Con Artists

Marty (AKA Shekky) and I came back from the Montreal Comicon late last night after an easier than anticipated 6-hour drive back home. At the end of the con it really comes down to how quick you can get the van in: you have to be one of the first in that chaos that is a line out on the street, that’s the line that backs up traffic, has the parking guys all yelling and the cops coming to try to calm everybody down, throw in construction on every corner and you get a sense of just how good a job Marty did being one of the first guys in!

It was a very busy con, I talked to a bunch of dealers and they all said they did well. The booths with general pop culture merchandise were all very very busy, old comic dealers were busy too, especially the ones with lots and lots of bins filled with comics from the last 40 years or so. A comic dealer I know said 70% of his business was sports cards, the NHL held their draft on Thursday night and any Montreal Canadiens stuff was selling well. The Habs actually have a booth at the con which is a great PR move, (hats off to their PR man Jon who just happens to love shopping at our booth) they even brought in their #1 overall pick to the con for a half-hour on the Friday: bedlam.

One evening back at the hotel we shared an elevator with a comic artist but I wasn’t sure who it was: the guy looked familiar and I have a feeling he was a famous comic artist. We had a brief look at each other and the look on his face that I read was “you peasant, how can you not know who I am”, I’m sure he read my look and thought “this guy doesn’t have a clue” and I think he meant in general. Anyway, when he stepped off I asked Shekky if he knew who that was and that’s when Shekky lifted his head away from his phone…

Before I left for la belle province I did get a bunch of books ready for next week’s eBay auction and one of the covers that caught my eye was this Pat Boyette gem from Jungle Jim #26: it’s so simple with nice clean lines and a great perspective, it really works.

My ad of the week comes from Strange Adventures #222 and features a DC in-house ad promoting Showcase #88. Jason’s Quest makes its debut in Showcase #88 and reading the ad I think I would have lined up to buy this comic, which brings up the question why didn’t Jason’s Quest become a bigger thing? The concept sounds great and Showcase was a well-read anthology series at the time, I would have figured the project would have attracted legions of fans right off the hop. Is something like Jason’s Quest resurrectable?

The page of the week comes from Doctor Strange #181 and features the great Gene Colan. Don’t yell but I picked this page over pages and splashes that were waay funkier but to me, they were waaay too Steranko. It’s as if Colan was trying to get psychedelic on us and for me, it was too much. This page though is rooted in tradition but has a very funky panel presentation. I prefer Colan’s dark alleys and cityscapes with his odd angles and perspectives.

Summer’s here but there’s no slowing down for our internationalcollectiblesexchange weekly eBay auction. Sunday night’s auction finish had some great results including this one; a stack of some of the later FOOM! Marvel fanzines went for $460 USD. These old FOOMs were lots of fun.

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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  1. If that Jungle Jim isn’t a Rangers swipe, it’s certainly a “homage”.

    I was too young for that Jason’s Quest ad, but there is no way that it would have held my attention for a nanosecond. No color? Turn the page. Even now my eyes glaze over and I didn’t read a word of that confusing text. That is the anthesis of what I want out of comics. (On the other hand I finally bit the bullet and bought the Infinite Crisis Omnibus for a c-note, and I am champing at the bit to get my mitts on it. Color! Battles! Superheroes! That’s what it’s about!)

    I am not a huge Colan fan but I ended up with a nice copy of Daredevil #58 (first Stunt-Master!) and I really dig that cover.

  2. Meli…you’re not a Gene Colan fan????

    Put down that Infinite Crisis and take thee to an optometrist, post haste!!!

    Jokes, kids, they’re just jokes…they say there’s no right or wrong way collect…well..they’re wrong about that too!!!

  3. That’s the spirit Walt!!!

    if people don’t wish to conform to our superior and prescribed tastes…then the answer is obviously to dictate to them!!!

  4. I champion both black and white ( comes from my love of comic strips snd old movies) and Gene the Dean Colan one if my favorites. I am guessing Colan doesn’t translate into big enough bucks for Mr. Meli’s interests…
    On the selling front things are still going well, partly do to how long ago I acquired some books. Only key DC sells well. Almost all Marvel sells well, even the old anthology books like Marvel Tales and Marvel Superheroes. They may not go for a lot but better then something like Green Lantern.

  5. The other day, I picked up a beat up copy of To Riverdale and Back Again,the CPV $3.00 version but in only fair condition. The thing that amazed me the most was that most of the interior art was drawn by Gene Colan.

  6. Gerald, seems you’re a natural at this comic book selling business, I smell a part time career on the horizon.

    Klaus, nice find, I checked out a few pages, love those up angle panels.

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