Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Report from Comic Con: Day Four

The final day of Comic Con was a light one for me... mostly because after three solid days of All Comic Con All The Time, we're all ready to pass out where we stand... in line... waiting... forever... like the most colorful production of Godot ever performed...

I attended a few book panels in the morning, including a YA panel featuring my personal deity Scott Westerfeld (Uglies!  Leviathon!).  He, like Joss Wheadon, Orson Scott Card and Bryan Fuller, was everything I imagined a genius of his caliber to be.  He talked a bit about specificity in YA - how the characters are extraordinary in some unique way, and that shiny-snowflakeness appeals to us, at any age.  The idea that there will be a moment (a fairy godmother moment, as another panelist put it) when it is revealed that you really are more awesome than all those other people out there in the world.  When a Hagrid, or an Edward, or an Effie Trinket will pull your name out of a hat and you will be put on the path to the greatness you may never have suspected lurked inside your normalcy.  Then they went on to speak about the importance of setting - how many books are defined by the phrase "on a a world where" making the uniqueness and specificity of setting a defining element in YA.  In a genre that is broad and wild in its possibilities, it was a fabulous panel.

After that I grabbed some lunch to eat while waiting in line for the Buffy 20th Reunion (since the movie) Panel.  The actors playing Jeffrey from the original movie, Glory, Xander and Spike from the show and writer Jane Espensen and two Dark Horse Comic artists/writers filled out the panel.  They talked about the legacy of Buffy - which I think is powerful, no denying that, but when they laid the success of the "entire paranormal romance genre" at the feet of Buffy, I started to twitch.  Yes, I'm sure there is a symbiotic relationship between the popularity of the series and the growth of the genre, but it isn't so simple as to say Buffy spawned paranormal romance any more than you can say Running Man spawned Hunger Games.  (And speaking of Running Man, when is someone going to remake that movie without all the slapsticky one-liners?)  Yes, Buffy was awesome and kickass and I'm sure she did a lot for the genre of paranormal romance, but art is an evolution that is too complicated to be originated by any one show.  The fact that such a sweeping generalization was just accepted and run with by the panel made me a bit twitchy.  Luckily we moved on to favorite lines, favorite plot points, and then... after that panel ended... the traditional end-of-Con screening of Once More With Feeling, the Buffy Musical.  As a sing-a-long.  With heckling.  It was amazing.  Especially the shouting of "you aren't even a real person!" every time Dawn showed up to screw things up and get into trouble.  As a nerd who knows every word, I was in heaven.

It was a brilliant farewell to Comic Con.  I walked away with a big ole grin on my face.  Until next year...

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