Crossposted on Film.com
I've been attending comic book conventions since I was two years old and perhaps my most favorite part of every experience, no matter how many stars are in attendance, no matter how much footage I see, no matter how amazing the cosplay is, no matter how much drinking with fun folk occurs (don't worry, that part didn't start until I was 16. I mean...21...), is raiding the dealer's room for awesome swag and merchandise. ESPECIALLY at Wondercon, which may be packed, but not overly filled to the brim or ginormous enough to make the Dealer's Room bridge on the stressful and wholly enervating experience it can be at big brother Comic-Con. So I thought for the rest of you dealer's room loving geeks out there, I'd give you a taste of some of my favorite items seen and acquired on the show floor.
Green Lantern Light Up Ring
The most coveted swag of Wondercon 2011, these official Green Lantern rings, licensed by DC comics, were given out at the DC booth throughout the weekend. The only guaranteed way to get one was to wait in an epic line, so very few of our cohorts actually got their hands on one. I feared that because of this reason, I wouldn't be able to get an extra one for Da7e, but because the Universe quite likes us, I found one sitting on the floor during the Femme Fatales panel and nabbed it up. Buy one on ebay for 100 bucks, or better yet, don't. Are people insane?!
Star Trek/Reservoir Dogs Tote Bag
Of all the things I tweeted this weekend, a photo of this tote bag hands down got the most response. Expect to see some Retro Outlaw items getting some love across the internets this week. The tote was only *five* dollars and the sole reason I didn't nab it was so Robert Meyer Burnett (or another huge original Trek fan) could. The design is also on a shirt, but as far as I know, you won't be able to find it online. If you are headed to Comic-Con this year, remember to look Retro Outlaw up as soon as you arrive so you can grab yourself one to carry your swag in for the weekend.
The Walking Dead Hoodie
Continuing my trend of owning WAY too much The Walking Dead merchandise, I couldn't resist buying this adorable hoodie from the Image booth for only a meager discount off the retail price. Not only is it comfortable and cute, but it's for The Walking Dead and there was only one size small remaining! And I do mean the COMIC mind you. So the hoodie is only and exclusively full of win. I expect to never take it off. Apparently it isn't available anywhere else yet, but you can pre-order one for yourself here.
More after the jump!
Brittney Lee Art Print
Ob.Sessed. Eruditechick and I made the correct decision of perusing Artist's Alley early on and discovered designer/animator's Brittney Lee's amazing work. I haven't been a fan of this particular style of animation in the past (reminiscent of later Disney works like Hercules, The Emperor's New Groove and Tarzan), but somehow when Lee does it, I can't get enough. A lot of her prints seemed to focus on sweet romance, from one of a pirate trying to get a mermaid's attention, to one of a couple kissing outside of a home in the winter, and many others focused on girls with cats. As someone who loves all of the above, it was difficult to not buy everything she had on sale. But ultimately I went with the one featured above. This particular print had sold out by the time I came back on Sunday, so the one Lee sold to me was the very print she submitted to Comic-Con International for approval in Artist's Alley. She personalized it to me next to her signature and I thoroughly geeked out. Look her up at Comic-Con and be sure to go by her booth. Everything is significantly discounted in person, plus you have the opportunity to get your purchase made out to you and meet the lovely artist! See other favorite prints of mine here and here.
Jedi Master Bathrobe
Another hot booth in the dealer's room was the "Robe" booth. I call it the "Robe" booth, because I don't know what its Christian name is. (Update: Its in fact "Robe Factory." I was close.) But a Jedi Master bathrobe has been on my damn Amazon wishlist for years, so you better believe when I noticed that they were 50% off, I bought one on the spot. It's terrycloth, it's huge, it makes me feel like a Jedi Master, it's the greatest purchase one could ever make at a comic convention ever. Hyperbole? What's that? The booth also featured Star Trek bathrobes and Captain America lounging robes, among others.You can buy one for yourself here, but it might be smarter to wait until Comic-Con for that sweet sweet major discount.
Hand-painted pop art takes on every geek character imaginable, I picked up one of these in magnet form as an "I went out of town without you" gift for my boyfriend. Anyone who can guess which character I purchased for him wins 12 points. (That number may or may not be a hint. Another hint: You will not see it on her website, but you do see it in the pictures above in large form - the small form is gone, because I bought it, but it's next to a character from the same universe!) The artist, Lauren Perry, takes commissions, and if you choose to order through her website, she can make you any character you desire. I hope I can find her again at Comic-Con, because next time, I'm buying one for myself.
