May 4, 2010

DC Comicon Review

A new show organized by the promoters of the long running VA Comicon and Baltimore Comicon, the first ever DC Comicon took place last Sunday, May 2nd at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. While technically, not in Washington DC, the show was close enough to count and did avoid most of that annoying beltline traffic.

While the location and access may have caused issues for some people, it did not seem to affect attendance as the place was packed for just about the entire length of the show. We had a constant stream of people at our booth from 1015am to nearly 330pm (and the show closed at 500p!). With the continuing concerns over the economy, this was the second show we have been to in the past three months (see NC Comicon review below) that not only drew a good amount of people, but also people buying.

One of the big draws for the show was the artist Triple Play of JG Jones, Herb Trimpe, and Frank Cho along with a number of others. While we never got a chance to meet with any of the artists due to be soooo busy (not a problem I will ever complain about), I did notice a consistent line for them. The line for Jones started as soon as the show opened and grew to about 50 people by the time he arrived (one site related note - next time make the center aisle a little smaller. The side aisles were blocked on one side by the line of people). I did see a number of sketches by the Fillbach and Luna Brothers, so they did appear to be staying busy as well. Overall, I did not hear any complaints from attendees about access to the guests.

There were some activities supporting the main dealer's room, but once again, it was too busy for me to see any of them. There were about 20 people in costume, but nothing that had that "Oh wow" factor. Hopefully we will see more participation in this next time along with perhaps a program from the school's drama dept (do they have one?)

Overall, this show was a real encouraging sign going into the busy summer convention season, but it was also a testament to the hard work being put on by the promoters. While some people like to gripe and harp on little things, it was an overall success and surpassed a number of expectations. It proves that if you let people know the event is out there and give them a variety of reasons to come (dealer's room, guests, supporting programs), then they will come. Thanks to everyone involved, and we are certainly looking forward to doing the next one.

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