This was my first time attending Motor City Comic Convention, and definitely my last. The original plan was for my husband and I to attend Friday and Saturday, then take our children on Sunday. After Saturday’s fiasco, you couldn’t have paid us a million dollars each to attend on Sunday.
The event took place May 17-19 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, MI.
FRIDAY – Showtime 12:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
We arrived at the Showplace around 11:15 a.m. The venue is in a good location and easy to get to/from the expressway. We had no problems with traffic until we got in front of the Showplace.
There was two lines outside. One for advanced/VIP ticket holders, the other for non ticket holders. Around 11:45 the advanced/VIP ticket line (we had advance tickets) began to move inside the building. There was a lady standing outside the door yelling for the people in line to have our tickets out and ready, pacing up and down the line while clapping her hands. The young female attendee in front of me said the lady was starting to scare her, because she was extremely loud and rude.
Right before we were let into the show, a guy started handing out registration cards and pencils. He said we had to fill them out in order to get a wristband. I looked down at the card and it stated that everyone had to fill it out in order to get a wristband. I found it strange since you’re registered when you purchase tickets online.
Tickets were scanned and we were given a wristband and a program. I looked around at the other ticket counters. Then I stood on my tippy toes and peeked over the booth. What was I looking for? A goodie bag. A bag with trinkets. Something to put our purchases and freebies in. There weren’t any. Oh well. I always take my purple backpack. The registration cards? Some were scattered upside down on a table along with the pencils. There were attendees at the ticket booth asking what to do with the cards. The workers/volunteers didn’t know. I ripped mine in half and tossed it in my purse.
Once inside the show, my husband and I immediately opened the program to locate the map of the show’s floor. No map. We always make an agenda for cons ahead of time, so we decided to do a tour to get a feel for the show. By the way, there were no maps posted anywhere on the floor.
SATURDAY – 10:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Traffic to the Showplace was backed up. We sat in traffic outside the building for a long time. As we pulled into the parking lot, I saw a line wrapped around the building to the left, and a shorter line to the right. I knew right away the show was going to wreak havoc. We parked in the parking lot (which became full a few vehicles later).
When we got to the line that was closest to us (the shorter line), some of the attendees told us the advanced ticket line was on the other side. I looked at my husband and said, “Oh my gosh. That’s the line that’s wrapped around the building.” When we got to the other side, a worker/volunteer told us there were three lines. Advanced, VIP Stan Lee, and Norman Reedus. But as we walked (and walked) to get to the end of the line, I noticed the three lines somehow had merged into one. So much for advance/VIP getting into the show 1/2 hour early.
We stood in line one hour before it moved. And it moved only about an inch. The shade started to disappear as the sun began to beam its hot rays. I was so hot and sweaty. Stan Lee arrived and entered the building through the back door. That’s right. Stan Lee walked right in front of me! He was met by a round of applause from those of us in line that knew what was going on. He smiled and waved to everyone. That was a once-in-a-lifetime moment.
The line did not move again for a long time. I felt especially sorry for the elderly, children, disabled and those in costumes. The line eventually moved, but at a slow pace. When we finally made it to the front of the building, the lady that was yelling yesterday had a bullhorn. I was like, “Where did she get that from and why does her loud mouth have one?” I had no idea what she was yelling in that thing because I was beyond hot, tired, hungry and thirsty. My stomach was growling. My husband and I got in line before 10:00 and didn’t get in the building until after 12.
We walked onto the floor and I told my husband that I wouldn’t be surprised if the fire marshal came and shut the place down. The floor was extremely crowded. My husband wanted to wait in a line for an autograph. Since I had my own agenda, we agreed to meet at a designated area at 2:00. I fought my way to the concession area and quickly knew I wouldn’t be able to find him. But what I did find was awful. The lines to the concession stand were extremely long. There were elderly, children, and people in wheelchairs waiting in those lines. I told myself that the place was going to run out of food and drinks. The concession area was pathetic. There were people sprawled all over the floor. Some were eating and/or drinking, others were fanning themselves or being fanned. It looked like a shelter, as if we all went there to seek shelter from a storm.
