San Diego International Comic Convention 2007

There?I said it without using initials like everyone else loves to do these days. It’s over and I hope everyone that went had a good time and got what they came for. These days that could be a lot since it’s no longer just a place to buy used comics. I’ve only missed three of the cons in the last 20 years. I’ve seen it change slowly from one form to another. The biggest changes have some in the last 5 years. I think it’s a good thing, not only for comics, but pop culture in general.

Sure, it’s become so huge that it’s a bit overwhelming, but it’s doing what comics distribution should be doing more of, it’s getting the word out and attention on comic books. I suspect you’re going to see even bigger changes there in the next 5 years.

My Buddy, Rock, At SDCC Taking In…The Sights

Granted, the convention doesn’t have that “sitting around the campfire” feel that it used to have, but there are still loads of other conventions where you can still really enjoy comic books and really talk to your peers, fans and meet new folks. Conventions like Pittsburgh Con, Baltimore, Heroes Con, New York and the various Wizard shows. Embrace San Diego for what it now is and keep moving forward.

Most everyone I talked to that went had a really good time. Sure they were tired, but they were all excited about something they saw, bought, heard or did there. Excitement is always good. My good friends, Tom Pritchard, Marcus Perry, Billy Tucci, Marlin Shoop, Ted Adams, Chris Ryall and Mark Schultz all gave me their con reports and it seems they all had a pretty good time considering how super busy it was. They all used the word exciting in their reports.

SDCC: “Tonight We Shop In Hell!”

Maybe I’ll run into you there next year and we can all get excited.

Beau Post It Notes

Here are a few things you should be checking out if you aren’t already. Remember, I’m here to remind you of the good stuff.

Will Eisner’s The Spirit (DC Comics) If you haven’t looked this book over yet, then you are really missing something. Every issue to date (#1 through #7) has been just beautiful and has some really fine story telling. Even if you thought The Spirit was “old school”, this latest version will change your mind. It’s one of those rare books today that covers all bases, good stories, dialogue, art and color. In my never humble opinion, this is one of the best colored books out today.

Superman: The Amazing Transformations Of Jimmy Olsen trade paperback (DC Comics) When I was a young kid I always bought the comics of Superman’s Best Friend Jimmy Olsen and Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane. Both books had the most incredible, quirky, nutty, goofy and fun adventures in comics. You never had to fool with continuity or past history. You just threw down 12 cents and looked to see what kind of crazy character Jimmy would turn into or what kind of man-catching plot Lois had thought up. Now DC Comics has collected 192 pages of great Jimmy Olsen “transfomation” stories that will entertain any age group. If you’re looking for something to buy a youngster where they can just have fun, this is the book. If you want a break from the dead serious current DCU, then this will be your best break ever. In this Jimmy turns into a werewolf, a circus freak, a giant turtle man and so much more. I hope that DC soon collects some of Lois Lane’s insane adventures from this time period too.

Justice League Of America: The Tornado’s Path Hardcover. If you’re going to stretch a story out over multiple issues then there are two writers at DC Comics that you can depend on NOT to waste your time. Those two guys are Brad Meltzer and Geoff Johns. In this case of the JLA, it’s Brad that comes through with a very good story line that is meshed with just enough talking and more than enough walking. He and artist Ed Benes give you panels and pacing that are straight up and not confusing. Chaos usually runs amok with a lot of team books when the writer and artist (and editor) don’t adhere to good story telling. That’s NOT the case here. This is a great book to enjoy all your favorite DCU characters interacting and smacking evil around.

Super Villain Team Up #1 (Marvel Comics) Modok. Do I really have to say more? I really don’t know who these guys are that wrote and drew the book, meaning I hadn’t heard of them before, (Fred Van Lente, Francis Portela and Terry Pallot) but then again, most comic book news sites and magazines only cover the names of their personal favorites and flavors of the month anyway. Marvel and DC also drop the ball on occasion by doing the same as publishers. That’s why I’m afraid that this fun book will get missed. It’s loaded with all sorts of great Marvel second tier bad guys like Armadillo, A.I.M., Puma, The Fixer, Mentallo and many others. Best part is that Modok is running the show and he’s blessed us once again with his witty, stock bad guy dialogue and those alligator arms that flail around when he gets really pissed off. Modok is the baddest, big brained bad guy to ever come out of Bangor, Maine. The art on this book is a little wanky in places, but nothing that won’t correct itself after some practice. The coloring has it’s moments of going from good to fruity, but all in all it’s the characters and story that give you the fun in this one.

Marvel Adventures Giant Size Avengers #1 (Marvel Comics) Marvel Adventures always provide the reader with great fun tales of heroes without the heavy dialogue that should be used only in novels. In this book you get a big double sized book with not only the fun Avengers team, but the always entertaining Agents Of Atlas as well. The Agents Of Atlas are the characters pulled from Marvel’s days as Atlas in the 1950’s. This was a wonderful time for Marvel that today’s readers are just starting to learn about. This big book includes a new story with The Avengers and The Agents Of Atlas teaming up by Jeff Parker and Leonard Kirk as well as reprints from Marvel Comics #82 with Namora and The Sub-Mariner and Venus #1. Namora and Venus were two of Marvel’s first hottie super heroines. A great deal at $3.99

Now go forth and find some of these fun mainstream comics before you turn into a coffee shop livin’, dressed all in black, Sandman lovin’ Frodo quotin’ wedgie victim.

Busted Knuckles Manly Cover Of The Week

Black Cat #13
Harvey Publications 1948

Artist Lee Elias was one of THE best comic book artists ever. He rated up there with Frank Robbins, Alex Toth and Milton Caniff. He had an incredible style that made the most out of a few brush strokes and was a king at action story telling. This simple layout cover gives you motion, tension and clarity. His interiors were even more exciting. Elias was an early student of real hand-to-hand combat and placed that in all his stories. In issues of Black Cat he always added a page or two of Black Cat’s Simple Judo Tricks. There he would have Black Cat show you how to apply judo holds and carry them out. What a great feature! If me and my brothers would’ve been around in 1948 I can promise you we would’ve been trying these out on each other. This is one of my personal favorite issues because of the title, Black Cat and the fact that it was lucky number 13.

Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week

Daniella Alonso
– actress

Daniella Alonso can do it all. She can play the vixen, the cunning femme fatale, the scream queen and the ass kicking princess of punishment. You may know her from her films and TV shows such as, CSI: Miami, The Hills Have Eyes II, Hood Of Horror, One Tree Hill and Law And Order. She’s New York City born and raised and has a great career ahead of her. Hollywood rumor is that she is in the talks to play a very popular comic book hero for a 2009 release. Keep your google search on her name and see what becomes of it. Where were women like this when I was young, single, and hadn’t started fraying around the edges?

The Roundup

A lot of you will be now gearing up for Wizard Chicago. It won’t be quite as hectic as San Deigo, but it will be a little more comic book related. It’s always been a good con to pick up back issues and hard to find Golden, Silver and Bronze Age comic books. There’s always a fine list or dealers there that are loaded with pretty good deals.

I won’t be there this year, but if I save my pennies and dimes I might make it next year. I hope all of you have a good time in my place. Well over 25 years ago, Chicago Con was the first comic book convention I ever went to. It’ll always hold some great memories for me. I hope you go out and make some for yourself.

Your amigo,

Beau Smith
The Flying Fist Ranch
P.O. Box 706
Ceredo, WV. 25507

Prove your manhood by visiting Beau at the Flying Fists Forum!

About The Author

Beau Smith

Beau Smith is a writer for Comics Bulletin