New York Comic Con is over and the dust is settling (into the empty spaces in our wallets). It has been an interesting year at one of the largest Cons out there and we are so glad to have been there to share in the experience with all of you. There are very little places in the world where you can walk down the street having an entirely pleasant conversation with a woman with red eyes and vampire teeth, and getting into an in-depth discussion on toy collecting with a storm trooper. New York Comic Con is an experience I believe everyone should have in their life, it isn’t just about comics it is pop culture on display in its finest form. The folks at ReedPOP put on a fantastic, entertaining and highly organized convention that drew over 150,000 attendees last year, and we assume at the very least that many this year as well. When you enter the Javits Center you become overwhelmed with the sea of people many of which are wearing costumes of their favorite fantasy based icons. There are rows and rows of talented artists, writers and creators of all kinds, toys and collectibles as far as the eye can see. There is no lack of innovation, creativity and passion between the walls of this convention and that in itself should warrant a visit at least once in your life. We however, come for the toys.
If there is one thing that was extremely prominent this year, it’s the fact that Pop! Vinyl figures from Funko have definitely infiltrated the collectors market. They are everywhere! I couldn’t count the amount of exhibitors that were selling Pop!s though I was glad to see them. Before I came to the Con, I already knew what I was looking for so we planned the booths we needed to visit beforehand, the convention app was very helpful for that. As we walked around visiting other vendors it became even more evident the impact that the Funko Pop line has had this year, they were a topic of conversation at each of the vendor booths, they would note our gigantic Pop! Bag and start asking us “Did you make it into the Funko line?” this was a very common question asked to us throughout the day.
Did we make it into the Funko line? The answer is no. We chose not to even attempt to make it, even though there were definitely pops we wanted, we actually got the majority of what we wanted from the retailers like Hot Topic and Barnes and Noble that received some of the convention exclusives. The others that we wanted from some of the other toy retailers like Toy Tokyo and Fugitive Toys, we were able to obtain with very little issue. We are collectors, we do not focus on the resale value of the toys we collect and sometimes even if we want something we choose to forgo it because of the difficulty in obtaining it. Many people were complaining about the difficulty of getting a ticket to even get into the Funko line, it seemed that there was a bitter love/hate relationship with Funko looming around the convention halls. Here are some things to think about. Funko has done a lot to try to help us as collectors get what we want. They have released some convention exclusives to the retailers for those fans of the brand that can’t make it out. They have done their best to regulate “flipping” by organizing the lines at the conventions and by limiting the amount of pops that can be purchased at a time. They don’t even let exhibitors, press or any other special pass holders to have any special access to lines; those folks have to wait just like everyone else. What we are saying is, there is no need to bash Funko because you are unable to get the pieces you want for your collection, if there was no demand there would be no supply and you would have no Pop!s to collect!
All I know is I can’t wait for next year’s Convention. This year gave us many ideas for what we are planning for all the convention goers. We will definitely be doing some filming and live broadcasting, interviewing all of our fellow Funko collectors and engaging with the lifeblood of the convention… You!
See you next year!