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The Flashpoint Paradox

flashpointparadoxbrdI’ve kept up with all of the DC animated features since this line started back in 2007 or so with the Doomsday one, loosely based on the Death of Superman story from 1992. And while I’ve enjoyed certain ones more than others (New Frontier and Under the Red Hood immediately come to mind)…I have to say that after first viewing, Flashpoint Paradox is in that upper level.

While I own all 6 paperbacks collecting the entirety of the Flashpoint ‘event’ from 2011, I’ve only yet actually read the original mini-series and the Batman tie-in mini-series. So while hardly immersive, I’m not unfamiliar with Flashpoint in general. And perhaps it’s partially that I’m not overly steeped in knowledge of the entire event that helped me to enjoy this, as from what I recall of the comics, this is quite a good adaptation.

My primary “issues” with this film are story-wise, and the same I had with the comics–specifically the way things play out with Barry’s powers, and that against “usual” the ending is–we as viewers/readers are aware–not the actual ending. The comics’ ending kicked off the New 52, and I believe this film leads into New 52-era followups, leaving stuff based on the “old” DC Universe behind (at least for awhile?).

For the most part I had no problems with the visuals…as an animated features this worked very well for me. There wasn’t really much of anything jarring or offputting to me about the animation itself. Some of the character designs were a bit “off” from what I’d’ve expected…but in and of themselves, nothing bad.

flashpointstack

As said, I’ve only (as of this typing) read the “core” Flashpoint comics and the Batman mini…so the allusion to that actually made sense to me. Other stuff–particularly the cameos–were fine with me, because I don’t know the comics’ stories, so for me, there’s nothing of concern missing. And for what I recall of the comics (and granted, it’s been a couple years now), there’s more context to things given in this film than was in the core Flashpoint mini-series, making this a better package in a way.

The voice cast was good…I sorta noticed the familiarity to Lois Lane’s voice, somehow missed it in Superman, and while no Kevin Conroy, Kevin McKidd pulled off a very good Batman. I’m not particularly “set” on any particular Flash voice, to say nothing of being pretty sure the voice I’m familiar with from Justice League and Justice League Unlimited was for Wally, not Barry.

Just as Justice League: The New Frontier led me to buy and read the source material, The Flashpoint Paradox has led me to pull the source material from my shelf and finally make the time to actually read it.

flashpointcollection

I bought this for the “promo”/”first week pricing” special at Target…probably the cheapest blu-ray/dvd/digital combo I’ve found for any of these films; and for the $13.99 this was quite worthwhile for the film alone, and I anticipate multiple re-watchings.

The bonus materials are so-so, and rather ‘standard” at this point. Several episodes of past DC animated series, featurette(s) on the focal character/story of the film, a lengthy promo/preview/featurette on an upcoming film, plus the usual stuff–commentary, digital comic that I can’t even read on the tv screen, etc–that I typically ignore.

So all in all…I definitely recommend seeing this…but unless you really care about extras, or the HD (which I’ve never noticed difference between blu-ray/dvd with) you’re probably just as well getting the DVD. And unless you’re in a hurry to see this…it’s not unfathomable to expect that by the time the next animated feature comes out, this one’ll be around the $9.99 price point at your local Target/Walmart type stores. And if this is available in a nearby Redbox kiosk, it seems quite worth an evening’s rental!

Completing Two "Sets" in a Weekend Haul

I snagged a few more bargain-bin issues last Thursday and Saturday, and finally completed not just one, but two “sets.”

