2013 Comic-Con Report

July 23rd, 2013 | Posted in News


I’m back from Comic-Con International 2013 with a report on the event:

  • Too many people
  • too many funky smells
  • not enough places to sit down

New this year was the penchant for people to wear backpacks roughly the size of Rhode Island. Whenever one of these folks spun around to see some sight or another, it would cause moments similar to that scene in the Lord of the Rings where Sauron swings his mace and sends waves of elves and soldiers flying.

Enough complaining… Comic-Con is really a great deal of fun and tremendously cool, just so long as you possess yourself in patience when dealing with some people who either very selfish or very thoughtless. Most attendees are neither, so it’s plenty easy to have fun.

This year the National Cartoonists Society’s booth was very busy with signings by the likes of Jeff Keane (The Family Circus), Bill Amend (Foxtrot), Greg Evans (Luann), Brooke McEldowney (9 Chickweed Lane, Pibgorn) and many others, including an appearance by Jack Black who was signing the poster for his upcoming Music Festival along with the artist of said poster, NCS member Luke McGarry.

Personally I was reasonably busy not only signing for a few hours every day at the NCS booth, but doing a few panels and other fun stuff:

The MAD Show panel– On Thursday morning I sat in on the panel from the MAD show on the Cartoon Network… I wrote about that on Friday. It was fun, and the show is very popular. It’s starting its fourth season this fall, and will air its 100th episode in November.

MAD About MAD Panel– On Saturday afternoon I joined MAD editor John Ficarra, art director Sam Viviano, associate art director Ryan Flanders and cartoonists Sergio Aragon?¬©s and Peter Kuper as we discussed what’s new with MAD Magazine. Some of the big news was the upcoming “Inside MAD” book I mentioned yesterday, as well as the next volume of the “MAD‘s Greatest Artists” series, this time featuring Dave Berg. They also announced that the first 23 issues of MAD are available for digital download, and in even bigger news that other platforms besides the iPad for getting the digital version of MAD are forthcoming soon. General silliness ensued.

MAD about MAD Panel

MAD signing at the DC Comics Booth– That night I did sketches and signed at the DC booth. This is usually an exercise in “try and stump Tom asking for a ‘Draw Alfred as….’ sketch”. No one stumped me this year. I did Alfred as Batman, Superman, the Huntress, Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Rambo, Wonder Woman and the Golden Age Flash, plus a bunch of other goofy sketches.



Alfred as Doctor number eleven

MAD Drawing Demo– I did another drawing demo at the DC booth like last year, only this time I did things a little different. Using my smarthphone to look up references, I asked the audience to call out the name of a celebrity and then I did a caricature of that celebrity under the table can so people could see it happen on the big screen. Mixed results… it is hard to draw on a flat surface when sitting perpendicular to it, and I could not angle the table with the camera. Also I was drawing at 100 MPH with a sharpie, which sucks. I did Bill Murray, Drew Barrymore, Robert Downey Jr., Criss Angel, Leonard Nimoy and Sean Connery.




I also sold a lot of Doctor Who prints, but I still have a lot left! It’s an exhausting but fun week. I’ll be there again next year!

Next month, I’ll be making a rare appearance at another comic-con, this time in Chicago, Aug. 8-11th.




  1. oneswellfoop says:

    Did you draw Alfred (from Batman) as Alfred (E.Newman)? Too bad I couldn’t make it. 🙂

  2. Kenny Durkin says:

    Great report. See you in Chicago, Tom!

  3. N Gomes says:

    can we have a look at Drew Barrymore, Robert Downey Jr., Criss Angel, if you can post it here!


Sketch o’the Week- Julie Newmar! #batman #batman66 #catwoman #julienewmar

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