Thursday, October 6, 2011


A week from now, I’ll be at the New York Comic Con.  It will be my
first time attending this event and my first time back in New York
City since 2003.  I’m pretty nervous about the trip.

Going to my first New York comics convention in the early 1970s, I
was confident and excited and thrilled that I would be meeting some
of my favorite comics creators.  Dick Giordano took me to breakfast
one morning, one of many kindnesses shown to me by industry pros my
first time in the Big Apple.  It was a smaller friendlier industry
back then.

This time around, I’ll be walking into a convention larger than any
I’ve been to...with the sole exception of the last San Diego Comic-
Con I attended.  I can’t remember when that was.

I’ll be seeing a comics industry vastly different from the one that
existed when last I wrote for either DC or Marvel.  With one or two
exceptions, I don’t think I’ve met any of the current DC or Marvel
editors...and that probably holds true for the other publishers at
the show.  I used to know almost everyone in comics.

Sight unseen, the size of the show is intimidating to me.  I don’t
get around as easily as I once did and adrenalin only takes me so
far these days.  I’m in decent health for a guy months away from my
60th birthday, but there will be aches and pains and some anxiety.
I’ll deal with it.

Am I allowed to say that I don’t love New York?  I loved it for the
first couple years I lived there in the 1970s.  Since then, it has
been that old girlfriend I bump into now and then, but she’s gotten
meaner over the years.  In these days of electronic communications,
I don’t understand why DC or Marvel or any publisher would stay in
that overpriced city. 

As noted in previous bloggy things, I’ll be signing The Grim Ghost
and other things I’ve written at the Atlas/Ardeen booth.  I’m very
much looking forward to meeting Jason Goodman, Brendan Deneen, and
the rest of the folks I’ve been working with this year.  It’s the
main reason I’m making the trip.

Also as previously noted, I’m looking forward to meeting old pals,
making new friends, and talking to publishers, artists, and editors
who might want to work with me on various projects.  I doubt I’ll
make any deals at the show, but I’m keeping an open mind if anyone
wants to discuss such opportunities with me.

Since this is a big show and I don’t have a firm schedule for when
I’ll be signing at the Atlas/Ardeen booth, your best bet of being
able to get together with me for any reason is to e-mail me prior
to the show.  Then we can either arrange a meeting or exchange cell
phone numbers so you can contact me at the show.

Let’s see what else I can write about today.


I haven’t read any more of “The New 52" comics from DC, but I did
read the DC Retroactive/Flash issues. The short version: the three
comics weren’t as good as their Batman counterparts.

The best story of the bunch was the new one Cary Bates wrote for DC
Retroactive: Flash - The ‘70s
#1 [$4.99].  Gorilla Grodd mesmerizes
Iris Allen into being the (non-biological) mother to his human/ape
hybrid clone.  It was a truly malevolent scheme, but the story had
all sorts of unexpected human elements to it.  The art definitely
had a 1970s vibe to it, but it couldn’t hold a candle to the work
of Irv Novick, who drew Flash for most of the decade.

The issue’s reprint was a Superman/Flash team-up drawn by the great
J.L. Garcia Lopez (inks by Dan Adkins).  But the artist struggled
against a ponderous Marty Pasko script that was just as much of a
struggle to read.

For DC Retroactive: Flash - The ‘80s #1 [$4.99], William Messner-
Loebs and Greg LaRocque presented a new story of a delusional woman
who believes Wally West is her boyfriend and seeks to be used as a
hostage by various members of the Flash Rogues Gallery so she can
spend more time with him.  It’s a zany idea that never manages to
fulfill its potential and soon becomes tedious.  The tale’s further
encumbered by art that doesn’t measure up to the kind of solid work
LaRocque did back in the 1980s.

The 1980s reprint is also by Messner-Loebs and LaRocque.  It has a
few good moments, but it’s not a standout.

DC Retroactive: Flash - The ‘90s [$4.99] is the least of the three
issues.  Both the new and reprinted story involve time travel and
other super-speedsters.  Neither was very entertaining and both of
them were plagued by art that just wasn’t suitable for the Flash.
Adding a final strike to the “at bat,” the reprinted story was just
the first part of a multi-part story.  If today’s readers want to
learn what happened next, they’ll have to hit the back issue bins
in search of the rest of the arc.

The DC Retrospective/Green Lantern issues are on my reading pile,
so look for a review of them soon.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff. 

© 2011 Tony Isabella


  1. Bob Ingersoll, who has such a great memory he should be an app, tells me I last attended the San Diego Comic-Con in 2003.

  2. I still kick myself for not taking a camera to the 1972 Phil Seuling Ny Con. Were you there?
    One of my fondest memories!

  3. Your breakfast with Dick Giordano was at the 1970 convention at what was then called the Statler Hilton hotel in New York. And two people tagged along with you: Al Williamson and me.

  4. Let the record show that my friends remember my life better than I do.