Return of the Jedi Comb
I didn't actually purchase any of these $15 combs, but I was completely fascinated by their existence. Were geek themed combs a thing in the early 80s? How does it even work? Who uses combs? So many questions! I found these at a booth FILLED with bizarre and hard to find Star Wars items that would have made 12 year old me faint. But 25 year old me hasn't rewatched the movies in a while and doesn't use a comb, so the item went unpurchased.
Game of Thrones Sigil Shirts
Now I don't know a damn thing about the George R.R. Martin series because I'm stupid and have only read the beginning of the first book, but from what I was told, these shirts represent different kingdoms, each with its own sigil. The kingdoms are Stark, Lannister, Baratheon, Tully, Arryn, Greyjoy, and Targaryen and by the end of the con, you could get 2 for $35. But again, I'm stupid, and didn't have time to talk to Future Muse about how much she is going to want one of these, so I didn't get one. For a limited time, you can use this code at the HBO store to get the show floor price: WGOT20.
Lord Mesa "Lil" Art Print
Another amazing Artist's Alley find, it was almost impossible to decide which print to buy from Lord Mesa's booth. Ultimately, I went with a five dollar Avatar: The Last Airbender one, as I've only recently gotten into the show and own absolutely nothing relating to it. If you followed my tweets during Wondercon, you'd have noticed my never ending pleas that someone direct me towards a booth with a good stuffed Momo, but alas there wasn't a single Airbender toy in the whole damned hall. Fortunately, this print was a nice (and undoubtedly much cheaper) substitute. Lord Mesa was even kind enough to tell me where to stop looking in his book of prints to avoid Season 3 spoilers, as I'm only halfway through the series. I came close to buying his phenomenal Joker/Harley print and only didn't because I already have two pieces of fantastic Harley artwork, and too much Harley artwork on my walls may give people the wrong impression of me. Or the exact correct impression of me that I would rather wait to show you once we're friends :). Check out his loads of artwork here.
Dorothy of Oz Comic
IDW was giving away samples of the Dorothy of Oz comic, which will act as a bridge between The Wizard of Oz and the forthcoming animated movie featuring the voices of Lea Michele, Hugh Dancy, Patrick Stewart, Oliver Platt and more. I was very excited to pick up this preview, as the Oz books have always been huge in my family, Return to Oz having been a childhood staple. The movie is based on the book by the same name, written by the grandson of L. Frank Baum, Roger S Baum, and the comic supports the notion that the movie, like the book it was based on, will be more on the side of whimsical and fun than disturbing and unsettling, like the original Baum's books were, and like Return to Oz, based on his 2nd and 3rd books, most certainly was. I prefer the dark part of Oz, but was still happy to get my hands on a copy of this comic, purely for collection purposes.
Tony Fleecs' Pulp Superwomen
Also found in Artist's Alley - and I'm still kicking myself for not going back and getting one - were these gorgeous prints of what the covers would look like if superwomen were ever translated into the world of pulp fiction. Fleecs also has a series called "Adorable Tragedies" where he recreates the darkest moments in superheros lives, but in the style of "adorable" or as Lord Mesa calls it, "Lil". Click here to see Batman's adorable tragedy and here to see Wolverine's. Oh, and there may have also been a Team Spike print. I was so impressed with Fleecs work overall, my plan was to go grab Eruditechick and bring her over to help me decide which one to get, but I never made it back. Here's hoping Fleecs appears at Comic-Con so I can get one then - I much prefer buying art FROM the artist. Though if you want one for yourself now, just follow the link.
Cookie Vs. Wookie Shirt
This is just adorable and warranted mention. You can grab one here.
Of course, there was also great swag at many panels, including a Green Lantern shirt & lanyard, Falling Skies comic book, Priest 3D glasses, Femme Fatales bags and Dr Who shirt, and endless other great merchandise on the floor. This year in particular, I grasped the value of spending quality time in Artist's Alley. It's a great way to discover new artists, chat with ones you're already familiar with, and make some great, unique purchases.