East Coast fanboys who couldn’t afford to fly to San Diego two weeks ago: rejoice. It's time again (a few months later than originally planned) for Boston Comic Con. Whether your obsession with genre entertainment preempted the start of your sex life or you think Batman and Superman are members of the X-Men, the spectacle slated for this weekend at the Seaport World Trade Center should have something for you.
Convention veterans likely already have a good idea what this weekend has in store, but we put together a guide for all you newbies planning your inaugural venture into BCC.
If, for some baffling reason, the prospect of ponying up $100 for a photo op with a pair of dwarves appeals to you, "Hobbit" stars Aidan Turner and Dean O’Gorman will be on hand to oblige. Autographs from the pair of Brits go for a more reasonable $40, as will be the case with zombie hunter Laurie Holden ("The Walking Dead") and human hunter Kristin Bauer van Straten ("True Blood").
We don’t know how much godlike voice actor Billy West (of "Futurama" and pretty much every other cartoon ever) plans to charge for his signature, but the dude voiced Doug Funnie, Dr. Zoidberg, Zapp Brannigan, and Ren AND Stimpy, so we’ll pay him whatever he wants (and we’re not necessarily ruling out sexual favors). Just kidding — maybe.
It’s also no exaggeration to say that maybe 30 percent of the entire comic book industry and about 100 percent of New England-based comics pros will attend in some capacity. The roster of scheduled writers and artists ranges from the Big Two (Marvel and DC) muckamucks to cult favorites (a guarantee: James O’Barr will be stalked by at least five dudes cosplaying Eric Draven), to local up-and-comers like Scott K. Monteiro and Liam Boyle, who recently funded their first book — a shark-saga dubbed "Rex Nocturnus" — through Kickstarter.
For Somerville dweller Ming Doyle — who provided the neo-old school imagery for Image Comic’s dystopic, somewhat volleyball-oriented "Mara" this year — conventions are the closest she gets to an office party.
“As a freelancer, I don’t get the experience of going to a 9-to-5 job and interacting with colleagues,” she explains. “I really enjoy the opportunity to get out of my studio and interact in person with my readers and coworkers. We all get to rub elbows.”
Things to do
Plenty of experts will be on hand to expound upon the craft and history of comics throughout Saturday and Sunday. If we had to pick two panels, we’d check out Neal Adams’ from-the-trenches account of the mid-20th century superhero renaissance at "Secrets of the Silver Age" and listen in on the Fables panel to find out where the writers of "Once Upon a Time" get all their ideas.
Those who want to get in on the action and collectible card game enthusiasts can pummel one another into submission with swarms of enchanted creatures in Magic: The Gathering tournaments, plus a set of of "Yu-Gi-Oh" competitions slated for Sunday.
But for casual fans, the true joy of any con is gawking at costumed revelers, while simultaneously envying their geeky grit. (A side note: BCC organizers won’t allow cosplayers, including those partaking in Sunday’s contest, to bring any legit weapons as accessories, and rightfully so. Anyone who spends months meticulously scraping together a flawless Darkseid outfit in hopes of cosplay supremacy might not take defeat gracefully. It should make us all feel a little safer that his omega beams are just for show.)
For more info visit bostoncomiccon.com