March 24, 2011
The Never-Ending, Four-Color Festival: Cons, Shows, Events
By Tom Spurgeon
* the Minneapolis Indie Xpo sold out of exhibitor space really, really quickly
. That one's held in November.
* to my eye, which was employed in every way possible afforded to those not attending a show, C2E2
did everything it needed to do in its second year. It needed slightly-higher attendance (it couldn't just hold serve because the first year was disappointing in that regard); it needed to go major-gripe or fiasco free; it needed to show off Chicago as an avenue for fun things in order that creators and professionals will want to go there when it's the third, fourth, fifth show and maybe they're not a special guest; it needed to dominate Toronto's Wizard show and SPACE news-wise; it needed to establish itself as a place for mainstream comics publishing news announcements; it needed to not have its pop-culture aspects dominate; it needed to reassure key players in Chicago that it was a growing, vital show. Now they have to build on it, which brings with it a whole new set of expectations/benchmarks. For now, it's very, very worth noting that the major story that would have been a 17,000-person show or other obvious sign of decline was assiduously avoided.
* I've never thought about conventions trying to set Guinness-style world records
, and I should probably write a bunch of joke records that could be set, but mostly I was amused that someone thought of this as a PR wedge.
* WonderCon has its programming schedule up, here
. They do a solid mainstream-oriented programming slate, but there are a number of creator-driven panels of interest all over the comics map, including panels with Robert Kirkman, Jason Aaron, Seth, Hope Larson, Carla Speed McNeill, Paul Levitz and Sergio Aragones.
* Fantagraphics has a quick rat-a-tat of convention-related announcements up: Jim Woodring is going to SPX
; Megan Kelso is making the drive
down to Olympia; the Mattotti/Reed book will debut at TCAF
* Stumptown has announced its final guest list
. Sounds like a talent-packed show.
* finally, Chris Butcher has a write-up
on the British comics and cartoonists being featured at this year's TCAF, including Blank Slate, Nobrow and featured guest Mawil.
posted 11:00 am PST
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