Monday, July 28, 2008

SDCC: Some Thoughts

Woo! I just got back late from SDCC late last night, and what a trip it was. This year was my second time attending, and I can never get used to how huge this event truly is. At times, the convention center felt like a total mad house with all the people crowding around. I'm going to post a few pictures within the next few days of some TMNT stuffs (mostly NECA) as well as a few TMNT sketches I was fortunate enough to get. For now, I just thought I'd write some observations.

- The NECA booth did a great job promoting the TMNT with huge banners and displays. I was thrilled to see the turtles with a strong toy presence at SDCC. On the other hand, GoComics didn't have much of a display, though I did pick up a flier that featured Mikey on the front. The 4kids booth was a royal pain in the ass to find, and when I did find it, the whole booth was decorated in nothing but Chaotic. You'd think that the company that's producing a brand new TMNT cartoon in the fall would want to promote it in front of thousands of kids, since they seem to aim for that demographic and ignore the older fans (me included). The only hint of TMNT were the passports (see Murphy's blog) sitting on the table. As a major sponsor of the 25th anniversary, they could have at least made some sort of banner. I wouldn't have even bothered looking for the 4kids booth if I didn't need to get my passport stamped by them.

- Speaking of 4kids, a rep I spoke to at the official booth saw my TMNT shirt and asked if I were a fan. I said, "of course." He asked me if I visited the blog, and I assumed he meant the 4kids blog (this was the 4kids booth, after all). However, he meant Murphy's "fifth turtle" blog, which caught me by surprise. Either this guy is a fan himself, or 4kids is back on good terms with Murphy. Irregardless, he plugged Murphy's blog and told me I should be reading it (which I already do).

- Four guys dressed in turtle suits, minus the masks but wearing colored bandannas, were walking around throughout the convention. They were constantly yelling "cowabunga!" and "turtle power!". I also noticed that they were using surfer lingo when speaking to other people. At first, I just thought they were a group of fans, but then I saw them handing out TMNT passports. My thanks to whichever sponsor decided to hire these guys to run around and make sure people were aware of the 25th anniversary. Too bad I couldn't get a clear picture of them.

- While waiting in line to get Kevin Eastman to sign my B&W NECA figs, a woman came up to the cash register to buy the same set. When the cashier told her that Kevin was signing the figs and that she should get in line, she told him "I don't care about that." The guy gave her an incredulous look as she walked away. Her loss (unless she's selling on ebay).

- When it was my turn to get my NECA figs signed, I asked Kevin if he was going to participate in any of the 25th anniversary events. He cracked a few jokes, then finally confirmed that he would be taking part. What kind of projects, he wouldn't say.

- Overheard at the NECA booth:
Guy 1: "Oh my God, the turtles are back?!"
Guy 2: "Hell yeah! Check out the detail on those action figures. That's insane!"
Guy 1: "It looks like they just stepped out of the comics!"

- Kevin Eastman is a very generous guy who truly appreciates his TMNT fans. He's also got a great sense of humor, and I enjoyed talking with him. Simon Bisley, on the other hand, is one crazy man, LOL!

Coming up next: NECA pics
Coming up soon: TMNT sketches from various artists
Coming up later: More sketches (not all TMNT)

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