New to the Collection: NYCC 2013

For this special edition of ” New to the Collection”, I have recapped what I had acquired at this year’s New York Comic Con (October 10th – 13th)!

I love New York City! I’ve been there a number of times now with various friends. However, this was my first year attending New York Comic Con! Tons of sellers in the exhibitors’ section of the Javits Center (located in Midtown Manhattan). Everything from vintage toys to more current product. I was able to get a couple of the convention exclusives: the Masters of the Universe Classics Strobo and the Batman: Arkham City Dr. Hugo Strange action figures.

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At first, I was going to pass on the Strobo figure. I wasn’t familiar with the character, but after reading the bio I decided to get it. A cool figure to add to the ranks of the Cosmic Enforcers. Plus, if you got the the End of Wars Weapons Pak, there is an extra gun available for Strobo!

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Dr. Hugo Strange is one of my favorite characters from Batman’s Rogue Gallery. One of my favorite stories involving Hugo Strange is from Batman Annual #10 (1986), “Down to the Bone” written by Doug Moench and art by Denys Cowan and Alfredo Alcala. Basically, Strange buys out Wayne Enterprises and leaves Bruce Wayne without his fortune, Wayne Manor or access to the Batcave. To have another version of Hugo Strange in action figure form was a must for me.

Probably one of the best times I’ve spent in Artist Alley at any convention thus far, New York Comic Con had guests such as George Perez, Jose-Luis Garcia Lopez, Cliff Chang, Larry Hama and many more. I spent a large part of my time of the last two days at the convention in Artist Alley.

While going through many long boxes of comics and other displays, I got copies of Marvel Comic’s Transformers # 5 and the Treasury Sized Edition of Superman vs. The Amazing Spiderman.

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Transformers # 5 has one of my favorite comic book covers ever, featuring my favorite Decepticon – Shockwave!

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I remember having a copy of the Treasury Sized Edition of Superman vs. The Amazing Spiderman when I was younger. My parents were friends with a couple (the Guzmans) that lived near Almon Street in Halifax, and they can kids that grew up on reading comic books. Those kids were now adults at that time and had left their old comic book collection at their parents’ house. Mr. Guzman would invite my brother and I to the room where those old comic books were kept. He actually gave us a few of those comic books and one of them was that Superman vs. The Amazing Spiderman book! Two of my favorite superheroes in one story! I had long since sold that original copy of that book at a Sackville flea market, but I came across this copy in Artist Alley. I was hoping to get Stan Lee to sign this, since he was appearing at New York Comic Con. Unfortunately, I missed out on the autograph session with Stan Lee but happy that I still got a copy of this book.

Larry Hama, best known for his major contributions to G.I. Joe, was doing signings and sketches at this table. I had met Hama at Hal-Con in 2012 and got my copy of Marvel’s G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero signed by him, plus a sketch of the Baroness. He was great to meet again. This time around, I asked for a sketch of Scarlett.

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Above is the 7-Inch Remix Set of 6 prints, created and signed by Cliff Chang. Chang was cool to talk with and he even was doing quick sketches for fans. Below is a sketch of Wonder Woman by Chang that I got after meeting him.

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Jose-Luis Garcia Lopez is one of my favorite artists. I grew up on his licensing art of the DC Comics characters that he did in the 1980s (such as the artwork for Kenner’s Super Powers Collection line). One of my earliest memories of his artwork was from the Treasury Sized Edition of DC and Marvel Present: Batman vs. The Incredible Hulk. I clearly remember my dad buying this gigantic comic book for me from a corner store located on Dutch Village Road in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This would be the first Treasury Sized Edition I would own, read repeatedly and try to copy Lopez’s artwork. My original copy of that giant comic book has since been long gone (I remember later cutting out pictures and making a collage for my wall.). However, once I heard that Lopez was attending this New York Comic Con, I went and found a copy of that Batman vs Hulk story for him to sign!

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Jose-Luis Garcia Lopez was so nice to meet in person. Lopez was kind and soft spoken when I met him. I also bought a copy of his sketchbook that Lopez had at his table. He apologized that he didn’t have time to do a full drawing for my sketchbook. Actually, I didn’t know he was doing sketches at the convention. He then showed me the pile of sketchbooks he still had to finish. I wasn’t expecting a sketch, but he did a quick drawing of Batman for me. A pleasant surprise and I was very thankful!

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One of my other favorite artist is George Perez. If there was one single story that influenced me in comic book collecting, it was Marv Wolfman’s and Perez’s work on Crisis on Infinite Earths. “Crisis” made me aware for the first time the idea of multiple universes, multiple versions of the same character and alternate realities. I remember looking at the cover of Crisis of Infinite Earths # 1 and asked my dad “how did Superman get so old”?  That particular issue led to me learn more about the history of DC Comics and tracking down back issues of Justice League of America/Justice Society of America crossover stories, All-Star Squadron, All-Star Comics, etc. Plus, I’m a fan of Perez’s work on The New Teen Titans. I got two issues from Crisis on Infinite Earths and an issue of Justice League of America signed by Lopez, plus an original sketch of Dick Grayson as Robin!

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Overall, I had an awesome time at New York Comic Con and would definitely consider going back again!

That’s it for now, friends! Happy toy and comic hunting!

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