDIOS
DMF COMICS
IMAGINISM STUDIO

Special Appearances By:
ATILLA ADORJANY
SAM AGRO
KALMAN ANDRASOFSZKY
JASON ARMSTRONG
NEELAM ARORA
ANDY BELANGER
JACK BRIGLIO
SCOTT CHANTLER
MICHAEL CHERKAS
MICHAEL CHO
ROB COUGHLER
CLAUDIA DAVILA
VALENTINE DE LANDRO
ARTHUR DELA CRUZ
MICHAEL DOONEY
RAY FAWKES
AGNES GARBOWSKA
DREW GERACI
SCOTT HEPBURN
JANET HETHERINGTON
RAFF IENCO
JOHN KALISZ
LEO LEIBELMAN
JEFF LEMIRE
LOGAN LUBERA
VATCHE MAVLIAN
BRIAN McLACHLAN
STEVE MURPHY
JOSEPH O'BRIEN
RAMON PEREZ
NICK POSTIC
PETER REPOVSKI
DAVE ROSS
ALEXANDER SERRA
STEPHEN SILVER
RONN SUTTON
ERIC TALBOT
MARCUS TO
MARC WOLFE
HOWARD WONG
CHRIS YAMBAR
RICHARD ZAJAC

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Boughts and Thoughts - May 14th, 2008

Batman #676 - The start of Batman R.I.P. Debating on the trade or continuing with the issues. Either way, I want to see where this goes.

Death Grub (One Shot) - Not much to read, mainly an art book, because ideas are basically done on the spot. It's Ryan Ottley's 24-hour comic. Twenty pages in 24 hours, not bad.

Iron Man: Legacy Of Doom #2 - Not bad. Iron Man is in hell. Dr. Doom continues to deal.

Locke & Key #4 - I have to say, I'm quite freaked out by the cover of this book. It's nothing graphic. It's just a picture of a freaky looking girl standing in the wellhouse. Has something to do with the issue itself, which was quite a good issue. Partially a flashback issue, but it explains the backstory to the series.

Serenity: Better Days #3 - Not a bad way to end it. Totally forgot what happened at the end of issue 2. Gonna have to flip through it again.

Walking Dead #49 - Quick issue to read. Not much happened. Rick and Carl continue on their way.

Young Liars #3 - Continuing a very good series. Lots of action in the beginning, and a whole lot of yelling throughout the issue.

Down with the Sickness/Fan Expo Sci-Fi Guest List

Following up from Friday's posting, I was able to duck out early from work. Actually, when I got there, my boss told me that the general manager told him to cut someone that night, because it wasn't projected to be that busy. That's when I opted to be the one cut, but said I'll stay until everyone else arrives, just so we have staff there, and if it's busy by then, I'll stick around.

Luckily I stayed until everyone else got there, because the other guy starting at the same time I did, didn't show until 6:15PM. He ran out of gas on the highway, and his cell battery died (from what he said). So if I left, when I could've, no staff for an hour and fifteen minutes.

The other two guys started at 7PM, but one was late. He text messaged me saying he was stuck in traffic, ten minutes before his shift started. I think he was like 10-15 minutes late. Wasn't too bad. I actually stayed until 8PM, having a discussion with the other guy working.

Took off to Wal-Mart to buy some more meds, and then headed home to relax.


Spent Saturday running errands with my bro, then back to painting his room, with coloured paints this time. He did the bulk of the work (as he should, since it's his room... I painted my room last year by myself, so he should capable of painting his room by himself). I mainly took care of the corners and edges, using those tools designed specifically for corners and edges. Also, helped with part of the wall.

The cold didn't go away fully. I just had a cough and stuffy nose when I was at work Sunday morning, and got worse when I got home. This prompted me to clean my room, and clear out some junk. Continued to clear out some stuff in my room, and clean it. It's helped slightly. Should be gone by this weekend.

The guest list for the Sci-Fi portion of Fan Expo Canada 2008 was released on Monday. I am quite impressed, and am considering meeting a couple of guests... I keep saying that, but I usually don't find the time to do so... or really want to spend the money to do so (usually spend it on the comic guests).

Sci-Fi Expo Featured Guests
BUZZ ALDRIN Apollo 11 Astronaut (Historical Icon of the 20th Century) - Doubtful I'll spend to see him, though if he's signing in the autograph area, I may take some photos.

KATE MULGREW Captain Kathryn Janeway (Star Trek: Voyager) - Was never a fan of Voyager, except for Jeri Ryan... and I didn't spend on her... though this was way back in the day.

EDWARD JAMES OLMOS Admiral William Adama (Battlestar Galactica) - I don't follow Battlestar Galactica, so I won't be seeing him.

