Last year I had my first experience with Comic-Con out in San Diego, and boy was it a hoot. The size of the conference center, the number of attendees, the booths, the cos-players, the comics, the anime, the manga, video games ... enough to send you into a joyous shock. I loved it. I cannot say the show in New York (first annual) had the same impact on me. First off I spend a better part of last week with and recovering from the flu, preventing me from writing about the show earlier and second the show was over sold.
Now going into this I had to temper my expectations as I knew it was the first annual, but I knew deep down if it was half the show that San Diego puts on then it would be well worth the trip. Yeah, well, this is a yes and a no. I was very impressed by the gaming room layout. On the top floor of the conference center there was a cavernous room dedicated just to video games and in the back a ton, few hundred, tables laid out just for some card battling action. I saw this before the public was let in, but never made it back due to the crowd issue (more on that in a min). The hall with the main show itself was kinda cramped as the two larger rooms were dedicated to an art show and the other to a travel show. We got stuck in the basement.
So who was there, well DC Comics, Viz, ADV, FUNimation, Tokyopop, Darkhorse to name a few, but no big presence like Star Wars, big video game booths (some consoles upstairs as I said). All the booths were smaller, content really taken back. It was like the ugly little brother of the tall hot model that is Comic-Con San Diego. All this said, it was a good first effort minus the crowd issue.
The show was over sold. There was a line 200+ people deep that had paid and could not get into the show. Press were made to wait in this line also, and there was even a line (shorter) for exhibitors. I missed a panel I was going to attend and write about and had to have friends bring me an exhibitor badge to get me back into the main show. I could not go to the video game or card game room because I would have been trapped outside the main show, it was a mess. That is my one gripe about the show. It was fun, a good two days, and I'll tell you about Richard A. Knaak, Frank Miller, Peter Max and Manga Studio another time.