I knew the layout of the floor from Friday, but Saturday was no joke. People were pouring in by the masses. There was no elbow room and I tripped a few times over people. I elbowed so many people on accident, just from looking at books. I was almost trampled on a couple of times. I began to feel sick. I was very hot and sweating more. The show was so packed that if you looked down, you couldn’t see the floor. I was so tired, hungry and thirsty. My eyes watered because I wanted my husband. But I knew I had to keep going. So I stood over by a dealer’s table, took a few deep breaths, re-assessed my location on the floor and dived back in.
It was so packed that I could barely see the faces of guests at their tables. I eventually caught glimpses of the writers, artists, and dealers that served as landmarks for my husband and I. CGC was down and around from Ryan Stegman. A vendor selling protective covers was across from Joe Eisma. And so on. But I was barely able to use that method because of the dense crowd. I breathed a deep sigh of relief when I finally made it to Dave Aikins table. I told him I couldn’t leave without getting my kids something, as always, from his table.
My husband found me almost two hours later.
The dealers all had dollar signs in their eyes. They were trying to sell overpriced books. I don’t buy just to be buying. If I’m going to buy something for my collection, then I want a good copy. Otherwise I can read it online. High grade dealers tend to discriminate. They either ignore us or talk to us as if we don’t have any money. We are African-Americans but so what? We have money and it’s just as good as anyone else’s. But I have noticed that dealers tend to pay my husband more attention when they realize he knows what he’s talking about. That when he tells them to show him their high-grade (whatever comic he names), then that’s what he wants. Or if they try to sell him a beat up copy of something, he quickly refuses it. Some dealers have even asked his age and how long he’s been collecting because of his vast knowledge of the comic industry. I get the same treatment, but worse because I’m a female. We walked away from one dealer’s table because he would not end his call on his cell phone. There was a white male customer already waiting when we walked up. So that dealer didn’t discriminate. He just didn’t want to get off the phone. Oh well, my husband found what he was looking for at another dealer. And it was no small purchase either!
There were great sales for both singles and trades. Some dealers sold their trades for half off cover price. Some sold them for $5.00. I bought several back issues (singles) for a series I recently began reading, all at half price each. There was something for all ages, all at good deals.
We left the show around 5:15 and said we would not attend another Motor City Comic Convention. I met a lot of comic fans. I talked and laughed a lot. Every writer, artist and celebrity I met and talked to were very nice and friendly. They even let me take pictures with them. Just who did I meet and talk with?
- Joe Eisma (Zoe from Morning Glories sketch)
- Ryan Stegman (Superior Spider-Man sketch)
- George Perez (Thanos sketch in Infinity Gauntlet book)
- Dave Aikins (Books/sketches – Team Umi Zoomi, Buddy Teeth)
- Ernest Thomas (Old schoolers like me know him as Raj from What’s Happening. New schoolers know him as Mr. Omar in Everybody Hates Chris)
- Mochael Moreci and Steve Seeley (Hoax Hunters. They told me what the series is about and I bought the two trades right on the spot from them.)
- Billy Tucci and Mark Sparacio (autographs for my Heroes for Hire)
- Les and Seth Gold (Hardcore Pawn reality tv show)
There were many more I wanted to meet but it was mass chaos in that place. Never again.
We got home and found that Bleeding Cool had already posted an article. I was so exhausted that I couldn’t read the article for awhile.
