By Jemal Flores
It was a good time, at the Fourth World Comics in Smithtown, New York. Every year the event lines just get bigger and bigger. The fans were lined up down the block to get inside and have comic book creators sign there comics and toys. This years event included, writer Scott Snyder, John Romita Jr, Peter David, Charles Soule, Greg Pak, Reilly Brown, Cory Smith, Fred Van Lente, Chandra Free, Sean Chen and Crees Hyunsung Lee.
Fourth World had a special cross-promotion with DC Comics Instagram account. Fourth World was one of five stores to have a live streaming ‘story ‘going on all day with other stores around the country. If you have Instagram and were following DC on Free Comic Book Day, you would have seen the live video of Scott talking about how he loves this store. Fourth World was the place where he would come to sign and promote his independent work before he worked on Batman. He said that he appreciated the fact that he could come to sign at the store and bring some of his friends with the blessing of DC. The video clips showed a short tour of the store, It showed the crowd lined up to meet the creators, how fans waited to get into the store and some of the cosplayers both inside and outside meeting fans. Plus the message from Scott talking about how he came to be a part of the Fourth World family. All Instagram video ‘stories‘ are designed to only last a few hours never to be seen again.
Having a live interactive video that fans could interact with around the country, in multiple places in real time, I thought this was a very cool way to promote free comic book day, even if it only lasted for a few hours online. Being a family-run business and having been a part of the community for 30 years, the Fourth World was full of children and adults of all ages, all happy to get free books signed. I grabbed myself the four comics allowed, Secret Empire was what I was after. I was told by a friend of the store, a man named Jessie the DC Instagram proxy, to tag my photos taken at the event the pictures are shown here in this article.
John Romita Jr. one of my all time favorite comic book artist was there. I had the opportunity to briefly ask him about his art process. I asked, How long would it take for him to draw one comic book page? He said, that he could finish three pages in one day, if they were not that elaborate in design. The more elaborate pieces would take about one day. He then picked up a copy of the Hulk he was about to sign and said that, this Hulk cover would have taken one day to draw.
I took a photo with Scott at the signing table, all of the creators were very pleasant and happy to be there. Snyder and Romita stayed sighing well past their scheduled time and the fans really appreciated it. Reilly Brown was a half hour early and started to sign taking Peter David’s place at the table.
David did not leave before signing everyone’s comics on the long line outside the store, even though it was well past the time for him to leave. I had a great time and I will be back next year.
Jemal Flores is Comic Book Collector, & Charity Cosplayer. He is a fan of all things nerdy.
You can follow him @chojinmahn on Twitter.