Well, the site appears to be working with the new design. If you bookmarked the June 23 rant page, you are probably stuck in an endless loop of errors - go to "http://badbartopia.net" without a specific file in the URL and you'll be okay. The changes, sadly, aren't significant, yet they took me forever to get done. I blame World of Warcraft - that game is like crack (or as I imagine crack would be, since I've never had that particular "pleasure." I have done a paltry few drawings that I might get around to adding to the drawing gallery, but they probably won't be there for a few days.
Now, on to the first of the gazillions of uninteresting things I have neglected writing about...
San Diego Comiccon 2005
I actually recorded my experiences soon after the Con (July 15-18), but didn't bother to post them then, so this information is pretty dated.
I didn't get to attend the Comiccon on Thursday (the first day), so I missed Bruce Campbell speaking to the attendees - I really would have liked to have been there. The reports of his speaking are very entertaining.
Bruce, on this summer's movies:
"If aliens invade the earth in ‘War of the Worlds,’ that's a 'B' movie," Campbell said. "Tom Cruise can jump up and down on the couch all he wants, but he's in a 'B' movie.”
"From May to August, I have absolutely no reason to go see a movie," said the bespectacled actor, who wore a blue Tommy Bahamas Hawaiian shirt as he entertained the standing-room-only audience of roughly 2,000 with occasionally profane comments.
On his own film achievements:
Campbell didn't spare himself, either, such as when asked by audience members whether his recent, much-reviled low-budget Sci Fi Channel film "Alien Apocalypse" was going to be released on DVD.
"Why? Because it was so good?" Campbell replied. "Are you just being a smartass?"
In response to a heckler:
And when one audience member shouted out a dumb question, Campbell told the man, "You, sir, are a moron."
In response to a question about his book:
When another fan asked when the paperback version of his new book "Making Love the Bruce Campbell Way" would come out, Campbell told him "Buy the hardcover. Don't be a cheap bastard. How much did you pay to get in here?"
And in response to being asked for his thoughts on Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes:
Which lead to another question about what he thought about Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes getting together.
Campbell’s quick reply: “I’m sure I don’t give a rat’s ass about that.”
There was a lot more in the linked article - stuff like this is why I love this gathering of ubergeeks. I'll be there in about 12 hours.
On Friday morning, I realized, in a panic, that I had neglected to pre-register for my one day of convention-attendance (though I had remembered, weeks in advance, to request the day off from work) and was probably about to be subjected to a two hour wait in line, just to get my badge. As a last ditch effort, I went online and checked the Comiccon's web site. Oddly, the registration page was still up, so I filled it in, printed my confirmation and headed downtown.
I arrived at the convention center with time to spare and quickly obtained my badge (with no wait whatsoever). I realized that I now had at least a fifteen minute wait before the convention hall opened and found a quiet corner to read the book I had brought along (Catch 22). But before I started reading, I rifled through the bag o' freebies that comes with admission and discovered a flyer about donating blood. I figured I could read in the line while waiting to donate blood just as easily as I could where I was currently sitting, so I packed up my stuff and headed across the convention center.
The convention hall was minutes from opening its doors to the throbbing, pulsating horde of geeks, freaks and ne'er-do-wells, so I really didn't want to spend too much of my time donating blood and risk losing time that I could use to gawk at booth babes and seek out the treasures of the Con. I was assured by the woman who gave me my numbered sticker that the entire process would take around 30 minutes, so I settled into my chair with a red "115" stuck to my chest and read about Milo's entrepreneurial exploits while I waited.
Two hours later, I was a pint lower, a t-shirt richer and in possession of a limited edition (378/500) unpainted Spike action figure from season 5 of Angel - a television show I have never watched. But, still very cool.
I finally managed to get into the convention hall and began meandering up and down the rows (if you have never been, you would have a difficult time understanding the enormity of this place) of vendors, artists, writers, book publishers, adult film actresses, Playboy models, etc. It wasn't until I found Bobby Rubio's (we met the previous year) booth that I actually spent any of my money. I picked up issue 3 of Alcatraz High, a slick piece of work done with full, vibrant color in a Disney-esque style - a worthy addition to any comic collection. The sketch that Bobby willingly adds to the back cover makes it an even sweeter deal.
The next stop was my friends, Laurie and Kendrix, with Konsequential Studios (I also met them the previous year): the writers, artists and publishers of A Monk's Tale. I picked up the most recent two issues of A Monk's Tale, a well-done black and white comic set in China focused on the heroics of three Buddhist monks. I love those guys; I shot the breeze with them for quite a while before moving on.
The booth beside Konsequential Studios belonged Summertime Comics, but was sadly lacking Ryan Woodward (who is busy working on Spiderman 3, so at least he had a good excuse). I picked up a couple of other books from their table (as well as a Decoy book that they referred me to from Penny Farthing Press. My favorite was I'm Not Your Teddy, more of a children's book than comic. The interior art is vibrant, painted and beautiful.
The last comic artist/publisher that I had hoped to see that I managed to locate was Frank Cammuso. He didn't have a new Max Hamm book ready, but he was selling a sketchbook filled with very unfinished and interesting sketches. He even sketched a character inside the front cover for me while I watched and waited.
Sadly, Mike Kunkel (Herobear and the Kid) and Mark Oakley (Thieves and Kings) were unable to attend this year (though I did hear from the Summertime guys that Mike was in attendance, just not in a booth).
One of the vendors was seling rare and unique pieces of art, such as this piece by Dr. Seuss. The price tag was over $1,000, so it didn't make it home with me. My favorite purchase of the day was a "signed open edition print," Hide and Seek by Lawrence Allen Williams. He had many other equally amazing prints (both in adult-oriented and children's motifs) for sale, but I, sadly, only picked up one of them. Even the back of his business card was a work of art.
The highlight of my day was probably meeting Justine Joli, an adult film starlet. Her unusual attire immediately caught my eye as I wandered up the aisle her booth was located within. My mediocre photography skills utterly failed to capture the sweetness of her smile or the surprising innocence of her expressions. She was so captivating that I was inspired to get her a gift: a pair of striped "Emily Strange" socks from another booth. When I presented my gift, I was rewarded with a warm embrace and all the photos my camera could handle. It was awesome! From her website bio:
I love Sci-Fi and am a complete computer geek! As long as the computer is a Mac. A staunch Mac supporter. No way of “converting” me. (Convert or Fight?) I have wireless any thing I can get my hands on. Blue tooth all the way baby!! Can’t seem to get enough of new innovative technology.
Fav. Movies: Blade Runner, Blade 1 & 2, Princess Monokoe, Vampire Hunter D, Hackers, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Moulin Rouge, Ghost in the Shell 1 & 2, Amalie, Animatrix, Tomb Raider 1 & 2, Dune (both versions) LOTR, Star Wars movies, and last but not least All the star Trek movies.
A geek-girl pornstar - who could ask for anything more? I did, of course, pick up a glossy 8x10 autographed photo. How could I not?
My day of attendance happened to be "Star Wars" day, so there were Jedi knights, Padme Amidalas, stormtroopers and other assorted Star Wars related dorks everywhere. The Lego booth had an impressive display of Star Wars vehicles suspended beneath a deathstar-eque dome. There was even a life size Chewbaca made entirely from Legos. Somebody has way too much time on their hands. I didn't see her, but Natalie Portman was supposed to have been there.
There were many other booths, artists, costumed attendees and attractions that are well worth mentioning, but I don't feel like mentioning them this time (my camera's battery died before I could snap many pictures of these "other items of interest," as well). Maybe next year.
A gallery of many of the photos I took can be viewed here.