Over the last several weeks I’ve been snagging the various Comics’ Greatest World issues:

comicsgreatestworld01

I’d “missed” Motorhead at JC‘s the last time, so went back to find that, and also came across a later Motorhead special. The CGW Motorhead issue completes my set of the Comics’ Greatest World issues this time around.

comicsgreatestworld02

Then, since I’d seen a number of these issues scattered throughout the bins, I decided to see what I could piece together of a second set. Found all 4 Arcadia issues.

comicsgreatestworld03

Also found all 4 Steel Harbor issues, including the 2nd copy of Motorhead.

comicsgreatestworld04

Found 3 of the 4 issues of Golden City…thankfully, I’d forgotten a duplicate I’d wound up with of Catalyst: Agents of Change, so this subset was completed as well.

comicsgreatestworld05

And I could only find 3 of the 4 issues of The Vortex…missing the final issue: Out of the Vortex itself.

comicsgreatestworld06

I was pretty sure I might have seen Out of the Vortex in the bargain bins at Comic Heaven–knew I’d seen several Comics’ Greatest World issues at the least. And sure enough…found Out of the Vortex there, completing a second set of the series.

misc01

Snagged several randomish issues at JC’s, including a Thor issue I saw an ad for when I paged through the final issue of Thunderstrike a few days earlier, so grabbed that. The GI Joe issue I don’t have, though I might have #1. The others were just sort of “hey, 25-cents…can’t beat that for this!”

valiantstuff

I’d actually meant to put the Timewalker issue back, but (obviously) forgot. The Secrets of the Valiant Universe I didn’t want to pass up despite being pretty sure I have that already. And nothing like pulling “rare” issues like Unity #0 and Darque Passages from a quarter-bin.

vanguard

I believe Vanguard is the character I recognized from a random Eternity comic I picked up earlier; found issues 1-3 here, so snagged ’em.

xbooksendofjuly

Grabbed several X-books from my list…

mercyogn

Near as I can tell, Mercy is a short prestige-format/”original graphic novel,” and definitely not bad for only 25 cents! (and early-ish Vertigo, at that).

slidersspecials

At Comic Heaven, I came across 3 Sliders comics. I only bought two of them as the other was a 2nd issue of two, and I didn’t want the temptation/frustration of trying to track down the first…and these two will be plenty (if not more than enough) to see if I even enjoy the property in comics. Six appeared to be another small “original graphic novel” and so well worth its bargain-bin pricing.

runevenomsilversurfer

It was quite cool to come across these Ultraverse issues. Two copies of the “newsstand edition” of Rune/Silver Surfer (a flip-book) and another copy of the Rune/Venom issue…signed by Chris Ulm and including a certificate of authenticity!

turtlesoupmini

I know I already have Turtle Soup in its entirety, but do recall at least one issue being in less than wonderful condition. Finding all 4 covers the bases, so to speak, on a replacement copy…and no sense leaving only 3 of 4 issues to frustrate someone else, anyway.

hypersonicmini

I have no idea what Hypersonic’s about, but it’s a 4-issue mini series of which all 4 were present…and I saw “Abnett” on the cover, so figure this oughtta be well worth a read.

misc02

The polybag on Divine Right caught my attention…but moreso is the “preview” issue for Stormwatch. Doom’s caught my attention as a mail-away. Overstreet looked interesting–rather than a price guide it’s got short creator profiles. And the Sojourn issue is Sojourn; an apparent one-shot or such. Originally $3.95 cover price…not a bad buy from the bargain bin.

misc2099stuff

Snagged the 2099 Unlimited issue to add to my growing 2099 collection. The Doom 2099 is the final issue, and I’m pretty sure these later issues are going to prove MUCH harder to track down than any of the early issues, so this was quite a welcome find. I grabbed the Iron Man issue as I’m filling out that run apparently; the Heroes issue is random Milestone.

miscdcstuff

I grabbed the Justice League issues as randomish ’90s stuff to read. Darkstars adds to my growing Zero Hour set. And Zen…well, I’m pretty sure this is a better-condition copy of one I already have…and hey, it’s Archie Zen for under 50 cents…can’t beat that!

A Wednesday-Worthy Haul

This week’s Wednesday haul was a bit more normal-ish, except it included a couple of full-price back-issues I’d previously specifically avoided. Bloodshot #13 and Harbinger #14 I picked up as usual–they’re on my pull-list. The Eternal Warrior/Bloodshot Sketchbook was a freebie.