BRENT SPINER Lt. Cmdr. Data (Star Trek: The Next Generation) - Loved him as Data, but I didn't see him before, I doubt I'll see him this year.

MICHAEL ROSENBAUM Lex Luthor (Smallville) - One of the two people I do want to meet. He's just too damn cool. Lex Luthor! The voice of The Flash (in the Justice League cartoons).

SEAN ASTIN Samwise “Sam” Gamgee (Lord Of The Rings) - Passed on him before, I believe I'll pass on him again. C'mon, I even skipped Elijah Wood, though I would've wanted to see him, timing and money once again the cause for me not seeing him.

LAURA VANDERVOORT Kara Zor-El (Supergirl) (Smallville) - The other person I do want to meet. It's Supergirl.

JAMIE BAMBER Lee “Apollo” Adama (Battlestar Galactica) - Once again, don't follow Battlestar, doubtful I'll see him.

RENEE O’CONNOR Gabrielle (Xena: Warrior Princess) - Gotta admit, I thought she was hot in the Xena: Warrior Princess days. But that was years ago, haven't seen her in anything recently.

KRISTY SWANSON Buffy Summers (Buffy The Vampire Slayer (film)) - The original Buffy! Luke Perry ruined that movie for me.

JEREMY BULLOCH Boba Fett (Star Wars) - I am a Boba Fett fan, but I passed on him so many times, and this year will be not different.

Special Guests
HENRY WINKLER The Fonz (Happy Days) - It's The Fonz! The coolest MoFo on the planet! Doubtful that I'll see him.

Comic Guest List TOMORROW! At NOON! Bracing myself for a heart attack. Someone get me a defibulator. :D

Friday, May 09, 2008

Not feeling well

This feeling started early in the week, where my throat was sore every morning, and I tried to hack out some phlegm. Not a plesant feeling. I seem to feel like this when the weather doesn't remain constant for a long period of time. It's been hot, then cold, then hot again, but nights seem to be cold. I do leave my window open at night, because my room is the hottest one in the house at night. Over the past two weeks, it's just been cracked open slightly, and closed in the morning, when my bro comes in to check his email before work.

Anyways, Wednesday night was I guess the real start of it, because the sore throat came back during night time. I tried to lessen the feeling with some tea, to keep the throat warm, but it didn't work. I thought I'd sleep it off. Nope, felt worse in the morning.

I guess it didn't help that for the bulk of Thursday, I was in the basement, painting the primer onto the walls for my bro's new room (that he's been waiting for its completion for several years now... almost done). I did this by myself, while everyone was at work and school. The room is not well ventilated, and very dusty after all the sanding to rid the drywall of the compound to hide the cracks. Yea, not fun.

After all the painting, I knew I was coming down with something, in addition to being exhausted from the painting. I crashed around 7:30PM. Slept for about an hour and fourty-five minutes, which my bro proceeds to insult me on (the thanks I get for painting his f*cking room... even though it's just the primer, it starts off the process).

Anyways, I got up last night, still feeling the sore throat, but the feverish feeling that I felt was starting up, seems to have gone.

Fast forward to this morning. Throat, worse. Feverish feeling, back. Ability to talk, fading. I debated calling in sick to work today, but ended up napping again, to fight off the fever. I think it worked a little, as I don't have the fever again, and my throat feels a little better. I might feel like ass when I'm at work... moreso than I normally do. I took some meds, hopefully that will combat the sickness. I've opted not to call in sick, but I'll see how it goes at work. If I start feeling worse, or if the managers don't want me spreading this sickness around, I may be able to duck out early. Just play it by ear tonight.


Sadly, Herb Trimpe cancelled his appearance to Motor City Comic Con. This does have me a little worried, because he also no-showed or cancelled his appearance to Pittsburgh Comicon a couple of weeks back.

My actual intentions were to see Herb at Motor City, so that I could skip him at Paradise Toronto Comicon, and allow those Torontonians that haven't seen him, see him. This would also have freed up some time for me at the con to check out the other guests. Oh wells, what can ya do, eh?

This does free up some time and money in Motor City. I actually don't intend on getting too many sketches at Motor City (or actually at the Paradise Toronto Comicon). I may look around for the deals while at Motor City, but I'll have to see how that goes while I'm there next Saturday.

I'm actually trying to save up some money for Fan Expo Canada. I am quite excited about the guest list, and it doesn't even get released until Thursday May 15th, 2008. Talk about pimping out the guest list. Not even one name, and I'm all excited. The trust I have for the Comic Book Expo Event Co-ordinators. They's two awesome people.

