Prepare yourself, South Coast of England: you’re suddenly being inundated with a whole raft of exciting comics-led conventions in 2018 which simply can’t be ignored. Shane Chebsey‘s International Comic Expo hits Margate in April, no doubt Simon Birks‘ Meanwhile… Comic Con will be returning to Chichester later on in the year after a very successful debut, and another newcomer to the UK convention calendar makes an impression in Portsmouth this May with a host of international comics talent, some of which hasn’t been seen in this country in over a decade.
Portsmouth Comic Con is the brainchild of Portsmouth Guildhall and Tripwire Magazine, aka its EIC Joel Meadows. Joel’s extensive career as a comics and pop culture journalist and publisher gives him the impressive phone book and contact list to pull together a stunning roster of creative talent, tempted to Hampshire’s sunny climes (or, let’s be fair, however sunny it can get down there in May).
Already on the call sheet are the likes of DC Comics’ Rafael Albuquerque and Cully Hamner and Tommy Lee Edwards, international superstars such as Geof Darrow (SHAOLIN COWBOY), John Paul Leon (STATIC, EARTH X) and Dave Dorman (STAR WARS, INDIANA JONES) and a jaw-dropping collection of some of the best UK talent including Frank Quitely (WE3, ALL-STAR SUPERMAN), Mark Buckingham (MARVELMAN, FABLES), Laurence Campbell (2000 AD, JUDGE DREDD), and Sean Phillips (CRIMINAL, FATALE). A full listing of the announced guest can be found on the Portsmouth Comic Con official website on their Programme page, http://portsmouthcomiccon.com/programme/.
Announced this week are five more illustrious names:
With THOR: RAGNAROK currently cleaning up in cinemas around the world, it is only fitting that the show brings the man who was the creative dynamo behind the character’s early ’80s renaissance. In his illustrious five decades long career, Walt Simonson has drawn many of the most iconic superheroes of all time including Fantastic Four, Batman and Superman. In recent years he has turned his attention to the creator-owned Norse fantasy epic RAGNAROK, for which he has been winning plaudits.
Joining Walt is his wife Louise Simonson, a comic writer and editor of the same stature as her husband. A major figure at Marvel and DC in the eighties, she has worked on and written for many of their major titles, including Star Wars, New Mutants, X-Factor and Superman: Man of Steel. This will be the first time the pair have been over to the U.K. in over a decade.
Tess is a good friend of AEISD, and someone that we’ve caught with on her previous visit to the UK for Thought Bubble 2016 – she’s been gagging to come back to our shores ever since. Los Angeles-based artist and comics creator Fowler, whose work has garnered a considerable following, describes herself as ‘an artist in blood and trade’. She is best known for books such as RAT QUEENS, HEATHEN for Vault, HEAVY METAL and is currently the artist for IDW/Black Crown Publishing‘s KID LOBOTOMY with Peter Milligan.
Another extraordinary artist from the U.S is Shawn Martinbrough. This classic illustrator has drawn CAPTAIN AMERICA, BLACK PANTHER and HELLBOY. His work outside comics has involved co-creating the supporting characters in Marvel’s DEADPOOL movie. His most recent work has been THIEF OF THIEVES – the new crime series from THE WALKING DEAD creator Robert Kirkman.
Last but by no means least in this latest raft of guests is Tim Bradstreet, a comic illustrator who counts STAR WARS in his long list of credits, as well as over 70 covers for Marvel’s THE PUNISHER and DC’s HELLBLAZER His work also includes movie posters and gaming, and he was also the artist behind the highly controversial Iron Maiden album cover A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH, and THE PUNISHER movie posters.
An impressive collective of creatives, I’m sure you’ll agree.
We’ll be keeping a close eye on the upcoming announcements for the show, as we get closer and closer to May and, indeed, we’ll be doing our best to make it down to check out the show ourselves. (I hail originally from that neck of the woods and it’ll be good to catch up with the natives.) Don’t forget, when any announcements are made, we’ll also be updating our Event Page for the show, http://www.anenglishmaninsandiego.com/event/portsmouth-comic-con-2018
PORTSMOUTH COMIC CON promises to be one of the largest regional events of its kind, celebrating the art of comics, illustration and the worlds of TV and film. The event is the brainchild of Portsmouth Guildhall and Tripwire Magazine. Tripwire has been, for over 25 years, the pre-eminent comic and genre publication read by some of the biggest names in the film, TV and comic industry.
There is still time to take advantage of Early Bird tickets. Visit www.portsmouthcomiccon.co.uk or phone the ticket line on 0844 847 2362.