The 30 Most Awesome Notes on WonderCon 2010

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WonderCon: Zig-a-Zig Aaaah

11. Another difference between this show and San Diego is that there’s not yet a lot of videogame presence on the show floor–although there was a big booth that ran Just Dance demos all day. (The group seen here was coordinating their moves to the Spice Girls’ “Wannabe.”)

12. Splice director Vincenzo Natali made an appearance to introduce a trailer and an excerpt of his genetic-engineering/body-horror thriller. He noted that it’s “got a little of David Cronenberg’s DNA spliced into it.” (No kidding. Long live the new flesh!)

13. Oni Press, unsurprisingly, had a big display of  Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim books; they were also selling a totally sweet new O’Malley-drawn T-shirt that echoes the design of the movie poster.

(More on Techland: Scott Pilgrim vs. The World Trailer Wins, But Can the Movie K.O.?)

14. At Saturday afternoon’s “Trailer Park” program of trailers for upcoming movies, a chorus of dudes started booing loudly from the very first shot of the trailer for Twilight: Eclipse. Apparently there’s a certain kind of fanboy who doesn’t just dislike sparkly vampires but feels threatened by them.

15. Nicholas Cage on the visual transformation he underwent for his part in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: “I come from the Lon Chaney, Sr., school of acting.”

16. The Artists’ Alley area on the show floor was anchored by convention stalwarts like Colleen Doran, Frank Cho and Sergio Aragonés. The rest of its aisles were a mixture of industry veterans selling original art, aspiring fantasy artists hoping somebody would notice them, artists who thrive on interaction with their readers (Larry Marder, as usual, had a bowl of Beanworld “action figures”: dried beans with faces drawn on them), and people promoting sui generis projects like Anina Bennett and Paul Guinan’s faux-historical coffee-table book Boilerplate: History’s Mechanical Marvel.

17. There were vestigial bits of old-school convention culture hovering around the far corners of the exhibit hall, like the aisles devoted to leathery starlets and minor celebrities (e.g. the guy who played the Soup Nazi in that one episode of Seinfeld) who’d let you take your picture with them for $5 to $30.

18. Silicon-enhanced “booth babes” are, blessedly, going out of style. The first place I encountered any was at the booth promoting the Kick-Ass movie.

(More on Techland: The Addictive, Audacious Kick-Ass: A Spoiler-Free First Look)

19. James Robinson, at a sparsely attended spotlight panel, described his plans for the next year’s worth of Justice League of America, and announced that he’ll also be writing a twelve-issue Shade miniseries (about the supporting character from his old Starman series).

20. The result of five or ten years of high-volume graphic novel publication schedules from Marvel, DC and Image is that there are now vast quantities of graphic novels in circulation that nobody wants. There were half-off-all-books booths scattered all over the show floor, and by Sunday afternoon some retailers were trying to blow out $25 paperbacks for three to five dollars.

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