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NY NO-COMICS CON?

Laurel Maury at npr.org said he walked something like 200 feet into February’s New York Comic Con without seeing a single comic book. He saw “booths for video games, regular books, Dungeons and Dragons, sure. Toys, everywhere. But this year,” he continued, “the four-year-old NY Comic Con seemed to be about everything but comic books.” Instead, he saw premiers of TV shows, t-shirts, corsets, vinyl dolls, messenger bags “even doorbells.”  Said Maury: “It is increasingly clear that big ‘cons,’ as comic book conventions are called, are no longer the comic book geek's natural habitat — they're places to see and be seen, where Hollywood and the gaming industry try to get products into the hands of early adopters.” The New York Times, which famously doesn't have a comics section, had a booth. "We're here because a lot of people are here," the man behind the table told Maury.

NewYorkComicon  Maury tried to analyze the situation: “Part of the problem is that kids don't read comics anymore. It
takes about 15 minutes to read a comic book. At $2.95 to $3.95 a pop, that's a pricey quarter-hour for a 10-year-old who can get his mom to spring for a video game that will keep him occupied for two months. These days,” he went on, “kids who read comics tend to buy graphic novel collections, and the kids reading manga lean toward manga journals like Shojo Beat. So selling comic books is now about video-game tie-ins, toys and movies,” Maury concluded: “It's as if, just at the moment the comic book is gaining appreciation as a real art form, it's losing its vitality.”

For more Rants & Raves with its comics news and reviews, gossip and cartooning lore, visit www.RCHarvey.com

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