Now that I have had time to recover and to soak in all that I have experienced at NYCC last weekend I thought I would give a review of the convention as a whole. NYCC was held October 10th to the 13th and I was there for all four days and it was a whirlwind of fun and excitement. I’m still recovering from convention hangover so it must have been a rocking time. Like all shows there were a couple new things that were implemented some good and some well not sure if it was good or not. But mostly it was all good so read on to see what I thought of NYCC.
This year was the first year that NYCC used RFID chips in the passes for all the attendees. Whether you had a VIP, Press, Pro, Exhibitor, Single Day etc, etc you had to activate your pass on your home computer before you attended the convention. They have said that their passes have been counterfeited and they went the route of using Radio Identification chips to stop that and to prevent the convention center from being overrun. I have to admit last year the convention was really crowded and it was extremely hard to walk around the convention. This year not so much as they seem to have cut down on the people who did not pay and crashed the convention so for the most part I am in favor of the chips in the passes. Lots of people were complaining that you needed to get scanned to enter and exit the convention. I did not find this to be a big problem as I got there early and they had lots of people with the scanning device at the entrance. Even when leaving when there was a line to get out I did not find it to be a hassle. It was pretty easy and did not take a lot of time and I did not think it was that much of a hassle or inconvenience as people are making it out to be. If it keeps the crowds down to a manageable number and keeps the counterfeiters out then I am all for it.
What was strange and not the fault of NYCC was that DC Comics did not have a booth on the main convention floor. What they did have was a display of Superman’s costumes from across TV and the movies and it was really out of the way at the far end of the convention center on the lower level near the escalators to the Empire Stage level. I did not care for this as DC Comics usually has a pretty cool booth and it was really missed. What they did for their creator signings was set up a signing area in artist alley. This was actually a pretty good idea as DC Comics signings on the main floor is hectic at best. By having them in artist alley in an area that is hardly used at all makes sense and they are able to maintain a line that is not hectic and organized. It also cut down on those trying to cut into the line also which is a good thing. Another thing they could have done was hand out wrist bands to those waiting in line to get into Artist Alley first thing in the morning for the Scott Snyder Greg Capullo signing. It would cut down on a lot of people running through Artist Alley to get in line before it gets capped. It was first come first serve and you should have seen the people run to get in line. I was fortunate to get in line early and did not have to run and was still able to get a spot in line to get my books signed.
This time around I attended more panels than I normally do and I have to say that I was really impressed and bowled over with how greatly attended the two Doctor Who panels were. There were so many people that fans were standing up in the back of the rooms to listen to the speakers. This included the fan run panel that at first did not have any celebrities until the end when Colin Baker and Nick Briggs made a surprise appearance. The crowed was fired up and full of excitement. It made me pretty happy how much Doctor Who fandom has grown since the new show and the fact that a lot of young fans wanted to see Colin was a good sign that the newer fans are interested in the shows history. It was really a great moment for NYCC and hopefully they continue to have a Doctor Who presence at their convention. John Barrowman was without a doubt the best panel I have ever attended. I’m not going to give much away but if you ever have the chance to see one of his panels then do yourself a favor and go and see it. Just leave the children away from this panel as they will get quite the education.
If there were any problems I did not see any even though I did hear about some once I got home and was glad to hear the convention organizer put a stop to it really quickly. For me I thought this convention was really well organized and I found that the main area was not that congested at all making it easier to get around. Which seemed odd to say since they announced that there was 130,000 people attending this convention the same amount as San Diego. NYCC was lots of fun including Sunday which is kids day which is a NYCC tradition and one that I hope they continue for years to come. It is pretty cool seeing all the kids dressed up as their favorite super heroes.
New York Comic Con was a lot of fun for me this year. I had a blast going to different panels and interacting with the fans. Covering NYCC is a lot of work but very rewarding as you get to see all sorts of cool stuff and the fans were really clever with their cosplay this year. I was really impressed with the skill and detail they put into their costumes. It is always a sad time when I head for Grand Central and the train back to New Haven as it dawns on me that it will be another whole year until NYCC happens again.