DREDDCON:3, The Brewery, London Dec 14 2002
Congratulations to Tharg for another fine DreddCon, for which I was
delighted to act as chatshow host, interviewer, and occasional voiceover
I only saw the panels I compered, obviously, so look forward to hearing
good reports of the Big Finish Dredd Audio panels, the Tharg facemask
prosthetic demo (I hope someone got good photos), the Tharg/Matt Smith
interrogation session, and The Crazy World Of Fraser Irving.
The New Droids panel featured Si Spurrier, Boo Cook, Rob Williams,
Adrian Bamforth, PJ Holden, Steve Roberts and webmaster Wakefield Carter
and raised (and answered) the inevitable questions such as "how do you
get into 2000AD", and "which character would you most like to do?" .
A straw poll of panel and audience suggested that the most missed series
from 2000AD are Harry Twenty On The High Rock, The VCs, Invasion, Robo
Hunter, Mach One, Alan Moore's Future Shocks, short strips of one or two
pages (eg Sooner Or Later, Captain Klep, short Future Shocks), and epic
series of six months length (eg Apocalypse War, Judge Child, Strontium
Dog & his dad etc)
The Established Droids panel featured Fraser Irving, Siku, Andy Diggle,
Peter Doherty, Steve Yeowell, Mike Collins, Mike Carey, Simon Fraser and
Simon Davis and provoked heated discussion about the merits of computer
games over comics, as well as unveiling exciting projects from all the
creators, soon to be seen in 2000 and the Megazine.
The Mega City or Brit Cit panel examined the difference between US and
UK comics publishing, with Alan Barnes, Andy Diggle, Matt Smith, Chris
Weston and Greg Staples. Topics covered included Todd MacFarlane and
what he owns, why Panini bought Marvel, how Royalties work, and how much
more some comic companies pay than others. A recording and transcript of
this panel might have given libel lawyers months of work.
Finally THARG'S PITCH FEST was the best yet, being the third annual such
event. 10 would-be 2000AD authors were given 2 minutes on stage to pitch
an idea for a Future Shock, short story, character or series, and all
were of a very high standard.
The Top Five, voted for by the audience, were:
5 - MEG TALES by Misha Begley (age 13) - 'What If..?' stories in the
3rd equal - THE GREY CABAL by Natalie Sandles - The elderly become the
ruling elite but have to visit other worlds and steal their sperm, when
they arrive on Earth they are 'greys'
3rd equal - YOU COULD BE A WINNER by Alan Donald - Readers Digest junk
mail is in fact an invitation by aliens to great riches, and a test of
human intelligence. With a twist in the tale.
2nd - SPERM COUNT by Paul Glasswell - Easily the biggest laughter
raiser. A hilarious and unpublishable tale of the anal rape of a future
Queen Victoria by a miniaturised Donald Pleasance. To quote Matt Smith
"I'll be buggered if we publish that"
1st - YURI GAGARIN by Arthur Wyatt - A Past Imperfect story revisiting
the Russian cosmonaut's 1961 encounter with cosmic rays. I hate to spoil
the ending, as this story will inevitably appear in 2000AD, so just cast
your mind back to the cosmonauts who went into space before Yuri, and
expect a twist in the tail.
For DreddCon overall, Attendance was healthy, if understandably lower
than previous years. By my calculation there were half as many people
there (paying 15 pounds a ticket) than last year (at 6 pounds a ticket),
which is ultimately more profitable for Rebellion and raised no
complaints from anyone present.
See you all next time I hope - Splundig Vur Thrigg
Kev F Sutherland
Co-producer and publicist
May 24 & 25 2003