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Comicpalooza 2011 Report

Houston, TX is not only the central headquarters of SF Signal, it’s also home to Comicpalooza, an annual media convention that started as a small comics-only convention, but has since grown. I attended the event on Saturday and had a good time.

There were several notable guests on in attendance. To name a few from film/tv: Deke Anderson (General Caven in the upcoming 2011 Green Lantern movie), Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett), Anne Lockhart (Lt. Sheba in the original Battlestar Galactica), Sean Maher (Firefly), Edward James Olmos (Battlestar Galactica, duh), Marina Sirtis (Star Trek), and Tony Todd (Candyman and Chuck), to name a few. From the comic and literary world, there was Phil Hester (Wonder Woman), Bob Layton (Iron Man), Marc Bernardin (io9 and Blastr), Steven Brust (Tiassa), Joe R. Lansdale (Devil Red and Hyenas), Ari Marmell (The Goblin Corps), Chris Roberson (iZombie and Superman) , AJ Scudiere (God’s Eye), Tad Williams (Otherland), and so many more.

So many guests and I only managed to say brief a hello to Marina Sirtis. Steven Brust and I chatted for a bit and I thanked him for his recent interview with Paul Weimer. I got to spend some time with the always-entertaining Chris Roberson, who was in an interesting panel on how to get started in comics. I completely failed to meet up with Ari Marmell and Joe R. Lansdale. Next time!

I attended a “surprise announcement” panel with Edward James Olmos, his son Micahel who owns a production company, and writer Bob Layton. As I tweeted from the con, the three of them are working on an interesting new project: a film called Mettle that realistically shows the effects of post-traumatic stress, in this case on a superhero. They successfully managed to pique my interest by explaining their approach (without really giving away any spoilers) with contagious enthusiasm. I’m looking forward to seeing it.

I somehow managed to not spend any money in the dealers’ room – a tough thing to do considering all the awesome stuff to be found in there. I also signed up for Apollocon while I was there – an annual Houston convention I attend.

Despite all that goodness, the highlight of the con for this book geek was to be found at the table set up by

The Heinlein Society The Virginia Edition Publishing Company. If you recall, there are the folks that are publishing the complete works of Robert A. Heinlein in beautiful leather-bound editions. The table also sported the actual computer on which Heinlein wrote The Number of the Beast. (Pictured here, click to embiggen.)

And as cool as that was, sitting innocuously on the table beside it was a true treasure for sf fans. It was a leather-bound book of appreciation from Heinlein’s peers that contained letters written in 1976 from many sf notables. These were not facsimiles, mind you, but the actual letters — some written, some typed and signed — of some of heavy-hitting science fiction names. There were letters by Robert Bloch, Ben Bova, Arthur C. Clarke, Isidore Haiblum, Edmond Hamilton, Frank Herbert (also pictured here, click to embiggen), A.E. van Vogt, and about 70 others. And I touched them with my own greedy little hands. This awesome keepsake simply left me speechless. Expect to see this published as part of Heinlein’s correspondence in the print run of his complete works by the society. (And I got to handle the reall thing – neener neener!)

All told, an enjoyable day at Comicpalooza 2011!

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

1 Comment on Comicpalooza 2011 Report

  1. Sounds like you had a good time. Wish I had attended.

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