I took vacation time to attend the Motor City Comic Convention. This was my weekend to work. My vacation was for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We originally planned to attend C2E2 and Motor City this year, but we decided to attend one of them. So we decided to attend Motor City since we’re only an hour drive away. Not again. Next time we’ll go to C2E2. If I want to take a vacation for another con, then it will be for the con I always take a vacation for. Wizard World Chicago. That’s always my weekend to work but it’s worth it, and my husband and I always celebrate our anniversary because it’s during that time. Another con close to me (1 1/2 hr drive) is the Detroit Fanfare. It falls on my weekend off, it’s lots of fun and it’s organized. I am hoping that we’ll be able to attend this year.
The Suburban Collection Showplace was a nice spot for the convention. I wish it would have been in a building closer to hotels, or somewhere with an adjoining hotel. I buy a lot of stuff and like to haul it to my room and dash back to the convention. I’m sure the guests would appreciate it as well, so they won’t have to lug all their stuff in a taxi or whatever vehicle that transports them between the hotels and the Showplace.
The venue was not the problem for the crowd. Stan Lee (I had VIP tickets at Detroit Fanfare in 2010 so I’m glad I wasn’t a part of that mob this weekend) and Norman Reedus weren’t the problem. Sure these two pulled the crowds in, but they were not the problem. The problem is the promoters. They oversold tickets. They know the limit for the building space, so they should have allowed a certain number of tickets to be sold. A certain number of VIP and advanced tickets. Once capacity is reached for those tickets, then everyone else should have to purchase tickets at the show, space permitting.
The promoters also need to get more workers/volunteers, and security. There was no crowd control. Most of the workers were very rude and unprofessional.
Will I attend another Motor City Comic Convention? NO.
The story begins one year after the fight between Spider-Man and Venom that left his mother dead and father injured. Spider-Man, aka Miles Morales decided to give up being a superhero.
Outside of being a superhero, Miles Morales is an ordinary teenager living an ordinary life. He has his best friend, Ganke, at his side. There’s also a teenage Katie Bishop, Miles’ girlfriend. Miles feels that since he is no longer Spider-Man, he can tell Katie about his secret past. However Ganke warns him against it, fearing that Katie will be put in harms’ way if she learns the truth.
At a rendezvous with Spider-Woman, Miles became upset when she tried to hand him a briefcase. After a brief dispute with her, Miles took off, leaving the briefcase behind.
I haven’t read Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, by Marvel Comics, since issue #4. I decided to grab and read this issue after Brian Michael Bendis, writer, tweeted that this issue would be a good jump-on point. And he was right. Several events took place in this issue:
- Discussion between Miles and Ganke about his giving up being Spider-Man and whether he should tell Katie his secret or not
- The meeting with Spider-Woman
- Running into Gwen Stacy while at dinner with his dad
- An explosion/fight outside the restaurant (No spoilers given. You’ll have to read and find out the couple that’s involved)
I really enjoyed this story. Well-written dialogue that is easy to read for all ages. I especially like the exchanges between Miles and Ganke. Short and to the point. But Miles appears in need of an attitude adjustment, having telling both Ganke and Spider-Woman (on separate occasions) they need to respect him. But then again, typical teenager.
Although I haven’t read this series in a while, I can definitely see a difference in the physical appearance of an older Miles Morales. He lost the baby face and although he is still cute, he is now a teenage boy with the height and attitude to go with it. Thanks to the creative team of Dave Marquez (artist) and Justin Ponsor (colors) for the visuals. Well defined features, especially Miles and Ganke.
I plan to continue reading the series to see where it’s heading. With Bendis as the writer, it can only go one way. UP.
VERDICT (drum roll please)
I recommend Ultimate Comics Spider-Man for all ages.
You may watch them everyday on Cartoon Network. Now they have their own comic book series. Regular Show #1 is just as funny as the television cartoon.
The debut issue of this new comic book series, by BOOM! Studios, has all the main characters in the story: Rigby, Mordecai, Benson, Skips, Muscle Man, and High Five Ghost. The story has all the elements and quirks as the cartoon series. Mordecai gets on Rigby’s case (you know Mordecai is the sensible one out of the two). Muscle Man creates chaos. Not only is Skips always knowledgeable about chaotic events, he always has a solution to the problems. And what would Regular Show be like without Benson yelling “Get back to work!”
