Fan Expo – A Week Later

Here’s a recording of Chris and Walt driving home from the Fan Expo Comic Con in Toronto. They just ate some chicken wings and jumped back into the van and hit record as they drove back to the shop for some tough unloading.

Please let us know what you thought of the show. Just leave a comment in the comments field; all that we ask is that you keep things civil.

Did you attend Fan Expo? What were your thoughts?

Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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8 Comments

  1. We need a low-frequency filter. I am carsick.

    “Saved for the customer?” – What the heck does this mean? Does Harley just buy and never sell? Come on. The only thing this can mean is that you priced below market and somebody other than Harley took advantage of it. Big deal. The only argument for this is as a Big B marketing expense. I hate those kinds of arguments.

    The bin stories were even better on audio. I think the 1985 to present scarcity wave is building – a combination of lack of love for the boom printings up to around 2000, and the lower print runs after. There are of course a near-infinite number of books from this period, but the cream of these is really starting to get noticed. Like I said in my earlier comment, I will save my high-dollar purchases for the internet, but my low-dollar purchases are going to be at the cons.

    Unfortunately, as has been the case for me for decades, this means my LCS is left out. I don’t want it to be this way, but if I can pick up books at 50-75% below cover price at the cons, what incentive do I have to buy them for full price at the LCS? This brings us back to the “new books are too expensive” problem.

  2. Called me out on the “saved for customer” remark now did you? Of course you’re right, I rmember once a Pete Dixon from Paradise Comics had a nice new stash on comics before a show and Harley hit him early, well before the show opened. Pete mentioned later that he thought he priced them all just right, I asked how so, he said Harley only bought three of them!

  3. welcome back lads, thank you for some wonderful entertainment. Boy, those high grade Tombs had my ears up!

    Congratulations on a success convention!

    Whatnot: amateur sellers starting at low starting prices, very low resolution pictures (usual phone camera and you’re on your phone) comics are for-the-most-part very rough, sellers take advantage of the fast pace and low resolution to overgrade very average books. Stay away, very little high grade is there.

  4. Spider, I just glanced at WhatNot and that was my impression. I think this and the other flash auctions rely on people’s optimism toward lotteries. “Only a few people are seeing this and it will be over soon!” Yeah right. I’m sure the sellers are motivated to give stuff away for a song. Not. I will save 99% of my raw buying for when I can inspect and haggle in person.

  5. WhatNot has evolved into it’s current format. What happened was it started a year ago, proper shop owners hopped on, saw they had 20 people in the room, started selling a nice, high grade Tomb of Dracula and got 5 bids and a sale price of $8. They quickly realise the market for high grade isn’t there, so the books get worse…and it becomes apparent the majority of the audience are young, new & inexperienced – quite simply, they don’t understand that grade matters. You’ve got auctions running for 30 seconds, talk up the book, move on. Needless to say, a whole bunch of guys realise that you go to the LCS, raid the 50c/75c/$1 bins – then you start your auctions at $3 and you are earning immediately. It’s usually just drek now, and not worth the risk.

  6. Good info Spider, at the con they were all high gloss, high energy, perfect for attracting the young, out of the hobby crowd. I assume they auction off all kinds of things, not just comics?

  7. Walt, the problem with the last few years is that the hobby has attracted people who have no motivation to educate and nurture…they are fly-by-nigh operators who move in to the hobby for the new money, grab as quick as they can and they will move out (it’s not like they have stores and faces etc.)…but that’s not my problem…it’s the new generation of collectors that will be burnt and leave the hobby. No one buying a $300 Blackflag acetate exclusive is getting their money back, and when it dawns on them they are going to feel justifiably cheated.

    This site does a great job for inexperienced collectors, they can read at a leisurely pace, go away and research, ruminate and become knowledgable. We, as a community, need the new folks, we need their passion, their excitement for different things, their new world view….we do not need to scam these people bit by bit bu bit until they realise that they’ve spent a year of WhatNot, spent thousands, and have a pile of mid-grade drek. Anything that discourages or takes advantage on new fellow collectors needs to be called out for the survival of our hobby.

  8. I like your attitude Spider, this is exactly what we need to do as a community, be welcoming to the newbies and be willing to pass along what we’ve learned along the way, at least to those that are willing to listen.

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