I did receive an email for their special Sci-Fi Guest this year. I haven't seen any official announcement on boards or the website, so I won't mention it here, until it's publicly released, for those not on the mailing list.

Just found out about a store signing, this coming Wednesday.

Andy B. will be signing at Paradise Comics, Wednesday May 14th, 2008, from 4PM-7PM. This is to promote the release of his Friday the 13th: Abuser and the Abused issue, that was release two weeks ago.

Any grammatical or spelling errors were intentionally done for the purpose of humour. ;)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Boughts and Thoughts - May 7th, 2008

Abyss #1, 2, 4 - One of Red 5 Comics titles. It's a four issue mini-series, so I gotta find issue 3. Gist of it, kids finds out his dad is a Super-Villain! Wait, didn't that happen in Wanted?... and Invincible?... I've only read issue 1 so far. I'll get to the others later on.

Atomic Robo/Neozoic (FCBD 2008) - Cyber City Comix had it! Darryl is awesome. This book is awesome! Atomic Robo is definitely a series I want to check out. As for Neozoic, keep reading below).

Avengers/Invaders #1 - Not bad, but I'm not buying twelve issues of this series. Hardcover, in about a year and a half. That's what I'm going to get.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season Eight #14 - It's Godzilla! No, Dawn-zilla! Wait, too corny. It's Dawn! Finally be put to use, instead of just being a giant back at the castle. Wow, to that ending/cliffhanger. Next issue, WAR.

Detective Comics #844 - Highly enjoyed this issue, more for the second half of the issue (the second half included Zatanna). Did like that part of this issue tied into the "Face The Face" story. I remembered it instantly when I read it.

Dynamo 5 Annual #1 - I can't honestly say why I bought this. I haven't read a Dynamo 5 issue, since issue #1. The regular series had issue #12 released a little while ago. I know, Annual refers to a year, but books like Xena (by Dynamite Entertainment) released two issues (three if you include #0), then went to an Annual, then went to a relaunch.

Gemini #1 - New book by Jay Faerber (Noble Causes, Dynamo 5). Not a bad start to the series. I like the artwork in the book, by Jon Sommariva.

Invincible Iron Man #1 - Not bad, being the first issue of Iron Man I bought, since the end of Extremis. I am not that big of a fan of Salvador Larroca's artwork. I preferred his style prior to the "Blood of Apocalypse" arc in the X-Men series, which was like 3-4 years ago. Since then, he's becoming too "Greg Land."

Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas #1 - That was a quick read. Written by the director of Iron Man, Jon Favreau. Drawn by one of the designers of the movie Iron Man, Adi Granov. Looking forward to the rest of the series.

House of Mystery #1 - Picked up both covers (Woohoo! Bernie Wrightson variant cover for cover price!).

Mighty Avengers #13 - Nick Fury recruiting a whole bunch of people, forming a team to take on the Skrulls... or at the very least, try to make the world a better place.

Neozoic #1, 2 - I wanted to meet J. Korim on FCBD, but because of the timing, I wasn't able to. Even though he was announced as a guest for Paradise Toronto Comicon, I didn't actually look into his stuff until The Beguiling announced him for FCBD. I checked out some of his art, and was quite blown away. So, I picked up these issues today. I'll check for the rest of them elsewhere, since they weren't at Cyber City Comix. Both issues are nice to look at. However, I haven't read them yet.

Secret Invasion #2 - Forget about incognito, they are now superpowered. Check out the claws on that Skrull version of Wolverine.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Free Comic Book Day 2008 Review Follow-Up

My search for Atomic Robo & Friends and Viper Comics Presents... continued today, but after work, as I was scheduled for the morning shift. I was able to get out early, because it was slow and were overstaffed.

I made the trek to Planet X, in Richmond Hill. This used to be my regular shop, a little while after getting back into comics, and was my regular shop for about a year and a half, before going back to Cyber City Comix.

The first FCBD I went to (I think in 2005), was at Planet X. The sale that weekend was great then. Picked up many 3/$1 comics (in addition to the free books). The year after, was okay. Same deal, but a lot of the same 3/$1 comics for sale (in addition to the free books). Last year, I didn't go on the actual FCBD, but the day after, and I can't really remember the sale. This year, the sale was 20% off everything, 30% off of the back issues.

Being the day after FCBD, I went hoping that some books would be left, and possibly a copy of the two books I was searching for. All the FCBD books had been given away (of course, this was like 4pm on Sunday). I did pick up some back issues.

Captain America #6 (Variant cover), She-Hulk #20 (Zombie variant), and Ultimate Spider-Man #115 (Zombie variant).

