PAGING ALL FANS OF COMIC BOOKS
THE SEATTLE TIMES-November 12, 1988
Author: VICTOR STREDICKE
Attire at this convention is most likely faded jeans and
T-shirts. T-shirts sporting characters such as
Spider-Man, The Punisher, Teen-age Mutant Ninja Turtles or Archie.
Center Con 13, a comic-book convention, runs from 10 a.m. to
4:30 p.m. tomorrow in the Northwest Rooms at Seattle Center.
Admission is $2, and children younger than 5 get in free.
Comics from the '40s and '50s are caressed. Comics
from the '60s and '70s are debated. Comics
from the '80s are stockpiled. The basic
function of the convention is to sell back issues. But
the 70 collectors and shopkeepers operating 100 sales tables
supply a sociological study of comic merchandising - with
limited-series comics, hardcover and softcover graphic novels,
reprints, calendars, cloisonne pins, decals, buttons and
``This should be the state's biggest `con,' '' predicted Bill
Wormstedt, who organized this 13th annual comic-book convention
with Carl Waluconis.
Mike Grell, who draws the nationally recognized superhero
``Green Arrow'' at his Green Lake studio, is scheduled as a
special guest (unless he gets behind schedule illustrating a James
Bond 007 project), along with The Brothers Hernandez (Gilbert and
Jaime), who draw and write an adult comic, ``Love and Rockets.''
Autographs and advice on how to break into the business are
big draws, Wormstedt said. At noon, a panel
will discuss ``up-and-coming women artists and writers.''
Dealers will have thousands of 25- and 50-cent comics, but
Wormstedt said there will also be comics worth hundreds of
dollars. ``If there are any exchanges worth
thousands, they'll probably be pretty private transactions.''
Wormstedt said the comics business is thriving. There are now
more comic-book titles being published each month than ever were
produced in the '60s.
Sought-after comics this year include ``X-Men,'' an action
group that has spawned four additional titles, and ``Batman, The
Cult,'' an enclosed-storyline series.
Wormstedt said it is not uncommon for a drop-in visitor to
recognize the cover of a comic he or she read as a child and buy
it just for the nostalgic value.
Dealers from as far away as Detroit have signed up for space.
Steve Sibra, owner of Rocket Comics on North 85th Street in
Greenwood, is one of the local dealers who will have a sales
table. ``I don't take new comics to
conventions,'' Sibra said. ``I stick with older stuff, older
`Batman,' DC superheroes, `The Avengers,' `Silver Surfer.'
'' Sibra said he also uses conventions to add
to his own collection of '50s horror comics such as ``Tales From