And sometime last weekend I’d determined that I would go ahead and give Adventures of Superman a chance. I am so disinterested in current New 52 Superman stuff that maybe some “out of continuity” tales of a Superman more like I remember will scratch this particular “itch.” But I made a condition for myself: only two issues into the series, I would ONLY buy either issue if BOTH were available…which left me only with some of those bargain-bin issues shown earlier this week from Comic Heaven. Kenmore had both of these, so I added them to my “regulars,” and still came out ahead of a week with multiple Marvels…

main_haul

As is fairly “usual” for me, I did do a quick rummage through the bargain bins at Kenmore. This week, the entire stack of bargain-bin comics matches the price of any of the four “regular” comics…which continues to be an increasingly disturbing thing!

xbooksandhulk

Found an X-Man issue on my list of missing-issues. A Hulk issue that just looks “fun” to read. And my two favorite issues of Fatal Attractions, and two of my all-time favorite issues, period…I just don’t pass up either of these issues when I find ’em for 25 cents…!

wonderman

Also found another X-Men issue I’m missing. And keeping true, found the entire mini-series for Wonder Man here, so snagged it. $1.25 for what in TPB would run at least $20-25 these days from Marvel…can’t beat that!

premiereissues

About a quarter of one of the bargain bins seemed to be nothing but #1 (and #0) “premiere” issues from the ’90s. I don’t know if someone started to cherry-pick the bargain bins and put a stack back, or if it was part of an unsorted collection purchased and tossed in the bins. So I cherry-picked from those. I grabbed the Stormwatch and Megaton issues because they’re bagged with a trading card. Figure maybe I can just horrify someone by opening the plastic to remove the card. Also a certain “novelty” to snagging Hitman #1 for 25 cents (last year having snagged his very first appearance for 50 cents). And X-Men Unlimited #1…that’ll just be a convenient opportunity for re-reading.

I recognize one of the figures on the Megaton cover…looks like someone from an old Image series that had a flipbook with a Savage Dragon issue. I’ll need to look into that later.

gambitandwolverineholograms

And finally, part of what I like (other than the stories themselves!) with the Fatal Attractions issues: the holograms!

A Haul Worthy of Comic Con (part 2)

The other day I shared a bunch of bargain bin comics I’ve picked up the last few weeks. Cool as those were (especially the Robin stack), the “heart” of it all–and where I’ve felt the MOST “progress”–has been with the X-books.

Here is the bulk of my Marvel haul the last few weeks…again, this would put what I could find at any major convention to shame….three local comic shops can outdo a room of 50+ dealers.

xmenwolverinehulk

I believe with this issue of Uncanny X-Men, I’m only missing Gambit’s first appearance (#266) from having a run on the title from Inferno to 400-something, and even the 400s are getting filled in nicely (see further below).

ironmanhulketc

These were issues I actually grabbed to round out a batch of “$.50/ea or 15/$5” issues. I’m going to have to pull together my Iron Man run soon to figure out exactly what I am missing–I’m pretty sure I’ve got at least half of the 1998-2004 series, and a good chunk of the Extremis series.

mephistovsmarveluniverse

Saw all 4 issues, which I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen all 4 at once or not…I know I’ve seen this in chunks of 1-3 issues, though. And for a mere $1? Heck, yeah!

2099worldoftomorrow

Kinda bummed, assuming someone cherry-picked #1 here. Still…easier to remember I need #1 than one issue in 2-5.

