This years show takes place next weekend, October 26th and 27th, at the Tacoma Convention Center in Tacoma, Wa and features a handful of amazing comic creators, vendors, and celebrities including cast members from the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and BucknRogers, all in a very family friendly atmosphere.
I connected with one of the show founders and producers, James Taylor to chat about Jet City Comic Show, and give him an outlet to tell us about the show. Read on.
TheSteveStrout: Jet City Comic Show is celebrating ten years with this event. Can you give a brief history of where and how the show started?
James- Jet City Comic Show: So both Brian and I helped started Emerald City ComiCon (Brian was a partner/founder), which there was a big need at the time for a better comic book convention in the PNW. As that show was growing we saw that some of the owners were wanting to go more and more the media route with actors. So at some point we all agreed that Brian and I would start a comic book convention that focused more on comic books and local creators and we kept it spaced out from ECCC on the calendar. So as they were growing we focused more on the basics, we kept costs as low as we could to keep the show affordable for local vendors and keep the ticket prices as low as we can.
TheSteveStrout: I see a lot more people at Jet City with children. What about Jet City Comic Show gives it the ability to stay way more family friendly than other shows?
James- Jet City Comic Show: Part of it is we don't charge ticket prices for kids under the age of 10. Truthfully a 3-year old has no "buying power" at the show so why should we profit off of them. Unfortunately some other conventions charge for those kids.But somehow, I'm not totally sure, there's this community feeling about JCCS that other shows don't have. Maybe it helps that we have kids ourselves but that's something we wanted from the get go was for families to come to the show and hopefully that younger generation picks up a comic book and likes. For us it's about community and building that community includes kids. We want a thriving future for comic books, for that we have to start creating new readers.
TheSteveStrout: Speaking of anniversaries, the iconic Buck Rogers series is 40 years old now, and you've managed to bring in 2 stars from the show in Gil Gerard and Felix Silla (Silla also from The Addams Family, which is perfect timing for Halloween). On top of that you have actors from The Power Rangers! How do you still manage to keep Jet City Comic Show so affordable compared to other shows?
James- Jet City Comic Show: It's a conscious decision from the beginning to put on an affordable convention for all. We could get big name actors, that's actually quite easy, but we don't want fans to be paying $75 for an autograph. So we've stripped the show down to the basics, eliminated some fluff that isn't necessary for the convention to be successful. We try to give bang for the buck, so to speak.
TheSteveStrout: I've noticed recently that you guys promote other area geek conventions, how do you feel that strengthens the region's convention scene?
James- Jet City Comic Show: In the old days, especially at the beginning of Jet City Comic Show and before, it was a community. So we are always willing to give back and help other shows and quite often a chunk of them make the same offer available. We're all fans of similar genres and of course none of us want to see another show fail.
TheSteveStrout: We interviewed a LONG time ago, so people may have missed it. Can you give a little info on you and your teams background in the comic industry?
James- Jet City Comic Show: I began working in comic books as an artist / inker back in 1997 as a freelancer for quite a few different companies, the bulk of which was at Penny Farthing Press (who just went out of business in September after 20 years). While working as a freelancer I published comic books under my label Rorschach Entertainment, helping give some young creators a chance. Nowadays I work as Director of Marketing for a fishing rod company.
Brian began working in comic book stores in the mid-90's, which is how we met, and is currently the owner of Subspace Comics in Lynnwood. Brian over the years has written creator-owned comics under his Micro Brew Studios brand, was a founding partner in Emerald City Comic Con and of course joined with me to start Jet City Comic Show in 2009.
TheSteveStrout: Who are a few of the featured comic creators scheduled to appear and where can readers find a full list?
James- Jet City Comic Show: We have a lot of guests that have never setup at JCCS in the past. Veronica Fish from Archie and Sabrina comics has an incredible art style, a serious up and coming talent. Jim Valentino, co-founder of Image, Karl Kesel, Mike McKone, Kevin McGuire and so many more. It's honestly a great guest list of people who've worked on a lot of different comic books. You can find the full list at the website, www.jetcitycomicshow.com, just click on guests.
TheSteveStrout: Besides awesome celebs and great creators, what else can attendees look forward to?
James- Jet City Comic Show: That's the cool thing about our comic conventions is that it's all inclusive. So besides the obvious comic books and their creators, you'll find toys, gaming, cosplay including a costume contest on Saturday. We have cosplay groups raising money for charity. Big Lego display that gets better and better every year and a couple replica vehicles with Bumblebee from the Transformers movies and a Supernatural Impala for photo ops.
TheSteveStrout: Where can we find all the Jet City Comic Show details and any social media presence?
James- Jet City Comic Show:
TheSteveStrout: Anything else you want to add?
James- Jet City Comic Show: Come to the show and have a good time. Explore, check out all the booths I'm sure you'll find something new. Go through Artist Alley and besides the big name creators there are many wonderfully talented folks putting out some great work.
I highly recommend coming to Jet City Comic Show and celebrating the conventions 10th year with us! If you see me, say hi and grab a thestevestrout.com pin! It's a great piece of flair for Halloween time!
Steve Strout is the media mastermind (haha) behind this site, host of the Comic Book Swap Meet, nerd, terrible artist, gamer, convention goer and comic book reader who spends more time rescuing toys from thrift shops than a normal adult should. He is also known around the northwest for his promotion of live music and stand-up comedy events and is the creator/producer of the Comic Book Swap Meet mini convention, and Olympic Peninsula Comedy Competition (which will make it's big return soon!). Follow him on Instagram at http://instagram.com/thestevestrout, and He can be reached for comments at email@example.com on twitter at @thestevestrout