From October 6-9, the newly renovated Javits Center in Manhattan was home to none other than New York Comic Con! With an all-new wing and additional levels for programming, this year’s NYCC felt bigger than ever! Headlining guests included entertainment stars Oscar Isaac, Sebastian Stan, and Brendan Fraser, as well as comic book legends Frank Miller, Todd McFarlane, and Jim Lee.
As the mecca of conventions, New York Comic Con offers everything your favorite con does on an even grander scale: nearly 600 exhibitors, over 500 Artist Alley creators, photo ops, and rare autograph opportunities…
Above, Zeb Wells & Adam Kubert signed over at the Marvel stage to promote the upcoming Dark Web comic. But in addition to Marvel returning to NYCC, other industry giants made their comeback on the Show Floor this year. IDW, Konami, CGC, and even Funko (just to name a few):
NYCC’s Show Floor is one of the most diverse selection of merchandise you’ll ever find at a show. We’re talking about gaming, anime, custom keyboard parts, signed memorabilia, vintage toys, modern statues, loose & sealed action figures, magnets & enamel pins, mystery boxes, TCG & tabletop gaming, and plenty of exhibitor freebies & giveaways! Not to mention tons of convention exclusive items. This year there were exclusive Funko Pops, FiGPiNs, trading cards, apparel, and of course comic books.
Comic book artist Tyler Kirkham (above) dropped a brand new Whatnot exclusive battle-damaged Batman variant cover over the weekend that fans were going crazy over. Meanwhile, retailers like Unknown Comic Books, Carnivore Comics, Trinity Comics, Undiscovered Realm, Artist Alliez, Spectral Comics, and Comics Elite all had exclusive variants that debuted for New York Comic Con… many of which sold out right away!
And we can’t forget about the dozens of comic vendors, especially household names like Victory Comics, Absolute Comics & Statues, Dave & Adam’s, Royal Collectibles, and New York’s very own Midtown Comics. One of the great things about NYCC’s Show Floor is that exhibitors will occasionally bring aboard special signing guests that are not mentioned on the Official Website, so you definitely need to keep your eyes peeled on their individual announcements and scheduling! And speaking of surprise visitors…
Jack Black, Bowser himself, dropped by the World Premiere of the teaser trailer for the Super Mario Bros. movie! You never know who’ll appear at NYCC but you’re always guaranteed a great time at the programming events. While some did require reservations, others allowed walk-ins and/or standby lineups to give you the chance to attend some once-in-a-lifetime events. There are even reservation-based signings that are completely free with your activated NYCC badge so you’ll want to get your badges as early as possible!
But panels are a great way to enjoy hearing from your favorite celebrities, writers, artists, cosplayers, and other guests, while being in the midst of fellow like-minded fans. Another way fans came together were through NYCC’s many fan activations, which are immersive mini-exhibits that are oftentimes interactive:
Step in, be transported away from the con, and into a different reality! Whether it’s the promotional One Piece movie set (above), the Genshin Impact garden, the DC Batwheels go-kart experience, or the realistic Daily Bugle by Marvel, they make for amazing photo ops and comic con memories that you’ll never forget.
This year’s Gaming area was also massive and took up a whole corner of the new wing of the Show Floor. It was a great way to relax and decompress before braving the Show Floor or Artist Alley once more. Plus along the walls (and outdoors) were some pretty great food options to keep you going & give you nourishment throughout the weekend. Options included Nathan’s hot dogs, Japanese takoyaki, Menya Jiro ramen, cheesesteaks, birria tacos, a mac & cheese truck, and even sushi!
And you’ll certainly need that strength to brace yourself for the epic Artist Alley downstairs! There were local artists, specialized artists & crafters, all kinds of prints (metal, lenticular, holographic, wooden), and some of the biggest comic book industry names around! This year’s alley featured more art reps than ever: Comic Sketch Art, Essential Sequential, Kirby’s Comic Art, Trinity Comics, Scott’s Collectables (artist InHyuk Lee above), Artist Alliez… and even Jim Lee, Kevin Eastman, and Rob Liefeld were tabling here! And with comic book graders in attendance, signature witnessing has never been easier with companies like Agents of Slabs, Captured Collectibles, and the real deals CGC & CBCS/Beckett.
Artist Alley also gave a touching tribute to Kim Jung Gi who passed away just days before New York Comic Con. Fans filled his booth with flowers, cards, and special messages that were collected on Sunday just moments after I took this photo. It’s moments like these and so many others that make you feel at home at New York Comic Con, yet feel like you’re a part of something bigger.
If you’ve never checked out New York Comic Con before, hopefully this gave you a small glimpse into what it’s all about and you’ll want to join in next time! NYCC returns October 12-15, 2023.