2099doomissues1to26minus2

As I’ve said repeatedly in this blog: I’m a sucker for “runs.” Doom 2099 #1-26 (missing only #2) was too good to pass up…though I’ve been more interested in getting a run of Spider-Man 2099 like this…and leaning toward adding the 2099 line to my “want list.”

captainamericafightingchance

I’ve long been interested in the Fighting Chance story, in tracking down a copy for myself. I once borrowed this run from a friend, and read it–years ago, over a decade back–but I’ve wanted to have a copy for myself. I’m pretty sure I’ve got most of the run from 438-454 or whatever the final issue was around Onslaught, the entire Heroes Reborn series, the entire Heroes Return series, and a part of the 2002 series…so had my eye on this as a point to go “back to.” Finding all 12 issues of the main arc plus the epilogue in one go for basically $3.25? Beats the heck outta “just” a single $3.99 book today!

1016728_654404861255975_924327134_n

And just because it’s a huge issue and was only 25 cents, snagged another copy of #400. Also grabbed Astro City vol.1 #1, first print…for the sheer novelty of it only being a quarter. Had there been more issues of the series, I would’ve snagged those as well–even though I have the collected volumes through Local Heroes.

shinyxbooksissues

I grabbed Prime and Uncanny #300 because of being big issues…and shiny. Can’t beat comics like this from 20 years ago that would easily be $8+ today…and getting both for about 50 cents.

xmanissues

Gradually starting to fill in the X-Man issues. I originally followed ALL the X-titles during Age of Apocalypse, and then a few months immediately after, before dwindling off on the various titles. I kept up with X-Man off and on through the years, which makes it a bit harder to remember what I remember because I read or have just seen the cover image for.

amazingxmenageofapocalypse

And I think I’m somewhat building another Age of Apocalypse set…at least if I can find all 4 issues of a given series together. I keep seeing Astonishing X-Men, but finally saw a full run of Amazing X-Men.

xmenunlimitedissues

Also filling in the X-Men Unlimited run. I’m also trying to track down the NON-shiny covers for the various issues that had ’em…while they’re cool and grab my attention, ultimately I actually want to have all “standard” covers in my main run of the series. In this case, the Phalanx Covenant crossover is the main such series of issues.

newxmenacademyx

Academy X is probably gonna be one of the harder series for me to fill in, given how “recent” it is. While $1/issue isn’t bad, I suspect that ultimately I’ll wind up having to suck it up and raid $1 bins for this series…barring more significant “finds” than the handful of issues here.

newxmen

I wound up buying the first two oversized hardcovers collecting this run…and jumped to the singles from there. So I’m backtracking on the singles. My main “goal” is the ’90s X-books through this NEW X MEN run; beyond that will just be bonus.

uncannyxmenissues

Despite focus on the ’90s, I think ultimately I’m aiming for Inferno to the end of the first Uncanny X-Men series…with hauls like this, it’s not too far outta the question.

xfactororiginalseries

I’ve had far better luck with X-Factor than I have with New Mutants…almost to the point that I’m debating whether I even want to track down the New Mutants series piecemeal. I may content myself with the later printings of Cable’s first appearance to the end, or just stick with X-Force.

xfactor2005

Though this “2nd” X-Factor series technically falls outside my “core” range…the renumbering to 200+ (and finding this 43-issue run) leads me to count it as one entire run on the whole…particularly given PAD’s lengthy run here.

generationxissues

I’d forgotten that Generation X only ran 75 issues…but should have recalled, as it and X-Man were both part of this Counter X sub-imprint/branding at the end, and both ended at that #75. This run is nearly 1/5 of the entire series…which isn’t bad at all!

excaliburissues

Excalibur’s in a similar vein as New Mutants for me, except I’ve had much more luck finding a number of issues for it. It’s one of the lower “priorities” for me, but since a lot of my fondness of the ’90s is centered largely around titles that existed during Fatal Attractions and around Age of Apocalypse…this certainly counts!

xtremexmenissues

Finally, a bunch of X-Treme X-Men issues. I’m actually particularly interested in learning more about what went down with Rogue and Gambit, and kinda see them as having disappeared into this series for a few years. How accurate that is remains for me to discover, but nothing wrong with adding another complete X-series to my collection…

