Among the well worn stack of comics that I refer to as Barbershop Comics was an old issue of the X-Men that hit the stands late in 1981. There is nothing special about that particular issue, but the advertisement above for comic conventions caught my eye. I attended the Philadelphia convention!
The mists of time have obscured many of the details, but as far as I remember, it was the winter of 1982 and I just returned to the Philadelphia College of Art after the outrageously long winter break. Once there, I rushed back up to the 13th floor office of the school’s quasi-newspaper DUCKWORK to see the fellows that put together that publication. They were excited about publishing future issues of the paper for which I had a few ideas, but they were more excited about the upcoming Creation Convention where they were going to have a table to promote COMICO!
COMICO? What’s a Comico?
To their credit, Gerry Giovinco and Bill Cucinotta probably mentioned the name of their future comic publishing company more than once, and I probably figured, “Yeah, yeah. We’re in art school. We’re all going to be rich and famous. Sure.” BUT these guys meant it, and they were going for it! Renting a table at a comic convention was a big deal! These guys were making an announcement to the comic buying world! Eventually they did make a big splash publishing independent comics. This was the beginning — Comico’s primordial past!
Ye of little faith…
So I had to attend that convention. I remember hanging out with the Comico crew and wandering the floors scoping out movie memorabilia that was not to be found anywhere other than at conventions. It was a good time. Tragically, I did not take a camera, and I probably would have forgotten it all if it wasn’t for the ad in a crappy X-Men comic.