Indie cartoonist Javier Hernandez is a fan of the Fistful of Soundtracks channel (I'm glad to have introduced him to the comedy of Paul Mooney) and is always great to chat with about 007 music, so I dropped by the Alternative Press Expo in San Francisco on Sunday to say hello to Jav, as well as grab some comics by Rafael Navarro, Debbie Huey and Rina Ayuyang, whose new Whirlwind Wonderland collection I've been looking forward to picking up. I also introduced myself to Hellen Jo and Martin Hsu, two Secret Identities contributors whose work was brought to my attention by the project while I wrote my Secret Identities story.
Also at APE 2009, I had Brandon Bird sign a copy of his brilliant Law & Order coloring book that I bought from him at APE two years ago (he ought to be a script doctor after explaining to me why he thought Harvey Dent was unconvincingly written as a "white knight" in The Dark Knight), and I chatted about '70s movies with Michael Aushenker (I was surprised he hasn't seen The Friends of Eddie Coyle, which Criterion finally released on DVD this summer, so I recommended it to him).
Because of the lack of booth babes and cosplayers, APE isn't as photogenic to me as its sister cons WonderCon and San Diego Comic-Con. (The even smaller Asian American ComiCon, where I was given my very first con table, was a lot like APE, in terms of low-keyness. Speaking of my first table, what was funny about that experience was that outside of Secret Identities, I had nothing else to promote at my table because everything I've written and drawn has been published only online. That's what I get for being a webcomic blogger.)
Despite the minimal photogenicity, I enjoy the smaller and much less crowded APE way more than the other two Comic-Con International cons. I prefer being able to walk around without getting poked in the eye by someone's Hasbro lightsaber.