A Haul Worthy of Comic Con

Hand in hand with “panels,” comic conventions–to me–mean cheap comics and from sources outside my usual stomping grounds. Yet, more and more lately I find that what dealers bring to local cons just can’t hold up to “everyday bargains” I find at local comic shops: whether it’s 75% of HCs/TPBs when Marvel blows stuff out, the plethora of cheap “sets” and “runs,” or just (what I consider to be) high-quality quarter-bin stuff.

quantumandwoodyissuesandmisc

Right now, aside from wanting to fill out my TMNT collection, I’ve been working on my Ultraverse, Classic Valiant, ’90s Bat-books, and ’90s X-books collections. However, along with stuff for those “main” target areas, I’m a sucker for random single issues–especially with a shiny cover that would’ve cost $3+ 20 years ago but is now just 25 cents–as well as the random “run” of pretty much anything. (Say, 25 of 26 issues of Doom 2099 or 21 of 24 issues of Thunderstrike).

rai1dollarissues

I’ve loaded up on some great bargain-bin fare the last few weeks from three local comic shops: Kenmore Komics in Akron, JC’s in Cuyahoga Falls, and Comic Heaven in Willoughby (local when I visit my parents).

Above I show some Valiant stuff, including my $1/ea copies of Rai #6 (Leaves me with only one chapter of Unity to track down) and Rai #0.

comicsgreatestworldissues

I’m missing one single issue from having a (new) complete set of the Comics’ Greatest World original saga, and may research how long each of the spin-off ongoings went; though those series aren’t nearly as plentiful in bargain bins that I’ve seen.

ultraversepremiere0issue

I grabbed Ultraverse Premiere #0 because…well, it was a mail-away, so not nearly AS common as other early Ultraverse books from this time. Hawkman and Universal Soldier I grabbed for shiny-ness.

freexissueanddarkwingduck

I grabbed the Freex issue as a cover I didn’t recognize off the top of my head. The Green Lantern issue I recall being a “hard to find” issue back in the day, so am quite amused at being able to get (yet another) copy for only a quarter. And Darkwing Duck? Darkwing is just awesome!

runevsvenomissue

I know I’d had at least one copy of Rune vs. Venom years back, but since officially beginning my Ultraverse quest, for the life of me I have NOT been able to locate it. Stumbling across it–a lone, random Ultraverse issue in a collection of primarily Marvel and some DC was quite a welcome bit of serendipity!

shinyfoilycovers

X-O, Superman, and Doom just for the sake of shiny-ness. Especially X-O…I’m a sucker for these “chromium” covers!

detectiveissues

Detective Comics is going to be one of the harder series for me to fill in due to sheer longevity. Other series have come and gone, but Detective and Batman have 2-3 times as many issues to track down from the 1990s-2000s as any other single related title.

robin01to135

…Of course, snagging 135 issues plus several annuals for Robin in one go is absolutely FANTASTIC, if only for convenience alone!

robinminis

The week after I’d bought the Robin 1-135 stack, I was given these: they’d been destined for that stack, but just hadn’t made it out. I would have gladly paid the $4ish for these, but welcome the “bonus” to what was already a great price for such a tremendous run in one go.

zerohourissues

A couple years ago I assembled a set of Eclipso: The Darkness Within. I’m presently intending to also build a set of Zero Hour, Armageddon 2001, and Bloodlines.

onemillionissues

…and thanks to this set, DC One Million, as I believe this is probably 2/3 of the entire ‘event’.

Wednesday, I’ll plan on showing off the more plentiful Marvel and X-Books bargain bin finds of late.

Not at Comic Con: Thoughts On Announcements/etc.

SDCC LogoIn no real particular order…

New Amazing X-Men title

I don’t know how Nightcrawler’s coming back, nor do I much care…but I have a certain fondness for the character, especially in tandem with Wolverine. Right now, MONTHS before the issue would even hit stands, ok…interesting concept. I’ll probably “bite.” BUT at SURELY a $3.99 cover price and presumably biweekly shipping (aka “double-shipping”) at that price point, I won’t be around long. I’m enjoying the heck outta how much my 1990s’ X-books collection seems to be coming together lately….and when I can get 8-16 issues for the price of one new issue, I’ll take quantity (and nostalgia) as the better value.