The gang is at an outdoor benefit concert when Muscle Man starts a mosh pit, which eventually gets out of control. Now Rigby, Mordecai, Skips and Benson have to find a way to get Muscle Man to stop moshing.
If you are a fan of the Regular Show cartoon, then you will want to grab a copy of this issue and start reading. I’m a fan of the cartoon and reading the story was just as funny and entertaining as watching it on television.
The story is written by KC Green. A very easy to read, all ages comic. Silly and funny just like the show.
Art is done by Allison Strejlau and colors by Lisa Moore. Good visual storytellers. The characters are drawn true to the cartoon, a major selling point.
VERDICT (drum roll please)
I recommend this title, especially if you are a Regular Show fan.
It was the depression era. The year was 1932. Sheldon Sampson, a wealthy businessman, had dreams of being called to an island where he would find answers and help for his country, the United States. But this island is mysterious, as no one has ever heard of it or seen it. It appears only in Sheldon’s dreams. After traveling a great distance, he found and hired a crew to take him to this land of the unknown.
Sheldon’s brother, Walter, and some of his friends from college left for their journey, not knowing what was in store for them. All they had to go by was a picture of the island that Sheldon drew for them. The crew reached the mountainous island, but no one outside the group knows what happened while they were there. They never even talked about it amongst themselves. The only thing that is known is that they returned home as superheroes. Costumes and all.
The story jumps to the present. The children of the now aging superheroes have super powers, but most of them do not take their responsibilities of being a superhero seriously. The aging superheroes are still out in the field fighting villains while most of their children are living life in the fast lane. Sheldon’s children are partygoers and drug users. His arrogant son, Brandon, takes care of superhero groupies in the mens’ rooms at clubs. His sister, Chloe, is a drug abuser and uses the renowned name of her family to gain publicity, fame and endorsements. Soaking up the spotlight while doing nothing to earn it. They’re both slackers. They don’t care about saving the country. They just want to live carefree.
Walter’s son, Jules, is a slacker also. When a fight erupts between the heroes and a villain, Jules stayed back. His plan was to jump in at the end and throw a few blows. He is also using the family name for his own personal fame.
The economy is weak and the two brothers, Sheldon and Walter, engage in a verbal dispute over their roles as public servants. Walter feels it’s his moral responsibility to show the president what needs to be done to stabilize the economy. Sheldon, on the other hand, wants to continue fighting crime, as he feels that politics are to be left to the politicians.
Jupiter’s Legacy #1, a new by Image Comics, is a story about a generation gap and the problems in-between this gap. Children of renowned superheroes who has no desire to follow in their parents footsteps.
I went into this title with no idea of what it was about, therefore I didn’t know what to expect. Although the script is well-written by Mark Millar, the story didn’t grab my attention at all. There was no substance for me to get hooked on. Younger readers may find this story boring and hard to follow. Sure you have the younger generation running around partying, abusing drugs and feeding off their parents names, but you also have their parents, older heroes who believe in serving their country and being responsible. They care about the economy, their country and the people in it. Younger readers may not care too much about the latter.
I like the artwork. Frank Quitely (artist), and Peter Doherty (colors). I like how the appearance and style of the kids’ costumes immensely contrasts with that of the more classic style of costumes worn by the older heroes.
I was bored stiff by this debut issue. I only found one page turner. And I couldn’t turn it because it was the last page. As of now I’m up in the air as to whether I will give the next issue a try or not.
VERDICT (drum roll please)
I do not recommend this title.
A dying Otto Octavius, aka Doctor Octopus or Doc Ock, found a way to switch bodies with Peter Parker. Having gained the memories, powers and skills of Spider-Man, Otto now realizes the responsibilities that comes with being Spider-Man. Otto vowed to be a better Spider-Man. A smarter Spider-Man. SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN. However a small piece of Peter Parker is in the brain of the Superior Spider-Man. Stuck in Otto’s brain, Peter is forced to watch Otto live his life and trying his hardest to keep Otto in check and out of trouble.