Since I didn't find the two books I was looking for, I decided to head to Dragon's Realm, in Maple. I personally never found the selections in the store to be all that great, as the owner has also included selling flags, purses, burned video games, and various other items that I don't think a comic shop should ever sell. The location moved, so that it's closer to my house, by less than a kilometre. This was the second time it moved in the past 2-3 years.

Anyways, two years ago, the store did order some FCBD books, and I did get a couple. Last year, he didn't order any FCBD books, so I didn't have any expectations of any being there this year. I just figured, since it's not too far away, I'd check. Nope, nothing.

I went looking for books to buy, and was thinking about getting the Daredevil One-Shot that was released last week, but opted to pass on it, since the owner was too busy dealing with a customer trying to sell the owner some somewhat old books. I didn't want to interrupt the dealing, nor did I want to wait for a break in the dealing, so I just put the book back and left.

Personally, the lack of selection in comics is why I never made this a regular store, even though it's minutes away from home. I like variety and some indie titles. It's not all about Marvel and DC.

Anyways, I did read some of the books I got on Saturday. It turns out it's the Hellboy FCBD book that has the Futurma cast as Hellboy/B.P.R.D. characters, not the Bongo Comics. As I said before, don't expect any reviews on these books.

I guess this is it for FCBD 2008 from me. I do leave you with this link.

SNAP North Toronto - Photos from the Frank Cho signing at Paradise Comics.

Yours truly is featured in one of the photos. I can't say that I know the other two in the photo, but the comic I'm holding belongs to the guy to my left, as I had already put my comics away.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Free Comic Book Day 2008 Review

Free Comic Book DayMay 3rd, 2008 - Free Comic Book Day 2008.

No gauntlet for me this year. Well, sort of. Last year, I went to Comics & More, Grey Region, One Million Comix, Paradise Comics, Silver Snail, and The Beguiling.

This year, I went to One Million Comix, Silver Snail, and Paradise Comics. Skipped out on three stores, but I wish I was able to head over to The Beguiling. Unfortunately, due to the arrival times of some of the guests at Silver Snail, I opted to skip the signing at The Beguiling, and just head to the signing at Paradise Comics. The signing for one of the people I wanted to see at The Beguiling was done, so I'll just catch this person (and some of the others) at Paradise Toronto Comicon.

At the Silver Snail, the line formed fairly early on for Steve McNiven. It was unknown whether he'd be sketching or not. Steve McNiven confirmed he would not be sketching, much to the disappointment of fans, but I did have a feeling he wouldn't. Stuart Immonen, no sketches, as always.

But when it came down to it, I had books to get signed, so it was all good.

Stargirl by Ty Templeton (2008)Iron Man by Leonard Kirk (2008)I did have hopes for getting sketches from the next two guests. Ty Templeton and Leonard Kirk. Ty arrived first, which was around 2PM. The line actually started to form for him around 12:45PM. Well, for Ty and Leonard. There was a sign for Alvin Lee, but that was later taken down.

Leonard Kirk arrived around 2:15PM, which worked out great, because of the way the line was, I was second for both Ty and Leonard. I ended up with two awesome sketches from both of them.

I think Ty wasn't 100% pleased with the Stargirl sketch he did for me, which would explain the words he included in the sketch. As for me, I think it's great!

For Leonard's sketch, I originally was thinking of getting a Wildcat (of the JSA) sketch, but I ended up changing my mind during the waiting period, and ended up with Iron Man. Just continuing that Iron Man love, especially after the movie. I also had that Iron Man Heroclix in my pocket. Iron Man it is, and holy geez, I'm happy with my decision change.

At this point, with Steve McNiven returning to his table (after lunch), I did have a quick chat with him. Expect his run on Wolverine to be violent! :D

Spider-Man by Francis Manapul (2008)Spider-Man by Agnes Garbowska (2008)I got to Paradise Comics around 4PM, hoping to catch Francis Manapul and Agnes Garbowska, before their signing time ended. I did make it on time, though cutting it really close.

I was surprised to see they were both using watercolour paints for their sketches today. I was quite happy to get a sketch done by them, because both are fantastic.

I ended up leaving the store just before 6PM, because of the whether. That rain came down hard.

Lots of FCBD books to read, but don't expect any reviews. I was disappointed that I didn't see any Atomic Robo & Friends or Viper Comics Presents: Kid Houdini and the Silver Dollar Misfits. I am told there was some Atomic Robo & Friends at Silver Snail, they just weren't downstairs with all of the FCBD books.

I'll probably get cracking at these books tomorrow, when I'm home from work.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Free Comic Book Day Tomorrow!

Saturday May 3rd, 2008 is Free Comic Book Day.