Doctor Who Comics in 2014–Publisher?

So, my main concern is: what happens to what I’ve bought of the IDW stuff via Comixology? I mean, I enjoy the IDW GI Joe Classics issue that reprints what was originally published by Marvel, but I haven’t seen things go the OTHER way. IDW is quite guilty of the variant covers, and the $3.99 price point, so rumoured Boom or Dynamite wouldn’t make any real difference to me there. I suppose really I’ll just wait and see…and make sure I read my IDW/Comixology issues before the end of the year.

Superman/Batman film

OK, so there’s been talk of something like this for YEARS. That it’s official? I like it a lot better than the prospect of a Justice League film so soon. Certainly fits better, and (at least conceptually) has potential. Also works well to me as a Man of Steel sequel, but also allowing the introduction of a new Batman, without actually relaunching a Batman franchise so soon after the conclusion of the Dark Knight films. If there’s controversy over the quote from DKR used to “help” announce it, well…to me, that just goes to show one of THE most adversarial, iconic moments of the characters in conflict, to me. It doesn’t mean the film itself will be DKR. Of course, this is just the announcement of the film…we still have YEARS until it would be released, so waaay too soon for much serious speculation. While there’s a place for the classic silver age buddy-buddy Superman/Batman relationship, I’m rather fond of the semi-adversarial but mutual-respect One Night in Gotham City (Man of Steel 1986 #3) relationship.

Avengers 2 = Age of Ultron

I’ve heard enough negative of the comic series Age of Ultron to make me glad I didn’t keep up with the single issues beyond #1. And I certainly hope the movie is in no way an adaptation of that specific story in general. Perhaps some loose concepts of that, some of Busiek‘s Ultron Unlimited, etc. I was looking forward to Thanos and possible Infinity Gauntlet stuff, but hey…I jumped straight to that conclusion for obvious reasons. Other than Iron Man 3, we haven’t had any more Marvel Movieverse films since Avengers as yet, though, have we? So the post-credits “subplots” haven’t really gone anywhere since then…and we’re way too early yet to truly have any reasonable expectations here.

Afterlife With Archie

Archie + zombies, and requests to not have ’em shelved with regular Archie comics? OK, I’ll probably (if you’ll excuse the bad pun) “bite” on this one, provided I remember it when the first issue would actually hit. A bit late to the party, but hey…when I do dip into Archie stuff I tend to enjoy it, and the publisher taking enough of a chance on a different direction that they’d watch out that it’s not put in front of kids is a responsible enough move to get props from me.

TMNT Stuff

Mostly just glad there are no plans for Venus de Milo in the main comics. Overall just looking forward to the continuing series, and that it’s being kept seperate from the tv animated series. Pre-Comic Con saw that there’d be a City Fall part 1 tpb, which is rather discouraging…I would truly prefer to see a single-volume of a single arc, especially when it’s “only” 8 issues. Not all that pleased at the prospect of Bebop and Rocksteady being introduced, but given Krang and the Neutrinos’ depictions, there’s some potential, and I’ll wait to see what actually develops.

Cataclysm vs. Hunger

Much like last year’s announcement of Mavel Now killing my enthusiasm cold for AvX, this series’ announcement totally killed any enthusiasm I had for Hunger. For the most part, I feel like it says “Hunger is prologue, but the REAL story that ‘potentially could end the Ultimate Universe’ will ACTUALLY be Cataclysm.” So I’ll stick to avoiding the Ultimate Comics stuff as singles per usual, see what shakes out, and back track in collected volumes or such after the fact.