In the last issue, the Avengers forced Spider-Man to undergo extensive testing and evaluations because of his erratic behavior. Test results did not reveal an imposter and Spider-Man was released with probation.
Seeing an anomaly on his brain scan, Spider-Man went to the H.E.A.R.T. Clinic to take back his neuro scanner that was stolen by Cardiac. Spider-Man learns a little girl was severely brain-damaged during one of his schemes, so he performed surgery on the girl and saved her life. Borrowing the scanner from the clinic, Spider-Man returned to his lab to study the anomaly in his brain. He discovered the tiny fragment is Peter Parker! Otto informs Peter that he is aware of him and that he plans to extract him from his mind once and for all.
The entire storyline in The Superior Spider-Man #9, a Marvel NOW! title by Marvel Comics, is about the lobectomy, and its’ outcomes, performed on Otto to destroy Peter Parker. Or Peter Parkerectomy, as Dan Slott, writer, coined in the last issue.
Without giving any spoilers, I will just say that this issue is full of surprises. I am amazed at the scope of this storyline. The events that take place in this issue are breathtaking. Action packed. Adrenaline inducing. Peter was not going down without a fight, and he and Otto were prepared for each other. And well prepared they were.
The Superior Spider-Man series is not to be read lightly. The more I read this title, the more involved I become in the story. Especially this issue. Peter and Otto fought long and hard, but I want to set the physical battle aside and talk about the verbal exchanges between the two of them. Peter came down hard on Otto about his portrayal as Spider-Man. He reminded him of nearly being fired from the Avengers, and the brutal treatment towards his enemies, including the murder of one of them (I won’t mention the name in case you haven’t read the issue yet). He was basically telling Otto that he’s not worthy of being Spider-Man and that he should give him his life back.
Otto, however, broke it down to Peter and let him know why he’s the better Spider-Man. Peter was always slinging around town being the “Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man.” Always comical. Wanting to be loved by everyone. Not using his powers to its’ fullest extent, he always went easy on his enemies. Since Otto has been Spider-Man, there has been a reduction of crime in the city. And he gets full support from the mayor and the police. Superior Spider-Man has taken down several enemies that Peter Parker went too easy on. The Vulture and Massacre are perfect examples (again I won’t spoil it in case you haven’t read it yet).
I totally agree with Otto and I feel that he is the better Spider-Man. He created a device to help Aunt May walk. He stopped the Vulture from using children as his henchmen. He re-enrolled in college to take that last credit and write a thesis for his (Peter) Doctorate Degree. He saved that little girl’s life with the brain damage. Otto may be a villain, but he is a hero at heart. He has shown compassion far too many times for it to go unnoticed.
The Superior Spider-Man #9 is probably Slott’s best issue yet. Well written and engaging dialogue. Phenomenal character interactions. Compelling characters, especially Otto. A lot of information is packed in this fast paced story but it’s not hard to follow.
Superb artwork by Ryan Stegman (artist) and Edgar Delgado (colors). These two are great at visual storytelling. I especially like the cover. Hmmm, I wonder if the layout of my brain spells my name. Ummm that’s okay. I don’t want to find out.
There is no doubt that I will continue to read The Superior Spider-Man.
VERDICT (drum roll please)
I highly recommend this Marvel NOW! title.
Ultron has destroyed humankind. There are only a few survivors and they are scattered around the world. Most of the superheroes were killed. Wolverine and the X-Men #27 AU, an Age of Ultron tie-in by Marvel Comics, gives us a look at an attempt to prevent this catastrophe from occurring.
