Have you ever watched Tim Allen’s Galaxy Quest? You know how they are sitting at the Comic Con, signing photographs, before they leave the planet with the aliens? I wonder what it would be like to be the aliens who took off with famous actors. I never thought I would attend a Comic Con, but always thought they kinda looked like fun. This weekend was my first ever, and I was lucky enough to go to Arctic Comic Con as a vendor. I knew that Tom Arnold was going to be there, but I didn’t expect to see Bai Ling, Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Michael Biehn, Jennifer Blanc-Biehn, Wallis Day, and Keith Coogan. The event was postponed a couple times due to the pandemic, and a lot of people had been waiting for it, and had extra time to work on their costumes.
Before the event picked up, there was a VIP time period and very few people were there. I decided I would go and say hi to the stars. I didn’t talk to everyone, but I did talk about hockey with Tom Arnold and told Keith Coogan I have been quoting his most famous line from Don’t Tell Mom The Babysitter is Dead, “The dishes are done, man!” every time I finish doing the dishes. I asked what their plans were for getting out and seeing Alaska. I was surprised to find out they had not made any plans, they didn’t have a car rented, and they were flying out right after the convention. One of my patrons, Sig Larsen, was in attendance. He said he was rallying the troops to go to Whittier, but didn’t have a car. I made a lot more sales than I expected, so I had to make more prints, pack cards and frame pieces for my booth, so I couldn’t offer to take anyone anywhere, but I bet Keith Coogan and Wallis Day would have gone with me to Girdwood and back, if I had offered.
What was awesome about Comic Con, other than bringing my product direct to market, was the welcoming attitude and friendly atmosphere that this particular culture presents. You could tell a complete stranger you liked their costume, shirt, shoes, or whatever bling they were toting, and get an enthusiastic “thank you!”. I talked to people until my voice was worn out and then I had a beer and kept on going. I was amazed at the creativity of the costumes, but I didn’t recognize about 40% of the anime references. If you can tell me what comic character looks like Princess Jasmine on the top and Aladdin on the bottom, with a samurai sword, I would be very happy to know.
By the end of the second day my brain had turned to mush, and my inventory was low. I traded a print of Mando drinking a beer with baby Yoda (yes I know his name is Grogu) for a copy of Richard Griffith’s, Bubba Ship 1 A Redneck Adventure. Then, Keith Coogan came over and brought me a free signed plate and took a selfie with us. I was thinking of buying one, but I just didn’t know what I would do with a signed plate. Well, it looks great in my glass display case that I just got for the studio, and I will always remember that he is a good guy. Maria gave them a print of Pac-Man drinking beer, because Keith’s wife was wearing a Pac-Man dress and shoes. She said it would look great in their arcade room.
Cheers to doing something different, meeting new friends, and getting product to market! I’ll go to Comic Con again next time.