Sunday the 18th was the last day of the NY Comic Con. I managed to squeeze in two panels before hightailing it home that afternoon. My first port-of-call was the Mad magazine panel, which featured editor John Ficarra and veteran artist Al Jaffee (who just turned 90! Click here to reserve his book Mad Life from us), as well as MadTV producer Kevin Shinick, who brought video clips from the show, which airs on Cartoon Network Monday nights.
The panel started with everybody reciting the Pledge of Allegiance with product names like Wisk and Crest mixed in and got wackier from then on. Mr. Ficarra and his writing staff talked about how they come up with ideas, what they have planned for future issues now that Mad was back to bi-monthly status, upcoming paperback and hardcover collections, and their new online blog The Idiotical. The panel was very kid-friendly, with lots of pre-teens and teens of all ages attending. The staff was very patient with questions they were asked -unlike other panels, people on this one didn't ridicule the convention goers -and in fact, took advantage of one question to give a brief, informative but funny history of the magazine. The Mad staffers really liked their fans! And the exchanges between staffers: "(Mad) doesn't have any standards" was a highlight!
Afterwards I made it to the "Pulp Fiction" panel, where I finally got to meet Will Murray, author of The Desert Demons (which I reviewed here), Anthony Tollin, publisher of Sanctum Books, Dynamite Comics publisher Nick Barrucci and Radio Spirits CEO Mark Tepper, as well as my pal and Pulp1st online writer Mark Halegua. Most of the speakers talked about their upcoming projects, mostly concerning upcoming reprints and new stuff focusing on the "hero pulps" like Doc Savage, The Shadow and The Spider. Dynamite, for example is publishing new comics on Tarzan (Lord of the Jungle), The Shadow and The Spider next year, while Mr. Murray has another new Doc Savage novel out next month (Horror in Gold; yeah, I'm getting it). And Mr. Tollin is preparing to republish 1979's The Shadow Scrapbook, with new pictures and info, as well as also (separately) reissuing the 1963 revival novel Return of The Shadow by Shadow creator Walter B. Gibson.
After that, I headed home. The Javits Center was way too crowded, there weren't enough entry areas for persons with disabilities (you try taking an escalator on a wheelchair next time!) and the less said about the rest rooms and the "Food" (yeah, sure, that's what it was) Court, the better. Major changes will have to be made at the Javits for next year's Con before I consider going back.
And speaking of next year's Con, it was really nice to see Joe Simon and Al Jaffee, but couldn't any more industry veterans be recruited for panels?
On that note, I say farewell to 2011's New York Comic Con. See ya next year...?