Ultron, an artifical intellect, was created by Henry Pym, a founding member of the Avengers. Wolverine, one of the few surviving X-Men, and Sue Storm Richards, the only Fantastic Four survivor, travels back to the past in hopes of finding and confronting Hank, to try to stop him from creating Ultron. Wolverine plans to stop Hank by whatever means necessary.
After arriving at a guarded, off-line S.H.I.E.L.D. facility, Wolverine and Sue decides to split up. Wolverine is to look for a battery, while Sue looks for records, tracking devices, and anything else that will give her an idea of Hank’s location.
Using the monitors to try to locate Hank, Sue realizes the system is set up to monitor everyone on Earth that has super powers. They’re even monitored in their own homes. She watched her life change before her, starting from a particular day at the Baxter Building.
Wolverine attempts to save an alien creature, only to realize the creature is the Brood! After killing the alien parasite, he realizes that he is the one responsible for the Brood becoming evil.
This title is a one-shot. An Age of Ultron tie-in. It is difficult for me to review a one-shot because I do not want to disclose too much information. So I usually just post somewhat of a shell of the story. This way you will have something to look forward to in the story. Like what happened when Sue watched that day at the Baxter Building? Exactly what went down between Wolverine and the Brood?
I really enjoyed this story and it is to be continued in Age of Ultron #6. Well written dialogue. Matt Kindt is the writer.
Great artwork. No complaints in that area. Paco Medina is the artist. David Curiel and Rachelle Rosenberg are the colorists.
VERDICT (drum roll please)
If you are reading Age of Ultron, then you should be reading all the tie-ins. Since Wolverine and the X-Men #27 AU is a tie-in, you should be reading this title as well. I highly recommend this title by Marvel Comics.
Ultron had one goal. And that goal was to destroy humanity. Ultron is an artificial intelligence (robot) created by Henry “Hank” Pym, a founding member of the Avengers.
Ultron attempted many times to destroy the world, but the Avengers stopped him every time. Some predicted he would succeed one day. And that day has come. Ultron has destroyed humankind. There are only a few survivors, scattered around the world.
In the last issue, the surviving heroes travelled to the Savage Land, where they met up with Ka-Zar and Nick Fury. They soon learned, thanks to a dying Luke Cage, that Ultron is running his scheme from the future. Nick Fury has been preparing for the annihilation by Ultron for a long time, and has a stash of weapons and gadgets. He even has an Iron Man costume! So a small group of them travelled into the future in an attempt to take on Ultron. Some of the heroes include Nick Fury, Captain America, Storm, Iron Man and Red Hulk.
However Wolverine had his own agenda: go back in the past to confront Hank Pym to try to stop him from creating Ultron. I blogged briefly about that in my review of Wolverine and the X-Men #27 AU.
In Age of Ultron #6, by Marvel Comics, Wolverine has travelled back in the past to the Savage Land, Antarctica. Sensing someone other than himself, Sue Richard appeared. The two of them found Hank in the middle of an experiment. An experiment of advanced artificial intelligence. Wolverine and Sue confronted Hank, but it wasn’t a friendly meeting.
Meanwhile, following Nick Fury’s lead into the future, the time-travelling heroes encounter an endless number of Ultron patrols. A long and hard battle follows.
I am still enjoying the Age of Ultron mini-series. Brian Michael Bendis is the writer. The dialogue is well-written and each issue is always better than the last. I like the interactions among the characters. I am especially amazed at how well they are all working as a team.
This story is not only about survival, but trust as well. With that being said, the only part about the story I didn’t like is Red Hulk’s interaction with Taskmaster. Whether or not you trust someone is not an issue right now. There are only a handful of survivors and teamwork should be prevalent. Red Hulk was quick to judge. That bought tears to my eyes.
I love the artwork, especially the going back and forth between the past and the future. The art team for the present includes Brandon Peterson (artist) and Paul Mounts (colors). The art team for the past includes Carlos Pacheco (pencils) and Jose Villarrubia (colors)
VERDICT (drum roll please)
I highly recommend Age of Ultron.