Friday, November 17, 2017

JIm Shooter at Rhode Island Comic Con

My con season always ends in early November with the Rhode Island Comic Con. This year, the comic guest list was a bit more robust than usual (although the con tends to be more of a celebrity convention with a dash of comics). 

I was thrilled to see Chris Bachalo as a guest as I loved Shade the Changing Man and his subsequent work. I was also very happy to see Rags Morales as a guest as I loved the New 52 Action Comics with Grant Morrison.

But the big draw was Jim Shooter. 

This was my first opportunity to meet Shooter and as a long-standing Legion fan I couldn't wait to bring him a bunch of my old issues to get signed. What you will see in the pics are the actual issues from my collection, in the bag with my obsessive signature label on the bag. What you can see is that these issues are not in very good condition but who cares.

And Shooter himself was a great guy, engaging with the fans and telling stories about his work. 

So here are the issues I brought to get signed.

There was Adventure Comics #352 and #353, the first Fatal Five story and the death of Ferro Lad. Shooter said that Mort Weisinger told him that the movie the Dirty Dozen was popular and he wanted Shooter to see the movie and write a version of that story. Shooter didn't want to crib the movie so instead just did 'villains forced into being heroes' arc based solely on the movie poster. Fascinating.

I also brought Adventure Comics #369, the first appearance of Mordru. Shooter said that he has drawn a mock-up of this cover which he sent to Neal Adams and that is was Adams who said that Shooter's perspective was all wrong. This design was all Adams and Shooter was thrilled with it.

I should have led with Adventure Comics #346, Shooter's first Legion issue and the first appearance of long standing Legion characters Karate Kid, Princess Projectra, Ferro Lad, and the villainous Nemesis Kid. Shooter showed me a pic of him, as a kid, standing next to Mort Weisinger back when he was hired. Incredible.

I also brought Adventure Comics #349, the first appearance of Universo!

A few more issues.

I had to bring Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes #212, the first appearance of my beloved Calorie Queen. But this issue also includes the first appearance of Magno Lad, Esper Lass, and Micro Lad, frequent thorns in the Legion's side.

You can see I had Mike Grell sign this issue at a prior con.

And, I brought Legion of Super-Heroes #37 (2008), Shooter's first issue in the Threeboot run.

You can see that I had Francis Manapul sign this issue at a prior con. When Shooter saw that Manapul had signed it he said he thought it was cool that I had that signature on the book. But then he said that he was pretty sure that Manapul didn't like him.

I wasn't exactly kind when I reviewed this run on this site. But I thought it was cool to get it signed.

Finally, I brought Action Comics #339, Shooter's first published work ever ... a Supergirl story! He said the assignment he was handed by Weisinger was 'I need a 12 page Supergirl story by Friday. Go!'

So lots of good stories from Shooter who really a nice guy. He didn't charge for signatures and was glad to see that my comics looked 'well loved and well read', a comment on their semi-dilapidated condition.


  1. Awesome story! I saw Shooter at Heroes Con but there was always a huge line at his table, so I didn't take the time to meet him.

  2. Glad you had such a great time. Did he mention why the Devil’s Dozen was a tad short?

    1. 1. Jim Shooter didn't write that story; E. Nelson Bridwell did.
      2. Evillo's Devil's Dozen (Adventure Comics #s 350/351) had several unnamed henchmen; I always sort of assumed that they were the rest of the "Dozen".

  3. For all the bad things about Shooter, he needs to be honored for several great things he achieved.

    1) Breaking into comics at the age of 15 and writing a hell of a great series of Legion stories.

    2) Returning to the Legion and writing a second series of great stories.

    3) Becoming Marvel's Editor-In-Chief and basically saving the company from falling apart in the 1970s.

    4) Overseeing some of Marvel's finest moments: Claremont/Cockrum X-Men, Claremont/Byrne/Austin X-Men, Miller's Daredevil, Sienkewicz's Moon Knight and New Mutants, Simonson's Thor, Byrne's Fantastic Four, countless others... all on Shooter's watch, under his supervision.

    For all his other sins, we owe Shooter big-time.