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Monday, November 20, 2006


Nephew and I attended the Big Apple Con in New York on Saturday. It's the way comic book geeks ring in the holiday season every year. The view across the way from our table made the day considerably less grueling: a lovely Russian model in costume who posed for a comic book. Another across-the-way neighbor had a banner with a naughty superhero; they soon folded it over for the sake of the many young'uns in attendance.

It was a pleasant surprise to see a work friend there, who I now call FF #48 Dude. This is because he brought along something he had been telling me about for years: his Near Mint (or is it Very Fine?) edition of Fantastic Four #48, the first appearance of the Silver Surfer and Galactus. He was treating it like Sydney Greenstreet would have treated the Maltese Falcon.

My favorite Spider-Man artist, John Romita, was there, but I never laid eyes on him. His autograph lines were LONG. I heard one guy brought 10 books for him to sign. I brought two: Spidey #44 (the Lizard) and #60 (Kingpin). But every time I went to his line, it was so long that I decided to try again later. Finally, on one visit, the line looked manageable. I walked to the end of the line. The fellow in front of me had a sign on his back. ON HIS BACK! Affixed with duct tape! It said: "Last in line for John Romita." Oh, the humanity.

When I told people that Val Kilmer was appearing at the convention, non-geeks said, "Why would a big movie star do that?" while geeks said, "But 'Batman Forever' sucked!" Well, Kilmer's "appearance" was from behind ceiling-high curtains. You had to buy a ticket for an autograph, stand in line, and THEN he'd sign an authograph for you behind the curtains! When I heard about this, I had to run down and see it for myself. I spotted Kilmer through a separation in the curtains; he had on sunglasses and spiky hair. I don't know who cooked up this innovation, but COME ON, Val. Either do the con or don't. The whole idea of fan conventions is that you get down-and-dirty with the Great Unwashed. Even Jack Nicholson did a Q&A the one time HE did a con (for Fangoria in 1994 to promote his horror stinker "Wolf"). Fango editor Tony Timpone told me Jack had a ball. Did Val?


Blogger LoraSara said...

Thanks for the insight into Val Kilmer. Different from the gushing fan description I read on another blog.

4:54 PM, November 21, 2006  

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