Marvel Now 2

Though I got sucked in on several Marvel Now One books, I quickly dropped those for one reason or another (primarily $3.99/issue + double-shipping). So I’m not particularly interested in and of itself in a second round of Marvel Now. If something individually grabs me (Say, Amazing X-Men #1), fine…I’ll check it out. Otherwise…it’s just another thing out there.

Deadpool vs. Carnage, Origin II

Never particularly enjoyed the first Origin series. So I don’t have any enthusiasm whatsoever for a second. See earlier comments about enjoying cheaper ’90s X-comics. Now, Deadpool vs. Carnage sorta sounds “interesting” as a loose concept simply for my having digital issues of Carnage and Carnage USA to read, thanks to being mildly interested after reading the “free” issue(s) #1 from the big Marvel “giveaway” a few months back.

Everything Else?

As of this typing, nothing exciting or of real interest for me from DC. But then, I’m not their target audience anymore. I may go back on my resolve regarding Adventures of Superman, and allow the indulgence in the non-New 52 Superman stories, but DC in general just doesn’t interest me these days; all the worse with the creep into the $3.99 pricing. Sorta interested in Sam Keith‘s The Maxx return, and will probably find myself picking up the first issue at least just for the heckuvit…I remember when the original edition came out, and have a copy or two SOMEWHERE in my collection, snagged from bargain bins through the years. And at least so far…so much for the hope of Batman ’66 home media official release…

And overall, more than glad I didn’t have to deal with the crowds and costs and hassles of Comic Con itself to learn what I have.

Not at Comic Con 2013

SDCC LogoOnce again, Comic Con is upon us, and once again, I am not there.

Yet…truthfully, I am honestly pretty sure I don’t actually WANT to be there.

I get “crowd-claustrophobic” fairly easily, and everything I hear of the convention population suggests I’d wind up fairly miserable.

As I’ve told the guys at Kenmore Komics several times: they’ve “ruined” conventions for me, as well…the Kenmore 25-cent bins are a RICH source of cheap comics for me, with more great “gems” than I can honestly try to recall in one sitting…and more often than not, the bins are at least somewhat organized. Lately, it seems to me that most convention bargain bins are little but “recent” stuff from the last 5-10 years with little good assortment from the ’90s…and it’s frustrating just how many “bargain bins” have crept up to 50-cents.

I’m also quite a fan of the panels at conventions. I still remember my first Gen Con, going to a random panel about Magic: The Gathering, and sitting next to someone playing with his kid…and come to find out that it was Richard Garfield–the guy who created the game! Or attending that panel with Ed Greenwood, author of the Elminster books. A particularly fun panel with Tracy Hickman and his wife, and the crowd-involved generation of the Ninja-Pirate-Viking Elves. Or that Wizard World Chicago attending all the DC panels, a Vertigo panel, and a number of Marvel panels. Being present at a Gen Con for the announcement of Privateer PressHordes game. The Stan Lee panel at Pittsburgh 2012 with my friends Bridgett, Michael, and Ashley.

But everything I hear of SDCC, you basically have to wait in ridiculous lines to get into any of the “major” panels. And frankly, to me that seems a waste of time. I shouldn’t have to “camp out” overnight and half a day to attend a 1-hour panel on Doctor Who or whatever “big” panel. Hardly worth the air fare, lodging, parking, and food costs.

So I intend to stick to the “smaller” cons. I keep entertaining the idea of attending Heroes or Dragon Con one of these years. I’ve given up on the NYCC as that seems to have gotten too huge too quickly. Even C2E2 has gotten “iffy” for me.

And while I haven’t even touched on other “issues” I have–particularly the “con exclusives” and such–I’ll stick to getting my “news” from sites like Bleeding Cool and CBR…though even a lot of that I’m not fond of these days as there’s just so much…hype. And spoilerage.

That being said, I may post later this weekend with some of my thoughts on what news does catch my attention; things that I’ll be looking for coming out of the various announcements.

EDITED TO ADD: Some of my thoughts on news that caught my attention.

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