For first time readers, Free Comic Book Day is where you go to a participating comic shop, and you can walk out with one or more free comics, ON SELECTED COMICS MARKED WITH THE FREE COMIC BOOK DAY LOGO. You can't walk to any store, grab a book on the wall or anywhere else not designated as the free comics. Retailers also set the limit as to how many you can take.

I have the known signings listed on the side bar, but I'll list them here as well (without the links).

Free Comics For Kids Day (Sponsored by The Beguiling, and others).
GUESTS: Michael Cho, Steven Manale, Jeremy Tankard, Brian McLachlan
DATE: May 3rd, 2008
PLACE: Palmerston Library, 560 Palmerston Ave (at Bathurst Subway Station)
TIME: 12PM-5PM
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Free Comic Book Day at the Beguiling
GUESTS (Wave 1): J. Korim, Jessie Lam, Tyrone McCarthy, Alana McCarthy, Tara Talan
GUESTS (Wave 2): Willow Dawson, Nick Mandaag, Chip Zdarsky
DATE: May 3rd, 2008
PLACE: The Beguiling, 601 Markham Street.
TIME: 12PM-3PM (Wave 1), 3PM-6PM (Wave 2)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Silver Snail FCBD Signing
GUESTS: Steve McNiven, Stuart Immonen, Leonard Kirk, Ty Templeton
DATE: May 3rd, 2008
PLACE: Silver Snail Toronto, 367 Queen St. W.
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Paradise Comics FCBD Signing
GUESTS: Francis Manapul, Agnes Garbowska
DATE: May 3rd, 2008
PLACE: Paradise Comics, 3278 Yonge St.
TIME: 1PM-5PM
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Stadium Comics FCBD Signing (Brampton)
GUESTS: Alex Milne, Vince Sunico
DATE: May 3rd, 2008
PLACE: Stadium Comics, 499 Main Street South, Unit #104


As for the books, there are several nice ones to get (full list of books can be found here.

Bongo Comics Free-For-All! FCBD 2008 Edition - Can't go wrong with The Simpsons and Futurama. Especially with the summer coming up, and kids going to camp. Parents normally buy this shit up for their kids, so here's an extra free comics for your child. Also, I believe there is a Hellboy/B.P.R.D. pin-up with the Futurama characters, drawn by Matt Groening.

Hellboy/B.P.R.D. FCBD 2008 Edition - Though I haven't followed any of the Hellboy or B.P.R.D. series, I hear this is a must get for normal readers.

Broken Trinity Preview FCBD 2008 Edition - Top Cow's next event gets previewed here.

X-MEN FCBD 2008 Edition - Upcoming Uncanny X-Men artist, Greg Land, provides artwork for this issue, focusing mainly on Pixie. Only a matter of time until we see her in some pornstar pose, courtesy of Greg Land.

Marvel Adventures: Iron Man FCBD 2008 Edition - For most people that have seen Iron Man prior to FCBD, here's a free Iron Man fix for you. I'd still suggest getting previous Iron Man issues, if you just became an Iron Man fan (like I have). Not sure if I'm going to collect any Iron Man ongoing titles, but I've taken a liking to the character.

Imaginary #1 FCBD 2008 Edition - From the art studio that provides artwork to Radical Comics new line, you get previews to the Radical Comics titles. If you didn't spent the buck (each) to try out Hercules and Caliber, then get this free book, so that you can justify spending your dollar (each) on those books.

Atomic Robo & Friends FCBD 2008 Edition - Called the next "Hellboy," Atomic Robo is a character to check out. I haven't yet, but I will definitely get the trade when Scott Wegener appears in Toronto this June. Get your introduction to the character here, if your store didn't order the first series (mine didn't, which I wished they did, because I would've picked it up).

Owly and Friends FCBD 2008 Edition - Good ol' Owly. Great all ages book.

Viper Comics Presents: Kid Houdini and the Silver Dollar Misfits FCBD 2008 Edition - I wish more stores ordered from Viper Comics. Josh Howard's Dead@17 is pretty cool (I just ordered the collected edition of that series). I have a feeling I won't find many of this book around, which I would like to try out.

Anyways, that's it from me about FCBD, until after FCBD. Slightly easier gauntlet this year? I'll have to see.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Iron Man Movie Review

This movie, in my opinion, was the greatest comic book movie made to date. This movie had it all. Action, comedy, special effects, Stan Lee!

Robert Downey Jr. was the perfect choice for Tony Stark. I loved the little War Machine tease. And then the cameo after the credits. The rumours are true. :)

I can honestly say that this movie has me seriously contemplating the purchase of the Iron Man omnibus. I will have to see about it.